Have you ever seen images of paintings or other visual representations of Cleopatra, the Egyptian queen? In all her images, Cleopatra has something in common – her eyes are heavily lined with kohl!
That’s not surprising considering that it is believed that the Egyptians were the first to use Kohl, way back in 3100 B.C. It was more than just a cosmetic then – it was also used to cool the eyes and improve eyesight. Today kohl or kajal is common across continents, particularly in South East Asia and the Middle East.
The main ingredient in kajal is often carbon or organic charcoal, mixed with plant oils and other eye-friendly ingredients. Indian women have been making kajal at home, mixing soot with sandalwood and camphor. Today we have a wide range of kajal products, in different colors and with different staying power.
For best results try the Mamaearth kajal that is smudge-proof and long-lasting.
Different Ways to Apply Kajal
For any type of kajal application, it is important to prep the skin on the face beforehand, including the eyelids. Remove any existing makeup and cleanse the skin. Prep the skin with a primer, applying it around the eye area and eyelids as well. Use a concealer to hide any dark circles so the kajal can pop.
1. Lower Waterline
This is probably the most common kajal application method followed in India. It includes the application of kajal only on the lower waterline, leaving the rest of the eye plain.
To apply kajal in this way, gently bring down the eyelid using the ring finger of the non-dominant hand, without pulling down the skin. The intention is just to open up the lower lash line. Start applying the kajal starting from the inner corner of the eye and moving outwards. You can end where the eye ends or you can extend a little bit further.
A pencil is perfect for this kind of kajal application. You can smudge the kajal a little immediately after application to create some depth. You can use kajal in various colors for this style. If your eyes are small, a white kajal on the lower waterline will make your eyes look larger.
2. Upper Waterline
This way of applying kajal is another alternative to the lower waterline method. It is the opposite in the sense this one includes the upper waterline leaving the rest of the eye plain, and can also be a little trickier to apply.
To apply kajal on the upper waterline, slightly lift the upper eyelid with the ring finger of the non-dominant hand, to expose the upper lash line. Start applying the kajal from the inner corner of the eye along the lash line till you reach the outer end. Take care to keep your hand steady so you get a nice, bold straight line that isn’t bleeding onto your upper eyelid.
This method of application is also called tight lining and can take some practice, but it’s great to make the eyes look larger and wider. You can finish off with some mascara to complete the fresh, perked-up look.
3. Winged Cat Eye
A winged cat eye is one of those makeup trends that never go out of style. When applied well, it can make any outfit look instantly more chic and classy. Getting the perfect winged eye with eyeliner can be tricky, but a kajal makes this easier.
To get a good winged cat eye, start by drawing a line along the upper lash line, moving from the inner corner of the eye to the outside. As you reach the outer corner of the eye, extend the kajal line a little, moving it upwards at a slight angle. If this extra ‘flick’ of kajal seems a little wonky, you can just go over it with the kajal again to make it neat – a thick line looks good too.
The winged cat eye can be completed with a lower waterline application. You can make the two lines meet at the flick of the upper kajal line. A pencil works best for beginners who are trying this style, but a liquid or gel may give finer results.
4. Double Winged Eye
Once you’ve got the knack of doing a winged cat-eye kajal application, you can proceed to try the double-winged eye. It is similar to the single winged style, but as the name suggests, involves two lines.
To get this style, apply the kajal in a regular winged style closely along the upper lash line. Once you have reached the end of your ‘wing’, draw inwards along the upper lash line, retracing your earlier path but this time slightly above the earlier kajal line. You can bring it to the inner corner or stop midway. You can fill in the gap in the wing at the outer edge of the eye.
This is a slightly quirkier way of applying kajal but is great for a casual event or a night out. This will also look great with different colors of kajal and eye shadows, as you play around to find a combination you like.
Note: Like all new products that you may try, we highly recommend carrying out a patch test before you start using a product to eliminate any allergies or rashes caused by any ingredients in the products. Mamaearth’s products are completely free from any nasties, chemicals, and toxins. It is proud to have India’s first Made Safe certification.