I never learn.
In spite of my avowed disaffection for liquid eyeliners, I have managed, somehow, to buy five of them in the last six weeks. Because, you know, this one will be different. This one won’t dry into a shrunken vinyl mess that clings to my lashline with more determination than Romeo to the corpse of Juliet.
And, I suppose, technically inaccurate to boot, since she’s actually still alive when he finds her in her tomb… but, as usual, I digress. The point, if there is one, is that like those of our star-crossed lovers, my hopes for joyful union with Make Up For Ever’s new Aqua Liners must perforce end in tragedy.
OK, I am being a little melodramatic. There’s really not much wrong with these liners, but unfortunately that’s as much rah-rah as I can muster.
Like many of the newer liquid liners, MUFE’s version has a tapered application tip that’s not actually a brush as much as … well, a sort of felt marker tip. It is relatively inflexible, so if you want a product with an actual applicator brush, one that you can really work with control-wise, this is not the product for you. Unfortunately, those kinds of brushes are becoming more and more endangered by the second. I should start a sanctuary.
The formulation is more-or-less the same as that of other liquid liners, although it does have a kind of nifty quick-fix feature that will allow you to correct a mistake in the few seconds before it dries. If you end up getting product where you don’t want it, it can be removed while still wet with a Q-tip — or, if necessary, a finger. And the removal (at this stage, at least) is easy and clean: it’ll actually brush away in a sort of powder residue, like eraser shavings or dry-erase marker fuzz. Once dry, it does shrink up against the lashline as many long-wearing waterproof formulas do.
It will, indeed, last all day. I didn’t try swimming with it on or putting my face in a puddle to test its waterproof-ness, but from the above-mentioned death grip it has on your lashline, I don’t think mere water could do it in. But now we come to the main problem — removal. It will come off with cleanser and water, or with makeup remover, but you have to be very persistent, which can cause a lot of eye irritation — and you will probably give up before you get all of it off. It comes off in rubbery (vinyl-y?) little strings, and you can easily take out an eyelash along with the liner while you’re at it, so I advise caution.
MUFE’s Aqua Liners come in 16 shades, of which only 15 are available in the US (#2 is missing). The colors range from standard (including three shades of black) to outrageous (red, hot pink, diamond white). Several colors are disappointingly muddy when applied to skin: the dark blue and the dark purple look so much like black that I didn’t bother with them. I picked #3, Emerald Green, because green is a color I don’t have in liquid liner form.
If you’re dead set on picking up a liquid liner for long-wear in hot summer days, I’d advise that you skip these unless there is a color in the lineup that you feel you absolutely have to have. I’ll have a review coming up later in the week of one of the other brands of liquid liners I’ve tried that I’d recommend over these, so stay tuned to find out which those are!
MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Liner in #3 (Emerald Green): $23 at Sephora (exclusive retailer)
Price/Value Ratio (mid/high-end: poor/fair/good/excellent): Fair. If you don’t really love the colors, skip ’em.
Purchase again? Nope.
(Have you used this product? Love it? Hate it? Want it? Give a holler in the comments!)