17 Of The Best Drugstore Eyeliners – 2020

by Shalini Roy
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Eyeliner is a staple in most women’s makeup bags. Any makeup look is practically incomplete without it. Getting your eyeliner on fleek can be a struggle. From hard-to-use applicators to runny formulations that smudge, there’s a lot that can go wrong. Moreover, with an abundance of options out there, it can get awfully hard to pick the right eyeliner. So, it may come as a surprise to you that when it comes to eyeliner, the affordable ones you find in drugstores are your best bet. To help you choose, we’ve put together 17 of the best drugstore eyeliners that you can find for less than $10. Even makeup artists swear by these formulas!

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Maybelline Master Precise Eyeliner
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Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eye Pen
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Milani Eye Tech Extreme Liquid Eyeliner
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Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner
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L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Liner Noir Liquid Eyeliner Pen
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NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Liner
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e.l.f Expert Liquid Eyeliner
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Rimmel Exaggerate Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner
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Kiko Definition Waterproof Eyeliner
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Almay Liquid Eyeliner
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15 Of The Best Drugstore Eyeliners Under

1. Maybelline Master Precise Eyeliner

This waterproof eyeliner features an ultra-fine tip that delivers laser-sharp precision for the most defined line. It’s long-wearing and water and smudge-proof, delivering precise definition in just one stroke.

Pros

  • Easy and precise application.
  • Water and smudge-proof.
  • Very pigmented.
  • Suitable for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers.

Cons

  • Dries up quickly.
  • Fades rather easily.

Maybelline Master Precise Liquid Eyeliner Review

This drugstore liquid eyeliner is one of Maybelline’s most popular products. If you are a beginner and have just started off with liquid eyeliners, this one’s great for a first start, and it’s really easy to use. Even when layered, it doesn’t give the awful patchy look. This one looks just like a calligraphy pen, and its small tip allows for super sharp and precise wings. One of the best drugstore liquid eyeliners!

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2. Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eye Pen

This intense liquid eyeliner pen adds drama to your eyes and helps create any eyeliner look – soft or dramatic – with its tapered felt tip. The ultra-precise design of the tip makes it perfect for mess-free application. It stays up to 16 hours and is ideal for daily wear.

Pros

  • Highly pigmented, intense black color.
  • Tapered felt-tip.
  • Easy and mess-free application.
  • Glides on smoothly.

Cons

  • Tends to smudge on rubbing.
  • Not water-proof.

Revlon Colorstay Liquid Eye Pen Review

This eyeliner by Revlon, named ‘Blackest Black,’ comes in a pen packaging. Its consistency is neither too thick nor too runny, and the felt tip makes it really easy to use. It’s great for everyday wear and will easily stay on for a good 11-12 hours. Coming to the pigmentation, we noticed that we had to go over the line a few times to intensify the black because one stroke didn’t seem enough. However, that did not ruin the look. If you have oily eyelids, you will love this eyeliner as it won’t budge at all!

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3. Milani Eye Tech Extreme Liquid Eyeliner

The party-proof Eye Tech Extreme Liquid Eyeliner by Milani allows you to create a thin, medium, or thick line just by switching up the angle you hold it. It’s a waterproof, transfer-proof, and non-feathering formula that glides on smoothly in a single stroke and stays right where you put it.

Pros

  • Ultra-fine tip.
  • Easy application.
  • Long-staying.
  • Smooth flow of product.
  • Glides on smoothly without tugging or leaving gaps.
  • Jet black in color.

Cons

  • Its tip is slightly stiff when compared to other pen eyeliners.

Milani Eye Tech Extreme Liquid Eyeliner Review

This eyeliner by Milani comes in a sleek pen-style format. Its fine tip helps create flawless cat eye looks and winged lines. It’s one of the most pigmented liquid liners out in the drugstore market, and if pigmentation is an important criterion for you, you will love this. We were impressed with its staying power as it stayed on for about 12 hours without budging even slightly. This is definitely one of the best eyeliners in the under-$10 range!

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4. Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner

Create perfect lines to oomph up your eye game with Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner. Choose your pick from 9 glamorous shades, and smudge out the line with the soft smudger tip. The specially designed tip self-sharpens to ensure you draw perfect lines every single time. This eyeliner is super precise and offers you control and versatility as it glides on smoothly.

Pros

  • Easy to apply
  • Self-sharpens
  • Soft smudger tip
  • Ophthalmologist-tested
  • Smooth formula
  • Does not tug or pull on the eyelid
  • Cruelty-free

Cons

  • Difficult to remove
  • Smudges and smears easily
  • Not suitable for application on the waterline

Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner Review

This CoverGirl eyeliner comes packed in a color-coded pencil with a twist-up mechanism. Its creamy, buttery formula glides on smoothly to give you precise lines. The pigmentation intensifies with each swipe. Although it is water-resistant, it fades and smudges throughout the day. It is still worth a buy if you’re looking for something soft and smooth that creates neat lines.

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5. L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Liner Noir Liquid Eyeliner Pen

L’oreal Paris presents Voluminous Liner Noir Liquid eyeliner pen in a rich, black formula. You can now create mesmerizing feline looks with its ultra-fine 0.1 MM felt tip for sleek and easy application. Its unique packaging shape provides added control and precision.

Pros

  • Extremely pigmented black.
  • Pen applicator for smooth and precise application.
  • Fine tip.
  • It does not rub off easily.
  • Glides on smoothly.

Cons

  • It tends to slightly smudge when worn on a very hot day.

L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Liner Noir Liquid Eyeliner Pen Review

If you are looking for a less expensive alternative to Stila’s liquid eyeliner, this one is close enough and way cheaper. It comes in the form of a marker pen that gives you a whole lot of control over the thickness of the line. It helps you achieve the perfect wing without much effort, unlike the traditional liquid liners. The formula is very smooth, and it does not clump. What more can you want from an eyeliner?

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6. NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Liner

The cat-eye liner look is the toughest to achieve. That is why you need to get your hands on NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Liner. Its ultra-precise tip is so smooth and flexible that you can line your eye with a single stroke. It is extremely fluid and gives you the most dramatic cat-eye finish effortlessly.

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Intensely pigmented
  • Matte finish
  • Cruelty-free
  • Vegan

Cons

  • None

NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Liner Review

The super sleek and supple tip of NYX Professional Makeup Epic Ink Liner is all you need if you are a beginner who wants to ace the bold cat-eye look. Its fluid formula makes it very easy to put on. It applies evenly without smudging or getting patchy. Though it is slightly difficult to remove, it is a long-wearing eyeliner.

7. e.l.f Expert Liquid Eyeliner

With the new e.l.f Expert Eyeliner, say no more to tugging or pulling with its easy glide formula. This smudge-proof liner is rich in color, creating a long-lasting, defined look.

Pros

  • Good pigmentation that’s buildable.
  • Dries quickly.
  • It provides an easy and precise application.
  • Available in five shades.
  • Smudge-proof and water-proof.

Cons

  • The color could be more intense.
  • Less quantity.

e.l.f Expert Liquid Eyeliner Review

If you like the traditional eyeliner bottle, this one’s a great product that has a thin brush for the perfect winged eyeliner. It’s a solid black that gives a translucent line in one swipe, but the intensity of the black isn’t the best. It gives you a good, satin finish. Coming to its staying power – it’s decent, and it does not flake off or break and stays put till you actually remove it with a makeup remover. Anyway, this $3 eyeliner is definitely worth every penny.

8. Rimmel Exaggerate Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner

If you are going for an extravagant, bold eye look, Rimmel London Exaggerate Liquid Eye Liner is perfect for you. Its felt-tip applicator delivers its highly pigmented formula effortlessly. The tapered applicator is comfortable to hold and easy to control. Its smooth and fine texture deposits enough liner to create a perfect line in a single stroke.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Travel-friendly packaging
  • Long-lasting
  • Smudge-proof
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • Dries very quickly.

Rimmel Exaggerate Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner Review

This is one of the best drugstore felt-tip liquid eyeliners. It is run-proof, flake-proof, and smudge-proof. The product claims to last up to 16 hours with a classy matte finish. It is suitable for sensitive eyes and contact-lens wearers. The felt-tip delivers bold, winged eyeliner looks very precisely. To exaggerate the beauty of your eyes, this drugstore liquid eyeliner is your best pick.

9. Kiko Definition Waterproof Eyeliner

Kiko Definition Waterproof Eyeliner is a drugstore liquid eyeliner so creamy and buttery that you will never want to use any other eyeliner. It is formulated without parabens and is water-resistant. It glides on without tugging or pulling at the sensitive skin of the eyelids. Its thick consistency delivers a flawless finish that makes your eyes look gorgeous all day long.

Pros

  • Sturdy packaging
  • Long-lasting
  • Smudge-proof
  • Waterproof

Cons

  • Difficult to remove

Kiko Definition Waterproof Eyeliner Review

This drugstore liquid eyeliner is a savior for people with oily eyelids or living in humid climate. The smudge-proof formula lasts up to 12 hours or more. The precise fine-tip applicator lines your eyelids sharply. The formula is extra black and glossy and dries in 30 seconds to give you some time to undo your mistakes. No flaking, no cracking – this super pigmented eyeliner gives you the most matte finish ever.

10. Almay Liquid Eyeliner

Almay’s unique inkwell design delivers fresh colors each time. It comes with a flexible tip applicator for mistake-proof control. Its water-resistant color stays on up to 16 hours.

Pros

  • Suitable for contact lens wearers.
  • Smudge-proof.
  • Rich, matte color.
  • Dries fast.
  • A flexible tip creates precise lines.

Cons

  • Not waterproof.
  • It does not stay put for more than 4-5 hours, especially on hot days.
  • Not suitable for oily eyelids.

Almay Liquid Eyeliner Review

This eyeliner comes with an applicator that gives you more control when creating a wing or going for other creative looks. One swipe of the product gives rich color, and you can build it up to intensify it. It dries quickly and sets into a matte finish. Almay’s a winner when it comes to its staying power (on normal days) and its non-irritant formula; so, if you have sensitive eyes, you can go for this. This sure is one of our favorite drugstore picks!

11. NYC High Definition Liquid Eyeliner

NYC’s High Definition Liquid Liner’s ultra-fine felt tip creates precise lines from soft to dramatic and gives you the ultimate mistake-proof application. Its duo of film-forming polymers come with long-wearing properties to intensify your eyes and give you rich, intense color.

Pros

  • Suitable for sensitive eyes.
  • Good pigmentation.
  • Pen-style makes it easy to control.
  • Gives precise and sharp application.

Cons

  • Smells like a marker pen.
  • Its tip is quite hard.

NYC High Definition Liquid Eyeliner Review

We have mixed feelings about this eyeliner as some of its features impressed us, and the rest was quite a disappointment. It comes in a pen packaging with a stiff tip, which makes creating winged lines rather simple. The application is easy, and you need to store the pen upside-down if you want the color to be intense when you apply it. If you want a simple, daytime look, this will work well, but if you are looking for something dramatic, give this one a miss.

12. Boots No7 Stay Precise Felt Tip Eyeliner

This felt tip liquid eyeliner by Boots makes for easy application, while its weightless formula lies comfortably on the eyes. The perfect sultry and dramatic frame for your eyes.

Pros

  • Decent staying power.
  • Good packaging.
  • Easy to use.
  • It comes in different shades.
  • Glides on smoothly.

Cons

  • Poor color payoff.
  • The finish is not consistent (needs to be layered).

Boots No7 Stay Precise Felt Tip Eyeliner Review

This Boots eyeliner comes in very convenient packaging and is easy to use, but when we consider its color payoff and pigmentation, it’s disappointing. It needs more than one swatch to get an opaque finish. The longevity is decent, and it lasts for at least 6-7 hours without flaking off. This eyeliner isn’t super cheap – it’s in the mid-price range in drugstore brands, and there are better and less expensive drugstore options.

13. Wet & Wild H20 Proof Liquid Liner

Cruelty-free, vegan, waterproof – what else does one need in an eyeliner? Wet & Wild H20 Proof Liquid Liner is a must-have in your travel makeup bag. From subtle, precise lines to bold, extravagant strokes – create your desired look using its fine applicator brush. This drugstore liquid eyeliner is long-lasting and available in two classic shades.

Pros

  • Smudge-proof
  • Waterproof
  • Long-lasting
  • Cruelty-free
  • Vegan
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Sticky formula
  • Might cause eye irritation
  • Tugs or pulls on eyelids

Wet & Wild H20 Proof Liquid Liner Review

The formula might feel a bit too sticky and difficult to apply. Thus, it is not the best choice for anyone with sensitive eyes. The waterproof matte finish is so appealing that you’d ask for nothing else at this price. It offers decent pigmentation, and its pen-like applicator is great for makeup newbies.

14. Jordana Fabuliner Liquid Eyeliner Black

Jordana’s Fabuliner makes looking fabulous, effortless! It takes the guesswork out of perfectly liquid-lined eyes. Master any line style – from thin feline-flicks to bold, thick lines just by adding a second swipe! This is your one liquid liner for every kind of drama!

Pros

  • Deepest black.
  • It does not smudge or smear.
  • Easy and precise application.
  • Easy to remove with makeup remover.

Cons

  • Not waterproof.
  • Has to be used and stored horizontally.

Jordana Fabuliner Liquid Eyeliner Black Review

The Jordana Fabuliner Liquid Eyeliner is available in two shades. It’s a great formulation that dries very quickly, and its felt tip creates a precise line for a winged liner. One swipe gives a translucent black while multiple swipes give you your desired color. This one looks good even on top of the most pigmented eyeshadow. For $2, this one gives you the best of both worlds and is worth a shot.

15. Rimmel Scandal Eyes Liquid Eyeliner

Rimmel’s Scandal Eyes Bold Liquid Eyeliner is an intense glossy color that lasts all day and night with a 24 hour wear time. It’s fade, transfer and waterproof, and has an innovative round tip applicator for the boldest look.

Pros

  • Convenient to use.
  • Rich black color.
  • It can be used to create both thick and thin lines.
  • It does not smudge or smear.
  • Stays on for a good 6-7 hours.
  • Glides on smoothly.
  • Suitable for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers.

Cons

  • The color might slightly rip while application if the first layer is completely dry.
  • Cheaper alternatives work the same way.

Rimmel Scandal Eyes Liquid Eyeliner Review

Rimmel’s Scandal Eyes liquid eyeliner comes with a felt tip liner in a glossy pen packaging. The liner is handy, and it has a rubber grip that ensures precise application. It has a slanted tip, which helps you create both thick and thin lines with the perfect curve. It glides smoothly and is very gentle on your lids. It settles into a matte finish with a sheen to it and stays put for 6-7 hours, after which you will need to touch it up. Overall, this a decent eyeliner, but there are cheaper alternatives in the market that work in the same way.

16. Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum

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Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum is the dream pick for makeup enthusiasts. A liquid eyeliner with a lash-boosting formula is all you need to safeguard your lashes while adding definition to your pretty eyes. It improves the appearance of your lashes by lifting them from the roots. This high-tech dual formula is dermatologist-tested and safe for sensitive eyes and contact-lens wearers.

Pros

  • Adds volume to lashes
  • Smudge-resistant
  • Water-resistant
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Fragrance-free
  • Paraben-free
  • Suitable for people with sensitive eyes and contact-lens wearers

Cons

None

Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum Review

The lash booster formula of this liquid eyeliner nourishes and conditions your lashes while improving their appearance. This sleek and stylish eyeliner pen is easy to hold and control for drawing precise lines. This highly pigmented wet eyeliner is available in three shades that stay put all day long.

17. Neutrogena Precision Liquid Eyeliner

Neutrogena Precision Liquid Eyeliner’s razor-sharp precision helps you achieve the dramatic cat-eye look effortlessly. It is formulated with natural honey and coconut that nourish your lashes. It is a smudge-resistant eyeliner that lasts all day long without flaking.

Pros

  • Water-resistant
  • Smudge-proof
  • Flake-proof
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Highly pigmented

Cons

None

Neutrogena Precision Liquid Eyeliner Review

The ultra-sharp razor tip of this pen eyeliner glides smoothly on the eyelids without tugging the skin. It delivers rich color in just a single swipe. This quick-drying eyeliner lasts perfectly throughout the day. If perfecting that winged-eye look has been a task for you, pick this pen and up your eye game instantly.

Now that you know all the best drugstore eyeliners available right now, check out our buying guide to pick the best one according to your needs along with some tips for applying eyeliner.

Buying Guide For Drugstore Eyeliners

How To Choose A Drugstore Eyeliner?

Choosing the right kind of eyeliner might seem intimidating, but is easy if you know what kind of look you want to create:

  • Gel liners are great if you love your cat-eye, winged looks. Their creamy and thick consistency works easily with a brush.
  • If you are a perfectionist for precise, sleek lines, go for a liquid eyeliner. Paired with a felt-tip applicator, it allows you control to create your desired look without getting messy.
  • If you are a beginner who wants to take their smokey-eye game up a notch, a pencil liner is the perfect choice for you. Sharpening it might be a pain, but its smoothness and ability to smudge perfectly is worth the hassle.

What Tips Should Be Followed While Using Any Drugstore Eyeliner?

Applying eyeliner can get messy, but here we have a few pointers to fix your wings:

  1. Choose the color of your eyeliner based on the kind of definition you want to create.
  2. Always rest your elbow on a flat surface while applying eyeliner.
  3. Use a concealer or a primer to hide any mistakes.
  4. A clear lip gloss also does wonders in removing smudge eyeliner.
  5. Outline the look you want to create with a pencil, then fill it in with the liner of your choice.
  6. Fix your mistakes using a cotton swab.
  7. Choose the right brush to apply your gel liner.
  8. Always sharpen your pencil eyeliner for precise application and smudging.
  9. Let the liquid eyeliner dry first before making any changes.

While shelling out for an expensive eyeliner seems like a sensible way to avoid smudging and smearing, amazing formulas do exist even at the drugstore counter. You only need to do some research! That was our list of some of the best drugstore liquid eyeliners, all under $10, that even makeup artists swear by. Have you tried any of these drugstore brands? Sound off in the comments!

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Shalini Roy

Shalini Roy has a Master's degree in English literature. She is an ambivert whose expressions have found their way in writing. She channels her passion for all things fashion and makeup to write engaging content related to Beauty and Lifestyle. She first found her penchant for writing through poetry and serving on various editorial boards of Model United Nations conferences. Shalini is a lover of spoken word poetry, books, and movies.
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