The 8 Best Drugstore Liquid Eyeliners to Buy in 2018

Find your perfect budget-friendly formula

Nailing your eyeliner look is hard enough as it is. We get it, it’s not the simplest of tasks, especially when you want a precise cat eye or other difficult-to-master result. Luckily, finding the best formulas is less complicated than ever, which makes mastering and wearing eyeliner simpler than ever. The best part: they don’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Instead, look to your local drugstore for the newest and easiest-to-use versions.

Whether you prefer a pen, brush tip, or waterproof liner, there’s an affordable one for you. Stock up on a few of these trusty favorites—trying your hand with different formulas, shades, and applicators will help you find the one that best suits your needs. And with such bargain prices, you can’t go wrong! Get ready to start swiping and you’ll see that the possibilities are endless.

Read on to learn more about the best drugstore eyeliners you can buy now.


Wet n Wild® Megaliner® H2O Proof Liquid Eyeliner - 879 Black - 0.17 oz
Courtesy of Target

The last thing you want after you’ve perfected a cat eye—or any eyeliner look for that matter—is for it to smudge. This soft, felt-tip brush makes it easy to maneuver. The satin finish formula, though it’s waterproof, does have a little dry time to it for you to get it right. If you apply and realize that it’s a little off, rework it and then let it set. If you find yourself reaching for an oil-based remover to correct your handiwork, though, be sure to wipe it clean with water and follow with a primer or a dab of concealer so that you’re working with a clean slate. Any trace of oil that’s left behind can mess with the application and then you’ll really have some trouble.  More »

If your first thought is, “this looks like a mini pizza cutter,” you’re right. Though the roller tipped liner may appear difficult to use, it’s actually one of the most foolproof applicators out there. The perfect amount of product is loaded on the wheel when you pull it out of the tube, so you won’t have to worry about having too much or too little. And once you place it at the base of your lashes on your lid, it’s almost as if it’s locked into a track, making it impossible to draw anything other than a straight line. Simply roll it back and forth to build intensity. You can easily create a flicked look by just dragging the wheel outwards at an angle and lifting once you reach the point where you want it to stop.

Brown eyeliner is underrated and often overlooked because black makes such a statement. Less intense than its ebony counterpart, a rich cocoa hue defines eyes and works for both day and night. This one in particular leaves behind a matte line when swiped on lids and has a contour-grip handle that makes it easier to hold and draw the perfect line. Spice things up with a brown liquid liner on top and black on the lash line. This will amp up the intensity of your lashes, but still appear natural because there’s no harsh black line rimming your lids. More »

Most similar to a calligraphy marker, the fine felt tip creates a smooth, thin line that won’t feather. Create a barely there mark and build it up to your desired width or leave as is. It’s long-lasting and smudge-proof, but won’t cause you to tug or pull when it comes time for removal. This is great for daytime looks or if you’re a no-makeup-makeup gal. For an ethereal vibe, dot a metallic liner above the thin black line—it’ll act like a halo and make your peepers appear wide open.

The curved tip pen can be used to create a feline flick, either small or more dramatic. Hold the pen with the tip at 45 degrees, angled out from each outer corner and lay it down almost like a stamp. Then connect it to the line started from the inner corner that runs along the rest of the lid. Sometimes it’s smart to get the wings first before drawing the rest of the line. And remember, similarly to eyebrows, winged eyeliner lines can be sisters or even cousins instead of identical twins. Because let’s face it, perfection is overrated.

What could be better than an eyeliner that also encourages lash growth? This Amazon Choice rated product taps a Japanese formula that provides long lasting liner packed with lash boosting peptides. Reports claim that after 2 weeks 75% of women saw longer, fuller and more enhanced lashes. It also comes in brown, black and ultra black so even if you want to switch up the hue you’re wearing, you can still reap the lash growth benefits.

Almay Liquid Eyeliner
Courtesy of Target

Tested by dermatologists and labeled as hypoallergenic, this inky formula gives you everything you want in a liquid eyeliner formula without any of the irritation. The built in brush allows you to get a precise amount of liquid to create your smudge-proof line. It also promises 16 hours of wear without any irritation. If you find yourself to have reactive eyes or are just prone to allergies in general, try a patch test with this on the back of your hand and see how you do after a few hours of wear. If there’s no reaction, give it a try on eyes. More »

The hot off the runway look this year was all about graphic eye makeup. If you’re after a style that’s a little more daring than your classic lash hugging liner, go for a look where the line is drawn in the crease, almost hovering over the rest of the bare lid. A chunkier line is bold and doesn’t call for much additional makeup other than a solid base of foundation and lots of dramatic flutter on your eyelashes. Dare to go even further? Create a double line either with a thinner liner or a colored one for contrast.

This drugstore eyeliner from L'Oréal Paris helps you achieve a show-stopping look thanks to its thick marker-like tip. Users say the tapered sponge applicator brush compares to higher end eyeliners and makes applying eyeliner easier than ever.


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