The best eyeliner for hooded and wrinkly upper eyelids?

by Debbie

Bumpy uneven eyeliner on wrinkled hooded upper eyelids

Bumpy uneven eyeliner on wrinkled hooded upper eyelids

Hi Linda,

I'm over 50 and my eyelids are hooded and wrinkly, so putting on eyeliner is a real hassle for me.

I've tried all these tricks for hooded, wrinkled eyes, and I can make the eyeliner look okay from far away, but when you get up close, it's all bumpy and uneven.

And, it flakes off and onto my bottom eyelid and cheeks.

And sometimes by the end of the day, the eyeliner has bled into the area around my eyes and into the wrinkles and looks messy and smeared.

Sometimes I look like I just woke up!

Any suggestions on the best type of eyeliner for me?

Editor's Note:

Hi Debbie, thanks for your question about the best eyeliners for mature eyes. It's a common concern for older women, and I totally understand what you mean. I have the same problem!

Based on my experience, here are some suggestions and observations that might help.

I'll start by listing the types of liners you might want to try first and then move on to the type of eyeliner you might want to avoid.

Great Choice

1. Gel eyeliners: These are often considered the easiest to use and longest-lasting among all eyeliner formulas. Look for ones that say "Silky Gel Formulas" and make sure they are a long-lasting or waterproof formula.

Why are they a great choice?

Their ease of use makes them gentle on delicate skin, especially on the upper lash line. And, they usually have a fine tip or come with a liner brush, so you can draw a very thin line for a softer look.

And, if you want a more dramatic look, just press a little harder. Urban Decay makes a great one called: 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil.. It's a creamy, waterproof pencil eyeliner that comes in a wide range of shades.

This eyeliner's formula glide makes it easy to apply. And, it goes on smoothly.

2. Pencil Eyeliners: These are the perfect eyeliner for a casual everyday look. You can draw precise lines easily on the lower lash line or inside the upper lid (called tightlining).

I think these are perfect for mature women who want a nice casual look. Personally, I always aim for a natural, yet defined eyeliner makeup look. I want people to notice my eyes, not my makeup! 😊

Good Choice

A decent choice would be a satin glide eyeliner. A satin eyeliner will allow for a more smoother application and may not look as bumpy.

I say this is a good (but not great) choice because some glide-on eye pencil liners can transfer or smudge throughout the day, settling into fine lines or creases around the eyes.

You'd have to play around with the different brands. Three popular brands are known for their satin glide eyeliners:

1. Marc Jacobs Beauty
2. Bobbi Brown
3. L'OrΓ©al Paris

Stay Away from Liquid Eyeliner

Liquid liner products can be irritating for those with sensitive eyes. Plus, unless you have a very light hand or you're a makeup artist, liquid liners are hard to control and apply.

I've never been able to get a smooth application with liquid liners, even if they have a smooth felt tip.

I think the issue is their intense pigmentation, which tends to deposit too much color. Plus, they have a very short dry time, so it's hard to fix any mistakes because you have to work fast.

Stay Away from Creamy Formula Eye Liners

Keep in mind this is my personal preference, but I find any creamy pencil to be a huge problem for older skin, wrinkles, or hooded eye issues.

Here's why: They tend to cause "raccoon eyes". While crayon-type eyeliners with a creamy texture are easier to apply compared to waxy pencils, gels, and liquid eyeliners, they tend to wear off quickly and always smudge and smear into folds, creases, and lines.

However, if you really like the look and feel of creamy liners, try applying an eye primer or eyeshadow primer first. This might help the liner stay on longer and not smudge.

The Right Eyeliner for You

So many different types of eyeliners to choose from! Which is best for you?

Of course, your personal style, eye looks, and makeup routine will be a deciding factor in which type of eyeliner is best for you. But, one thing you should always look for in an eyeliner product, is a long-lasting formula.

A long-wearing eyeliner will be less likely to cause "raccoon eyes" and settle into fine lines and folds on mature lids.

Final Thought
Regarding eyeliner application: Just because it's called eyeLINER, does not mean you have to draw a solid line across the entire eyelid.

Draw and connect small dashes to a smoother, more flattering look. And, try to avoid placing any dark eyeliner into the inner corner of the eye.

Always start at the middle of the lid (where the iris starts) and draw dashes out towards the outer corner of your eye.



Watch this video from celebrity makeup artist, Debra Rubin-Roberts, on the best way to apply eyeliner.

Her application technique makes it easy to get the best results. She also offers suggestions on the colors to use to make the whites of your eyes stand out!


Hope this helps. 😊

P.S. In my personal opinion, the best eyeliner pencil for older eyes is a hard waxy regular cheap, drugstore brand eyeliner pencil. I use one by Maybelline.

You can see how I use it here.

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