Makeup Artists Reveal How Much Longer Cat Eye Will Be Cool
While there are still plenty of beauty bloggers out there using eyelash glue to adhere straight up glitter to their lids, the general shift of makeup trends seems to be moving towards more natural looks.
But that also brings a question we might not want the answer to: is the cat eye, a 1960s staple which came back with a vengeance in 2006, finally dead?
For many of us, eyeliner was one of our first beauty products, and even when we’d leave the house bare-faced, we’d swipe some eyeliner on. But now, the natural look is all about skin products. The idea is to make it look like you have such flawless skin (and other “natural” features, like lash extensions) that you don’t need a stark black line jutting out from the crease of your outer eye.
As someone who still largely depends on liquid liner as one of the only makeup products I use on a daily basis, I had to ask the experts: is cat eye over?
István Hrichak, makeup artist and Director of Field Sales for Milk Makeup, doesn’t think the cat eye is going anywhere. He attributes the resurgence of the classic makeup look to Amy Winehouse, but suggests opting for a softer version for spring.
“Try applying [Milk’s] new Eye Pigment in After Party with a thin liner brush,” he says. “It’s a gorgeous rose gold that gives a fun subtle pop. True to its name, it’ll stay way past the after party, making your walk of shame less shameful.”
If wearing a light color on your eyes makes you look even worse than you do with no makeup, have no fear. Other makeup artists agree that there are other ways to re-up the cat eye without going metallic, but you don’t necessarily need to re-up it at all.
Carol Rock, Palladio’s makeup artist, also thinks the cat eye is a classic, and thinks it’s the perfect addition to a largely skin-focused makeup look. That is, if you can manage to draw a cat-eye without making it over the top, which tends to happen if you keep messing it up.
“Adding winged liner to a simple skin-focused look is great for people who want to elongate and define their eyes without having to pull out their eye shadow palettes and brushes,” she says.
Carol also suggests using the Palladio Ultra Fine Eyeliner Pen, which has a metered dose system to ensure that the right amount of product comes out from the tip. You know, so you don’t end up with a wing bigger than the ones on a Boeing 747.
At the end of the day, makeup is about what makes you feel better about yourself, and what you have fun with. Even if the cat eye is dead, I’d probably still wear it.
DeMille Michelle, Milani National’s makeup artist, speaks the truth when she told me, “there are no rules when it comes to makeup. You can always figure out a way to have the best of both worlds.”
She agreed that the “natural” makeup look was definitely on trend, but says that the cat eye is a classic that can always be updated with a new color or method.
“I would suggest using the Milani Stay Put Waterproof Eyeliner Pencil in Hooked on Espresso,” she says. “Just line your eyes very close to the lash line and extend upwards a little towards the outer corner of the eye. Take a small smudge brush and blend out a bit to create a soft defined eye. This is a nice deep brown that will give you that intense color but with a soft winged eye look.”
If you’re really feeling daring, Sarah Lucero, Global Head of Artistry at Stila, suggests changing the placement of your cat eye up completely.
“The greatest thing about the classic cat eye is that it can take on different shapes – you could say it has nine lives,” she says. “My favorite right now is the under swept cat eye in a cool color like our new Glitter and Glow Liquid Eyeshadow in Violet Vixen. I used this backstage at Alice + Olivia for the SS17 collection and it was gorgeous.”
I’m sorry if I scared you with the headline, but I was equally as scared when my editor suggested that I do a piece on this. Thankfully, these makeup artists have assured me that the cat eye is as classic as a Chanel flap bag. If you want to change it up with some funky new color or texture, have at it. But if you’re cool with basic black, don’t feel the need to change a thing.