Which Pencil Eyeliner at Sephora Lasts the Longest?


I’ve always thought that Consumer Reports did a really great job at evaluating different products ranging from cars to colleges.  So when a recent FutureDerm survey revealed that over half of our readers wanted more cosmetics reviews, I jumped at the chance to test different beauty products!

So here’s our first.  For this review, I went to Sephora and compared nine different black eyeliners:

1 – Givenchy Magic Kahal ($22.50, Amazon.com)
2 – YSL Dessin Dugard Waterproof ($28.02, Amazon.com)
3 – NARS Larger than Life Eyeliner ($23.00, Amazon.com)
4 – Stila Smudge Stick Black Eyeliner ($15.52, Amazon.com)
5 – Urban Decay 24/7 Black Eyeliner ($19.86, Amazon.com)
6 – Sephora Retractable Waterproof Eyeliner ($12.00, Sephora.com)
7 – Laura Mercier Eye Pencil in Black Extreme ($19.00, Amazon.com)
8 – Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes Mat ($18.45, Amazon.com)
9 – bare Minerals Round the Clock Eyeliner ($12.95, Amazon.com)

How We Did It

Our “research” was actually really simple:  We applied a thin line of each liner across a clean hand.  We tried our best to use the same pressure when applying each liner.  It was actually the thickness that was a problem:  some, like the Stila Smudge Stick Black Eyeliner, had an automatic sharpening system that made it impossible to refine the point. But, we did the best we could, starting with one liner:

And then working up to another and another:

Until we got to this:

How We Tested Them

We had two options:

One, we could have a number of subjects apply each eyeliner daily for a certain number of days.  Take photos at the beginning and end of each day.  Evaluate the longevity.

Or, two, we could just apply it on our hands and see which one rubbed off the easiest.  And repeat with makeup remover.

Naturally, we went with the second option.  Here are the results after rubbing our finger over the eyeliners in an up-and-down (vertical) stroke five times:

And after applying makeup remover evenly to each:


The longest-lasting eyeliners of the nine we tested were:

This is me, wearing the Sephora smokey eyes kit and Make Up For Ever eyeliner in Black.

Overall, after we tried these three, we felt the Make Up For Ever Aqua Eyes Mat lasted the longest and had the sharpest black color.  For a slightly less pigmented black, Laura Mercier Eye Pencil in Black Extreme had an easy-to-sharpen point and lasted almost as long.

What did you think of this post?  Let us know your feedback!


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  • DMLilian

    Although a great post, that theory does not apply to when using an eyeliner on your eye. You have to consider other elements, like oily lids, eye creams and even primers. The back of your hands where clean, unwrikled and free of any oils. Next time you should try a different way of testing. I also have to say I work at Sephora and Too Faced Perfect Eyeliner is what we sell the most and I have tried MUFE’s eyeliner and it didnt last an hour on. Good day to you!

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