We asked guys to try winged eyeliner – here’s what happened

Someone pass the make-up wipes?

All make up connoisseurs know that eyes are the most important (and most difficult) feature of a girl’s make up – especially if you’re a fan of winged eyeliner. Delicately drawn above the upper-lash line, winged eyeliner has been worn by female icons for decades, from Audrey Hepburn to Kendall Jenner.

This make-up technique requires years of practice mixed with blood, sweat and tears; initial attempts often lead to being poked in the eye. To appreciate all the effort that goes into keeping that liner ‘on fleek’ and to get back at anyone who’s told us to ‘hurry up’ when in the middle of applying make-up, we asked our guy friends to have a go at applying winged eyeliner. The results were interesting to say the least.

Callam, 24


From the get go I knew this wouldn’t end up perfectly. Although I have had some experience with makeup in the past, from participating in musicals and fancy dress, someone else was always there to help.

My eyelids kept shaking for some reason. To solve the eyelid shakes I tried tilting my face upwards when looking in the mirror. After a couple of attempts, I was happy with my results. However, I wiped off the eyeliner before going back out with my mates.

If I was to ever feel confident enough to wear this look in public I’d need several more attempts.


Declan, 16

Before, looking quietly confident

This challenge was much harder than I anticipated. I was nervous about putting it near my eyes – it felt like I was going to end up colouring my eyeball in. To keep my hand steady, I had to hold my arm with my free hand and paint the eyeliner on as if it was a paintbrush. After doing one eye I thought that the pen had run out – it hadn’t.

My advice to anyone trying this would be that if you mess it up just make the lines a bit thicker. However, you will probably end up having to colour your whole eyelid in.

Overall, I liked seeing the final product, I just didn’t enjoy the process.


Andy, 20


This was so much harder than it looks. I thought it’d be easy to apply but it was so difficult trying to follow the outline of my eye with the liner – the whole time I was afraid I was going to poke it.

I’d like to think that this was a successful attempt but who am I kidding, it really wasn’t.  After this, I’m never going to tell my girlfriend to rush her make-up again. If I was a girl, I wouldn’t bother doing this everyday, or maybe I would if I could do it well in a few seconds.

Nailed it?

This hasn’t really changed my views on guys wearing make up. I like my eyes as they are so I personally wouldn’t bother trying to enhance them with liner. However, guys should wear make-up if it makes them happy. To me, a lad wearing makeup is no different than wearing hair gel or whatever.


Harry, 19


This experience was eye-opening for a number of reasons (pardon the pun).

Applying eyeliner is not as easy as I thought. It actually requires a very steady hand and a lot of practice – not to mention very high levels of concentration. Surprisingly, I liked the look on myself and it allowed me to express myself in a way that I had not thought possible before.

I wouldn’t wear this look everyday. However, I frequently wear eyeliner on nights out, and occasionally during the day depending on my mood. It looks great and is fun to apply. I would encourage every guy to try this out.

After (dayum)

Louis, 19


For me, this was hardly my idea of fun. A YouTube tutorial suggested using liquid liner, but my mum only had an eye pencil for me to borrow. In an attempt to get the wing in a clean straight line, I used a piece of card; this was somewhat effective. However, you don’t need a protractor to notice that the wings didn’t turn out symmetrical.

Personally, I’d only consider wearing this out for fancy dress or due to the loss of a bet.

I don’t believe that men (or women, really) should wear make-up because it suggests that we should cover up our imperfections. Although I can sympathise with people wearing make-up to disguise blemishes, I think that for vanity’s sake it’s unnecessary.

After (with a lighter, but flattering brown shade)

Matthew, 20


I’ve been doing drag makeup for exactly a year. At the beginning, I just attacked my eye with liquid liner which kind of looked like an oil slick coming from my tear duct. However, with a bit of practice, I think I’ve now got the hang of it. The best time to start experimenting with drag make-up is halloween because then you can go out and meet other queens.

Boys should feel they can wear makeup wherever and whenever. There’s no shame in it, it’s a personal choice.


Christian, 19 & Dan, 18

Dan, before

Christian, before

We never realised how terrifying it is sticking something so close to your eyes and how shaky our hands were – we found ourselves pulling ridiculous faces while putting it on. Our advice: don’t blink or even breathe when trying to put it on. Maybe master a smooth line on your hand first before you apply it to the eyes. We give props to any girl who can do it smoothly, it’s a hard skill to master.

Also it’s so hard to get off. Afterwards, we looked like we’d been punched in the face a few times. This look is probably best for drag but we see nothing wrong with guys wearing this look everyday. If men feel more confident by wearing makeup they should do it.


Alec, 19


Doing this was easier than I thought but it was hard to keep a steady hand throughout. What annoyed me was that if you mess up you have to take it all off and start again, I couldn’t hack that everyday.

The easiest part of this challenge was taking the make-up off – isn’t it all quite expensive having to buy the liner and then all the stuff to remove it? This hasn’t changed my views on guys wearing make-up. If I was a girl I would wear this make-up look but it’s not for me personally.