What eyeliner? A guide to choosing the best type for you

which eyeliner is best for me? somanylovelythings

Admittedly, I am an eyeliner junkie. I cannot remember when was the last time I left the house without wearing it.

I am a huge fan of feline flicks – sometimes smaller and discreet, sometimes, big and bold – regardless of the style, the eyeliner is always there.

Although black is hands down my favourite, I’ve also been playing with some colour lately.

Nowadays, there are many options out there when it comes to eyeliner, and I am not just talking about brands and formulas, I am talking different methods of application! All very confusing!

So I put together this little guide to help you choose the best type for you!

Eyeliner Pen

eyeliner pen

Probably my favourite type a I find it the easier to use. Application almost always goes smoothly, so a greattime saver. I’ve tried so many… impossible to pick a favourite.

The important things are: to have a fine nib that is hard enough to offer support when applying – that’s what makes it easier and not be too dry.

L’Oréal Superliner, Eyeko, NYX and delilah are a few of the reliable ones I’ve been using throughout the years.

I am adding the NYX Curve here too, as it is easy to use, like a pen!

Best budget buy is the Collection felt tip eyeliener – also a consistent purchase for me.

Liquid liner

liquid eyeliner

The most traditional, been around the longest. As the name says, it is liquid and usually comes with a fine, soft brush, to be dipped in it but might not.

I find this is the hardest type to apply – a steady hand is definitely a must, as well as a lot of practice. The effect is lovely though, I feel it sits much better on the skin than any other type, but also takes me the longest to apply.

Perfect for the most fine of lines, I find that, due to the thickness of the brush, a bit harder for thicker lines, as you needs to draw over and over again thus increasing the chance of mistakes.

The hard wearing choice goes to GOSH Xtreme eyeliner is great for durability – it creates almost a film that stays put all day (and night). It has an amazing array of popping colours which turn out beautiful on the skin.

The budget buy has to be the MakeUp Gallery eyeliner from Poundland, for only £1 it has great staying power and a stiffer brush to aid application.

Special mention for the Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner, with super fine brush, great pigmentation and durability too – and fab colours.

Gel liner

gel eye liner

Used to be all the rage a good 5 years ago, so much that most high street brands will have a version of this. To apply, you need a good angled brush (MAC 263 is unbeatable on the job) and a reasonably steady hand. It glides very well on the lid and the finishing is great.

The brush itself is a fabulous tool to mastering the eyeliner application, as the angle can work as a marker to create perfect angles.

My favourite is MAC black track, hands down. Creamy formula, glides on the skin and looks great.

My budget choices include Maybelline and B. Makeup.

Pencil liner

pencil eye liner

Another super traditional type which I really like, but my beefs are durability and most importantly, precision. A delicate flick is almost impossible with a pencil liner. You need to sharpen too often and I found that, as a rule, it last much less that the other types.

Still, it has its place in my heart – and makeup drawer – it is perfect for flick-less lining, great for lower lash line and also for when you want a less harsh line; it is good for smudging and smoking.

My favourite brands include MAC, Pixi, Glo & Ray (the blue pictured is gorgeous!) and Eye of Horus (soft as butter and long lasting).

Powder liner

powder eye liner

A bit of a cheat, but I decided to include as I use it a lot. Basically, you can turn any eyeshadow into eyeliner and use an angled brush to apply.

Wetting the brush will maximise the colour. Durability is not great, and precision is not the best, so recommended like the pencil – for non-flicks, smokey lining.

In the past years, I have just used this type to line my bottom lash line, with MAC’s 231 brush. It is just perfect.

Whatever type you end up picking, make sure you end up with a combination of what suits your style and practicality (although I keep contradicting that!).

Also, practice does make perfect in this case. If you are really set on liquid, try, try and try. Eventually it will work.

What is your favourite? Although I am not an expert, I am more than happy to answer questions on this topic – please get in touch.


Contains a mix of samples, gifts and purchases.


7 thoughts on “What eyeliner? A guide to choosing the best type for you

  1. Hi! Great post! I’m recently looking for a liquid eyeliner within my budget. I used the Korean brand Etude House’s liquid eyeliner, costs only for US$4, but they changed the formula recently and now it is terrible!
    Thanks for the recommendation!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am using Bobbi brown (liquid eye liner pen) but I find that due to my natural oils the line vanishes or disintegrates after a couple of hours l.. Any advice ? Perhaps I need to try another brand. When I use pencil it is the worst !

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Mrs C
      Oh no! Our eyelids are indeed the oilier parts of the face! I’d recommend a primer (I use the Urban Decay eyeshadow primer) and a light eyeshadow, but if you don’t use any usually, possibly some translucent powder to set (you can get really cheap, like the essence one) before applying the liner.
      When I apply eyeliner (even my best one) without a primer, it usually sucks!
      Hope suggestions are useful and work for you!
      Let me know how you get on.
      Thanks for your visit and comment.
      Dani x


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