Different Eye Shapes

October 6, 2009 by  
Filed under makeup lessons

The eyes are the most exciting part to enhance with make-ups. The right strokes can improve your appearance dramatically or alter a character. An innocent looking lead actress can instantly transform into a mean villain after applying the tricks in eye make-up application.

Let us first get oriented  with the different eye shapes. Examples of each type will be those of local and foreign celebrities whose pictures were gathered from the net. Credits go to the respective owners of each photo. The ways to approach each with the proper makeup application will be discussed in a follow-up article.

I. Common Shapes/ Sizes

1. Small Eyes

Oriental eyes may fall under this category, but in general, this type refers to those peepers which are proportionately smaller than the rest of the face.  Example is TV Host Toni Gonzaga. She first striked me as one with closed-set eyes but upon re-examining her face, I decided she fits this description instead.

2. Prominent Eyes

This group is opposite to the first type, in which the eyes are prominent and tend to dominate the facial features. Think round, anime eyes but in human form. These types sometimes convey a surprised look that needs some toning down but can also be expressive and doll-like similar to Anne Hathaway’s.

3. Almond Eyes

Having this shape may cause you to be subject of envy at some point because  although almond eyes are common, they considered to be the perfect shape which any eye color or makeup design will work on. See the picture of an almond below for your reference. Notice that it is pointy medially and gradually rounded laterally. Primetime TV’s Darna, Marian Rivera, comes to mind when speaking of Almond-shaped eyes.

4. Protruding Eyes

Goiter probably pops into your mind when you hear protruding eyes but it isn’t limited among patients with thyroid disorders. Eyes like these don’t have to be huge in proportion to the rest of the face but they do have an exaggerated bulge from the socket which can be more obvious when the eyes look down or are closed. Penelope Cruz and Angelina Jolie both have these and they don’t look anywhere close to being a case of Grave’s Disease. Locally, there are a lot- from Concert Queen Pops Fernandez to Megastar Sharon Cuneta but we’ll pick the award-winning Cherry Pie Picache who first starred in an Eskinol Commercial with Vilma Santos and is now one of the most in demand actresses effectively essaying her roles whether as a clever villain or a devoted mom.

5. Hooded Eyes

These are commonly seen in aging eyes which lost its elasticity, thereby causing the droop. These can also be found on young people with folds of skin hanging over the socket line just because they are born that way. Asian eyes can sometimes have a hooded effect, making the eyes look closed even when they are not. Grey’s Anatomy’s Dr. Cristina Yang played by Sandra Oh enters the picture as an example for this eye shape.

6. Deep Set Eyes

Sunken eyeballs due to severe dehydration may illustrate an extreme case of deep set eyes but we are rather dealing with the eyes that lie deep into the socket commonly seen among Bollywood actresses. Women with these eyes are often considered a symbol of beauty such as Aishwarya Rai.

II. Distance

These categories are not descriptions of an eye shape but the distance between them which will likewise have an impact on your makeup application .

1. Closed- Set Eyes

When the eyes have a narrow space between them, this means you have closed-set eyes. Internationally, Jennifer Aniston was cited as an example but we’ll choose the fabulous actress Cherrie Gil to represent our local scene. Between her small eyes is a thin,aquiline nose making the space appear narrower.

2. Wide Set Eyes

When the eyes are spaced farther apart than the length of the eye, where you can put more than one extra imaginary eye in between, they are said to be wide-set. TV host Pia Guanio has small eyes accentuating the distance between them, making her a perfect example for this category.

Now look at yourself in the mirror and examine the shape of your eyes. Note that each type may not be exclusive from one another. Yours may be a combination of two or more categories. You can have small but protruding eyes or huge and deep set eyes. Uh… having a combination of a small, hooded eye on the right and a huge almond eye on the left is an entirely different case in which a trip to an ophthalmologist may be warranted. Otherwise, we can always put out our eye shadows and brushes and begin the magic. Hang on for the tips on how to apply makeup for each eye shape in the upcoming posts.


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21 Comments on "Different Eye Shapes"

  1. sunmom on Wed, 7th Oct 2009 3:00 am 

    i’m confused….hehehe! but it seems like i fall under hooded eyes. i find it difficult to apply eye make up because the fold where my upper eyelids meet my lower lids in the outer corners of my eyes is kinda deep and extends about 1/4 cm to my temples i’m thinking i’d send you a photo of my eyes so you can teach me how to apply eye make up on it. another thing is that, i have serious eye allergies that cause me to frequently rub my eyes (it’s that itchy, i can’t help it…). now, i’m just 24 and it looks like the skin on my eyes have sagged…can you also recommend a good eye cream to fix this? thanks!

  2. MUA In Scrubs on Wed, 7th Oct 2009 2:15 pm 

    hello sunmom, yes you probably belong to the hooded category as much as I do, given your description. It doesn’t have to be as obvious as Sandra Oh’s eyes and it can be combined with other eye shapes as well. For example: small and hooded or huge and hooded. When applying colors, one of my teachers told me not to extend too far to the drooping area so as not to emphasize it. Anyway, we’ll have more of that in the future posts on makeup techniques for each eye shape.

    Regarding your eye allergies, please have it checked with an ophthalmologist. You might have a case of allergic conjunctivitis so be careful with the makeups you apply near the eye area because they may be irritating for you. Allergies may be one of the causes of dark undereye circles and your frequent scratching causes the sensitive skin on that area to sag eventually. Instead of recommending an eye cream, I’d urge you to have your allergies corrected first. Besides the fact that I haven’t encountered an eye cream that really works, it might not suit you and further aggravate your condition. It would be best to see an eye specialist, if not an allergologist to determine the triggering factors leading to your condition. Hope you’ll get better soon!

  3. sunmom on Thu, 8th Oct 2009 2:57 pm 

    thanks! it’s really nice to have a doctor/mua around! :)

  4. Makeup For Small Eyes | The Doctor is vaIN on Fri, 9th Oct 2009 4:07 pm 

    [...] You have been introduced to the different eye shapes and the examples for each on the previous post. In case you’re clueless about it, please click this link to the Different Eye Shapes. [...]

  5. Makeup For Prominent Eyes | The Doctor is vaIN on Wed, 21st Oct 2009 1:30 am 

    [...] with protruding eyes, which will be discussed separately. As mentioned on our post on the “Different Eye Shapes,” a particular shape can overlap with another and produce a combined effect such as the [...]

  6. Donna on Wed, 21st Oct 2009 6:19 am 

    I’m looking forward to it :-) . thanks!

  7. MUA In Scrubs on Wed, 21st Oct 2009 10:12 am 

    Hi Don! As of today, the tips for small eyes and prominent eyes are already up and running. Please check back often for updates :) Thanks a lot, Don!

  8. Makeup For Protruding Eyes | The Doctor is vaIN on Thu, 19th Nov 2009 4:46 pm 

    [...] had Cherry Pie Picache as an example to illustrate this classification in our post on the Different Eye Shapes, and this time, we have Sharon Cuneta’s picture with the eye makeup that [...]

  9. mai on Tue, 24th Nov 2009 6:12 pm 

    wow! great post! at least, now i know where to classify my eyes. I belong to small and hooded eyes. same with sunmom, i find it difficult to apply eye make up because i want my eyes to appear bigger but usually end up to a more chinky eyes. :( looking forward for tips.

  10. MUA In Scrubs on Wed, 25th Nov 2009 4:01 pm 

    hello mai,

    thanks! we have belong to the same classification. i have small and hooded eyes, too. check back often for updates. the makeup for hooded eyes will be discussed soon. :)

  11. shirly on Mon, 18th Jan 2010 8:44 pm 

    Tnx for sharing this article. I find it very easy to understand since you manage to explain it by pictures of the popular local and foreign artists. I’ve seen a lot of websites that defines the different types of eye shapes…but this one I can differentiate one from the other by remembering those artists.

    Keep it up!

  12. MUA In Scrubs on Mon, 18th Jan 2010 9:39 pm 

    no problem, shirly! glad to be of help :)

  13. alyntoi on Mon, 22nd Feb 2010 6:48 am 

    wow, i so like your blog. So many informations that I really like particularly about eye make up. This is very helpful.

  14. MUA In Scrubs on Mon, 22nd Feb 2010 8:46 pm 

    thanks, alyntoi! :)

  15. Christine on Wed, 21st Apr 2010 9:55 am 

    I’m really lost on what eye shape I have, I can’t figure out if I have deep set, close set, or hooded eyes, or a mix, can you please help me?

    This is what my eyes look like

    Thank you! :)

  16. MUA In Scrubs on Wed, 21st Apr 2010 1:27 pm 

    hi chirstine, it’s hard to assess the real shape of your eyes because of the makeup but i think its of the almond and hooded type. watch how your lids above the crease area are drooping down (or it could be due to the makeup) and how it imparts a sleepy look, which many guys may find seductive.the space in between is just normal. it is neither closed set nor far apart from each other. hth. :)

  17. che on Thu, 27th May 2010 1:57 pm 


    learn a lot from those eye shape..;) when can we see your post on how to apply make-up on those different eye shapes? i love make-up but new on being an artist. not yet studying professionaly (hope sooner).

  18. ann on Wed, 16th Feb 2011 1:32 pm 

    Wow! Your blog is such a blessing. Im still confuse though. How would you classify the Maricar Reyes type of eyes where its big and pointy medially. Im of chinese and spanish descent. thanks dokie

  19. MUA In Scrubs on Thu, 24th Feb 2011 11:27 am 

    i think maricar’s eyes are almond-shaped, with monolids typical of asian eyes

  20. posh on Wed, 13th Apr 2011 9:29 pm 

    Where ever I go people comment on my eyes that its called cat eyes like d asian but wants to what exact type bcos asian ve different kind of eyes.they always tel me I ve beautiful n sexy eyes n d compliment comes from both male n female

  21. ann on Sat, 21st May 2011 1:13 pm 

    Oops! That should have been lateral not medial. Thanks doc. I find it hard to do my eye makeup. Help!!!

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