OK, liquid eyeliner isn’t easy by anyone’s estimate, but as someone who’s tried a fair dozen (or more) I feel I’m well-placed to sift the lit from the shit. I’ve chosen my top five liquid eyeliners based on a strict – but pretty obvious – criteria. They should be long-lasting, easy to apply, and not break the bank. When curiosity got the better of the cat flick, I did recently splurge on the Victoria Beckham £36 eyeliner (ouch) – but more about that here, and why it didn’t make my top five.
You can take what you want from the catwalks – but be prepared with a big pinch of the salty stuff. Spring/ Summer 2018 has some sassy, outlandish and very creative nods to various eras, with glitter and neon making a welcome appearance – but I’ll shelve that for nearer festival season. I’m the biggest fan of the cat flick, so it was great to see Tommy Hillfiger taking a twist on this classic eye look, as well as Tom Ford adorning the models with dramatic charcoal wings, and Jill Stuart perfecting the under eye wing – which looks surprisingly wearable and something I’ll definitely be trying out.
So, you like the look of the winged eye, but where to start? I know just how daunting it can be attempting this classic look – the thought alone can get those hands shaking when you need them at their steadiest, so the last thing you need is a sub-par product, and unfortunately there are SO many out there, so let’s get straight into it…
Coming in at number one is the Kat Von D Tattoo Liner (£16, Debenhams.com). This felt-pen style liner won’t disappoint by drying out after the first few uses like many – but will keep going with impressive stamina. Its fluid formula makes it easy to apply without any dreaded drag marks, and it’s smudge-proof too, seriously hard to beat and great for beginners! If you don’t feel like splurging though, spend a little less trying the NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Black Liquid Eyeliner (£9, Boots) and for even more of a save dash to Wilkos for the Essence 2-in-1 Eyeliner Pen (£2.50, Wilkos), a double ended pen with one skinny nib for fine details and a thicker end for bold lines and filling in, for less than the price of a pint!
Next up, Sleek’s Dip It Liner (£4.99, ASOS) is my absolute favourite for deep and dramatic charcoal black. With classic dipping pot application I always feel confident wearing this product even if it’s a little drizzly outside, it won’t get easily swept away. Plus, now that Sleek is on ASOS, you can wing it with any last minute needs thanks to next-day-delivery, woop!
And finally, a product that I was sceptical to try but am absolutely giving a double thumbs up is The Quick Flick (£20.42 + postage and customs, thequickflick.com.au). This innovative product comes as a pack of two double-ended pens and is a must-have for newbies to wings. Each pen features a regular eyeliner at one end, and at the other, a perfect wing-shaped stamp! Pre-loaded with product all you need to do is stamp, fill in and go – so easy! With three sizes to choose from, I recommend going all out with Grand – see my full review here.
So, you’ve settled on your tools, but how to make it tick? I recommend setting yourself up somewhere with plenty of light, and getting a handheld mirror to look slightly down into. By keeping your eyes open, you’ll be able to see exactly the line you’re tracing. Start by drawing a thin line from the corner of your eye out, then gliding the products back in to make a V shape, join up and fill in! Hooded eyes? The Quick Flick makes this much easier, the trick being to draw or stamp the flick low enough to see with your eyes open. If you’re still a little unsure, join me over on my Instagram @thedayseyesuk where I release a new #WednesdayWing eyeliner tutorial each week, with different products including all of those mentioned here.