Eyeliners are a makeup bag essential, but they're also one of the products we go through in a flash. So why break the bank? We've rounded up 10 of the best eyeliners we could find . . . and they're all $10 or less. Just keep clicking to uncover your perfect find.
Kohl is just one of the many options for eyeliner, but what exactly is it? In some form, kohl eye makeup has been around since ancient times — and even Cleopatra was said to be a fan. But these days, it's an essential product to create a sultry smoky eye look and more.
What is it? Historically kohl was a black powder used to darken eyelids, eyebrows, and eyelashes. But some cultures believed in the past that the paint could shield the eyes from the sun, ward off evil spirits, and even protect against infection.
Why it's different? Modern kohl eyeliner comes in soft pencil or powder form. It's made with more oil than the average pencil so that it glides on easily without any snagging of the skin. This makes it better for smudging and blending.
How to use it? Kohl eyeliner is an all-inclusive product for the perfect smoky eye. Just apply a thick line to the upper lid, close to the lash line. Then, smudge up and outward. You can continue to build until you reach the depth you desire. To finish, add a champagne-toned highlight, or dab on a dark color at the inner eye for something even more intense. Kohl also works well in the waterline of the lashes because of its blacker-than-black hue.
Color. It can be hard to incorporate into any makeup palette if you aren't careful. The rule of thumb for adding a dramatic tint is: all things in moderation. Take Demi Lovato's example and select one bright hue as an accent. She decided to go with a pop of blue at the X Factor season finale last night. To get a similar look, apply a pigmented liner like Yves Saint Laurent Waterproof Eye Pencil in Azure Blue ($29) on two-thirds of the bottom lid, leaving the inner corners clear. Give the shape a cat-eye flick for added drama. Go for typical black eyeliner on the top lid to keep the look from getting too overwhelming. Finally, keep the remainder of the face in neutral hues. A colorful eyeliner is really the only thing you need to update your everyday makeup look for a holiday party.
These eyeliner appliqués will jazz up your otherwise ordinary makeup look just as a sequined clutch or faux fur cape will add panache to any LBD. From subtly winged to full on fabulous, there's an option for you.
1. Violent Eyes Jet Black Glitterati Eyes ($10): Take the guesswork out of achieving the perfect cat-eye with these glittering eyeliner tattoos. Each set comes with four shapes, from demure to daring. Simply peel and apply for a sparkling liner look.
2. Eye Rock Shadow Transfers in Tulip Lace ($11): Forgo ordinary eye shadow with a look that could easily be from the Capitol of Panem. These swirling designs aren't for the faint of heart, but will definitely make heads turn.
3. Sephora Cat Eye Velvet Eyeliner Applique in Addiction ($7): Have a little fun with your eye makeup and try this flirty winged look that features one crystal for a hint of sparkle.
Eyeliner: it's one of those beauty tools that can instantly set the mood of your entire ensemble. Unfortunately, that can sometimes can be a bad thing. When executed well, eyeliner can make you look everything from more polished to edgy to sultry. When executed poorly, however, the effect can range from overly obvious to cartoonish. Eyeliner can be a tricky product to master, no doubt, but here's how to get it right, every time.
If you're using pencil liner:
"When it comes to a pencil, what you want to do is start at the roots of your lashes," says What Not to Wear's Carmindy. Instead of trying to draw on a flawless-looking line in one stroke, wiggle the pencil in small dashes along the roots. Finish by using a flat, angle-tipped brush to smooth over your work, connecting the marks. "Then you have that perfect line and you didn't have to do it in all one swoop," she says. "It's really a no-fail way to apply that pencil liner."
If you're using liquid liner:
To get an unwavering liquid line, Carmindy recommends dashing on a pencil liner (just as mentioned above) to the roots of the lashes. "Then you can easily trace over it with a liquid liner because you already have a stencil to go by," she says. As for whether or not you go with a classic Brigitte Bardot-style flick or a more daring double-winged technique, that's up to you.
When it comes to eyeliner, formulation is key. Since it's always good to have options when using eyeliner, especially for more dramatic looks, you might want to have multiple varieties on hand. To see which liners work for specific looks you desire, from pencil to liquid, just keep reading.
Winged eyeliner will always be a classic. But if you're looking for something that revolts against the cat-eye craze, then reach for these simple runway designs. Round, square, and barely there are just a few options beyond the iconic eyeliner flick.
1. A Roundabout Way: Instead of doing a wing at the end of your liner, try this oval edge seen at Giorgio Armani (left). The rounded shape is a great way to connect top and bottom liner, and it elongates the eye. Get a rough-and-tumble feeling by smudging the liner with fingers; an imperfect line reads sultry and sexy.
2. Be a Square: To get the modernized block shape seen at Kenzo (top right), draw a boxy outline with liquid liner and fill in. The trick is to align the bottom of your rectangle with the top lash line. Otherwise, your graphic could get buried in the crease.
3. Inside Out: Defining eyes doesn't require loads of eyeliner, as evidenced by the minimalist liner look at Guy Laroche (bottom right). Take on the tight-line technique and keep product on the waterline, honing in on the inner corners. Then, wiggle a soft pencil between lashes to fake fuller fringe. Top off with a berry red lipstick for extra elegance.
If you have shaky hands (or happen to live in an earthquake-ridden zip code), NARS Eyeliner Stylo ($27) is sure to diminish the blips in your liner look. The felt marker's tip is fine enough to create well-defined eyes that still look natural. But angle the pen on its side, and you'll have a thicker line for more dramatic eyes. With the amount of control this liner offers, you can draw a cat-eye or double-winged look in seconds. The smudge-proof finish is as fluid and shiny as a liquid liner but has the ease of a pencil. And if you're looking to step beyond the typical brown and black colors, good news: this eyeliner also comes in gray and navy for Fall.
A cat eye is the easiest way to add instant glamour to any type of look. Although it takes a steady hand and a little practice, this winged look is one of the most flattering makeup trends. With the release of The Dark Knight Rises upon us, why not release your inner feline and test out some of these cat-eye looks? Click through to see five ways to wear a cat eye. We're pretty sure Catwoman herself hasn't even thought of some of these.