I’ve given a lot of thought to the question about what makeup I’d keep if forced to severely slim down my bag and have decided that eyeliner would be right up there at the top. It’s one of the quickest way to turn tired, young-in-a-bad-way eyes into something ready to face the world. After experimenting with two of summer’s latest releases too, I think I might’ve even found one that could make me leave the house without mascara (a very impressive feat, indeed).


Hourglass Mechanical Gel Eye Liner, $16, sephora.com
Read the name, guys: This super-skinny style is actually built a lot like the pencils I remember clicking up all through high school math classes. So the tiny tip was easy to get right into my lash line and has such a fine point, I couldn’t make a mess and get too thick of a line even if I tried. If you like thick, dramatic liner, this might not be the best pick, but if you’re after a natural appearance with eyes subtly outlined, I’m a supporter.

Benefit They’re Real! Push-Up Liner, $24, sephora.com
I adore the super-voluminous mascara from this range, so I was all “thank you, please” as soon as I heard about the new liner. The angled liner makes it really natural to hold and apply like a pen, though I did find myself pausing, mid-draw, to click the end and add more color. I think with a few more practices, I could get to a Nicole Richie-level of thickness and totally skip mascara altogether. Far and away the best part is the way the tip makes cat-eyes way easier to perfect. Prior to this, the majority of my attempts would end up all over the place, without much uniformity from eye to eye, but by angling the brush as soon as I got to the end of the lash line, I got a nice Lauren Conrad-esque flick.

Are you really devoted to your current liner, or do you like experimenting with new ones?