Makeup Tips for Spectacle Wearers: Five Simple Steps

As an optometrist, I get asked for clinical and non-clinical advice about eyes and all things ocular. One of the most common non-clinical requests is for makeup tips for spectacle wearers. I am by no means an expert on makeup techniques, but these five simple tips are a good start.

The trend for statement eyewear is set to stay and the days of hiding behind spectacles are long gone. Bold glasses draw attention to the wearer’s face, so makeup must be flawless. Good lighting and a magnifying mirror are essential for those who find it difficult to see their eyes without their specs.

Banish Shadows

Frames and lenses can cast shadows underneath the eyes, so apply concealer to the inner corners of the eyes and any place else the glasses cast a shadow. A lightweight liquid concealer is less likely to crease or look cakey. As with all make-up, apply with a light hand because it’s easier to add more than to remove it and start again. Choose a shade a little lighter than the foundation and if necessary, use a peachy pink corrector to counter the greenish/purplish tone of under eye shadows.


Lengthen Lashes

Curl the top lashes with an eyelash curler to widen the eyes and to keep the eyelashes from touching the lenses. Avoid thickening mascaras because they contain fibres that can deposit on the back surface of the spectacle lenses. Consider a waterproof or long-lasting formula with a smaller
brush to reduce clumping.


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Draw A Line

Adjust your eyeliner thickness to suit the frames. A thicker frame needs a thicker line to the upper lashline to make the eyes stand out and a finer frame needs a finer line. Light-coloured eye shadow with a luminescent finish will make the eyes look larger, while a darker matte finish will have the opposite effect. This should be considered alongside the magnifying or minifying effect of a significant prescription. (The lenses in glasses to correct long-sightedness will magnify the eyes. The lenses in glasses to correct short-sightedness will minify the eyes and consequently makes them look smaller).


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Define The Eyebrows

Thanks to model of the decade, Cara Delevingne, dark, thick eyebrows have been de rigeur for some years. This look works well with a dark, thick frame but can overpower a delicate style. Neat, well-defined and in proportion with the frame is the aim of the eyebrow game. I think this is perhaps the most useful of all of the makeup tips.


Make A Face

Once you have applied your eye makeup, put your spectacles on and look at the face as a whole. Ensure the rest of the maquillage balances the eyes. Define the cheekbones with blusher or bronzer and choose lip colour carefully. The notion of having only a strong eye or a strong lip is outdated. Go as bold as you dare.


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I will write a post containing makeup tips for contact lens wearers, in due course. In the meantime, take a look at my blog post featuring the latest trnd in spectacle lenses, the Style Colours coloured photochromic lenses by Transitions.  I will link to Brilliant Blog Posts and The Saturday Share.



  1. Susan Benjamin
    September 2, 2017 / 7:02 pm

    It’s interesting that there are so many different types of spectacles Lizzy. Who knew!
    I am an optimist too, it is so much better to look at the glass half full, especially through snazzy specs!

    • elizabeth
      September 2, 2017 / 7:06 pm

      Hi Susan, thank you! I’m most definitely an optimist and always see the glass as being half full but in this case I’m referring to my professional background which is as an optometrist (ophthalmic optician)! Have a lovely weekend x

  2. September 3, 2017 / 7:08 am

    This post was really helpfull. I sometimes wear glasses and havn t thought about adjusting the make-up!

    • elizabeth
      September 3, 2017 / 7:59 am

      Oh thank you Nancy. Glasses change how one looks and sometimes the make-up can need s little adjusting as a result. Spectacle frames have the ability to draw attention both to and from a particular feature so it’s quite useful to do a little bit of experimenting! xxx

  3. September 3, 2017 / 10:22 am

    Hi Lizzy. I think this is a post that might appeal to many of your readers. I mean, for those of us 40+ the day our arms are definitely too short to read a book or newspaper will come and that day your tips will be highly appreciated. Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful weekend. Love, Lieske

  4. MT
    September 3, 2017 / 10:36 am

    I’m so pleased that specs are such a big part of fashion now. Since becoming a wearer later in life it’s a whole new world of fun for me! Nice article Liz, I love all the different make-ups you show xx

  5. September 7, 2017 / 4:16 pm

    I have worn glasses all my life but I never thought about specifically brightening around my eyes to compensate for the shadow. I will definitely experiment with this! #brillblogposts

    • elizabeth
      September 7, 2017 / 6:59 pm

      Oh it’s good to know that this might help you. Yes, spectacle frames do cast shadows so it’s worth looking in all lighting conditions to see what the effect is xxx

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