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How to Glue Your Eyelids

I’ve always wondered how to use eyelid glue. I knew it was a prime  tool in the make-up kits of Japanese gyaru seeking that perfect babydoll look, but never understood just how it worked. Then I discovered this handy guide in Kera magazine!

Basically, “Western” eyelids have a deep fold above them and Japanese eyes don’t. If you think of the eyelid as a window shade, “Western” eyes are pulled up an extra notch, so you can see more of the eyeball. Eyelid glue basically puts a tuck into Japanese eyelids, gathering up the lid so eyes look “wider.”

At the top is how Japanese eyes look naturally. In the middle, after gluing. Bottom: glued, with make-up.

Apparently, eyelid glue comes in two types: liquid and tape. The newest tape variety is called “medical fiber” and looks like a piece of clear, sticky, fishing line with little pins at the ends to hold while positioning it. In six easy steps, here’s how to use it…

1: Clean off all your make-up before putting on the tape. Use the end of the “pusher” stick to push the fold above your eyes deeper, to check for position of fold and length of tape. At the midpoint of your eyelid, the line of tape should be about 10mm above your eyelashes.

2: Pinch the pins at both ends of the “medical fiber” tape between your fingers and slowly stretch it until it’s about 8 cm long.

3: Position the stretched fiber (tape) along the line where you want the fold to be and pull it firmly against your eyelid until it sticks.

4: Before using the “pusher” stick to make the fold, trim off the extra tape. The line of tape should be around 30mm long.

5: Use the stick to push the skin under the line of tape deep into a fold beneath the tape. Hold it with the stick so the line of sticky tape adheres to the skin closer to where your eyelashes start. Wait for it to set securely.

Eyelid tape and glue wash off with water, and while they all claim to keep your eyes looking innocent and appealing for a day, most of the reviews I’ve read complained that eyelids had to be redone after a few hours. Mileage varied when users compared the new “medical fiber” type of adhesive used in the above directions to the older, thicker tape, but everybody agreed that the tape was more reliable and attractive than the kind you have to paint on, which makes for un-cuteness if it fails and your eyelid is suddenly marred by a swath of unnaturally white dried glue.

The Last Tea Bowl Thief was chosen as an Editor’s Pick for Best Mystery, Thriller & Suspense on Amazon

“A great read!” —Liza Dalby, author of Geisha and The Tale of Murasaki

Jonelle Patrick writes novels set in Japan, and blogs at Only In Japan and The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had

Jonelle Patrick View All

Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!

4 thoughts on “How to Glue Your Eyelids Leave a comment

    • I’m not quite sure what you’re asking, but if you’re looking for eyelid tape, you can buy it at any drugstore or Don Kihote in Japan. I’ve never seen it outside the country, though.

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