I Tried Unicorn Eyeliner IRL & Reached A Surprising Conclusion

It's safe to say that unicorns — the most enchanting of all mythic beasts — have stolen the hearts of many and they don't plan on returning them anytime soon. I am unashamed to say that, I too, adore unicorns. I tried unicorn eyeliner in everyday life, not only to pay homage to these spellbinding creatures, but also to try and make my day-to-day life a little more magical.

IMO, unicorns are so loveable because they have an air of nostalgia about them. If you played with My Little Pony toys in the '90s, or watched popular '80s movies such as The Last Unicorn and Legend growing up, whenever you see a unicorn nowadays you likely experience a comforting, familiar tug on your heartstrings. Unlike other fantastical beasts (including vampires, mermaids, werewolves, and witches) there is nothing remotely threatening about unicorns — they're sweet, gorgeous, and only want to bring joy.

After the events of 2016, where everything seems to have gone topsy-turvy, daydreaming of making friends with a unicorn, nuzzling into their soft mane, and riding down rainbows, is akin to wrapping yourself in a cozy, warm blanket with a hot cocoa. The hope that unicorns might exist in some corner of the world makes my life a little brighter. Thus, I tried unicorn eyeliner in everyday life to see if my life became more magical.

The Inspo

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There are tons of takes on the unicorn liner trend; just type #unicorneyeliner into your favorite social media platform and you're likely to find an array of looks. My favorites are the ones that look like an actual unicorn horn, rather than just a unicorn inspired makeup look. With that in mind, I began crafting my own.

The Method

I started out by applying a full face of "natural" makeup as I wanted my unicorn eyeliner to really stand out. I added a touch of pink eyeshadow to the outer corners of my eyes, to make the look extra cutesy.

I really suck at eyeliner, so I used an eyeliner hack I learned recently, whereby you stick scotch tape to your face to act as a stencil.

I drew white eyeliner across my top lash line and made exaggerated flicks along the tape.

After this, I went in with a very thin makeup brush dipped in water. I applied pink and blue eyeshadow, plus purple lipgloss on top of the white eyeliner flicks.

I am no expert when it comes to makeup and my skills with any kind of brush, are none existent. I tried to add a 3-D effect to make the eyeliner flicks "horn-like" but I didn't quite manage to get it as detailed as most other unicorn eyeliner creations I'd seen.

I believe you'd either have to be really good at makeup or art (or both), in order to pull this look off.

I finished with a smudge of sparkly, gold eyeshadow in the inner corner of my eyes, along with some mascara, to draw attention to my new eyeliner.

I was ready to take my new look into the world. As you can see, I was pretty excited.

Unicorn Eyeliner IRL

I felt like this look would be super cool for someone cosplaying as a unicorn — so of course, I had to try my unicorn hood on with my new eyeliner. However, I wasn't sure how well this magical makeup would translate into everyday life.

I was rather excited because I was making a trip with one of my oldest friends to see another childhood friend (her twin) and her twin's little girl. My friends are incredibly kind people and they told me they liked my fantastical makeup. I was looking forward to seeing what my friend's daughter thought of my makeup, however, after a bunch of playing and being giddy, I realized a toddler under two was not going to be bothered — and rightly so, she had far more fun things to be doing than analyzing her crazy "aunt's" eye makeup.

With all of the singing, being super silly, and reading books aloud, in addition to the unicorn themed eye makeup, I felt like I was an entertainer on a children's TV show. It was great and I was in my element — I think I may have missed my calling. When we all had dinner and the conversation went onto more adult themes, I totally forgot that I was wearing anything out of the ordinary and felt like I'd entered reality again.

It wasn't until a couple of hours later, when I was dropped off in my hometown, that I felt acutely aware of my unusual eye makeup. As I scurried down the streets, I felt as if people were looking quizzically at my eyes, but I may have just been paranoid. I popped into a shop, but it was so busy on the run up to Christmas that people didn't blink an eye at my makeup.

I arrived home and after seeing my partner, I asked him if he knew what my makeup was inspired by. He told me he had no idea — perhaps a result of me not drawing it on perfectly?

My faith in this ethereal eye makeup (however shoddily done) was restored when I visited my aunt in the evening. As soon as she saw me she said, "You look lovely!" When I asked what look she thought I was going for, she got it right on the money and guessed it was a unicorn inspired look. Although it's safe to say, the majority of my friends and family know I'm obsessed with unicorns, so I think this was a big hint to people that know me. Instead of feeling totally magical, I felt rather odd driving back home, alone in the pitch black, wearing unicorn eyeliner.

Did Unicorn Eyeliner Make My Life More Magical?

You don't know how much I wanted this to work. Before embarking on this experiment, I had high hopes that once the day was over, I'd feel like I'd been floating on a cloud and my life would be filled with magic that exuded outwards onto everyone around me.

The long and short of it is: I felt kind of silly. In fact, I thought it looked like I'd tried wearing candy cane eyeliner again. Wearing unicorn eyeliner IRL did not make my life more magical. Despite the fact that I spent the whole day trying too emanate wondrous unicorn vibes, my feeble makeup skills ultimately had me feeling like an average pony with a carrot tied around its head. Simply put, it's a cool look if you can manage it — but I probably wouldn't try to do it again.

Images: Phoebe Waller