We love a bold makeup look. While bright red pouts, draped blush, and mile-long lashes are fairly easy to achieve with a wide array of products and techniques—not to mention on just about all skin tones and face shapes—nailing the ultimate wing tip is not nearly as simple. At least, it wasn’t until celebrity makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes popped onto the ‘gram to share what we’re deeming the most helpful makeup advice of the year.
Enter: “bat wing” eyeliner. Oftentimes, when folks have trouble applying a winged eyeliner look, it’s because they have hooded eyes that quickly smudge the silhouette. Luckily, Hughes’ bat wing eyeliner technique is here to save the day. The trick is to apply your eyeliner with your eyes open and looking straight ahead. In doing so, you’ll be able to achieve the coveted wing tip, with the only difference being that when you close your eyes, your angled bat wing silhouette will be exposed. To be clear, that’s not a bad thing. The unique shape—started by Hughes—is something of a legend on social media now.
To see if the liner style is right for you, keep reading for 11 of our favorite takes on bat wing eyeliner.
Bat Wing Eyeliner 101
Need a video refresher on how to apply the bat wing eyeliner trend? Here, Jenny Stubbs shows us how it’s done. The Instagram video is such a joy to watch that it actually went viral on TikTok, making the makeup artist famous among the beauty lovers on the Gen-Z app.
Foggy Bat Wing Eyeliner
As the creator of bat wing eyeliner, Hughes has a way of applying her liner in all fashions—opaque and transparent alike. Here, she got creative with eyeshadow and makeup remover to mimic the appearance of traditional eyeliner formulas.
Sheer Gray Bat Wing Eyeliner
Remember: You don’t necessarily need liquid eyeliner—or even classic crayon eyeliner—to bring a lined lid look to life. Instead, dampen an angled eyeshadow brush and dip it into the color of your choice before tracing it into place. Cotton swabs dipped in micellar water work wonders for cleanup.
Classic Black Bat Wing Eyeliner
Sure, pale periwinkle wings are gorgeous, but that’s not to say that you can’t still make a statement with plain, jet-black tips. Here, you can see how shorter, wider wings can make for an especially bold end look. To re-create the look, try your hand at Hughes’ bat wing technique using Be a 10’s Be Magnetic Eyeliner ($24) in shade Be Alluring. The best part? Since it’s magnetic, it sets you up just as well for stellar eyeliner as it does for perfectly aligned false lashes.
Dramatic Bat Wing Eyeliner
While the bat wing technique is fairly straightforward, there are ways to dramatize the look. Case in point? These bold, tattoo-inspired wings. When Tesha’s eyes are half-closed, you can see the full silhouette. But when her eyes are wide open, the tailored design molds into a classic wing. Pretty cool, no?
Old Hollywood Bat Wing Eyeliner
Old Hollywood beauty is all about bold (but simple) black eyeliner and ruby red lips. And, if you ask us, Instagram MUA and YouTube sensation SmithaDeepak nailed the look. To snag the look for yourself, perfect your bat wing eyeliner with the OFRA Cosmetics Verified Liquid Liner ($20) and the brand’s Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick ($20) in Brickell.
Icy Bat Wing Eyes
While bat wing eyeliner can undoubtedly stand alone, it looks just as fun when paired with a fully shaded lid look. Just look at this icy eye makeup—a silvery-blue smoky eye paired with a deep black wing makes for a can’t-ignore-it makeup moment. Where the creator, Belinda Vossler, used Colourpop’s Truly Madly Deeply Palette ($17) for the lids, she relied on LA Girl’s Shockwave Neon Eyeliner ($4) in Blackout and NYX’s Matte Liquid Liner ($8) in black to perfect her bat wings.
Minimalist Black Bat Wing Eyeliner
Bat wing eyeliner is bold enough to be the only makeup you wear, if you so choose. Don’t believe us? Here, makeup artist Ana Reczynski shows us in full video fashion just how much of a statement black wing eyeliner can make all on its own.
Subtle Bat Wing Silhouettes
Depending on your eye shape and just how hooded your lids are, you may not need to trace as dramatic of a wing. That’s the case for YouTuber Saifa. Here, she shows how a subtle bat wing shape can look that much bolder when traced with a hint of fuchsia shadow.
Fading Bat Wing
We love any type of wing tip that is so expertly drawn on that the tip looks as though it’s stretching on forever, fading into the skin in the process. That’s exactly what makeup artist Lauren Mellusi managed with this look. The crisp edges come to a sharp yet seemingly infinite point.
Burgundy Bat Wing Eyeliner
Last but not least, we have another beautiful option from Hughes herself. Here, the mastermind behind some of Rosie Huntington-Whiteley’s most stunning looks shows us just how alluring a not-so-natural shade can look. The deep, cool tones are perfect for fall and winter, though they can be worn all year long if you wish.