Can you use eyeliner as a lip liner? A Practical Guide

Can you use eyeliner as a lip liner
Can you use eyeliner as a lip liner?
Can you use eyeliner as a lip liner?

Yes, you definitely can. You can use your eyeliner to match your lip liner. Both lip liner and eyeliner create an aesthetic effect and enhance your beauty.

You probably stumbled on this article because you ran out of lip liner or misplaced it, and you need to improvise. You know, sometimes it feels like the makeup is not complete without a lip liner. So yes, you can use your eyeliner as a lip liner.

Interestingly, the ingredients used in making the two are similar, but eyeliner has no additives. Kindly read on to know if there is any risk involved in using your eyeliner as your lip liner and the solution to any complication you may face.

Is it safe to use a lip liner as eyeliner?

It is not 100% safe, as it may leave you with discomfort. I won’t advise that you use your eyeliner as your lip liner. Lip liners contain chemicals that eyeliners do not, even though the basic ingredients are the same. The eyes are delicate organs that need to be taken care of.

Some time ago, I experienced eye irritation, pain, and my eyes were constantly itchy when I tried doing that.

A friend of mine, Susan, also tried it, and the experience left her with the famous quote, “Once bitten, twice shy.” 

She had a special outing with her husband, John, and opted for a red gown. She needed to use a red eyeliner to match her red lipliner, but she had none in her makeup collection. So, she used her red lip liner, and she had a bad experience.

Here is why it is not safe to use your eyeliner as your lipliner.

  • The ingredients may be similar, but they are not always clearly conspicuous. At times, they contradict.
  • The pigments and color additives are different from each other; these shouldn’t be interchanged.
  • The eyeliner is formulated for use in the eye area and not the mouth area. Hence, it may be cleaned off quickly by your tongue.
  • A lip liner may contain colorants or non-approved “Food and Drug Administration (FDA)” ingredients for the eyes.
  • The eye and lip liner ingredients may be similar, but eyeliners do not have additives; no preservatives.
  •  When you use your eyeliner as your lip liner, you may transfer germs from one to another.
  • You should not use the chemicals in your lip liners around your eyes; it is not safe. 
  • The best way to avoid cross-contamination is to have a lip liner and eyeliner and use them separately. 
  • Lip Liner pigments can irritate the eyes, while eyeliner pigments can irritate the lips. The lipliner pigment, in particular, may even be too much for your sensitive eye. 
  • It can cause stinging.
  • It can cause watery eyes.
  • The eye, especially the lash line, is more prone to infection than any part of the skin. 

What is the difference between eyeliner and lip liner?

Eyeliner is also known as an eye pencil. It is a cosmetic used to outline, define or make a line along or close to the lash line. You can trace the contours of your eye and apply your eyeliner there.

A lip liner, on the other hand, is also known as a lip pencil. It is a cosmetic product that fills the uneven areas on the outer edges of your lips before applying lipstick to give a smoother shape. A lip liner would make your lips appear plump and desiring. It will give you a puckered-up look if you have thin and uneven lips.

Also, lip liners are made with additives, while eyeliners are not made with additives. 

The ingredients may be similar, but chemicals used for a lip liner are not safe for the eyes. 

Why do you use your eyeliner as your lip liner and vice versa?

While it is not 100% safe to use your eyeliner as a lipliner, several people have adopted this style for some of the reasons I highlighted below:

A lot of variety:

Lip liner and eyeliner come in loads of colors and are produced by different brands. So rather than have a variety of lip liner and eyeliner to choose from, you stick to one instead to do the same work.


When you use your eyeliner as your lip liner, you save yourself the extra cost of purchasing a lip liner. So, you instead buy all different shades of eyeliner and use it as a lip liner as well. As in, you make it useful for both.

Glamorous lips:

The lip liner makes your lips look larger and fuller. It would make your lips fleshy and return your lips to their original shape.

What are five iconic eyeliner looks?

  1. Graphic arrow liner: It will give you a ferocious cat-eye look, most especially when you use liquid eyeliner.
  2. Natural liner: It is nice, soft, pleasing, and easy to do. You can use the sharpenable liquid eyeliner instead of the liquid eyeliner around your eye line.
  3. Thick Wing liner: You apply thick eyeliner around your eye-line. It would give you the look of an Italian movie star in the 60s!
  4. Long Line Liner: You can get this look by extending your eyeliner when you draw it along your eye line in a curved manner.
  5. Smoky Liner: You will look sexy with the smoky liner. Apply your eyeliner on top and under your eye line.

What does an eyeliner do?

  1. It creates a larger or smaller eye appearance. 
  2. It gives you different looks.
  3. It accentuates different features of the eyes.

What does a lip liner do?

  1. It will prevent your lip colors from shifting to the outer sides of your mouth.
  2. It will outline the outsides of your lips.
  3. It will provide additional cover to your lip shades. 
  4. It acts as an alternative for your lipsticks. 

How to make your eyeliner work as a lip liner?

  • Moisturize your lips with lip gloss. Let it settle for about 10 minutes before you use your eyeliner.
  • When you are outlining your lips, make sure you follow your natural lip line carefully. Make the line smooth. It will prevent it from being thin and lessen any germ risk.
  • Don’t apply it too heavily because of the chemical composition. 
  • Sanitize your eyeliner first before you use it as a lip liner to avoid any irritation.
  • You can sanitize your eyeliner by sharpening or washing the tip with alcohol.

Can you use eyeliner as a lip liner

What are the Dos and Don’ts of a lip liner?


Do not outline your lips in a sharp thin line. When you do that, it will make your lipstick look like you are coloring inside the lines.

If you want to create a subtle illusion, don’t overdraw your lips.

Don’t use a darker liner than lipstick.

Don’t forget your mouth corners as it may cause a break on your lip line.


Use a brush to smooth out the line, as it will properly blend the color outlining your lips to look natural.

Draw an X in the middle of your top lip. It would create a bigger cupid’s bow, especially if you have a small upper lip.

If you want to use your lipliner on lipstick, ensure you opt for a brighter lip liner than your lipstick. It will make your lips pop with a simple, bold effect.

You can fill in your entire lip with your lip liner if you want to create a solid base before applying your lipstick. It will also lengthen the staying power of your lipstick color.

What are the Dos and Don’ts of an eyeliner?


Don’t line your whole eye from “outside corner” to “inside corner” to “top and bottom” of your eye. It will only make your eyes appear smaller and unflattering. 

Don’t tight line your waterline on top and bottom. It will only make your eyes appear smaller. To tight line means to use your eyeliner to fill in the waterline beneath your lashes on top and above your lashes on bottom. 

Don’t draw an equal thick line across your eye. It will close your eye and make you squint.

Don’t tighten your skin when you want to draw a line, as it will give you a wrinkly result. Ensure you are free and easy when using a smooth and sharp pencil or liquid liner to draw your line.

Don’t use only a black liner. If you want to look dramatic, you use it on your top lid. You can smudge it with a brown shade on your bottom lid. 

Don’t apply your eyeliner after applying your lip gloss, lipstick, or any moisturizer; wait for at least 10 minutes before applying it. If you don’t wait for a few minutes, your makeup may drift or bleed.


You can tight line your upper lash line. Take your eyeliner and hold it vertically on your eyelashes. Smudge a line at the root of your eyelashes, from the outer corner to about 2/3 of the way in. Ensure you blend your lashes with your top line.

Use a brush to smudge your line, especially if you want a casual and soft look.

You can decrease your top eyeliner as you go towards the inner corners. Apply your eyeliner roughly halfway across your lid. As you move towards the inner corner, make small strokes. Let your line decrease until it vanishes into the corner of your eye.

Instead of drawing an offensive line under your eyes, you can use eyeshadow to create a soft line on your bottom lash line. Start drawing the line in the outer corner and reduce the line as you move inwards. Stop the line about 2/3 across your bottom lid.

Use eyeshadow to set your eyeliner if you have issues with your eyeliner ending up under your eyes. With an angled brush, follow the line with a matching color to lock in the color and stop it from sliding.



Where is the best place you can apply your eyeliner?

The best place you can apply your eyeliner is subjective. Because, eyeliner when applied on a different part of the face, can give you different looks. You definitely can’t get the same look. So, feel free to apply it either on top or under your eye line.

Why do people go for black lip liner and eyeliner?

Because black is more conspicuous, it is so loud.

Can you use eyeliner as lipstick?

Yes, you can. You can either outline with lip liner and fill in with lipstick, or use a liner to fill in the lips too.

Can you use eyeshadow as lip liner?  

Yes, you can. Eyeshadow and eyeliner tones are high in pigment. They make the lips vibrant. Applying a light pencil to the center of your lips makes your lips appear fuller.

You might need to apply lipstick on your lips first and then apply a lighter shade of cream eyeshadow similar to your lipstick color in the center of your lips.





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