Tuesday 20 September 2016

Three Good Things: Nude Eyeliner Pencils

Today I wanted to pen an ode to what I consider to be the ultimate multi-tasking makeup item - nude eyeliner pencils. Back in the day people would use stark white eyeliners in the waterline to make their eyes appear larger. I remember being obsessed with MAC Fascinating Eye Kohl & although it did make my eyes look bigger, it didn't look natural. Then some genius (I have no idea who, but thanks!) came up with the idea of using a nude eyeliner, the same colour as your skin. This has the same eye brightening effect as white eyeliner but it looks a lot subtler & you can use them on more things than just your eyes. They are a staple in my makeup bag & I use them all the time in so many different ways. I wouldn't be surprised if you hadn't used one before as they do seem like quite a boring product but for me they're a complete necessity. First let's compare three of my favourite flesh tone pencils.

MAC Studio Chromagraphic Pencil in NC15/NW20 - £14 / 3g
The product that first started off my love affair with nude eyeliners was MAC's Chromagraphic Pencil in NC15/NW20. This used to be a limited edition product but I do believe it was made permanent last year. I think it's pretty obvious how much I've used this pencil as it's been sharpened down to a tiny nub. This is the cheapest pencil & you get the most amount of product so it's very good value for money. Surprisingly, out of these three eyeliners the MAC one is the darkest & has the creamiest formula. The creamy texture can be somewhat detrimental as it often mixes in with my black liquid liner, creating a grey smudge near my tear ducts. Apart from the greyness, it lasts really well on my waterline but is too dark to use elsewhere on my face.

Illamasqua Eye Colouring Pencil in Vow - £16 / 1.4g
Illamasqua are known for their more out-there products & colours but they do the basics extremely well. In terms of colour this pencil is my favourite as it is the lightest & yellowest in tone. It's a good match for my NARS foundation in Siberia so I can use it anywhere on my face as well as for it's intended purpose. It's definitely the most versatile of the bunch. The pencil blends in seamlessly but it's nowhere near as long-lasting as the MAC or Charlotte Tilbury liners. It also has the hardest & driest formula but that isn't a bad thing at all. It's still fairly creamy but the harder pencil nib delivers precise results & doesn't need to be sharpened as often so you won't need to repurchase it for a long time.

Charlotte Tilbury Rock 'N' Kohl in Eye Cheat - £19 / 1.2g
My most recent flesh tone pencil purchase is this luxurious little number from Charlotte Tilbury. I adore her Rock 'N' Kohls as they glide onto the skin like a liquid & do not budge whatsoever! If you're quick you can smudge them out but after just a couple of minutes they set into place & wear for up to 14 hours with no transfer. As you can see in the swatches at the beginning of this post, I tried rubbing all of the eyeliners five minutes after application. The MAC & Illamasqua pencils blend away with little effort but the Charlotte Tilbury pencil is both smudgeproof & waterproof. It is very pigmented so you only need a little bit but the pencil is super soft & creamy so it does need sharpening quite frequently. This is the most expensive pencil & you get the least amount of product but it offers immense durability.

Each of the pencils has their own strengths & weaknesses but I do use them pretty much interchangeably. To be honest I tend to use the first one that I can find in my makeup bag! The one thing I use them for every single day without fail is to brighten up my waterline. It reduces redness, opens up my eyes & generally makes such a huge difference. I have quite small eyes so if I use black kohl in my waterline it just emphasises their piggy nature. Once I started using nude eyeliner I realised how much bigger & brighter it made my eyes look so now I feel really weird all day if I ever forget to apply it. Another great use for flesh toned pencils is to conceal blemishes. It allows you to be precise & just cover the bits that need to be covered. Many people use brown pencils to drawn on fake freckles, well I use nude pencils to hide the freckles that regular foundation & concealer leave behind. The final reason I love to use nude pencils is to clean up other parts of my makeup. Need to carve out your eyebrows? Got uneven eyeliner flicks? Overdrawn your lips too much? Simply use a flesh toned pencil to correct all of your mistakes & no one will ever question your makeup skills.

Are you a fan of nude eyeliner pencils? If not I hope this post has made some of you realise just how brilliant & useful they can be. I know I certainly couldn't be without one!

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  1. These all look great! I have a Rimmel one which doesn't seem to do much, as in the colour doesn't come out properly. May have to give the mac one a go! x

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