Scroll To See More Images
There was a time when applying liquid eyeliner seemed impossible, but after lots of practice, it’s become almost second nature for me. That said, I feel it’s time to tackle the next tricky beauty look—yes ma’am, I’m talking about how to apply cut crease eyeshadow. Lately, celebs and beauty gurus alike are living for a snatched cut crease look, and while the final glam seems daunting, it’s not that hard to create when you break the process down from start to finish.
“A cut crease can work on many different eye shapes, as it really provides dimension to the eye and makes it look even more open,” says L’Oréal Paris Celebrity Makeup Artist Sir John. He’s done many a cut crease on his celeb clients (like Beyoncé, NBD), so with a palette in hand and his tips in mind, I pieced together the perfect step-by-step guide to nailing cut crease eyeshadow. If you’re planning to give the look a go on your own eyes, read on for the best approach.
Apply primer to your eyelids
Not so fast! Before you even think about reaching for a palette, lay down a base to ensure your lids are appropriately prepped. I apply a thin layer of the Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Amplifying Eye Primer and let it sit for about 30 seconds. If you aren’t a fan of the tacky feel or worry about your shadow creasing, you can set the primer with a translucent powder before moving on to your shadows.
Hollow the eye with a matte shadow
Before you can carve out a crease, you need to create some depth. “I’d start with a light to medium brown shade for hollowing out the eye, and buff the shade in gradually,” says Sir John. The Revolution Beauty Forever Flawless Decadent Eyeshadow Palette has the perfect shades for a warm, reddish cut crease moment, so I take “Sahara” and “Grandeur” on a fluffy crease brush and start working the matte brown hues into my natural crease.
I make sure to bring the colors slightly above my natural crease as well. I do this by opening my eyes while I blend to ensure the shadow is still visible. (No, my look isn’t totally matte, as my brush had a bit of shimmer residue on it from past glams. Don’t @ me, okay?)
Use a darker shade to add drama and define
Next, take a more precise brush and a darker matte shade to create further depth before cutting the crease. A dark brown would suffice, but for my reddish look, I used a combination of “Hedonic” and “Splendid,” and worked them just above my crease to deepen up the light brown blending I did one step prior.
“If you have deep-set eyes, I wouldn’t recommend over-contouring, since you already have this natural hollowing,” says Sir John. In that case, the additional definition can start to feel heavy. Finally, I use a flat brush to pack on more of the dark shade onto the outer third of my lid.
Carve, or “cut,” the crease with concealer
Here we go, y’all. To really nail the look, I live and die for the Revolution Beauty Cut Crease Canvas, but if you don’t see yourself going full-glam often enough to justify buying it, your concealer and a flat shader brush will do the trick. Looking directly into my mirror with eyes open, I use the product to carve out a semi-circle just above my natural hollow.
“To carve out the crease, it’s best to follow the groove of the eye socket to find the right placement,” says Sir John. Once I’m satisfied with the shape, I apply a little more product and coat the inner two-thirds of the lid with it. Don’t stress about blending this into the darker shadow on the outer third, as the next steps will ensure a seamless blend.
Apply a shimmery shadow atop the concealer
Now we’re getting somewhere, people! Next, I take “Glimmer” and use a flat brush to pack the shade onto the inner two-thirds of my lid, until all the concealer is covered. Next, I take a darker, bronzy shimmer shade, called “Luxe” and lay it between “Glimmer” and my dark red outer third. I blend until the shimmery part of my eye transitions smoothly into the dark outer corner. It seems simple, but that perfect blend can be the most tedious step, so be patient!
Cut the crease with a glitter liner
Since I’m not yet a cut crease pro like Sir John, the crease I carve with my concealer isn’t always as razor-sharp as I’d like, so I use a little liner to amp it up. It looks like you’re super-talented and going above and beyond, but in reality, it’s the perfect way to cover up a sloppy carving job!
I take the PYT Beauty Glam Glitter Gel in “Gold” on a liner brush and use it to trace my cut crease, starting near my inner corner and stopping at the center of my lid. This is when the look really comes together and I start to get excited about flexing for the ‘Gram.
Add your finishing touches (lashes, liner, etc.)
Once your cut crease is slayed, you can personalize the look to your liking. I always take my Kaja Wink Stamp Wing Eyeliner & Pen and create a quick and easy liner look (If you’re really trying to improve your glam game, this stamp-on wing is a MUST!).
Then, I apply my KISS Blowout Lashes in “Pageboy” and highlight my inner corner and brow bone with my sparkly shade of choice. Finally, I run one of my darker mattes ever-so-lightly along my lower lash line. Time to reach for my ring light .
Start a YouTube channel and become a professional beauty guru
You’re done! You look so good! When my cut crease glam is complete, I finish the rest of my makeup and feel like a total pro. James Charles could never! Once you’ve mastered this basic cut crease approach, don’t be afraid to get creative and push your limits. Try out different color schemes, more dramatic liner, Euphoria-esque rhinestones, or whatever your extra heart desires.
Don’t be surprised when Sir John starts calling you the cut crease master. Shop everything you’ll need to recreate this look below.
Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.