Eyeliner 101

14 August 2014



I'm pretty sure the first makeup product that I put on my face was eyeliner, and let's just say, I had many, many, MANY disasters throughout my life when it came to applying it. When I first discovered eyeliner, I used to line around my lower lash line because I was too scared to apply it to my waterline, and then when I moved onto doing winged liner, I decided to go to school everyday looking like I coloured my eyes in with a sharpie. So, to put it in simpler terms, after having so many disasters and conducting so many experiments when it comes to eyeliner, I know a thing or two about what works and what doesn't.


I decided that this post should be my favourite eyeliners in each category, because ladies, the struggle is definitely real when it comes to finding the perfect eyeliner. You know, one that doesn't smudge, one that doesn't make you look like a raccoon (nothing against raccoons), all that sort of jazz.

Liquid Liners


Pretty sure when everyone decides to be brave and venture into the world of winged liner, they head out and buy the cheapest liquid liner they can get their hands on. Hey, I don't judge, my first liquid liner was from BYS and cost $3, did it work well? Errr probably not, but it did the job at the time. The truth is, whatever budget you're on, the good news is, you can most likely find a liquid eyeliner to suit you. Now that I've leveled up in the makeup world, I said goodbye to BYS and moved onto greater things.



Maybelline Master Precise // Right, I really enjoy this liquid liner, it's as black as my soul, the tip is a great size and is great for "precise" application, and it's affordable, so it doesn't cost an arm and a leg. My only gripe with this is that it can transfer to your bottom lash line, and causes this gross eyeliner build up in your inner corner. Nothing major, but I wouldn't recommend this if it's sweltering hot outside and you know you're going to be sweating. Also, if you're a beginner at eyeliner then this eyeliner isn't the easiest to use as the tip is incredibly fine, so if you're looking for an easier option, then keep reading, because I'm sure you will find something to suit you!



Napoleon Perdis Matte Eye Ink*// I'm going to come right out and say that Mr Perdis, you are a genius. A true pioneer. To be honest, liquid eyeliner isn't my favourite form of eyeliner, since I have a huge dislike of glossy eyeliners. I prefer my eyeliner to be matte, which is why I always gravitate towards gel or cream liners. But what happens when you wake up an hour late, and there's 10 minutes till your bus comes, and you need to sprint to uni? That's right, you usually don't have much time to fiddle with gel eyeliner (even though it's still my favourite). This product is amazing, because it gives you the efficiency of a liquid liner, but it's matte and dark like a gel liner. It's also easier to apply compared to the Maybelline Master Precise, but it is slightly more expensive. What I also love is that it isn't in a pen form, so it won't dry out as quickly as the Master Precise. If you're willing to spend $28, then check out ry.com.au and add this to your cart! I'll also be doing a makeup look featuring this product soon, so keep a look out!

Glitter Liners




Ulta3 Liquid Eyeliner * // I don't wear too much glitter, but it's nice to add some drama to your eyeliner on special occassions, and a great affordable option is the Ulta3 eyeliner. I usually like to do winged liner as I normally would, and then apply this over, and it completely transforms your look! If you're someone who isn't as daring with your makeup, but would like to take a little risk every now and then, this is probably the easiest way to look edgy without overdoing it! Who said you need to shave half of your head to look cool? This particular eyeliner is fantastic, because a) it's affordable, and I mean reeeeaaaaaalllly affordable, and b) it's subtle, but still noticeable. I mean, I'm not someone who invests in glitter eyeliners, so if I can find a budget friendly alternative, you bet I'm going to grab onto it as soon as I get my hands on it!

Pencil/Crayon Eyeliners

L-R: Bourjois Contour Clubbing Waterproof Eyeliner, Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Eyeliner
Right, so this next one is for tight lining the upper lash line, or waterline, so you need something waterproof and foolproof. I personally never apply eyeliner to my waterline as I find it looks too harsh on my face, but I know many of you love to rock the daring trend. First things first, pencil liners need to be creamy, because the last thing you want is a sharp pencil tugging inside your eye causing all sorts of problems. So I've given two options: a black eyeliner, and a brown, but keep in mind that these eyeliners come in a range of colours, and their formula is the same despite being purple or green.

Bourjois Contour Clubbing Waterproof Eyeliner // Where to begin. I love, love, love this eyeliner, and in my opinion, it is the best pencil liner from the drugstore/highstreet. It comes in a wide range of colours, it's extra creamy and smooth, and they say it's the dupe for the Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliners. Plus, they stay on your eyes all day. Yep, you read that right, these babies do not budge. I use this to tightline my upper lash line, and I love it because it doesn't transfer to my waterline by the end of the day. So if you're on the hunt for a good pencil liner, then forget MAC and other high end brands, because Bourjois has definitely knocked them all out of the park with this one. Just make sure you keep the lid on, because this gets everywhere as it's so creamy, and I've made the mistake of throwing this inside my makeup bag, only to find eyeliner on all of makeup.

Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Trio // If you've been reading my blog religiously (thank you!), then you would know that I recently rediscovered these lying around in my makeup collection, and I'm so glad I did! This eyeliner crayon comes in a pack of three, and the one that I have comes with a black, purple, and brown. If you're looking for more value for your money, then this is the way to go, as you get three eyeliners for $24, and they are great quality! Less creamy than Bourjois, but stays on all day, and doesn't smudge if you end up crying over a soppy movie, or maybe cutting onions if that's your thing. If you're like me, and find that black can look harsh on your eyes, then try using brown as it still provides definition, but in a more subtle way.

Black Eyeshadow



Right, this isn't really a "product" as per se, but more of technique that's close to my heart. Lining your lashline with black eyeshadow. You know those days where you really can't be bothered going all out with the winged liner? You want to look natural but you still want your eyes to have some "oomph", well this is it. This is my favourite technique for those days I'm being really lazy and can't be bothered applying makeup to perfection (yes, beauty bloggers go through this as well). I like to grab an angled brush, any black eyeshadow of your choice, and apply it very close to the lash line and wing out. This is also a great option if you have hooded eyes, as liquid eyeliners can transfer onto your eyelids and ruin all that hard work you put into looking good.  Oh, and if you find that your eyeliner never looks right, then try mapping out an outline with black eyeshadow, and then going over it with liquid or gel liner, that's how I got the hang of it when I was starting out!

Gel/Cream Liner



Shiseido Cream Eyeliner // I left the best till last. This is my ABSOLUTE favourite product to use, and I've been using this eyeliner since I was 14. Not only that, but I'm pretty sure I've been asked a million and one times "hey Basmah? What eyeliner do you use?" "How do you get your eyeliner so black?" and so on and so forth. So after 5 years, I'm finally revealing my secret, and it's this eyeliner right here. Now, Shiseido is pricey, so to be honest, any gel eyeliner will do, and there are some great affordable options out there, but even though this eyeliner is costly, it has lasted me FOREVER. I mean it. Plus, I still have so much left even though I use it nearly everyday. If you find that your gel eyeliner dries up on you, just blast it with your hair dryer for a couple of seconds and it should be as good as new. Now, some may disagree with me, but I actually find I have more control with gel eyeliner then I do with a liquid. Maybe it's because I've been using it for years and my hands are used to it by now, but whatever it is, this has become my holy grail, and I'll most likely cry if it was taken away from me.

So I hope you enjoyed this post, and added a few things to your shopping list! If you do end up trying any of these products out, then let me know, because I would love to know how you liked them!

What's your favourite eyeliner?

* PR Sample - opinions are honest and always my own, as stated in my disclosure policy.



Leave a Comment

  1. What a great review!!
    I have the Maybelline Master Precise, but it dried out it too quickly...just today I bought a gel eyeliner :)
    I'm still totally amateur especially when it comes to drawing the wing, and I think I have hooded eyes, so getting the angle right takes me agesss...
    I really like your tip of using brown eyeliner on the top lash line so it's not as harsh.
    Can't wait to see the makeup look with the Napoleon Perdis liquid liner :)

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    1. Thanks for reading Ilaha! If you find it difficult drawing the wing, then try using some sticky tape on the outer corner so you get a straight line everytime! x

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  2. Great post Basmah! The NP matte eye ink looks INTENSE! But also I may have to check out the Ulta3 glitter liners. Been looking for a glittery product to add a bit of pizazz to an eye look for special occasions!

    Tasha // shiwashiful.

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    1. Thanks Tash! Ooh definitely! And the Ulta3 eyeliners are so cheap, so you can probably pick it up with your spare change!

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  3. Fantastic post. So informative and yet it felt like I was chatting to a cool girlfriend over coffee as well. You inspire me that I must try gel liners.
    My recommendations for you would be Liquid- Guerlain, it is pricey but it makes the whole palaver so much easier because the brush is right and it is weighted correctly. Pencils/Gel Pencils- Eye of Horus, they are amazing. You have a small amount of smudge time and then they don't budge. I use them to tightline- brilliant or as a coloured wing that I top with black liquid or my new pen- also from Eye of Horus, like everything else from this fantastic range, the mascara is my holy grail, it doesn't disappoint.

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    1. Thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed the post and found it helpful! I'll definitely checkout your recommendations, they sound great and I'm always on the hunt for new products! x

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  4. I remember my first attempt at eyeliner oh it was awful!! love the post! Would be nice if you could take a look at my blog im a newbie to this blogger world! x

    Everything Beauty

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    1. Haha I can relate! Glad you enjoyed! x

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  5. Thanks for the mention! x - Ry.com.au

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