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Brown vs. Black Eyeliner: Find Your Perfect Shade Now

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Eyeliner, often considered the finishing touch to any eye makeup, can transform your look from ordinary to extraordinary. While black eyeliner has long been the go-to for many, brown is gaining popularity as a softer, more versatile alternative. But which one is perfect for you?

Brown Eyeliner: The Modern Trend

Over the past few years, brown eyeliner has seen a surge in popularity. Many makeup enthusiasts and professionals alike are switching to this shade, and here are some of the reasons.

  • Natural and Understated: Brown eyeliner offers a softer look compared to its black counterpart. It’s perfect for those who prefer a more natural, everyday look. 
  • Versatility: Brown eyeliner complements a wide range of eye colors, from blue to green to hazel. It is used to create different looks, from a simple daytime look to a smoky eye for the evening.
  • Fresh Look: Especially in daylight, brown eyeliner can give the eyes a fresh, awake appearance, making it a favorite for daytime wear.

Black Eyeliner: The Classic Choice

Black eyeliner is timeless. It’s been the standard choice for decades and continues to be a favorite for many.

  • Intense and Defining: Black eyeliner provides depth and definition to the eyes. It’s perfect for those who want their eyes to stand out and make a statement.
  • Drama: Whether you’re going for a classic winged look or a dramatic smoky eye, black eyeliner is your best bet. It adds an element of drama and intensity that’s hard to achieve with other shades.
  • Universality: Black is a universal shade that suits almost every eye color and skin tone. It’s a safe bet for any occasion, from a casual day out to a formal event.

Eyeliner and Eye Color: A Comprehensive Guide

Your eye color can play a significant role in determining which eyeliner shade will look best on you:

  • Blue Eyes: Brown eyeliner can enhance the blue tones in your eyes, making them pop. 
  • Brown Eyes: Brown eyes are versatile and can pull off both shades beautifully. Brown eyeliner can offer a harmonious look, while black can add depth.
  • Green Eyes: Both brown and black can work well with green eyes. Brown can bring out the earthy tones, while black can add contrast.
  • Hazel Eyes: Hazel eyes contain a mix of colors, and brown eyeliner can highlight the golden flecks in them.

Advanced Application Tips

Achieving the perfect eyeliner look requires practice and the right technique:

  • For a Perfect Wing: Start with a thin line from the inner corner and gradually thicken it as you move toward the outer corner. Finish with a sharp upward flick for the wing. For an advanced twist, try using a combination of brown and black for a gradient effect.
  • For a Smudged Look: After applying the eyeliner, use a smudging brush or your fingertip to gently smudge the line for a softer, smoky effect. Add a touch of eyeshadow for added depth.

Whether you’re team brown or team black, the choice of eyeliner comes down to personal preference and the look you’re aiming for. Remember, makeup is a form of self-expression, and there’s no right or wrong choice. Experiment with both shades to find what resonates with your style.


Are you considering a career in the beauty industry? Summit Salon Academy of Portland, the best cosmetology school in Portland, offers comprehensive education in various beauty disciplines, including makeup artistry. If you’re ready to turn your passion into a profession, click here to learn more about our programs.


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