Now Reading: Here Are Some Iconic Guyliner Looks Of The 2000s


Here Are Some Iconic Guyliner Looks Of The 2000s

July 23, 20196 min read

Long before a teenage boy with blending brushes, there was Pete Wentz and his eyeliner. While male makeup artists are common in this day and age, James Charles and Instagram tutorials were still a decade away when MySpace and My Chemical Romance were at their prime. Though the history of male makeup dates back to ancient Egypt, the men of 2000’s punk-rock were revolutionizing eyeliner on stage.

The 2000’s, also known as the era of “guyliner,” were a simpler time. It was a time before the rise of YouTube beauty gurus and Morphe palettes, when people took advice from J-14 articles and shimmer shadows could stand alone. It was also a time when makeup was a statement, rather than an enhancement, especially for men. One might argue that men in makeup is not a shocking statement, especially in our current society, but back then it was certainly bold.

The looks were edgy and brooding, and they made teenage fans go wild. While every man wore a bit of base and powder on the red carpet, musicians made sure their makeup was noticeable. Whether it was simple black kohl or verging on a Bob Ross painting, the look was sure to make a statement. Here are some of the most notable, as well as outrageous, looks of the decade:

Image via Fall Out Boy

1. Pete Wentz’s classic liner in Fall Out Boy’s “Thnks Fr th Mmrs” music video

Pete Wentz is often considered to be the father of the guyliner trend. Fall Out Boy music videos were incomplete without a quick smudge of kohl beneath his eyes. His look in the “Thnks Fr th Mmrs” video is simple, with Billie Joe Armstrong-esque eyeliner smudged ever-so-slightly under his lower lid.

And yes, that’s Kim Kardashian.

2. Jared Leto’s edgy “From Yesterday” look

While Jared Leto’s Joker makeup might remain his most well-known look, he has an extensive history with dramatic eyeliner. In this look, with the red tips and and black shadow, he is radiating peak 2000’s angst.

Many do not know about his band, Thirty Seconds to Mars, which he is still a member of. The band’s edge is complimented perfectly by Leto’s dramatic looks, which often consisted of black or navy eyeliner, with the occasional red eyeshadow tossed in the mix.

Image courtesy of Kelly R. Swift/SPIN

3. Brendon Urie’s  puppet face paint from Panic! at the Disco’s “Nothing Rhymes With Circus” tour

Panic! at the Disco was on the rise after their 2005 debut album, “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out.” They weren’t just any emo band, though. When it came to aesthetics, the band was undoubtably extra. They were over the top with their circus-theme, the frilly clothes, dancers and teenage angst all being major elements of the drama. Front-man Urie got creative, dolling himself up with drawn-on lashes and rosy cheeks, along with puppet strings.

Image via TheKillersMusic

4. Brandon Flowers’ smokey eye in The Killers’ “All These Things That I’ve Done” music video

“Mr. Brightside” singer Brandon Flowers is no stranger to guyliner. Featured in countless other music videos, the signature black eyeliner is paired with a lipstick kiss on the cheek. The simplicity and smokiness of the eye look adds to the dramatic and solemn ambience of the music video.

5. Ryan Ross’ eyeshadow in Panic! at the Disco’s “Live in Denver

Though Brendon Urie had his share of dramatic looks, he couldn’t compete with those of bandmate Ryan Ross. Being the creative genius of Panic! at the Disco, he thoroughly displayed his artistry in ways that went beyond lyrics. Whether it was Tim Burton-esque liner or shadow resembling Bowie, he was sure to put a unique spin on stage makeup. One of his most notable looks appeared in the band’s documentary, “Live from Denver.” Guitar in hand, he danced across the stage with red eyeshadow occupying half his face, intricately-drawn birds placed on top. Unlike Wentz and Flowers, he never settled for a quick smudge of kohl.

Ranging from the simplest of looks to the most intricate, guyliner never failed to enthrall punk-rock fans. While male makeup is no longer as controversial, these male musicians were fighting societal norms through means of artistry, all while serving looks.

Featured image via TheKillersMusic

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Mary Dodys

I cover the politics of pop culture—from celebrities scandals to the flaws in cancel culture. I'm always down for an album review, too. You can find me creating, whether I'm writing or painting.