When it comes to eyeliner, I tend not to experiment too much, finding a formula that works well (or well enough) and then sticking with it. Longtime readers of this blog know that I have very oily lids which can take down some of the most “long-wearing” formulas out there. For this reason, I’ve been mostly just using Make Up For Ever’s liners since discovering them some years ago (thankfully, they have a rather extensive selection of shades so I don’t get bored sticking with just one brand). Recently, I gave Giorgio Armani’s Smooth Silk Waterproof Eye Pencil a try too and was really impressed. Still, when it comes to new eyeliners, I think I will always remain wary, no matter how many rave reviews it may get. So when Gorgeous Cosmetics sent me there iINK Liquid Eye Pencil in Carbon Black to review, I was excited because of the name (Liquid Eye Pencil? So interesting!) but, as always, was ready to be disappointed.
Gorgeous Cosmetics describes this liner as a “gel based eye pencil [that] boasts intense coverage and excellent color pay off. The creamy formula applies and blends easily, without dragging sensitive skin. It quickly sets to become smudge proof and non-transferable. iINK is ultra long lasting and water resistant.” It supposedly has the “ease and convenience of a pencil, with the sleek finish of a liquid eyeliner.” How can you resist promises like those?!
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Luckily, Gorgeous Cosmetics very much delivers on those promises. The pencil is super, super smooth, soft, creamy and pigmented. It’s not quite as softened-butter-y soft like Giorgio Armani’s Smooth Silk Waterproof Eye Pencil formula, but that makes it easier to work with–you don’t have to be so careful not to break or smoosh the tip when you’re applying it. It is definitely much softer than MUFE’s Aqua Eyes formula, though. And more pigmented too.
As you can see in the swatch photos below, I applied Carbon Black on the left (a single pass on the left and built up to a heavier swatch on the right) and Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Eyes liner in OL–my usual go-to black liner–on the right. After just one pass, you can see how much more opaque Carbon Black is than 0L. 0L is just a tiny bit drier and waxier than Carbon Black so it did pull just a bit on my skin as I was swatching it–I experienced no tugging or pulling of any kind with Carbon Black.
I let both liners set for about 10 minutes on my arm and then tried using my pointer finger to smudge both sets of swatches using a medium pressure. Neither one budged a bit. I increased the pressure to no avail. Finally, I had to take a bit of tissue and try forcefully scrubbing both swatches off. You can see the results in the second swatch photo below. MUFE’s 0L did fade just a bit (though, if you notice, there was no real smudging!). Carbon Black, on the other hand, was almost completely intact. The heavier swatch fared better than the thinner one on the left, though.
I noticed that, compared to 0L, Carbon Black feels like nothing on the skin! When I rubbed a finger across the swatches of 0L, I felt a little bit of an almost tacky texture on my skin–it wasn’t much but I did feel it. Carbon Black, on the other hand, almost seems to bond with the skin and is absolutely seamless and undetectable to the touch. Carbon Black sets within about 30 seconds so you do have a little bit of time to smudge the liner (though I would work with one eye at a time just to be safe!). After it has set, there is no moving the stuff–rain, shine, shower, whatever, you’ll have perfectly intact liner all day! Even when using a dual-phase eye makeup remover, by the time 0L’s swatches were gone, Carbon Black was only about half-way removed!
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Without a primer, Carbon Black lasted all day on my upper lashline–no problem. On my waterline, it made it to about 9 hours before I saw a tiny bit of smudging at the outer corner. I got the best results when I applied 2 layers of product, allowing the first to really set before applying the second.
Unfortunately, Carbon Black is the only shade available in this Liquid Eye Pencil formula. Gorgeous Cosmetics has a regular Eye Pencil available in 6 shades but it is not long-wearing, so that’s a bummer. I really hope that they decide to release more shades (and soon!) because the formula is truly incredible!! If you’ve been searching for the ultimate long-wearing and ultra-pigmented black eyeliner that will actually last on your oily eyes, you have to check out Gorgeous Cosmetics! It’ll cost you but trust me, it’s well worth it! It’s normal to be a little wary of new brands but trust me, Gorgeous Cosmetics is the real deal. Their products have gorgeous textures, beautiful colors, and perform at the highest level. This is a brand that truly delivers on all fronts!
»»Pricing: $29/o.o4 oz. (1.2 g.)
»»Recommended for: those with very oily lids!
»»Overall Rating: A+
Disclaimer: the product(s) featured in this post were provided to The Beauty Sample free of charge by the manufacturer/PR for review purposes only. Regardless of how the product was obtained, my priority is to you, my readers, and I will always give you my honest opinion.