Some Strange Multi Eyeliner Review Saga

A while ago, I bought a “kit” by Bourjois Paris from BeautyTicket. Within this magical kit was a beautiful violet wet/dry shadow, a lavender creme eyeshadow, cute and tiny mascara, and the most epic, amazing liquid eyeliner I have ever used – Bourjois Paris Liner Princeau in Prune.

I have a strong tendency to become obsessed with products by Bourjois Paris. First, it was their Praline Lip Stain (I found it, by the way. As soon as I got home, I looked on a random bookshelf and saw its little red butt sticking out. There was screaming.), then this deep purple, bold, smooth, gorgeous liner.

Needless to say, I used it every day. Rarely a day went by where I didn’t find myself looking for that little tiny tube encasing that little tiny brush (brush is very important here – not a felt tip, not a stick – a fine-tipped brush) that made definition and highlighting so easy and saucy.

Now, there’s another aspect to the Bourjois Paris eyeliner that’s worth mentioning – it was my first liquid eyeliner ever. EVER. Ever.¬† I expected the learning curve for such a mistake-prone and wielding product to be much steeper than it was. Sure, I learned that too-thick lines make you look like a Kewpie doll and too thin lines are a waste of meticulous, lip-biting time… But I never once did the “EFF THIS, I’m wiping this shit off” move after a failed application.

I’m not really sure how long a tube (bottle?) of liquid eyeliner is supposed to last… But mine was kaput in about 5 months – is that normal? I don’t know. Either way, I miss it horribly and have since been on the search for the perfect liquid liner.

The first one I ventured to try was a laugh. A LAUGH, I tell you. Why did I even bother, I don’t know. Some people have amazing results with Wet’n’Wild Liquid Eyeliner and swear by it. I am not one of those people, as the most I did was swear at it.

It’s like $1.99, and it’s not worth any of those 199 pennies. Maybe three. But certainly no more than that.

That experience was full of application -> mistake -> try to smudge off -> make look horrible -> more vigorous eye-rubbing -> massive string of profanities -> attempt to wash off -> Why did I buy waterproof?

Not good.

My next attempt, I decided, would be educated. I looked online for the best liquid liners and heard really great things about Revlon’s ColorStay Eyeliner Pen. I’ve always been intrigued by the whole pen idea – yes, I was a major “draw on yourself”-kid. I fully hold this aspect of my personality responsible for this entire experience.

I ripped open the package as soon as I got home from the store. OOOH, A PEN! FOR MY FACE! I stared at the sculpted felt tip at the end and imagined how smoothly it would glide. I pictured the inky black that would make my eyelashes look like they were made of well-groomed shag carpeting (a coveted look, I’m sure). I ran to the mirror, and ran the tip across my lash line.

What the f…

What I saw when I refocused my vision was a jagged, semi-transparent line with breaks where my no-longer-13-years-old eyelid had been pulled. Gross. Toss.

Okay, retrieve from garbage can and place into makeup bag in case of emergency backup needs. In order to use this pen effectively, you have to do the whole eyelid-stretch thing which I really hate because it prevents you from really being able to stylize a line, and also because, hi, it’s uncomfortable.

FINE, I exclaim to myself. I’m going to spend real dollars on a real eyeliner from a real cosmetics company (no offense Revlon – Wet’n’Wild, quit denying the truth).

I got up early yesterday morning, dropped boyfriend off at work, and headed straight for Ulta. I had no idea what brands I was looking for, I was just a cosmetically scorned bitch on a mission.

WHAT CAN YOU HELP ME FIND? OH, I’LL TELL YOU WHAT YOU CAN HELP ME FIND. A F—ING EYELINER THAT ISN’T A PIECE OF SHIT, BUDDY!

Ok, I didn’t really go that far – I was quite lovely, really, if I do say so myself. I told the adorable sales dude that I wanted a pigment-y liquid liner that had a thin, brush applicator – no felt, no sticks, no funny business – just a brush. First, he says “We have one.” He leads me to Urban Decay’s Liquid Liner in those pretty, pretty bottles.

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The only thing I’ve heard about this particular product is actually bottle-related. Toward the end of the product’s lifespan, it becomes very hard to dig the remaining product out of the strangely-shaped bottle. For $18, I’d better get to use as much of this puppy as possible. However, the number of available colors was impressive, and I even spotted one that was similar to my precious Prune from Bourjois.

Salescutie then remembers – Oh! Actually, he has two more with brush tips to show me. OPTIONS ARE SEXY!

He reached for Too Faced Metal Eyed Liquid Liner. He makes¬† Mr. Yuck face while opening the tester. As he puts a line on the back of his hand, he says “We don’t like this one.” Oh, we don’t? “No, you almost, like, have to wear two eyeliners in order to get that bold line – see how it’s kind of jagged and transparent.”

…Ok, we don’t like that one. I’m not paying $17.50 for something that going to make me violent.

The last one he showed me was awfully tempting. Smashbox’s Masquerade Liquid Eyeliner & Lash Overlay ($19) was cutie-sales-guy’s favorite.

After sheepishly asking what a “lash overlay” was, he explained that each liner brush has ridges on the stick part (so technical) that allows you to use the liner fluid on your lashes, over mascara. “The bronze is bbeeaauuuuuutifuuuuuuuul“, he says.

Photo from MakeupAndBeautyBlog

Because they’re seasonal, there are only two shades – a bronze and a teal. While they’re likely very gorgeous on, I’m looking for something a little more everyday and a little less faaaabulouuuuuus!, you know?

So it was decision time. After testing all of the liners on my own hands, I went with the Urban Decay Liquid Liner in Crash – which is a deep, aubergine-purple. After checking out all of the available colors (MANY.), it was the closest I could find to my previous Prune. $18 later, it was mine, and I ran to my house (car) to put it on. It glides so smoothly, there are no icky creases or ugly, jagged lines. The tip was perfect and tapered and narrow… I did have to pull out a stray bristle, though.

I feel obligated to mention a touch of buyer’s remorse, though. Once driving, I kept staring at the super-inky, dark, bold black line on the back of my hand – Perversion by Urban Decay. Ugh, the line is so clear, thick, black, perfect… Next time, I will have it. For now – i’m going to enjoy success.

…for the next 3 hours. As my boyfriend and I sit at a sushi restaurant in Ballard, looking lovingly into each other’s eyes, I notice he’s not exactly looking… into my eyes – he’s looking around them.

“Are you wearing glitter?”

What.

“There’s glitter all over your eyes and stuff.”

WHAT.

Closer inspection reveals that my brand new eyeliner is purple… with silver sparkly bits. Sigh.

I cannot win this damned battle. I’m going back for the black, Perversion, ASAP.

  • Elizabeth

    Question- why didn’t you just re-order the Bourjois Paris liner?
    Also, I have had luck with gel eyeliners, specifically, Maybelline Lasting Drama: http://www.maybelline.com/Product/Eye/EyeLiner/eye-studio-lasting-drama-liquid-gel-liner.htm
    I’m sure if I coughed up the bucks for the Bobbi Brown version, I would be even more impressed: http://www.bobbibrowncosmetics.com/templates/products/spp/index.tmpl?ngextredir=1&CATEGORY_ID=CATEGORY22753&PRODUCT_ID=PROD1109 (they even have a dark plum for you!)

  • I didn’t reorder it because I couldn’t find it – it’s super tough! I found it on ebay for $14.50, but didn’t spring for it. I’d love to find something a little more accessible, you know? :)

    Gel liners!! I should look in to that. (Especially the Bobbi Brown!!) <3

  • shell

    Thank you SO much for all your research! i am a new(ish) user of liquid eyeliner and have been using Prestige, but it’s a felt tip. Not so bad, really, but if the brush is better I’ll try it. LOVE your article! and you are gorgeous, by the way!

  • Jen

    I love your eyeliner review! Its so hard to find a good one.

  • Amy

    Just wanted to say your post cracked me up, multiple times. It was a good thing I was alone in my corner of the office or they would have known I wasn’t working.

    I’ll keep the brush eyeliner in mind when I’m brave enough to try liquid eyeliners. Me with regular eyeliner is still near impossible.

    And you are super pretty! Reminds me of Jacinda Barret, Michelle Monaghan, and Jessica Stam.

  • Ana

    Gasp! I love Wet ‘n’ Wild’s liquid eyeliner! Are you sure you got the right one? A lot of people hate the waterproof one, but the MegaLiner is amazing. WnW’s gel (they call it Creme Liner) is also amazing, it’s my everyday HG.

  • Jess

    Great review! I could never make liquid liner work for me so I’ve worn gel liners for two years now. Smashbox is OK, but Bobbi Brown (with the Smashbox #21 brush) is my absolute favorite. It’s at Macy’s for only $3 more than the urban decay stuff AND it lasts for ever.

  • Worked at Sephora part time for 3 years and Urban Decay was one of our best sellers for eyeshadows, liners. We used to carry Bourjois Paris but sadly discontinued the line. I must say if you got 5 months of use out of that little tube you did really good!!! Most products are expected to last around 3 months with daily use or less. Anyway, your description of cute makeup boy totally cracked me up!

  • Shell: Thank you! :)

    Jen: Now you have one! Can’t wait for your review.

    Amy: Awww, thank you! Let me know how your eyeliner search goes.

    Ana: I knew a Wet’n’Wild lover would show up! I think maybe you’re right – the H2O waterproof hell I encountered was probably my biggest issue. I should try the non-waterproof kind, yes?

    Jess: Gel liners – I’ve heard of them, and I think I tried a L’Oreal brand once, but the brush was crappy. Maybe I’ll give Bobbi Brown a go!

    Hotsy: Oooh, good to know Urban Decay is popular – maybe it’ll work out. Cute makeup boy was adorable! I wanted to put him in my pocket.

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  • Bailey

    LASplash! You can get it at Ulta, I used one for 20+ girls at a dance competition. It’s liquid but it’s almost like rubber when it dries, no cracking/flaking/melting. It’s certainly waterproof, sometimes a little too waterproof, but definitely holds up better than any mascara I pair with it.

  • Bailey

    I should also add LASplash is also around $5. I would also suggest NYX.