Did I ever tell you that one of the great quests of my life has been for the best black eyeliner? Sad I know, but it’s true. I thought I had tried them all, finding some I liked more than others – from Stila to MAC, Bobbi Brown to Maybelline, NARS to Laura Mercier. I’m an equal opportunity black liner lover but it does need to deliver. Because none of them had quite the inky darkness that I craved, I kept testing out new ones, looking for a black that could audition for a Tim Burton film.
Until I tried the new Kat Von D liner. It is, quite simply, and hands down, the best black liner I have ever tried. Kat von D is pretty new to the makeup game, coming from a background as a tattoo artist and a reality TV star (not the way to my hear generally, but she has won me over after testing out her liner and some of her lipsticks, which are also fab).
Stocked in mega makeup store Sephora, I’m starting to see what the fuss is about with her line. Pigment rich, subversive packaging (reminiscent of another of my favourite brands, Illamasqua), it’s all a bit goth but also surprisingly wearable and has a great range of colours. A committed vegan it’s also cruelty-free, which also ticks my makeup boxes.
Sephora gave me a lovely bag of goodies to test out the other day which I’ve been doing religiously, and this liner is the standout. It’s just so damn BLACK. As dark as the Adams family hall closet, it also is a genius felt tip pen that has a nib that’s hard enough to draw great lines, but soft enough to manipulate around the delicate eye area. So whether you’re a liner novice or Lana del Rey, this one is for you!
Just when you thought you couldn’t POSSIBLY need another black eyeliner product in your handbag, along comes Burberry’s new eyeliner pens to change your mind. Burberry have to have one of the best marketing strategies I’ve ever seen – their ads and campaigns are always beautiful, always on brand and feature gorgeous English models, like this one with Suki Waterhouse who is the perfect modern 60’s muse.
Of late I’ve been cruising on YouTube for obscure 80’s hits – one hit wonders and bad Australian songs have been featuring prominently. So today when I came across a CLASSIC Australian pop song (prompted by hearing a delivery man playing it in his truck yesterday – you know it’s fabulous music when that’s where you hear it!) the epic “Electric Blue” by Icehouse, I just knew I had to introduce it to all my MM readers. Or re-introduce it for those lucky enough to remember it first time around (c 1987).
Obviously the first thing you notice about the video is the lead singer’s hair, or mullet. I can tell you right now from all the YouTube-ing I’ve been doing that mullets were a key part of 80’s Aussie music. Uncanny X Men, Wa Wa Nee, Pseudo Echo – all the (supposedly) hot boys at the time had a delicious, bouffant and flowing back section and preferably a neat groomed (and highlighted, if you really wanted to impress the ladies) fore section. Forget business at the front, party at the back – it was party at the front, a nightclub at the back and a full on rave all over. Looking at the men in these videos it’s a wonder Aussies managed to reproduce at all and all the women didn’t run away screaming overseas. ANYWAY…
I digress. The reason I’m introducing you to this classic piece of vintage Australiana is the return of 80’s blue shadow and liner, except it’s being worn with a 90’s grunge sensibility. Since the whole natural grunge makeup seam has been pretty much mined to exhaustion over the last few seasons, during this season’s shows makeup artists are bringing back flashes of block colour and liner that were also a mainstay of 90’s makeup.
Pat McGrath put a sky blue on a few of the girls at Prada this week in Milan and Lucia Pieroni did a gorgeous electric blue liner at Giles in London. Which harked back to the 80’s. So it’s a post-modern, modern look if you will, that looks totally fresh. Here’s my picks for the best blue liners and shadows to give you a bit of colour-blocked 80’s/90’s/now goodness. Mullet optional, but not recommended.
Best Blue Eyeliners
- NARS Kitty pencil – a gorgeous electric blue
- MAC Hi-Def Cyan Chromagraphic Pencil – used on the Giles show by Lucia Pieroni last week, this is pretty much the perfect blue
- Bourjois Regard Paillete in Bleu Etincelant – Sparkling eyeliner basically, but it sounds so much nicer in French! This is a gorgeous metallic bright blue liner. New to my kit this week. I love this and can’t wait to give it a workout.
- Essence 2 in 1 Kajal pencil in Destination Sunshine – the colour is a slightly off electric blue. It’s a bit of a weird colour which is why I like it. Essence are a German brand and Europe’s biggest selling range apparently, but new to me. At a bargain price point, I have to say I’m impressed with the colour pay off.
- Barry M SuperSoft Eye Crayon in Matte Blue – Barry M. Always. Another bargain too.
- Illamasqua Eye Pencil in Debonair – delicious bright blue with great pigmentation
- TopShop Makeup – If liquid liner is more your thing, TopShop do a deep blue liner called Yonder which looks quite delish.
Best Blue Shadows
- NARS Outremer – amazing cobalt blue. Incredible
- Illamasqua Victim – is a full-pigment intense azure blue, and one of my favourites
- Illamasqua Sadist – matte cobalt (cause you can never have too much colour blocked cobalt)
- MAC Electric Eel – a total classic
- MAC Freshwater – if you don’t want your electric blue without a bit of sheen. I’ve had it in my kit forever, but right now I’m channeling a matte finish.
- MAC Deep Truth – a beautiful dark navy. Because sometimes you need to take the electric down a level, to well, normal.
PS: What’s with the clothes in 80’s videos? Sweatshirts, singlets, a jumper that their nan knitted them – really it’s like most of them rolled out of bed that day and just pulled on whatever was in their washing pile. In the dark. The 80’s, truly the decade that style forgot.