Review: MAC Superslick Eyeliners in Defiantly Feline, Signature Blue, Smoky Heir

By Voxy  

Hot off the presses! (Literally — when my UPS guy delivered them, they were warm to the touch from sitting in the van all day in the sun.)

Superslick eyeliners are releasing as part of the MAC’s Fabulous Felines collection, but unlike some of the other items in the collection, these are permanent additions. Yay! They come in nine colors: Defiantly Feline (medium brown), Signature Blue (er, blue), Smoky Heir (deep purple), Nocturnal (silver), Pure Show (gold), Marked for Glamour (grey), On the Hunt (black), Desires & Devices (dirty olive), and Treat Me Nice (medium green). Most have a slight metallic luster. This review covers the first three mentioned above.

Liquid eyeliners always take a bit of patience. Pencil liners are easily smudgeable and you can get away with a little bit of imprecision. Even gel liners are more forgiving. Liquid requires (IMHO) the most control and the most precision. These are great for making sharp lines and for getting right down to the lashline, but they don’t smudge well. They remain wet for a few minutes, and once they’re dry these things do not move. That’s the advantage of liquid liners, so it all comes down to whether or not you’re willing to go through the hassle of precise application and then waiting for them to dry. When I use a liquid, I apply it before I do the rest of my eye makeup, because I don’t want to do a fabulous eye and then ruin it all by a jerky movement with the eyeliner. If I end up covering some of the liner when I apply shadow, I can always go over it again (and somehow it’s always easier to do it the second time, when you’re just tracing over what was there before!). This way if I need to remove it and start over, or edit the line with a Q-Tip dipped in makeup remover, I’m not ruining my shadow also.

The packaging is nice — pleasingly solid-feeling, with a screw-top lid (always nice for liquid products). I prefer brush tips that are really brush tips, not marker tips, but I have to say this one isn’t bad, though you do need a bit of skill to make sure it applies evenly. If you make the line too wide you may end up with some streakiness (you’ll see a little bit of this in the swatch photo). My only real criticism of the packaging is that I wish the brush housing were shorter — when you do your non-dominant side, the brush unit is slightly too long to work with comfortably. On the other hand, I’m particularly gifted in the nose department, so maybe if your schnozz is smaller than mine you won’t have such a hard time navigating.

If you’re new to liquid liner, let me offer some tips:

1. Start with the eye on your dominant side: i.e., if you’re right-handed, start with your right eye. Rest your pinky finger against your cheekbone to steady the hand. (And by the way, this should definitely be done before coffee!)

2. Start by laying the brush almost sideways against the upper lashline at the widest part of the eye, usually somewhere in the middle. Pull a little bit towards the outside of the eye, letting the brush rest against the lashline. Don’t go too fast. Let the knuckles of the hand flex so that your pinky finger stays on your cheekbone while your hand moves around it.

3. Overlap strokes until you get to the outside of the eye. Figure out what you want the end of the line to look like — if you’re doing a cat eye, you’ll want an upwards flick, for instance. I decided to do a less deliberate look below, and so I just brought the liner in at the outside corner.

4. Reposition the brush a little bit more towards the inside of the eye, and make a new stroke that overlaps where you started. Keep repeating this until you get as far towards the inner end of the eye as you want to go. With these strokes, always start as if you were bringing the liner up from underneath the eyelid — you can get a very nice, sharp line this way.

5. By changing where the thickest part of the line is, you can change the visual weight/proportion of your eye. If you want the eye to look rounder, make the line a little thicker from the center towards the outer end, and taper in at the outer end. If you want the eye to look longer, then make the outer edge the heaviest (and you’ll probably be doing some kind of flick here). Play around and see what works best for your face.

6. This is where I stop; I prefer a pencil liner on the bottom. But if you like a liquid liner there, you can follow the same procedure: start in the middle, bring it out to the outer edge, then fill in closer to the inner end gradually.

7. When you do the non-dominant side, if you’re able to turn the hand around so that you can again have the pinky resting against the cheekbone, more power to you. In that case, it’s the same as these directions. If that doesn’t work for you (and most of the time it doesn’t work for me), then you’ll end up resting your hand on your nose instead. Again, I start in the middle, but this time I pull towards the inner eye first, because it’s easier, and then I work my way to the outer edge.

Warning: These things are a bitch to remove. And when I say “bitch,” I’m talking Mommie Dearest level. Cleanser and water barely touch them. If you rub (not recommended), you will eventually loosen the liner enough that you can (no kidding) pinch one end of the liner between your fingers and peel it off your eyelid.

o_O

To get the swatches off my arm, I first tried regular makeup remover, to which they were impervious, and then waterproof makeup remover, which fared little better. After that I tried my Shu Uemura cleansing oil, and finally resorted to scraping the swatches off with my nails. Be warned.

Swatches and photos! (It was an allergy-riffic day, so I did take the liberty of Photoshopping out my bloodshot eyes. Nothing else was altered or corrected.)

Left to right: Smoky Heir, Defiantly Feline, Signature Blue

Below is Defiantly Feline just on its own. Other products used: TFSI, MAC Paint Pot in Painterly, Tarte emphasEYES brow pencil in Medium Brown.

Then I added shadow on top. Highlight: the gold shade from the Stila Goddess eyeshadow trio; Crease: the copper shade from the same compact. Lid: UD Toasted (in the Naked palette). Lower lashline: Neutrogena Spiced Chocolate pencil eyeliner. Mascara: MAC Zoomlash, which I’m currently testing.

Then I did a look on the other eye with Signature Blue. I wanted to smudge the liner a bit, but I think pencil liners are much easier to smudge than liquid, so I used MAC Pearlglide liner in Petrol Blue and smudged that. I also used the unnamed blue shade from the Smashbox Iconic Eyes palette on the lid, UD Gunmetal (from the Naked palette) at the top of the lid and into the crease, and ULTA Cocoa as a wash up to the browbone. Bottom liner is MUFE Aqua Eyes liner in Dark Grey 21L (from the Aqua Eyes kit). Mascara is again MAC Zoomlash.

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MAC Superslick Liquid Eyeliner: $17.50

Provenance: Purchased.

Price/Value Ratio (midrange: poor/fair/good/excellent): Good.

Purchase again? Yes, I think so; they’re well-made and reasonably easy to use, and if I’m traveling and it’s a choice between this and a gel liner, I’ll take the pen just for ease and rapidity of application.

(Have you used this product? Love it? Hate it? Want it? Give a holler in the comments!)

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6 Comments

  1. avatar chaosbydesign
    Posted August 28, 2010 at 7:49 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Oh, sh*t. I want these. As if I haven’t spent enough on cosmetics recently… I just *love* that blue.

    Great liquid eyeliner tutorial, by the way. I usually have to do mine a couple of times before I’m satisfied with it and I often get it everywhere apart from where I want it to be.

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  2. avatar a biologist
    Posted August 28, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Permalink | Reply

    So, so pretty! Thanks for adding photos of your eye makeup, it really helps to see how things should or can be done.

    Very tempted by liquid eyeliner now.

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  3. avatar Susan Alexis
    Posted August 28, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Great, detailed directions! Love the photos too. I really needed a step-by-step like this. Where was I when this stuff was taught?

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    • avatar Voxy
      Posted August 28, 2010 at 6:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Ha! I wish someone had taught me too — I only learned because I was frustrated by not being able to do it. I avoided liquid eyeliner for a long time (and truth be told it’s still not my favorite).

      There are plenty of things I’m still trying to figure out how to do better, though.

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  4. avatar marigolds
    Posted August 28, 2010 at 2:26 pm | Permalink | Reply

    Ooooh, the blue eye looks SO GOOD. I love that it’s kind of a warm slaty blue (if that makes sense.) Gorgeous! And I think I’ll just leave the eyeliner on all week, if that’s what it wants; how odd that it’s so tattoo-like! Did the MUFE makeup remover do anything?

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    • avatar Voxy
      Posted August 28, 2010 at 5:59 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thanks! Next time I’ll take a bit more care smudging — I wasn’t even sure that blue look was going to turn out, so I wasn’t quite as careful as I ought to have been.

      The MUFE make-up remover was a big fail with that eyeliner. Seriously, when it dries it’s like paint. It doesn’t dissolve; it flakes off. Or peels off, if you have a big enough piece of it. Weird.

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