Next to Sophia and Morello, Maritza Ramos is one of Litchfield’s most-stylish inmates on Orange Is The New Black. She’s never seen without her fierce eyeliner, or her best friend Flaca, so when we saw actress Diane Guerrero at the Urban Tech 2014 Gala in New York City, we just had to get her secret to creating that perfect winged-out look.

As it turns out, Guerrero was a pro at the effect long before she started playing Maritza. “It’s always been my thing! That look was especially big in my community growing up,” she told InStyle.com. To get the wings just right, the star recommends slowly building the application, and doing so with confidence. “I’m not sure if you want to walk around with a Maritza wing, but hold a steady hand, and use light, tiny brush strokes a little at a time,” Guerrero says. “And don’t be afraid to mess up! Sometimes I’d be like, ‘Forget it, I won’t even wear any’ because I was so scared to mess up, but just keep going and you can fix everything later.” Practice makes perfect, and we’re assuming Maritza’s fellow inmates are also certified pros, judging from their own bold eyeliner looks. “With Maritza and a lot of the girls, I feel like doing your hair and makeup is a way to have a little fun and keep sane,” she adds. “It’s our way of showing that we still care about ourselves and how we look. Besides, if we have to wear all the same uniforms, at least my eyeliner is on point!”

A penchant for dramatic eye makeup isn’t the only thing Guerrero has in common with her character—the actress admits that certain aspects of her own personality are mirrored in Maritza, namely those of her younger years. “Maritza is like my 12 year-old self. It’s like, I’d be in school and people would be trying to pull my hair, and I’d have to get really tough really quick. Of course I would go home later, cry, and watch Saved by the Bell, but I definitely see parts of my 12-year-old self in Maritza” she jokes.

See more of the best beauty moments we spotted while marathon-ing Orange Is the New Black.