by Alexandra Nicole Nuralam

#ProjectMonolids: A Makeup Artist Breaks Down Eye Makeup for Monolids

Having a monolid (a feature that people of East Asian descent generally possess) means that there isn’t a pronounced crease, which makes the majority of popular eye makeup techniques rather moot. Many people have had to resort to eyelid tape and double eyelid surgery just to create a double eyelid and maintain society’s beauty standards.

“This is why I started Project Monolids, which is very personal and close to my heart,” said Netherlands-based makeup artist and hairstylist Xiu Yun Yu (@xiuyun.yu). “I have small, slanted demi-hooded monolid eyes and growing up in the Netherlands with East Asian features and Western beauty standards and dealing with (casual) racism wasn’t easy.”

“For me, it was a long process to accept my eyes, to feel confident and eventually embracing it. I realised that there was a whole community out there, who have struggled or are struggling with their appearance and the shape of their eyes,” Xiu Yun tells BEAUBIT. “The project is all about the beauty and the uniqueness of monolid eyes; I want to create awareness that there is more than one definition of beauty.”

We enlist the help and expertise of Xiu Yun to show us the ways to apply eye makeup on monolids. Scroll ahead for her tips.

What is the most difficult aspect of monolids to work with for makeup?

I wouldn’t say “difficult aspect”, per se. The monolid eye shape is very different from those with double eyelids. We don’t have a visible crease. So, it requires a different way of applying makeup.

What are some of the most common mistakes people make when applying makeup on monolid eyes?

First, not applying an eyeshadow primer. Most monolids tend to have oilier eyelids, which might result in makeup shifting and creasing.

Second, applying makeup on a monolid using the same techniques you would normally use on a double eyelid eye shape, especially with a smokey eye look — it will look like you got punched in the eye!

Lastly, keeping your eyes closed when applying eyeshadow. With monolids, once you open your eyes, the eyeshadow disappears. Instead, apply eyeshadow when your eyes are half-open, so you can see how it looks when your eyes are fully open.

Photography @byangelahuizer & @jjjaaaniyu,
Model: @linglinrtw

What’s one beauty tip that’s really important for those with monolids?

It’s really important to prime the lids with a good eyeshadow primer. The eyelids of the monolid tend to be more oily as it folds directly over the places where you would normally apply your eyeliner and/or eyeshadow, which means it will smudge and move around. By using primer, it will help keep the makeup in place.

What are the easiest ways to make monolid eyes appear bigger?

Curl your lashes and use waterproof mascara! It makes your eyes look more awake and open. Waterproof mascara also holds the curl for a lot longer. You can also use eyeshadow and apply it as an eyeliner and blend to give more definition to the eye or draw a thicker, winged eyeliner to elongate the eyes. I also like brightening the waterline with a light-coloured pencil.

Photography @byangelahuizer & @jjjaaaniyu,
Models from left to right: @hx_shar, @sinaetje, @sungminess

Any tips for drawing eyeliner on monolids?

Always curl your lashes before applying eyeliner. Doing this afterwards can remove the product and ruin your hard work! It’s also essential to choose the type of eyeliner based on your personal preference, which you find easy to work with.

If you don’t have a steady hand, set your elbow on a flat surface, like a table. Start by drawing small thin strokes across the lid, so you don’t end up with a dramatic, thick eyeliner by accident. Unless you’re going for a dramatic look, then go for it!

Use your lower lashline to guide the angle of your wing. You can also keep your eyes open and place a dot where you want the tip of the wing to be and fill in from there, or try drawing the line with one fluid stroke. Don’t pull your eye when applying eyeliner. If you pull it too much, it alters the shape of your eyes and will influence your liner shape.

Lastly, use a waterproof pencil to apply on your upper waterline to fill in the gaps and finish the look. Q-tips are your best friend for correcting and cleaning up your eyeliner!

Xiu Yun’s Beauty Picks

Paula’s Choice Defense Essential Glow Moisturizer SPF 30, SGD45
Madara Skin Equal Soft Glow Foundation SPF15, EUR33
Madara Luminous Perfecting Concealer, EUR20
Too Faced Shadow Insurance Primer, SGD37
NYX Ultimate Shadow Palette in Warm Neutrals, SGD29
Kevyn Aucoin Eyelash Curler, SGD26.75
Lancôme Hypnôse Drama Waterproof Mascara, SGD48.70
BECCA Cosmetics Hydra Mist Set & Refresh Powder, SGD62
Skindinavia The Makeup Finishing Spray Bridal, SGD33.75