How to Make a Homemade Natural Eyeliner

homemade eyeliner recipe

How to make a homemade all-natural eyeliner that doesn’t run, burn, or flake, works beautifully, is waste-free, and only requires four ingredients. You can look your best while avoiding the toxic chemicals and waste that so often comes with commercial cosmetics when you make this DIY eyeliner.

As some of you may already know, I don’t wear makeup all that often.

Actually, I rarely wear makeup at all. It’s been about five years since I’ve put any on my skin, and the makeup I did wear even back then was the usual commercially-made cosmetics.

It’s only been in the past couple of months that I’ve started using makeup again, and even then it’s only hear and there.

I do it to glam up a little now and then, when I go out on dates, or when I’m in the mood to dress up a lil’ bit fancy.

When I do wear makeup, I prefer to have my twin sister apply it onto my skin as she’s a professional makeup artist and does a way better job at it than I do.

However, as she lives in Sydney (eight hours drive away from where I live up in Queensland), I don’t have her around that much, so I’ve been building up my skills in makeup, and so far I’ve moved from a complete beginner to mediocre.

But, this suits me fine.

I wanted to use natural makeup alternatives after learning about the tremendous amount of waste that comes with the cosmetics industry, and the huge amounts of toxic chemicals used in the products.

I wanted makeup that was certified organic, palm oil-free, and 100 percent natural.

So, I started making my own.

homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe

Plastic Waste and Environmental Impact of the Beauty Industry

In Australia alone, it’s estimated that more than 10,000 tonnes of cosmetic waste is sent to landfill each year. Makeup products aren’t generally accepted in kerbside recycling because they are too small to be sorted at a recycling facility and often contain mixed materials as well as remnants of the product, making them tough to recycle alongside glass and plastics.

By making your own eyeliner, you can help reduce the unnecessary waste that comes with cosmetic products. Reusing old eyeliner containers to store your homemade eyeliner in is a great way to minimise waste, too. Just ensure you thoroughly clean the jars/containers beforehand, and clean any brushes you’ll be using to avoid bacteria growth. The eyes are very sensitive, so it’s important to ensure makeup and brushes are clean and free of any harmful bacteria and pathogens.

homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe

The Toxic Chemicals found in Cosmetics

According to an article by Mg Naturals, of the 82,000 ingredients used in cosmetic and personal care products, 1 in 8 were found to be industrial chemicals. These ingredients can be pesticides, hormone disruptors, toxins which affect the reproductive system, and carcinogens. Some of the worst offenders to watch out for in commercial cosmetic products include BHA and BHT, coal tar dyes, lead, DEA (diethanolamine), formaldehyde (on cosmetic labels, formaldehyde-releasing preservatives are usually labelled as DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, methenamine, quaternium-15, and sodium hydroxymethylglycinate), parabens, BAK (Benzalkonium chloride), prime yellow carnauba wax (also known as palm wax, this wax can clog the oil glands around the eyes and can lead to dry eye disease, styes, and other infections), Dibutyl phthalate (DBP), parfum/fragrance, siloxanes, polyethylene/PEGs, the colour additive D&C Black No. 2, petrolatum/PAHs, sodium laureth sulfate (SLES), and triclosan.

The eyeliner I’ll be sharing with you today only contains four ingredients, all of which are natural and free from toxins.

If you want to change up the colour of your eyeliner, say, to brown for instance, use cocoa or cacao powder. This can also be done with other natural coloured powders like spirulina for green or blue, turmeric for yellow, and other natural pigments to vary up the colour of your eye liner.

Please note that unfortunately this eye liner is not waterproof. For a natural waterproof eyeliner recipe, see here. Beeswax is incorporated into the recipe to help the eyeliner sit on skin for longer, and allow water to run right off without causing it to run.

A powder may also be needed to set the eyeliner, as over long periods of time the liner can smudge. So, using a black eyeshadow to set it a little or to smudge it out will create a soft smokey liner look and will help the liner to set in place.

Always be careful when using any products, even natural ones, near the eyes. If any sensitivity or irritation arises, remove the makeup immediately and cease use.

homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe
The two different ways I wear eyeliner; on my eyelid and on my waterline.

Natural Skin Care

I believe that what you do to your skin before you use makeup is just as important as the makeup you use. There are some great natural options for skin care, my personal favourite being the oil cleansing method, which uses natural oils to balance the skin. I typically use the oil cleansing method at night and wash my face with my all-natural gentle calendula facial cleansing oil in the morning. I finish by applying a light toner of rose water to my face, or a little of my natural moisturiser.

With proper skin care, I find my skin is naturally healthy, so I don’t need to wear makeup most of the time. But when I do wear it, I like to use homemade, natural alternatives.

Before we get started in learning how to make this homemade natural eyeliner recipe – if you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my email newsletter at the bottom of the page to keep up to date on the latest recipes, DIYs, gardening and health tips I share!!

homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe
What the eyeliner looks like when applied onto eyes.

DIY Natural Eyeliner

This homemade eyeliner is as natural as you can get using only four, non-toxic ingredients; activated charcoal, shea butter, bentonite clay and jojoba oil.

If the eyeliner is too thick or too dry, add more oil and/or shea butter to create a smoother texture.


To make:

  1. Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl and mix well to combine. Use a mortar and pestle, or the back of a spoon, to really work the oils into the fine powder for a smoother paste. There should be no clumps.
  2. Scoop the paste into your tin or jar and smooth it down using the back of a spoon. Using metal with the bentonite clay will deactivate it. As mine is stored in a metal tin, it is deactivated and so won’t pull toxins out of my skin. The purpose of the clay is as a binder in this recipe, so it doesn’t matter that it has been deactivated.

To use:

  1. Lightly dip a line brush into the eyeliner mixture and then scrape the brush against the sides of the container to smoothen the paste on the end of the brush.
  2. Gently draw on your eyeliner. It may take some practice applying. You may get some specs on your face — as it is a powder — which can be gently wiped away once dry. The eyeliner will take a few minutes to dry, so after applying, be sure not to touch it for a few minutes. This eyeliner will typically last a full day. Clean the brush after each use.
  3. A powder may also be needed to set the eyeliner, as over long periods of time the liner can smudge. So, using a black eyeshadow to set it a little, or to smudge it out to create a soft smokey liner look, will help the liner to set in place.

For a natural mascara recipe that can be made using the same ingredients, see here.

homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe
homemade eyeliner recipe

As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor before trying or using any new products. I am not a doctor. All opinions expressed are my own personal thoughts and feelings of the products mentioned. Check with your doctor or health practitioner if you are uncertain about trying out any of the products, recipes or tips mentioned in this post.

Have you made your own eyeliner before? Was it what you were hoping for? Share in the comments below.

Lots of love,

🖤 Vanessa

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