Tightlining is the best way to fake thicker lashes. Here's how to do it without losing an eye.

This wonderful nugget of beauty wisdom comes courtesy of Mamamia’s beauty podcast, You BeautyTo ensure you never miss an episode, listen to You Beauty here for free. It’s a blast.

If you’ve ever wondered how to get fatter, luscious looking lashes without looking like you’re wearing eyeliner, do we have something for you.

It’s called tightlining and this subtle eyeliner trick is the easiest way to discreetly fake thicker looking eyelashes.

Got no clue what we’re on about? No worries, because Mamamia’s executive editor and beauty journalist of 15 years Leigh Campbell spent a decent chunk of time explaining exactly what tightlining is and how to do it on an episode of You Beauty (get it in your ears below, post continues after audio).

What is tightlining?

You might’ve heard whispers around the place about people putting eyeliner on the inside of their eyes. This, as Leigh explained, is a makeup technique called tightlining.

“Tightlining is when you apply eyeliner to your top and bottom, but mostly top inner lash line, or your water line or the rim of your eye,” she said.

“What you’re doing is, you’re creating a visual base for your lashes so they look really thick and luscious.”

Applying eyeliner along the top of your eyeliner also enhances your lashes, but tightlining or rimming the inner outline of your eye gives the illusion of thicker lashes without an obvious line.

You can also use tightlining to change the shape of your eye – Leigh uses tightlining on the top of her eyes only to make her round eyes look more almond-shaped.

A post shared by Leigh Campbell (@leighacampbell) on


Tightlining how-to.

If you’d like to try tightlining, here’s Leigh’s step-by-step instructions:

  1. Use your finger to gently pull your eyelid up (or down if tightlining your bottom lash line) to expose the waterline.
  2. Use an eyeliner pencil or a gel liner to trace colour along the inner rim of the eye two or three times.
  3. Hold your eye open for at least 30 seconds to allow the eyeliner to dry.
  4. Apply mascara and go life your life.
Once you master tightlining, you'll never go back to regular old eyeliner. Image: Supplied.

A few other great tightlighting tips from Leigh:

  • Never use liquid eyeliner for tightlining as it will go everywhere - use a pencil or gel liner instead.
  • Look out for eyeliner products made specifically for tightlining soon.
  • If you blink straight away, the colour can go into your eye - always allow the product to dry.
  • You can use black or brown liner, or white liner to make your eyes look brighter.
  • If you're a watery eye person or have sensitive eyes, probably don't try tight lining.

Oh, and try not to poke your eye out, would you?

You Beauty Cheat Sheet.

Other questions Leigh and Kelly answered, as well as their ‘spendys’ and ‘saveys’ (and where you can buy them).

'How important is the quality of shampoo you use, what ingredients should you look out for and should you shampoo twice?'

  • Quality and price are two different things - there are excellent quality shampoos at the supermarket.
  • Hairdressers will often say supermarket shampoo isn't any good because a lot of them contained (and still do) silicone, which makes your hair feel soft but makes it harder to colour when you go to the hairdressers.
  • Leigh said to avoid silicone, sulfates and parabens in your shampoos, however, silicone is more of a personal choice as some people enjoy the feeling from silicone shampoos.
  • Shampooing twice is also a personal choice: if you shampoo your hair every three/four days, the first wash will get the grit (dry shampoo, hairspray etc.) out and the second will cleanse your hair and scalp.
  • If you wash your hair everyday, there's no need to shampoo twice.

Kelly's Savey: Oral-B 3D White Whitestrips, $44.99 (but normally on sale).

  • These strips are really effective for at-home teeth whitening.
  • You get 14 strips for top and bottom, 28 in total.
  • It's a clear sticker for your teeth and you leave them on for about an hour.
  • They don't taste overly offensive, you peel off and brush your teeth afterwards.

Leigh's Savey: BYBI Babe Balm, $36.

Image: BYBI.
  • 100 per cent natural, vegan brand from the UK with really cool packaging.
  • Babe Balm comes in a bright orange tube.
  • It's a multi-tasking, all-purpose balm you can put everywhere (cuticles, lips, any dry bits).
  • Coming to Sephora in Australia soon.

Kelly's Spendy: Hydro Peptide Bambusa Blackhead Banisher, $34.

Image: Hydropeptide.
  • Blackhead strips aren't great for your skin, but Kelly loves these ones because they aren't' striping like others are.
  • You get eight strips for $34 and they're made with natural ingredients.
  • Kelly uses them once a week on her nose, and her boyfriend uses them twice a week.

Leigh's Spendy: Recreation Bondi Beach Sun-Kissed 50ml EDP, $109.

Image: Recreation Bondi Beach.
  • A Lady Startup who makes natural fragrances and oils - check with your obstetrician or doctor first if you're pregnant.
  • This scent smells like summer, it has cedarwood and jasmine in it.
  • The brand also does smaller sample sizes - a 2ml for $10 and a 10ml for $52 - if you'd like to try before committing to the full size.

Until next time, stay lovely.

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