It’s time to draw the line

It’s time to draw the line

Amy Winehouse sure has alot to answer for. And not just in rehab. Despite some pretty ugly off-stage antics, her signature hair and make-up look has rekindled some beauty trends that haven’t been so hot since the 60s.

First Amy-esque beehives stalked the catwalk for Donna Karan, LAMB and Nanette Lepore in New York, and now her elongated eyes are having their own on-trend moment. Which means polishing up on that trickiest of make-up moves: liquid liner.

The spring/summer shows in Europe showed liner at its sexy best. From the classic cat’s eye at Alessandro Dell’Acqua and the inky, lid-wide lines at Manish Arora to jolts of electric blue, green, yellow and fuchsia all over the place, it was all about working look-at-me liner to the hilt. I especially loved the super glamorous interpretation on eyes at the Dsquared show in Milan, where the make-up artist almost curled the end of the line and blended gold into a dark, velvety shadow on the lid. I’m feeling inspired!

But ogling and emulating are two different things. I’ve let my lining skills slip throughout my love affair with statement lipstick, and can all too easily imagine myself ending up like Alice Cooper in a thunderstorm. I’m seriously going to have to swot up on the moves I’ve been taught by the experts over the years…

Like starting off with a pencil. Tracing the line with a pencil first makes it easier to get the more precise application of a liquid liner right. And if you hold your lid taut and draw the line in a series of short strokes, rather than in one long move, it’s easier to control.

I really should reacquaint myself with the collection of MAC Fluidline ($32) gels and the Clinique Brush-On Cream Liner ($32) at the bottom of my make-up bag too. I like the dip-and-draw application of Fluidline because it doesn’t require surgical precision to get a neat line (just some practice!) and, though workable while wet, it then grips tight to avoid smears. Meanwhile, the creamy Clinique formula seems like just what I’d need to create the fat, graphic line of a Manish Arora model, though I’d still need a reliable liner brush to define the stylised edges.

Another clever tactic would be to use eyeshadow mixed with lid primer. The two transform whatever colour takes your fancy into a livewire liner that lasts all day. The staying power’s in the primer: you need one that mattifies your lids in one move and smear-proofs the shadow in another. I love, worship and adore Sparkle Sauce by Pop Beauty ($19.95) because it’s a perfectly pretty base for the entire lid and, when blended with powder, it doesn’t budge until you tell it to.

So that’s the theory, anyway. Now for the practice. I may be gone a while…

Images on right courtesy MAC Cosmetics.

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