Eyeliner has always been one of the more popular makeup looks to get creative with—and the new transparent eyeliner trend is proof. Call it the Euphoria effect—or blame it on masks concealing the lower half of our face for two years—but fun eyeliner is flourishing.
Transparent eyeliner is flooding TikTok and Instagram as the minimalist makeup look that’s perfect for summertime. Back in May, beauty creator May Akhtar posted a video on TikTok using concealer to create a graphic eyeliner look.
The look is simple but effective, and almost like an optical illusion—it’s achieved by taking concealer and using a slanted brush to apply it just like eyeliner, and then blending out the edges. You’re left with a “transparent” effect, since the brush leaves sharp lines that look invisible blended out, creating a frame for your bare skin. It’s basically a spotlight for your eyes.
Since then, the hashtag #transparenteyeliner has amassed over 1.3 million views on TikTok. The trend is also a summer favorite for celebrity makeup artist Hayley Kassel, who has created eyeliner looks for editorial shoots and Fenty Beauty campaigns. “It’s such a subtle yet stunning look, perfectly paired with fresh dewy summer skin,” she says. “It’s one of those looks that gives the perfect subdued pop to your overall makeup look. Very fun for those who want to experiment with more editorial style makeup without having to use any bold colors.”
Transparent eyeliner is also perfect for people who like bare makeup during warmer months, but still want to have fun with makeup. “The transparent eyeliner trend is the perfect summer makeup hack for anyone who wants to look put together but not overdone,” says celebrity makeup artist Clarissa Luna, who is behind Megan Fox and Lana Condor‘s makeup. “If you’re a makeup minimalist, this trend has your name written all over it!”
Luna recommends starting with clean skin to make sure concealer adheres. “One of my favorite concealers to use is the Armani Power Fabric Concealer,” she says. “It has great opacity and a smooth texture which means your liner will be more defined and easier to blend out.
Another tip is to work in sections. “Once you’ve achieved the length of your liner with the bottom line, blend the concealer down so the line fades into the skin seamlessly,” Luna says. “Follow the same steps with the top connecting line, but blend the line up.”
To create a more striking look, Kassel recommends starting with a nude tone base that’s 2 to 3 shades darker than your usual concealer shade—she likes using Danessa Myricks Nude Colorfix—for better contrast. “After applying that slightly darker base, use your regular concealer shade to carve out a cat eye,” she says. “Blend the edges, and remember to set with a translucent powder so it stays put and doesn’t smudge!”