EYE CONTOURING – how to corrective eye makeup

Eye shapes and how to contour them

Eye makeup is a very important for the whole process of face painting. But is has to be tailored specifically to the eye shape to have the highest impact.

Make a little observation of yourself and your girlfriends and I guarantee you your makeup skills will go right up!


Before we’ll even go to the eye shape and the various ways to correct them, we have to determine the eye set. Extremely useful when you want to know why you can’t wear, for example, all-around/Asian eyeliner.

This simple task will help you judge it really quickly:

  1. Take a brush or pencil. While sitting in front of a mirror measure the length of your eye. Mark this length with your finger on the brush.
  2. Take the length of your eye (on the brush) to measure the space in between your eyes:
    • If this space is smaller than your eye length you have got narrow-set eyes
    • If this space is bigger, on the other hand, it means you have got wide-set eyes
    • If this space is the same length as you eye it means you have symmetrically-set eyes

This knowledge is really useful if you would like to understand how to shade the eyes to correct them and to hide those little imperfections. So if you’ve just found out your eyes aren’t symmetrical then keep on reading!

Narrow-set eyes

Narrow-set eyes are set close to each other. To balance it out you should shade the outer corners of the eyes with a darker shade to make them appear further apart. You can strengthen the effect by applying white/light/bone-kind-of colour, matte or shimmer, to the inner corners. False lashes in a correct shape will definitely help as well.

Wide-set eyes

How to correct wide set eyesWide-set eyes are placed too far away from each other. To correct it shade the inner corners with a darker shade to optically pull them closer together. You can also line your waterline all around without looking strange.


Certain eye shapes are more likely to look good in certain shadings, so it’s worth getting to know a couple of basic techniques. I encourage you to find your own eye shape and be inspired. It may be your holy grail or you might not find it useful at all. It’s only a guide, remember, no rules in making your own face beautiful. Make sure you have all your tools ready and let’s get started.

Big (or round) or small?

How to correct big/round eye shapeSometimes eyes are so big that they are too big, honestly. It applies to a lid space as well. Try to concentrate dark shades on the lid without going too far above the crease. Line upper and lower waterline with black/dark/matching liner. If they are round, try to elongate them with eyeliner and false eyelashes.




How to correct small eye shapeYou can easily make small eyes bigger, by going a little bit higher than your crease with the shading. I’d suggest white/creme coloured liner in the waterline as well, as false eyelashes.




Upturned (or almond) or downturned?

How to correct upturned/almond eye shapeIf your eyes are upturned/almond, you have nothing to correct, really, so you can shade the lid and above the crease with whatever colours you like. Don’t go too high though, it never looks good.




How to correct downturned eye shapeOn downturned eyes, you’d shade the outer corners with a darker shade to correct their sadness and pull them up as much as possible. Avoid heavy eyeshadow on the lower lashline, as it will drag the eye back down. Elongated/”catty” false eyelashes can make a huge difference as well.


Hooded or monolid?

How to correct hooded eye shapeTo correct hooded eyes you should shade all the lid and pull the shading even higher, onto the hood. Use darker (not necessarily very dark, it may be medium bronze) matte eyeshadows, as they create most realistic shade. Shimmers bounce off the light optically making things bigger. In this case, we’d like to push the hood back to hide it a little. False eyelashes are an important step in here as well.




How to correct monolid eye shapeThe technique for monolid eyes is similar to shading hooded eyes. Pull shade up but with loads of blending and very consciously, to create a fake lid space. Elongate the eye with very thin liner if you want and don’t forget to tight line upper waterline.


Deep set?

How to correct deep set eye shapeThe easiest thing to notice in deep set eyes is a very prominent brow bone. What would you like to do in here is shade it with darker eyeshadow to hide that bone a little bit. I would recommend leaving one-third of the lid space lighter, but it might be one-third and it’s going to look fine as well.

I’ve got narrow and deep set eyes which are rather small.
What set and shape of eyes do you have?



If you liked this post you may find my thoughts about the idea of makeup interesting as well.

Let me know if you’ve learned anything new from this post and remember – makeup requires loads of practice.

Good luck!






eye contouring eye shapes eye shading

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11 Discussion to this post

  1. Jenn Worrell says:

    I can’t wait to go measure my eyes this evening. I have often wanted a little help in the eye make-up department, I’m saving this post! Thanks!

    • Paula Czarnomska says:

      Glad to hear it! 😍 Is description of the check clear enough? I was thinking if I should post a picture with it as I’m not sure if I’ve done it right 😂 Let me know!

  2. Tammy says:

    Great post. Love all the info! I was doing the natural thing for a while and am now looking to up my makeup game and this post will definitely help 🙂

  3. Mel says:

    This is super useful!! Thanks so much for sharing and love the illustrations of the eye styles. Did you do these?

    • Paula Czarnomska says:

      With very unprofessional equipment which is piece of paper, sharpie and eyeshadows – yes 🙂 I hope it’s good enough 🙂

  4. Akamatra says:

    Oh that’s very helpful! Would you consider doing one for the type of eyes that go down on their outer side? I haven’t found anything to help me fix their shape.

    • Paula Czarnomska says:

      You have one there already 🙂 But what is the most important thing you have to do – concenrate on the upper lid, place the shadows in cat eye way on the outer part of it and do the same with mascara Always think the most density on the outer corner.

  5. mapolo.style says:

    Great post, now I know a bit more about eye make up and what to do and what not to do

  6. Olivia says:

    Love this! Great info. Do you have any good recommendations for a good eye cream?!

    • Paula Czarnomska says:

      Not really but I’m getting to the point whenI’m going to seriously need it 🙂 I think I’d like to pick something from REN Cosmetics as I was never dissapointed by the brand, their products are perfect every time 🙂

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