How to apply eye makeup to small eyes

Updated April 17, 2017

When applying make-up to small eyes, there are some special tips to include to avoid making eyes appear even smaller. Since the size of eyes will not change, using make-up to enhance them is a great solution. Some common mistakes will make small eyes look even smaller. Avoid make-up errors by learning how to enhance the eye. A few easy steps to any make-up routine can dramatically change a woman's face, including her eyes.

Apply a base layer of eye shadow primer to the entire eyelid up to the eyebrow. This will prepare the eyelid for applying eye shadow and create a smooth area to work on. A primer also keeps eye shadow from creasing in the fine lines of small eyes. Creasing of eye shadow will look messy and darken eye shadow.

Spread a light colour eye shadow across the entire eyelid. A good choice of eye shadow colour for small eyes is a light ivory or silver. Avoid any eye shadow that is called frost. A bit of shimmer is OK, but a heavy frost will make eyes appear heavy and overdone. Dark eye shadows will only make eyes look dark and smaller.

Line eyes with a liner that is a deeper colour of the eye shadow used. Do not line the entire eye. Apply a thin line to the outer edges of eyelids, darkening the corners of eye. An eyeliner that is too thick or too dark will make eyes look tiny.

Sweep a small amount of a light shade of eye shadow on the brow bone. This is the area right underneath the outer half of eyebrow. A good colour to use is anything with just a small amount of shimmer. This highlights the entire eye and eyelid, creating a bright larger-looking eye. Try choosing a shadow that is a shimmery version of your natural skin colour.

Curl upper eyelashes. Use an eyelash curler and curl top eyelashes. After curling, apply mascara to top lashes. Cover only upper lashes with two coats of a dark brown mascara. This will pull lashes away from the centre of the eye and allow the white part of the eye to be more visible.


Neutral shades of eye make-up are best for small eyes. Use caution when curling eyelashes to avoid pinching side of eyes or breaking lashes


Do not curl lower eyelashes

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About the Author

Christine Wans is a freelance writer living in New Jersey. She has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology and women’s studies and enjoys writing about health, beauty, parenting, gardening and entertainment. As a regular contributor to the Pampers Pregnancy community, Wans writes about pregnancy-related topics as well.