Anime Eyes In Real Life

For this post I want to explore something a little bit different – I want to explore the idea of Anime art styles making their way into the real world. I’m not talking about fashion cosplay or character roleplay, i’m talking about the replication of anime eyes in the real world.

Meet Anastasiya Shpagina – often described as a real life Anime Girl. Miss Shpagina is a 21-year old Ukranian Youtuber who makes video tutorials for imitation make up. Miss Shpagina has recieved a lot of attention for her character imitations of anime characters, such as Sailor Moon, in which she transforms herself into the real life equivalent of that character. What contributes to her look as an anime character are features such as her flawless light skin, her bright coloured hair, and most famously her large anime-style eyes. I took some time to surf Miss Shpagina’s Youtube channel, and established exactly how she makes her eyes look as large as they appear, and if it can be replicated.

I am under the impression, based on a number of sources, that Anastasiya has in fact had plastic surgery on her face in the past. This in itself, while it is very easily to replicate, it’s very expensive and also life-altering, so I would not recommend this. Something I really wanted to discover is exactly how she achieves the anime-eye style, and I managed to find out!

The contact lenses that Anastasiya uses. The brand, fittingly labelled “Big Eye” Lenses, are a contact brand that have larger pigmented surface areas than regular contact lenses, which make the iris and the pupil appear much large than average human eyes. Big Eye lenses are widely available online, despite sources stating that they are in fact illegal in some countries. The lenses are the biggest factor contributing to her appearance as an “anime” character.

Anastasiya also utilises a number of make-up techniques to make her eyes appear much larger than normal, which include applying eyeliner further below her eye than normal, which in conjunction with her eye shadow underneath the eye gives her the impression of having larger eyes. She also uses eyeliner as well as eyelash extensions to give her more defined eyelashes. Anyone who can steadily apply makeup can achieve similar looks in this way.

In an interview, Anastasiya stated that she spends half an hour per day to apply makeup to her eyes alone to achieve her look, something I found truly staggering. Her attention to detail is beyond my male comprehension, but ladies out there, if you’re looking to take your cosplay to the next level, and you don’t mind wearing contact lenses, check out her videos and learn from the expert!

One comment

  1. In my opinion, normal cosplay where people just dressed up and put on make to look like some character is ok but I think if they really went as far as doing plastic surgery to look like some character is a bit too much. This make me think about ‘Human Ken Dolls’ ( However, it still amazing to see that with make up and some other product can change people look this much. Big Eye contact lens is quiet easy to find in Thailand. I’m not sure if it illegal or not but I have seen people where it and sale it in a mall before. Another point that I found interesting is that overly big eye is usually associated with anime or manga. It is true that manga and anime character usually have very big eyes but this characteristic might actually came from U.S.

    Tezuka Osamu, a very infulencial figure in Japanese manga and anime mimicked overly large eyes of character from the artistic style of early western animator. Such as, Mickey Mouse.


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