Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Battle Of The Brands: Maybelline & Bobbi Brown Gel Eye Liners

Eye liner is one of those things, especially on the waterline that wears differently on different people and so whatever works for me may not work for you and visa versa. I have been on a quest to find an eye pencil/liner that actually stays on the waterline. I tried the Maybelline gel liner before the Bobbi Brown one, and instead of doing separate reviews I thought I'd do comparison / mini reviews.

I've used the same brush with both of them, and that is the one that came with the Maybelline gel liner.


I've read such great reviews on this gel liner. Even though I agree it is really good, it didn't work as great as I had hoped. While applying it on my waterline little flakes would get in my eyes and some would stick to my lenses. I had to start applying lenses after applying the liner on my waterline. This just showed how water proof the formula was, because my lenses would obviously be wet when I'd apply them and often my eyes would tear up. Despite my eyes tearing up, the liner would not budge.

It's not very long lasting on the water line though. I've used it with and with out foundation .With foundation it stays on a bit longer, but it would still start spreading from the inner corner within an hour or two.

While using the Maybelline gel liner the eye liner brush I noticed that a thick crust formed around the bristles. I had to wash it every time before using it. It just goes on to show the drying formula of the gel liner. It doesn't happen with the Bobbi Brown one.

Long lasting as a traditional eye liner (on the lids)
Water proof
Extremely pigmented 
Comes with it's own brush
Available in Pakistan

The consistency of the gel liner is a little thick and is not ideal for tight lining the eyes. 
Is not long lasting on the waterline
Starts to fade a little during the day (on the waterline)

click to enlarge image (This isn't the most flattering picture of me, but I wanted to make my point. This is when I decided to buy the Bobbi Brown one)

after 2 and half hours of first applying it

Bobbi Brown

After trying so many eye pencils/liners in the last few months, I was a bit sceptical about it's claims as well. I used the same brush with this one, and I discovered that it applied more easily, and smoothly. It's great for tight lining as well. What I often do with the Bobbi Brown one, which I could never even think of doing with the Maybelline gel liner is that I close my eye and swipe the brush to and fro like a kajal. It doesn't hurt, not does it get in to my eyes. If I'd done it with the Maybelline one my eyes would have been full of flakes.

This liner lives up to it's claims. I've used this with and without foundation as well. On days when I've used just  a sunblock and moisturiser it stays for more than 3 hours and it just spreads a little from the inner conner of my eyes. This is when my skin gets super greasy. On days when I've had foundation/face powder it lasts for a long time.

I wouldn't have been able to survive the last few weeks without the Bobbi Brown gel eye liner. I've used it during dance practises and it would stay in it's place by the time I'd come home.

Long lasting (on the water line and as a traditional eye liner)
Water proof
Doesn't hurt the eyes
Glides on like a dream
Ideal for tight-lining 
Extremely pigmented 

Doesn't come with it's own brush
Hard to find in Pakistan

click to enlarge

After 4 hours

Click to enlarge

After 6 and a half hours (don't mind the flash)

If you're looking for a long lasting, water proof eye liner that doesn't budge from the eye lids, then go for the Maybelline one. For those who want a multi-purpose gel eye liner (water line, tight-lining etc.) then I highly recommend the Bobbi Brown one. It's a little expensive, but if it can work on me it can pretty much work for anyone. It definitely lives up to it's claim.

Bobbi Brown: 21$
Maybelline: RS850


  1. I LOVE the Maybelline Gel Eyeliner but now you have made me want the Bobbi Brown so bad! I do hate having to wash the brush all the time too!

  2. great post ... thanks for this honest review :)

  3. This is a great post. I haven't tried the Bobbi Brown one but I agree that Maybelline's liner fades when applied on water line.

  4. thank you sooo much for your review!!! i have tried so many gel liners ranging from maybelline, wet n wild, to loreal hip gel liner. was skeptical about the bobby brown gel liner because of its high price!! but after reading your review, i will ask a friend to get it for me from new york! yaaaay!!

  5. Sahar: Thank you

    Gloria: The Bobbi Brown gel liner is worth it

    Thank you Ruqaiya and Sana

    Sehrish: Yes, that is so frustrating about the Maybelline one

    Maryam: I did this review keeping you in mind. I would have done it sooner, but I'm a little lazy. I hope this works for you as well:).

  6. I use the maybelline one but i am not a fan of putting gel liner on my water line so i never noticed that it fades.Although i wouldn't mind getting my hands on Bobbi Brown as i have read so many positive reviews of it (including yours) :)