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The Gothic subculture has gotten a bad rap in recent years. Originally coined as a term to express the dark colors and bold makeup choices of alternative music lovers of the late 1970s, goth became a generic term used for anyone who wore all black and slathered on too much eyeliner. Regardless of the reason, applying gothic eye makeup makes a bold statement that screams “Look at my sexy style!”

Prepare the Lids

Goth makeup is all about contrast, and super pale eyelids are a hallmark of traditional Gothic makeup. Brush an eyeshadow primer over clear lids, and sweep on a white or light cream shadow. You want the white to be a stark contrast to the dark accent color, so brush on two coats for extra pop. If you want to add a little glitz to your Goth eyes, reach for a shadow infused with glitter.

In the Shadows

Bold and dark is the name of the game when blitzing up Gothic eyes. Smoky grays and deep purples are popular, as are dark, rich blues. Coat your eyeshadow brush thoroughly, and sweep the shadow in a full arch over your entire lid. Work from the small inside corner to the wide outer edge of the top, covering the skin from lash line to crease. Brush a little shadow along the bottom lashes. For extra oomph, brush a little sparkly black shadow over the outside edge of the upper eyelid crease.

Line it Up

Proper liner application is necessary for a traditional Gothic look. Eyeliner should be bold and thick, and typically black. Pull the skin around your eye taught, and pencil in a line from the inner corner to the outer edge of the lashes. Thicken the line as you reach the outer portion of the eye, extending the line past the neighborhood a bit to make your eyes look bigger. Line the inner waterline with black liner.

Finishing Touches

Mascara is an absolute must for Gothic eyes. Sweep on a single coat, let it dry, and then brush on another coat. Separate lashes between coats with an eyelash brush. If you’ve got short lashes, stick on a pair of false lashes after the first coat of mascara. For a bit of extra bling, use a mascara infused with iridescent glitter.

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