Tag Archives: eyeliner

mac gel eyeliner

Ask BX: Which Eyeliners do you Recommend?

Dear BX,

I’m on the hunt for the perfect eyeliner — one that won’t smudge and migrate down under my eyes after a few hours of wearing it. What do you recommend for an eyeliner that stays put all day?



What — you don’t like rocking the panda look? Neither do we. After testing out hundreds of eyeliners, we have a pretty good idea of which ones don’t smudge and which ones to save your money on.  Here’s a list of our favorites broken down by category.


urban decay 24/7 eye pencil eyeliner

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-on Eye Pencil ($19) — Ever since our blogger friend Kelly Gould of Gouldylox Reviews recommended this eyeliner, we can’t get enough. It’s the blackest black you’ll ever see, and it applies as creamy as home-churned butter.


mac gel eyeliner

MAC Fluidline ($16) — This little eyeliner pot has long been a favorite of many bloggers and makeup artists, with good reason — you get a precise, matte-velvet finish, with incredible control over how thin or thick you’d like your line to be depending on what brush you use to apply it. While many people opt for a thin liner brush, we opt for a slanted stiff-bristled liner brush like this one.


Marker Pen

smashbox liquid eyeliner pen

Smashbox Limitless Liquid Liner Pen ($22) — If you love the control of a pencil but want the look of a liquid, this eyeliner is perfect for you. We’ve bought this time and again and are in love with the way you can build it up for a thick cat eye or keep it super thin to look natural against your lashes.


To make any eyeliner last longer, we highly recommend wearing a good eyelid primer, which can help stave off eye makeup melt.  Some of our favorites —  Too Faced Shadow Insurance, bareminerals Prime Time Primer Shadow and e.l.f. Eyelid Primer.

Let us know what you end up getting, and if you like it as much as we do!

Line with the Blues

Open up your eyes!

I’ve recently begun experimenting with my eye make-up and I’ve come to realize that for a dramatic look, gel liner is the way to go. I wouldn’t necessarily go in this direction for class or a lunch date, but last night while out for a late dinner with my friends, I couldn’t help but feel bold and sassy wearing Lancôme’s Linear Design Longwear Gel Eyeliner in “Indigo Darling” ($24.50).

As a brown-eyed-girl I typically stick with a black kohl liner, so the indigo was a fun switch up. I did run into one small dilemma, though. I didn’t know what to use to apply it! Luckily I found a little liner brush from an old smudge pot kit but it certainly wasn’t ideal and my lines weren’t as clean as I would have liked them to be. What I should have invested in was the Dual-End Liner and Smudge brush (also from Lancôme) or any other angled liner brush.

Once I found my makeshift applicator, I chose the “go big or go home” tactic and lined with an intense, structured line.

Note: The photos are a little deceiving — the color came out as more of a navy than cobalt as it may look!

Started off with a basic neutral shadow and a little highlighter right on the lid. Sorry guys, not my best angle.
Not perfect, but close!
A little creepy…
Dorm room photo shoot complete -- the full effect!
Photos: Lauren Markarian/BeautyXpose

Product Review: CAILYN Gel Eyeliner

Eyeliner is my best frenemy. Some mornings, my eyeliner and I get along perfectly, leaving me proud and accomplished as I sport a perfect look. However, some morning I smudge or apply my liner unevenly me. On these days, we’re not such good friends.

I have always failed miserably when working with liquid liners, so I used to stick to pencil liners. However, I felt a bit limited and struggled to get a variety of liner effects (cat eye, thick lines, thick lines, you get the picture). About a year or so ago, I started trying out gel liners. I was hooked instantly. I love the flexibility that the brushes allow me, yet I much prefer the control of the gel liner over the liquid.

Recently, I was introduced to CAILYN’s gel eyeliner. One thing that first caught my eye about this product is the packaging. The gel liner pot and the brush are built-in together, which makes for easy transportation while travelling. Plus, I liked the wide range of colors.

I’ve been using “chocolate mousse” for my daily makeup routing over the past couple of weeks, and I love it. The color works well with my skin tone and the liner doesn’t budge. While applying the liner, you have a few minutes to fix any mistakes. However, after a bit the liner dries and stays more or less smudge/waterproof all day long.

I wish the brush came to a bit more of a point, but it does hold it’s shape very well.

Each CAILYN gel liner with a built-in brush retails for $21 on their site.

What type of liner do you prefer?

Photos: Kristin Bassett/BeautyXpose; Disclosure

Product Reveiw: Sue Devitt Eye Intensifier Pencil

They say that a person’s eyes are the windows to their soul. With such great emphasis put on your eyes, you best treat them right and enhance them with liners, shadows and mascara. While I could ramble on and on about all three of these things, I’m going to focus on eyeliner today…Sue Devitt Eye Intensifier Pencil, to be exact.

Sue Devitt Eye Intensifier Pencil

This water resistant eyeliner also comes with an attached applicator tip to help blend multiple liner colors, which adds drama to your look and intensifies your eye. The Pencil comes in 13 different shades, which allows for ample creativity.

13 shades allows for a whole lot of mixing and matching

I was generously asked to try out this liner in Kalahari, a light grey. I loved the color and the liner went on smoothly, yet I have yet to master the application. I typically use gel liner with a very fine-point brush or an extremely sharpened pencil eyeliner. However, Sue Devitt Eye Intensifier Pencils have a thicker, more rounded point, which made it difficult to apply as precisely as I like. However, with a bit more practice and experimentation, I’m sure I can master this pencil!

You can tell I had a hard time with my left (your right) eye - the line is not quite perfect
Hard to tell I struggled when my eyes are closed

Each pencil retails for $22 and you can order them at Sue Devitt or QVC.

Have you ever used Sue Devitt products before?

Long-Lasting Liner: Sephora Waterproof Smoky Cream Liner

My greatest find on Black Friday wasn’t an expensive new pair of boots or a bag. It was eyeliner. Yes, eyeliner. Although it wasn’t what I had originally planned on as being my best Black Friday purchase, I have to say, it was.

Sephora Cream Eyeliners: Top - "Bewitch Me" & "Rags to Riches" Bottom - "Water Park"

After an unsuccessful Black Friday, seeing how I wasn’t finding any great deals on anything I really loved, I headed to Sephora with my friends. No matter what, I can always find something I want to spend money on at Sephora. Cue my friend Tina, who introduced me to a kind of eyeliner that I had never used before: cream liner.

Having had used a cream liner by MAC, Tina swore by it. After a long night of dancing and having her picture taken at a family party, her eyeliner was still on and miraculously it seemed, without any smudging. I constantly find myself reapplying my eyeliner throughout the night, so I decided I needed to have this liner.

Since Sephora doesn’t carry MAC, I couldn’t get the exact liner Tina had used but regardless, I love my liner from Sephora. The Waterproof Smoky Cream Liner from Sephora comes in a .15oz pot, which looks small, but you only need to use a small amount each time. Take a small liner brush, like this one, and dip it gently into the pot.

Sephora-Classic Angled Liner Brush #15: Price $14.00

It’s not necessary to use a lot of cream, so just let the ends of the bristles dip slightly into the surface of the cream. Use the brush the same way you would use a pencil liner.

I used this liner in “Must Have,” which is matte black.

Sephora-Waterproof Smoky Cream Liner in "Must Have": Price $10.00

But there are tons of other colors such as cobalt, violet and sea green. It’s $10.00, which is similar to the price of pencil liners that I have used in the past. This cream liner did not smudge at all and looked the same at the end of my night as it did when I applied it. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to a pencil liner after being amazed by this cream liner. If you want to try long-lasting eyeliner, I suggest you definitely give this Sephora Waterproof Smoky Cream Liner a shot.

Photos: Sephora

Get Your Holiday Shopping All Wrapped Up with Bare Escentuals

be all wrapped up coverFirst Thanksgiving, then my birthday, followed by Christmas and finally New Year’s. As usual, I’m beyond excited for the holiday season, and I’m already fully immersed in the holiday spirit.  Case in point — my holiday shopping is well underway, I bought a pine-scented candle to tide me over until the Christmas tree comes, and I’ve been playing around with  fun makeup and hair styles I plan to wear during the festivities.

For those of you who are just as ready to jump into the holiday spirit, Bare Escentuals has got you covered with several fabulous holiday gift sets.

Have your eye on shadows? Try the Bare Escentuals All Wrapped Up, a pretty package of six petite shadow pots in a range of party-ready colors (including four new shades!).

bare escentuals all wrapped up

bare escentuals all wrapped up shadow

For just $34, this gorgeous set is affordable enough to get as a gift while picking one up for yourself too. Like all Bare Escentuals mineral shadows, the colors are deeply pigmented, swipe on fairly true to color, and can be built upon to create even more intense hues. These swatches were created with one solid swipe using an eyeshadow brush (no primer, no foiling).

Bare Escentuals All Wrapped Up Swatches

Colorific, no?

If stocking stuffers are what you’re after, why not pick up a mini trio of Big, Bright & Brilliant eye liners ($20)?


These liners may be mini, but they pack a pigmented punch in three deep shades (click on the picture for a larger view, and check out the subtle sparkle in the Midnight Moon and Black Gold shades):

bare escentuals big and bright eyeliners

The best part about these liners? The tips are very tiny, allowing you to create a very thin line should you so choose. The only downside is that they didn’t stay on my waterline as long as I would have hoped, but that’s pretty standard on my eyes with any crayon-like liner.

This year, Bare Escentuals also has a yummy stocking stuffer just for the lip gloss lover: the DeLISH 100% Natural Lipgloss Palette ($22).

bare escentuals holiday lip

The three glosses — Vanilla Spice, Pink Sugar and Jelly — taste just like their namesakes and actually impart some of their color rather than going on completely sheer. One warning — while the set comes with a brush for application, these glosses are fairly soft, so you might want to just apply them (gently!) with your finger.

After playing around with these great gifts (so covet-worthy!), I put together a color-packed look that I hope is worthy of Kelly Gould, who’s the ultimate color master and Bare Escentuals fiend.


With a blend of four of the brighter shadows in the All Wrapped Up kit, I would wear this look at a holiday party or other evening soiree. I guess I consider it a colorful alternative to the traditional smoky eye.  The key to this eye look is to blend, blend, blend!

bare escentuals all wrapped up shadow look side

To create this look, I began by swiping Tinsel over the entire lid. Then, I swept Mistletow all the way from the crease to just below the brow bone, also dabbing it in the inner corner of my eyes to really pick up the light. For highlight, I applied a light dusting of Garland just under the brow bone. Finally, to add depth (and that beautiful blue hue), I layered Bauble over the outer half of the lid (over the Tinsel), and extended it upward into the crease. Voila!

bare escentuals all wrapped up shadow look

So what do you think? Will you be picking up any of these gifts for your loved ones (and/or yourself)?

Photos: Bare Escentuals, Anne Houseman/BeautyXpose
Disclaimer: Products furnished complimentary for review purposes

High Fashion, Low Maintenance: Get Hooked Up with Mark

Our style mantra: Fashion and beauty are for everyone, no matter how busy your schedule or how small your budget may be.  We represent the fashionista who has places to go, people to see, or just likes to sleep in a few extra hours.  There’s no reason to run to class in sweats and unblushed cheeks when glamour can be achieved with just a little extra effort.  Check here as Chelsea unveils quick tricks and perfect products that can update your look in a hot second, without breaking your budget.

Mark Hook Ups coverWhat does every girl want? A little freedom, of course. And now Mark gives everyone the freedom to design the perfect makeup product.

Mark’s Hook Ups link your favorite lip, face and eye products all in one simple and sleek tube. With the freedom to choose from 18 products in customized colors, the possibilities are almost endless. A small connector links any two tubes for a quick and easy touch up on the go. Choose your two favorite products or stock up on as many as you want. Mark offers five types of their lip glosses as well as mascaras, lip and eyeliners and multiple makeup brushes in Hook Up form, all for only $6 each.

My favorite Hook Up products are the four face creams, available for just $8 each. Mark shrinks your skincare must haves into the perfect pocket size. Now you can take a small tube of acne cream, lip smoother, depuff eye gel or pore minimizer with you anytime, anywhere. Small purses are no longer a big problem.

The Mark website makes it easy for you to pick, choose and pair your Hook Up products and colors. Freedom is just a quick click away!

Photo collage: Mark

Need a Good Gel Eyeliner? Try Paula’s Choice.

paula's choice liner 3If eyes are the windows to our souls, there’s nothing wrong with a little home decorating. While eyeshadow brings color and mascara elongates luscious lashes, nothing will enhance the shape of your eye like the perfect liner.

Paula’s Choice Constant Color Gel Eyeliner, created by “The Cosmetics Cop” herself, Paula Begoun, is a must have when it comes to achieving every liner look, from au naturale to sultry smoky. It comes in four shades for varying moods, Onyx (blackest black), Earthen (medium brown), Espresso (dark brown) and Nightfall (deep plum) and is fragrance and cruelty-free.

As the case for most gel or liquid liners, when it comes to eyeliner application, you’re only as good as your liner brush. With a fine tipped point brush, use sweeping motions at the edge on your lid line. The gel glides on smooth, but not too creamy or wet. With a flat tipped brush, use tapping motions at the root of your lashes. The gel doesn’t bleed, keeping a precise line intact hours on end.

paula's choice linerCalling this gel liner water resistance is quite the understatement — it’s water defiant. It hardly smudges at all in contact with H2O and requires more than one application of makeup remover to completely disappear.

Paula’s Choice Constant Color Gel Eyeliner is available at www.paulaschoice.com for $12.95. Other products by Paula’s Choice include skin care, makeup, body and hair care, beauty tools and accessories.

Photos: Paula’s Choice
Disclaimer: Products were furnished complimentary for review.

Ask BX: “Natural” Look with Eyeliner

Dear BX,

I’ve always admired the women that can pull off eyeliner.  It may seem silly because everyone seems to wear it, but only a few really know how to apply just the right amount and exactly where and how it goes on.  I’m not a fan of the “cakey” look and I don’t want to look like death made over.  I’d like to enhance my eyes though.  I joined a sorority in college and on our spring retreat I didn’t recognize some of the girls when they woke up in the morning.  That’s just how much eye makeup they had on. CRAZY!!!!  Anyway, what are your suggestions for a good liner and how to apply it?


Great question, RK!  For applying eyeliner naturally (i.e., without looking like a raccoon or Pete Wentz), there are a couple of techniques to play with.

silver-linerThe right eyeliner really makes a difference with this look, and it doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg.  The key is to get a pencil that has a kohl-like texture, meaning it smudges easily to the touch (we like MAC Eye Kohl and L’Oréal Le Kohl Pencil Eyeliner).  If you have a pencil that’s a little harder to smudge, try softening it up by writing a few lines on a piece of paper, or blast your hairdryer on it for only a couple of seconds to warm it up. (Caution: don’t overdo it, or you’ll burn yourself!)

First, try a soft line on the upper lid only.  Start with a thin line on the inner corner of your eye, and slowly thicken it as you move toward the outer edge with small, brief strokes (you can also move from the outer edge in – there’s no “right” or “wrong” place to start). If your eyes are on the smaller side, start the line above the pupil and move out, as a fully-lined lid will “close up” the eyes and make them appear smaller.

For a more refined look (albeit a little tougher to apply), try a “tightliner” technique, where you line the inner eyelids underneath the lashes or as tight in line with the lashes as possible. Again, a softer kohl pencil liner works well, since it comes off easily to the touch, and you’re working in a sensitive area. Gently hold up your upper lashes with the side of your index finger on one hand, and apply the eyeliner with the other.

For a slightly more dramatic look, line the lower lashes with the same techniques.  As for color – well, that’s really up to you, but a general rule for a natural look is the lighter your hair, the lighter the shade of eyeliner.

This whole process may seem daunting at first, but don’t be afraid to play around to see what you like (and what you don’t).  After all, it’s just makeup, and you can wash it right off.  But if you’re a perfectionist at heart and want to get it right the first time, try out a couple of looks online first, and then test them in real life.

Want to know how to pull off the latest beauty trends…or just master the basics?  Ask BX.