Eyeliner is one of those products that you really can’t do without in your makeup bag.
With the swish of brush or a sweep of a pencil, you can transform your naturally gorgeous peepers into spectacular works of art.
Many opt for waterproof liners so they can get through the day without having to worry about smudging and raccoon eyes. However, which ones are good to purchase when you’re on a budget and are there any particular things you need to pay attention to when shopping for one?
The answer to both questions is “Yes,” and we put 10 of the best drugstore waterproof eyeliner products to the ultimate test. Read on, and we’ll share our results with you here in this detailed guide.
Eye makeup is all about precision, and when you have specific design goals in mind, you need the right tools to help you achieve the look you want.
Rather than shopping by color and brand name, you should be taking a look at the type of tip the applicator has. Is it a felt tip, a brush tip, a foam tip or a pencil? And what’s the difference between all of them?
Felt. For liquid eyeliners, a felt tip is the most popular choice. It is rigid and features a sharp point, which makes it easier to use if you have an unsteady hand when you’re trying to create precision lines.
Brush. Some liquid liners have brushes with just a few bristles on them. These are more flexible than felt tips and they allow you to create a thin line by pressing lightly or a thicker line by pressing more firmly.
These can be a bit tricky to get the hang of because if you have a shaky hand, the results will be noticeable on your eyes. Practice makes perfect!
Gel eyeliners also use brushes, but they are much wider and won’t allow you to create lines as thin as the liquid liner brushes will.
Foam. We tried one product with a foam tip – the L’Oréal Paris Telescopic Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner. It was interesting, to say the least, and functions much like the felt tip. Foam, however, will wear down more quickly than felt, which is why many manufacturers don’t use it.
Pencil. Some waterproof pencils are quite impressive, but the level of control you have depends on the type of pencil.
Self-sharpening pencils only have that nice, fine point when you first open the product. After that, they will wear down to a round nub that will create thicker lines.
Pencils that you can manually sharpen will allow you to keep the tip nice and sharp, and while you do end up wasting more product, they do allow you to be more precise.
Top 3 Best Drugstore Waterproof Eyeliner Reviews
All of the products in our table are waterproof and ideal for anyone who wants to create the perfect cat eye or smoky eye without spending a fortune.
Here, we’ll review the three best drugstore waterproof eyeliners that we tried. However, if you don’t want a liquid or a gel, check out some of the pencils or other alternative products in our table.
One of the reasons we loved this pen so much is that it has such a fine tip. We have used brush tips with a point this fine, but it’s hard to find felt tips that are this tiny and accurate. Stila comes to mind, but their eyeliner is much more expensive, and this one is comparable to it.
Once you apply this, it won’t go anywhere until you take the makeup remover to it. There is no smudging, and it dries quickly on the skin – a very impressive product!
If you’re a makeup junkie who has tried them all but you still haven’t found the best affordable product out there, this one will win you over.
Maybelline’s gel eyeliner comes in four different colors – blackest black, brown, charcoal, and eggplant.
You will really like this eyeliner if you don’t need to draw razor sharp lines on or around your eyes. They provide you with a brush when you purchase this product, but the tip is round and therefore yields wider lines.
Those with super oily lids will probably have more smudging issues, so be sure you use a good primer before applying it. We liked the product, but the more you open the little jar it comes in, the more oxygen it is exposed to; this results in the product drying out quickly, especially if you use it frequently.
They created a video featuring makeup artist Gabriel Almovodar using this particular product.
If you would like some inspiration or ideas on how to use it properly, check out his suggestions in this video. Skip forward to 0:20 to see this gel in action.
Celavi is another great eyeliner pen with a felt tip that has a shiny finish once you apply it. The product doesn’t seem like it will last all day, so we recommend it for evening use when you’ll only be wearing it for a few hours.
Remember that these less expensive formulas usually don’t contain the most skin-friendly ingredients, so if you have sensitive eyes, we would suggest you avoid it.
While we did like this product, it does seem to dry up at an alarmingly fast rate. It’s good while it lasts, which doesn’t seem to be very long.
We also saw this as a positive thing because so many of us don’t change out our makeup products often enough. This product is inexpensive and replacing it regularly won’t put a noticeable dent in your makeup budget.