Green Eyeliner for Brown Eyes

I would guess that a lot of brown-eyed girls have, at some point, wished for eyes of a different color. Blue, green, “something more interesting” — notwithstanding Van Morrison’s best efforts to convince us that we’re special.

And common wisdom dictates that brown eyes “pop” in purples.

I feel like I’m about to declare that the emperor has no clothes… but I’ve never made that brown-pops-with-purple connection myself.

Brown may be the most common eye color, but there’s still a lot of room for variation within the category. In three recent makeovers, three different artists have used variations on green eyeliner on me, and each time, I was entranced by the results.
Armani, 6, eyeliner, swatches, Bobbi Brown, Ivy Shimmer Ink, NARS, Kaliste, KarlaSugar, Karla Sugar
Tightlining with a green eyeliner seems to make my eyes look more green. It can bring out the gold, or amber in brown eyes. If you’ve never tried it, I highly recommend it.

Armani’s #6 Smooth Silk Eye Pencil ($27) is very, very darkly green. Bobbi Brown’s Ivy Shimmer Ink gel eyeliner ($21) is a bit brighter, but still a dark emerald. NARS’s Kaliste pencil ($21) is dark teal. I think they’re all subtle enough that people will notice your eyes, not your eyeliner.

Agree? Disagree? I’d love to hear your experiences.

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23 Responses to “Green Eyeliner for Brown Eyes”

  • Nicole says:

    I love green eyeliner and eyeshadow to compliment my dark brown eyes. It’s more wearable than purple for everyday occasions too. :)

  • Evelyn says:

    I’m still looking for just that right purple to really make my eyes stand out, not that purple doesn’t look nice with them but it doesn’t look amazing. I’ll have to force myself to try a green liner instead (not a fan of green but in the interests of beauty I will try!). lol

  • Lori Jenkins says:

    OH I couldn’t agree more! The green in Chanel’s regard perle quad is an amazing eyeliner shade for brown eyes!

    I do like Chanel’s berry eyeliner quite a bit – it’s purple, but has alot of metallic to it so it’s interesting. Otherwise I find few purple eyelining shades that don’t make my already red eyes from allergies look worse! lol

  • Tiff says:

    UD Asphyxia is awesome on my brown eyes – love it. It’s a duochromey violet that flashes blue.

    I also love love love any shade of green or blue on brown eyes. Brown may be boring, but we get to wear any shade imagineable!

    I have Kaliste and it’s so beautiful, but it smudges very badly on me. Stila Peacock is a gorgeous teal (more blue than Kaliste) that real stays put!

  • Lori says:

    I love that Armani. I have brown eyes that can change a bit to greenish, and I often use the Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes in 5L (Bronze Green).

  • Kate says:

    Warm brown eyes do look fantastic in green! I like purple on hazel eyes that have some green in them. I have blue eyes and often wish I had brown, I feel like anything besides neutrals look bad on me.

  • Hayley says:

    Off topic, but NYC makes an eyeliner very similar to that Nars one.

  • Julia says:

    I have hazel eyes, and I do find that purple brings out the green in them better. I also like to wear green eyeliner, though. :)

  • Honor says:

    I so agree with you Karla. I Have hazel eyes and Have ben tighligning in violet for year with an ok result. But when i tried Sihali from Mac , i was so impressed … It brought out Colors from my eyes that I have not seen before…. Blue works well too in summer. I Have to try ivy and the nars pencil

  • Natalie says:

    I’ve actually found that the right shade of purple can make my brown eyes pop, but teals and forest greens work great too! I think plummy shades of purple (like MAC Nocturnelle) look good with brown eyes, I got more compliments on my eye colour when I wear purples!

  • Phyrra says:

    Kaliste is gorgeous!

  • Charity says:

    I’ve found that brown eyes are the most versatile when it comes to being able to experiment with different makeup colours. Its great! Not only do I love purple and green, but blue, coppers, golds and warm silvers also feature heavily in my collection. I love my brown eyes – they’re not boring at all!

  • Cathy Crowley says:

    Hi Carla,

    I love the green liners. I have always felt uneasy about certain green shadows. Nobody want’s to look like they have a bruised eye! lol On the other hand the green eyeliners are fun. We have another liner for “First Timer’s” in green eyeliners called the Forest Shimmer Gel Liner from Bobbi Brown. I love using this one on women my age (50′s) and also women like yourself that don’t wear a lot of makeup.
    Some of my younger friends like using it as eye shadow as well, since it isn’t that dark.
    Good Topic! HUGGERS Cathy at the Bobbi Counter Northpark Neimans

  • Raines says:

    Absolutely agree. I actually found green works better for me. Purples can sometimes make me look tired, emphasise dark circles. Green brightens my eyes and draws focus to it. My favourite is Stila Jade shadow. It is a bright, shimmery green. It might look scary and tweenie-like, but promise you, nothing of the sort. I tightline it around my eyes for day looks and sweep it on my lid for fun night outs.

  • Carrie says:

    I’ve got green eyes and love wearing purples.

    I’m personally of the mind that I don’t care what the experts say, I know what looks nice against my skin and my eyes and I wear that, even if it’s not always ‘traditional’

  • Alas, I have blue-green-grey eyes, and I am green with envy that you brown-eyed girls get all the fun with color. I love all three, but I especially love the Armani. I wish I could wear it.

  • Rhapsode says:

    Uhm, totally true! I used to REALLY love this teal eyeliner from NYC; then I got into green eyeliners from Urban Decay, and I also find that copper and gold eyeliners look fantastic with dark brown eyes. Purple I like more as a shadow than as eyeliner.

  • Kayleigh says:

    I wore purples, plums, and browns almost exclusively from the time I was fourteen until I was seventeen- I had been duped by all the claims that purple makes brown eyes “pop.” When I was seventeen, my favorite colors were green an blue, and I decided that I frankly couldn’t stand to buy another purple or brown eye product, and green was my favorite color, so I bought a dark green eyeliner and some green and copper eyeshadow, telling myself that if they didn’t work out, I could always give them to my hazel-eyed sister. I put them on… and I haven’t touched purple since. It never looked good on me. But green and gold? Fantastic.

  • Michelle says:

    I agree and love these. I also love UD Stash and BB gel eyeliner in Forest Shimmer. Both make my eyes a little more hazel than brown. Those combined with different shades of green or gold shadow are a great look.

  • fiona says:

    definitely agree! seafoam green/turqoise/teal shades always work for me. i honestly don’t understand why they recommend purple for brown eyes, especially when they come up with those eyeshadow palettes for different eye colours and brown eyes always get purple.

  • maribeth says:

    I love green liners on my brown eyes. BB Forest Shimmer Ink is lovely, UD Stash as well. Also for Teal Revlon has a colorstay in Teal that works very well for me. Smashbox Jade is a little too light for me. Laura Mercier tightline Turquiose rocks. For a violet eyeliner try Violet Ink from Bobbi Brown. Lovely too-makes my dark brown eyes “pop”.

  • Allie says:

    Would you consider maybe applying these to an actual human face? It’s not every day I go out with stripes of makeup all over my arms.

  • Carin says:

    I am happy to see this and can’t wait to try my new green eyeliner. I usually stick to my basics, but felt like mixing it up and bought green eyeliner today and then wondered if it would silly.

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