Eye Liner Tastic – a look at different types of liners and what they are good for

I am an eye liner aholic and when I checked my make up bag – personal not work one I found 8 of them!!!!

One of the most popular questions I get asked is about liner because a lot of people don’t feel that confident applying it. Well hopefully when I have given you a breakdown of the pros and cons of the different liners it will give people a better idea of the range that is out there and a bit more confidence to play with their liner 🙂

First off lets talk about traditional pencils and the difference between Kohl, Kajal and “standard” Eyeliners.

Kajal liner is traditionally more organic and long lasting but can be very smudgy and messy to use.  A Kohl pencil is great for its softness but can also be prone to smudging, it is less irritable on most people and has a tendancy to stay longer than other liners. A standard liner is made mostly from in organic compounds but will have less smudgeness factor and is better for thin lines & flicks.

Traditional liners – Are the pencil, kohl liners we used to use them years ago in the water line and heavily on the top lid. There is still a use for these types of liners I love mine for using underneath the water line to smoke up my look if I am going out for a night or to add a bit of definition to eyes if there is not a lot going on with shadow during the day. Some people still like to use black liner in the water line but I find that it can make the eyes look a bit smaller – each to their own 🙂 an alternative to a black line in here would be a nude liner such as the nude liner from NYX. This liner brightens the eyes and opens up the eyes.

Some liners are definitely better than others I find these ones the best for different reasons 🙂

For smokey liner underneath the eyes or over the eye lid for the brave:

  • Mac kohl black liner really good for a smokey eye but it can run a bit if someone has greasy skin or watery eyes so it wouldn’t be my first choice for a beginner or if you are afraid of a smokey eye.


  • Benefit Waterproof Black liner is great, has a little pearer on top and does not tend to stray as much as the Mac liner. The pearer on top is a great idea to use your liner to the best of its ability you should pear it every few uses 🙂


  • My ultimate budget liner is Bourjois black kohl liner its around 6.49e from Boots and I always find it great for staying power and it does not over smudge under my eyes.

For a flick and for those that want to experiment with liner on top of their lid:

I have two great options:


  • The first one is from Blank Canvas cosmetics and is called Winging it – it is a really thin felt tip style liner that would be perfect for someone that wants to start wearing thin liner on top but is afraid of smudging it or making it too thick. It is 9.99e and great to start messing with wings as well as it is so thin. it does dry quickly and stays for ages so if you want to practice do it before you do your eye make up 🙂
  • The second is again a black felt tip style liner pen from Soap and Glory. This is thicker than the Blank Canvas pen so good if you want to have a thicker line on top but don’t feel confident thickening it out with a thin liner. Again it has really good staying power and doesn’t smudge on to your top lid. This liner is 8e from Boots.ie
The ultimate liner for me on the top lid that lasts all day gives great definition and great pop to the eyes is a gel liner there are some fab options out there including; Ingalot’s gel liner (this is so hard to take off so not for a beginner), Bobbi browns gel liner but the ultimate gel liner on the market for its price and delivery is Maybelline’s Black gel liner. It comes with a little brush (non angled) so its perfect for those starting out or you can just use an angled brush with it it for have one.
Its about 12e from Boots or Molloys chemist. If you take the brush dip into the pot and warm the liner on the inside of the pot lid to make it more workable. Strech the lid you want to apply on to and angle the brush downwards towards the  inner lash line and move section by section re dipping the brush when the colour fades it gives you a great chance of getting a straight line first time round. Just take it slowly and use the brush as your section guide. This is one for trying on a Sunday night when your not going anywhere.
Any questions, comments or feedback give me a shout 🙂 Happy Lining 🙂
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Bella Beauty Ballina is an Award winning Beauty and Hair salon based in Ballina, Co Mayo.