The Life-Changing Eyeliner Tip I Learned From Beyoncé's Makeup Artist

Is it a hyperbolic to say a makeup tip has changed your life? As someone with smallish eyes who counts black eyeliner as a necessity, right up there with oxygen and Seamless, the answer is simple: no. I’ll start off by saying that I thought my eyeliner game was already vastly superior to that of my peers, mainly due to the fact that I started at a young age. And like all things you start at a young age, it’s quickly become more of a habit than anything; I now swish and apply with the ease of a seasoned artist.

Like the screamo bands I used to love and my taste in men, my eyeliner preference has evolved—I started dabbling with pencil, but nowadays I use the felt-tipped liquid kinds exclusively. It’s the only type of formula and applicator that doesn’t smudge or smear on my semi-monolids or leave me with dark rings under my eyes like a sad panda.

But I digress—back to the eyeliner tip that changed my life. A few months ago, makeup artist and L’Oréal Paris brand ambassador Sir John B stopped by the Byrdie studios to shoot a winged eyeliner tutorial, inspired by a look he had used on his client Beyoncé—you may have heard of her. She’s, like, a singer or something.

As I watched him apply an exquisite sweep of liner, transfixed, he casually shared a tidbit that changed my eyeliner game forever. In fact, it was so unassuming, so mind-blowingly simple that it took me a full six months to process and absorb it before I put it to use. Keep scrolling and allow me to explain.

This story was originally published on April 19, 2016, and has since been updated.