May 10, 2015

Drugstore vs Mid Range vs High End Eyeliner Pens, Is there really a difference?

As someone who feels like a makeup look looks unfinished without eyeliner, I tend to go through eyeliners quite quickly. Over the last year or so, I've been experimenting with different brands from drugstore, to middle range and even a luxury brand. So how different could felt tip eyeliners really be? Surely they're all essentially the same?

Barry M Blink Precision Liner £4.59 | This is the eyeliner I purchase when I'm broke and have run out of eyeliner. It's a rather idiot proof eyeliner but I find it wears off well before the end of the day. I find it really struggles to apply on top a heavy eyeshadow look.

NYX The Curve Liner £13 | I was ready to repurchase NYX's the curve eyeliner and instantly fell in love with it after the initial problem of getting used to applying it with the strange curve holder. The formula is extremely black and it's so easy to create nice thick wings. Even though it wasn't waterproof I was willing to repurchase. It wasn't until the curved holder fell off and I saw how small the liquid liner cartridge was and I felt ripped off. 

Kat Von D Tattoo The Trooper Liner | While the rest of these are felt tip eyeliners, this actually has a brush tip disguised as a felt tip. I was expecting to love this but I don't think I've ever been more disappointed by eyeliner in my life. This eyeliner has been so hyped in the beauty community. The only real positive thing I have to say about it is I find the packaging adorable and that it's very easy to create intricate details with the brush. The issues? I find the formula too watery making it not last particularly well and a pain to apply over eyeshadow. The brush is too thin to be able to fill in my eyeliner wing which is incredibly frustrating. I'll always end up reaching for a different eyeliner to fill it in.

Urban Decay Ink For Eyes Precision Eyeliner £15.50 | I've often raved about Urban Decay's Perversion eyeliner pencil so I thought I'd try out their now not so new precision ink for eyes perversion eyeliner. While it easily applies over shadows, I find it has a tendency to drag on the skin. This usually results in me ruining my eyeliner and the quick drying formula makes it difficult to fix. I often have to line the back of my hand as occasionally the pen refuses to apply. Out of all 5, I found Urban Decay's formula the most long lasting of all.

Charlotte Tilbury The Feline Flick Eyeliner Pen in Panther £22 | Selfridges had a 10% sale last winter and I made a load of Charlotte Tilbury purchases because of it. Of all things to buy, I'm not 100% sure what compelled me to drop almost £20 on a felt eyeliner but I'm surprised to say, I don't regret the purchase. Charlotte Tilbury's formula is a super intense black and the formula easily lasts from the start of a working day into a late night. I find the felt tip quite sturdy with no dragging and the it's incredibly easy to get the tip of the wings right when applying eyeliner. Most importantly for me though, as someone who has serious allergy and hay fever issues, I find this eyeliner to be one of the only ones that manage to stay in place, even with watery eyes!

So what's wrong with it? Well the price for one, it's stupidly expensive. For the price, I definitely need to stop wearing it so casually and reserve it for nights out and special occasions only. I find the brush naturally creates thick wings, which I adore but if you're into more subtle liner, you may want to skip this entirely. I find it's almost too longlasting and on occasion can leave a stain. Despite that, I'm so enamoured by it that I definitely see myself repurchasing.

Swatched L-R with one swipe only : Barry M, NYX, Kat Von D, Urban Decay, Chatlotte Tilbury

To Summarise
BARRY M - Best for price, not so good on everything else
NYX - Takes some getting used to but otherwise amazing formula
KAT VON D - Best for thin lines, not particularly great for the rest
URBAN DECAY - Perfect formula but drags a bit
CHARLOTTE TILBURY - All of the points aside for the price mark

Favourite to Least Favourite - CT, NYX, UD, Barry M, KVD

The formula for each of these were quite different and had their own unique pros and cons. As someone who has often felt certain midrange and high end brands are a bit lack lustre in quality, I'm surprised to find myself genuinely in love with a luxury end eyeliner. That said, paying more doesn't always guarantee amazing quality either. You can find some excellent drugstore brand eyeliners that perform better than midrange ones. If eyeliner is part of your daily makeup routine, I would definitely recommend investing in a luxury one for special occasions.

1 comment:

  1. I'm a big fan of the Superliner Blackbuster by L'Oréal. The pen is a bit chunky, but you can still get quite fine lines out of it. It's a decent pigmentation and long lasting, and the pen doesn't drag. It's got a goldilocks formula too - not so dry that it sets instantly, but not watery enough to invade my eyeballs. 10 outta 10 would recommend.