How To Draw Anime Eyes

How to Draw Anime and Manga Eyes - Step by Step Guide

In this guide, we are going to teach you how to draw anime eyes. How cool is that? We'll start by teaching you how to draw the basic shape of an eye, and then we will move onto drawing different types of eyes like male and female. You don't have to be artistically inclined at all to do this; it's something that anyone can learn. Eyes are a good fundamental to get right if you want to learn to draw properly. Drawing anime eyes well will allow you to draw realistic human eyes in any style or genre.

Why eyes are important for expression in anime

They say eyes are the gateway to the soul. This is usually because eyes tell us a lot about how someone is feeling. Eyes in anime are no different. Actually, in anime eyes are are a key ingredient in conveying the mood and feelings of a character.

One defining characteristic of anime character design is the eyes. There are designs that have masculine and feminine characteristics, and some styles that are specific only to anime.

Expression is an important part of showing feelings and moods.

How to Draw Anime Eyes For Beginners

Drawing anime and manga eyes is a skill that is not difficult to learn, but can be challenging when it comes to mastering the subtle nuances of each type. Below you will find step by step instructions for drawing anime eyes in various states:

Some of the key parts of the eyes you need know about:

  • Iris
  • Pupil
  • Upper eyelid
  • Lower eye lid
  • Eyebrow
  • Eye lashes
  • Highlights

Drawing Anime Eyes Tutorial

Step 1: Draw the upper eyelid line

Start with the Upper eyelid Line. Do a number of lines to make it realistic

Step 2: Draw the eye lashes

Make sure the lashes are more horizontal than vertical

Step 3: Add a corner line.

Make it thick

Step 4: Draw the eyelid crease

You can do this with a short angled line

Step 5: Draw the iris.

There are many ways to do this, but a common way is with a large rounded circle.

You can cut off the top of the circle or have it showing.

Step 6: Draw the bottom eye lid

This is usually a small line.

You can also just leave this out

Step 7: Draw the pupil.

A common iris is just a normal circle.

Again the iris is flexible on how you want to the character to express themselves

Step 8: Shade in the Iris and Pupil

Gently shade the iris.

Then for the pupil, you want a darker colour

Step 9: Draw the shadow of the eyelid

Draw a line across

Then shade it a little

Step 10: Add in highlights.

Can be circle, square, triangle

Step 10:

Add color to the eye and liven it up.

Differences between masculine and feminine anime eyes

Anime Eye Size and Shape

Masculine anime eyes are usually a little bit smaller than feminine eyes. They also have a more angular, narrow shape. The eyebrows are usually thicker and less curved than feminine anime eyes.

In the guide above, we suggest that you draw eyes from the top eyeline down to the bottom eyeline. This is recommended when first learning to draw anime because it gives you the right proportions. However once you have got the basics, you can be a bit more flexible with the eye size depending on how you want the character to look.

When drawing female characters, you can keep to similar proportions of the eyes because anime girl's are usually seen to be more innocent and pure. But you can also draw more of a Westernised eye shape with the eyebrows being thinner and smoother, similar to manga style eyes.

However when drawing male characters, you should look to make your eyes smaller than the height of the top and bottom eyeline. Anime male eyes are usually drawn as being rougher than female anime characters because they show less emotion to be expressed, although you can use your own discretion for this.


Eyelashes are used to showcase femininity and anime and manga artists will often use eyelashes on female characters. A characteristic of anime is that the eyelashes don't go vertical. Instead, they are more horizontal in their look.

So when drawing female characters, make use of eyelashes. Male characters can have eye lashes but they should be minimal or shouldn't be used at all.


Male characters are often drawn with thicker brows and deeper-set eyes which makes them appear angrier or more aggressive than female characters who are drawn as softer in appearance. Male eyes in anime are usually drawn with thicker eyebrows and the eye shape is a bit more squarish.

Female characters are drawn with more delicate, thin eyebrows and round eyes.

How to Draw Anime Girl Eyes

Drawing Anime female eyes is relatively simple.

We will be using a basic eye shape for this tutorial, but feel free to add more details.

Here are some examples of girls anime eyes.

How to Draw Anime Boy Eyes

Anime boy eyes are usually much smaller than anime girls because of the shape.

After you're done drawing this shape over and over again on a few pictures or an actual person's eyes, voila you will be an expert.

A great way to draw is to get inspiration. Here are some examples of boys anime eyes:

How to Draw Anime Eyes Crying

They say eyes are the gateway to the soul and so there are lots of things you can do to express how your character is feeling. Crying is a big one of these. We're going to go through the basic steps of drawing anime and manga eyes crying in this tutorial.

Step One: Draw a circle for your iris and pupil.

Now, draw two smaller curves under each lash and then two lines coming out of the iris that are parallel with the outer corners of your eye. These will be your pupils.

Step Two: Draw a tear

You need to give your character a tear. Draw an oval shape under the iris that is the same length as half of it and then make two curling lines coming out from either side to represent tears.

Step Three: Darken up your outline

You need to darken up your outline so you can see it more clearly! You can do this by shading the lash line and adding in more shadows to your iris.

Step Four: Add Definition

You need to add definition around the tear lines so that it doesn't look like they're just drawn on! Draw a long curve, angled slightly upwards, for each eye-catching tear.

And now you have anime eyes crying.

Check out some great examples of anime eyes crying in anime below:


How to Draw Anime Eyes Closed

Drawing Anime eyes closed is so much easier than you might think!

- First, sketch the shape of your anime eye. This should be a whole oval with two curved lines coming out on either side for where to draw the lashes.

- Next, take another line and angle it downwards from both sides near the outer corner on each eye (the bottom). These should allow you to draw the shape of your eyebrow.

- Now, you can take two curved lines from the inner corners on each eye (the top) and connect them with a diagonal line to create sort of an upside down "V" for where your pupil should be.

- Fill in this whole outline with black ink or any other dark color.

- Take either a red or pink pencil and draw the upper lash line in whatever direction you want it to go, curving at the corners. Then fill that whole area with black ink as well.

- You can also take an orange pencil/crayon (whatever is handy) and follow along this same top lash line. By doing this, you will create the illusion of having a lighter colored eyelid.

- Now, take your dark color and fill in what should be the bottom lash line (below where it meets with the eye).

- And finally, draw two almond shaped eyes that are closed by taking curved lines from either corner of each eye to meet at an upside.

This is a simple way to draw anime eyes closed.

In Conclusion

Drawing anime eyes is easier than you might think. With our step-by-step instructions, it’s simple to draw the perfect eye shape and eyelashes in a matter of minutes! You can even learn how to make your character cry or close their eyes with just a few more lines. Whether you need some pointers on drawing an Anime girl, boy we have all the tutorials that will help guide you through every process from start to finish.

Once you have the basics down, you can start drawing anime eyes of your own design. Maybe you want to try adding in a wink or maybe some tears? With our step-by-step tutorials and video guides, the possibilities are endless! They should help you learn to draw.

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