Testing: Gel Liners

On a recent day at the mall, I decided to test out a few gel liners I've been interested in trying out. I've used ELF and Wet n Wild in the past and have been satisfied with the price, pigmentation, and staying power, but decided it's time to invest in a higher end liner. My major complaint with the cheaper liners is that they dry out way too quickly, resulting in a slight tug when applying. It's most likely due to the plastic packaging it comes in versus the glass the higher end brands come in. You can always scrape the top dried out layer, but sometimes I just don't want to deal with it. It becomes harder to scrape out of the jar and harder to clean.
I threw out the gel liners in the beginning of 2011 and have only been using liquid liners for the past year (Maybelline Stiletto Felt Liner & DollyWink). However, I miss building a strong line that I just can't achieve with liquid liners. I've been intrigued by these liners when I watch Youtube gurus apply them with such ease and without any tug!! So here were the "contestants":

From left to right:
 1) Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel Eyeliner - Black Ink $22
This is popular in the beauty world and it definitely looked so black when it was swatched. The lady at the counter swore she had never used a liner as black. It was the first product I swatched, and it WAS so black! It dried pretty quickly and I had to smudge off the top layer because the lady just gooped it all over my hand. 
2) Clinique Brush-On Cream Liner - True Black $15
The Pixiwoo sisters made this liner look really appealing in all their videos. This does feel truly creamy when applied. However, this liner looked deeper than the Bobbi Brown. 
3) Tarte EmphasEYES Waterproof Clay/Shadow - Black $22
This product is BLACK! It was soft and dried pretty quickly. I wasn't that interested in this product at first, but I decided to try it because Sephora offers this product with a free brush. 
 4) Yves Saint Laurent Eyeliner Effect Faux Cils (Longwear Cream Liner) - Deep Black $25
Swatched on my hand, this liner was definitely the most black. It was so opaque and I fell in love when it touched my skin. HOWEVER- I realized this product took forever to dry. I literally waited 10 minutes before I felt like it was okay to touch it. This is a major no-no considering my double eyelids are really small. That means major smudging onto my upper lid and I will not stand for that! In the picture, it looks as though it has a glossy finish (it probably looked the least matte), but most of it was because it was still wet. 

4:00pm (2 hours)
None of these liners budged one bit! 

5:00pm (after first hand wash with soap and paper towel)
Sadly, most of these liners began to disappear after one hand wash. I was relatively gentle to give the products the benefit of the doubt, but they still disappeared under running water. The Bobbi Brown, Clinique, and YSL all budged with similar results, but Tarte surprisingly kept on! I guess it does hold true to it's "waterproof" claim.

8pm (6 hours)
By this time, I had finished a lot of activities throughout the day and washed my hands several times. Clinique and Bobbi Brown went out of the running, YSL was trying to hold on for dear life, and Tarte was still running strong. 

10pm (8 hours total) 
The swatches remained pretty much the same from 8-10pm. I decided to use my Smashbox cleansing oil on a cotton pad and slowly swiped it across my hand to try to get as much product off as I could. Here's the end result after 8 hours of wear and one swipe of makeup remover. 

The Winner: Tarte! 

Wow, the underdog ended up beating everyone! I was thoroughly impressed with this liner and think it just might make it into my collection. Plus you get a double-ended brush! The only drawback about this product is that it may be TOO waterproof. I had to spend extra time getting all of it off of my hand, and wonder if it may be too intense for my eyes? I do think I should do a final trial between MAC Fluid Line Blacktrack and Tarte, but I just may end up with both. :P 

Hope this was helpful! What are your holy grail eyeliners? 

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