It’s a little tricky to start using kohl. Those who know how to do it make it appear very easy indeed but those of us who did not grow up with it get a bit queasy at the thought of putting a sharp stick near our eye and rimming it *zip* *zip*.
The “Pros” I have seen just apply kohl like it’s no big deal. You can, too but it does need lots of practice. I will assume that you can apply conventional eyeliner, and I will assume that you have an eyeliner pencil.
First step is to get comfortable with working very close to your eye. Take a couple of deep breaths and relax. If you feel yourself getting anxious or tense just stop and come back to it when you are more confident. Delaying this isn’t going to have any bad effects at all.
You are going to want to practice in a well lit place in front of a good magnifying mirror which is at the proper height for you. I have a 10x magnifying mirror mounted on the wall of my bathroom right above the sink and under the lights so I can see exactly what I am doing at all times and hands free. You are really going to want to invest in a great magnifying mirror and put it where it’s comfortable for you to use hands free and at the proper height. Make a journey to Bed, Bath, and Beyond and buy one. I prefer one without its own light source because most of the time those aren’t worth much.
Once you have the mirror in place, it’s time to practice. We are going to start slowly. Take out your eyeliner pencil, make sure it is sharpish and will lay down a good dark line right away. Stand in front of the mirror and pull down your lower lid so you can see the waterline. Take the eyeliner pencil and make a dark line from just in from the tear duct near your nose, to the absolute furthest out part of your eye.
Whew! Step back and take a look. I bet you think that is a great improvement. Do the same thing on the other eye. Then feel proud of yourself. Practice this lower waterline lining until you feel perfectly comfortable with it.
Notice how long the effect stays on your eyes and how you look with rimmed lids. Are you looking like you are squinting or does it make your eyes look hard and emotionless? Well, we will talk about The Fix for that later on but for now just get a feel for rimming your lower lid with an eyeliner pencil.
Please note that if at any time you experience redness, itching, tearing or any other symptom of a reaction to the pencil or the process stop immediately and chalk that up to you not being suited for this sort of thing. No make up is worth getting irritation or worse in your eyes.
So, now you are feeling comfortable with the process of lining your lower lid. You are ready for the adventure of doing your upper lid as well. Line your lower waterline like you always do. When you are through, blink hard so as to rub off some of the lower color onto your upper water line.
Now tilt your head back in front of the mirror and gently pull up your upper lid until you can see the waterline clearly and it’s held a bit away from your eyeball. Gently rim the upper waterline with the pencil BEING CAREFUL TO HOLD IT AWAY FROM YOUR EYEBALL!! You don’t want to scratch your eyeball with any part of the pencil. Just go slowly and be relaxed but note where your hands and the pencil are at all times. Go from the inner corner just in from the tear duct all the way to the outer corner of your eye.
Now stand back and line what you want to line around the tear duct near your nose. Some women look great with that lined, too, and some don’t. That one is up to you.
Again, assess how this looks on you. Do you look hard? Alluring? Dazzled or dazzling? Be realistic.
This is going to take practice and please do slow down and take your time. You will get there eventually.
At this point it’s about time for you to think about buying some real kohl. We will talk about that next. Please do remember to take it easy, relax, be aware of where all your implements are in relation to your eye, take a break if you feel anxious, and admire when you are through. Please be sure to stop at any symptoms of irritation, though.
Come and visit me at Possets Perfumes for more discussion of kohl on our forum, and a fragrance called Kohl, too, part of the Egyptian Evenings Collection which just came out! www.possets.com is the place.