The 12 Best Black Eyeliners Ever

The backbone of your favorite makeup looks.

eyeliner
Edward BerthelotGetty Images

Have you done a makeup audit lately? If you can't remember the last time it happened, now's probably the time. We've been known to hoard, too, but there's a chance some of your makeup is dry, almost empty, or just plain expired. But when we do clean house, there's one makeup product we always end up needing a restock for: a solid black eyeliner. It's the backbone of most of our favorite looks, and we run through them like crazy. In fact, it's the one product that tends to *disappear* from the Marie Claire beauty closet most often.

That said, we can be a little picky when it comes to finding a formula that really gets the job done. After testing so many, we know a good liner when we see one: it's got to be inky, pigmented, and last as long as the rest of our look does. There are a ton of options, and all of them are best suited for specific purposes. We love a creamy pencil for a sexy, smudgy look, and we tend to reach for a pot for a knife-sharp wing. And we're downright obsessed with liquid liners, because they're so versatile, and can create a vintage cat-eye or even an avant-garde floating liner. So, in an effort to streamline your audit, we've curated a list of the best of the best, from felt-tip MVPs to classic pencils. Read on for your perfect fit.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Your Avril Phase
TattooStudio Smokey Gel Pencil Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
Maybelline ulta.com
$8.99

Perhaps it was just me, but I remember being 13 and trying to smudge my eyeliner out *just right* in the hopes of impressing my school's resident skater boy. Not much has changed—it can still be tough to achieve that perfect smudginess—but this dual-ended pencil has a sponge tip to distribute the pigment on the other side perfectly. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Liner Devotees
Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner
Courtesy of brand
stila sephora.com
$22.00

It's been a makeup artist and editor favorite for years, and we don't see that ever changing. It's inky black, glides on like a dream, and it doesn't budge once it's on. There's actually one in my purse right now. You know, in case there's a liner emergency. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For A Rainy Day
Anastasia Beverly Hills Waterproof Crème Color
courtesy of brand
Anastasia Beverly Hills ulta.com
$18.00

If you're an angled brush fan, you're going to want an all-star formula for dipping. This pot contains a slick gel formula that glides on easily but won't budge after it sets, even if you sweat. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Intricate Looks
On Stage Liquid Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
Dior sephora.com
$30.50

Its name isn't just marketing—this formula has been a backstage staple at photoshoots and Fashion Week since it's release. We totally get it: its pigment is deep and dark as it gets, and the pen makes it perfect for drawing lines, wings, and even avant-garde shapes. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Tightlining
Stylo Yeux Waterproof Long-Lasting Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
CHANEL macys.com
$34.00

Sometimes, there's nothing chicer than a subtle tightline. This fine pencil is perfect for loading pigment right onto your waterline for sexy yet near imperceptible definition. And it's waterproof, so it'll stay put. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Instant Color Payoff
Rock 'N' Kohl Eyeliner Pencil
courtesy of brand
Charlotte Tilbury sephora.com
$27.00

There's nothing worse that a pencil that drags—it can irritate your lids, and it's just plain annoying not to get great color payoff on the first try. That never happens with Charlotte's pencil, though. The pearl powder-infused pigment glides on in just one swipe, and whether you you smudge it out or leave it be, it'll last for uptimes to 14 hours once it sets.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Natural Makeup Lovers
Clean Line Liquid Liner
courtesy of brand
Ilia dermstore.com
$28.00

It's tough to get black pigment right in natural liner formulas, but Ilia pulls it off. The felt tip makes it easy to draw on a perfect wing, and it won't require ten strokes to achieve true inkiness. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Big Wings
Roller Liner Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
Benefit Cosmetics ulta.com
$22.00

Another standby we're obsessed with! The felt tip somehow never dries out, and the fluid flows out in a perfect inky stream to create a flawless cat eye, every single time.  

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For A Budget
Makeup Slim Eye Pencil Long-Lasting Eyeliner
Courtesy of brand
NYX Professional Makeup ulta.com
$4.50

Great liner doesn't have to mean breaking the bank. NYX's drugstore champ is the perfect option to keep stashed in your purse to switch your look up on-the-go.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Deep Color
Pro Longwear Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
MAC Cosmetics nordstrom.com
$22.00

If you want a pencil that's truly black—we're talking deep space, black hole-levels of onyx—this pencil is unrivaled. It'll last all night, and it'll stay inky for just as long.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Sensitive Eyes
Satin Kajal Liner
courtesy of brand
Victoria Beckham net-a-porter.com
$30.00

The chamomile extract and vitamin E in this creamy formula make this one of the most comfy pencils on this list, and it looks as good as it feels. The sponge on its tip makes it easy to smudge it out along the lash line, or turn it into a chic, subtle wing.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
For Dry Eyes
Skyliner Automatic Gel Eyeliner
courtesy of brand
Wander Beauty dermstore.com
$21.00

You know that icky feeling when your liner goes crusty hours into wearing it? That never happens with wander's pencil thanks to nourishing jojoba seed oil and olive fruit oil.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below