Do Eyeliner Stencils & Stamps Work? We Tested Some Out.
Remember on Game of Thrones when one of the characters dies because he runs in a straight line away from a man shooting arrows at him, never once zigging or zagging? If I were that boy, I would have for sure made it to safety (and probably been killed by some other treachery—that's just how it is in Westeros). But I would have lived at first because my body just refuses to ever do a straight line, whether I'm cutting wrapping paper or lining my eyes.
I don't care about my present-wrapping skills that much, but I do care about makeup, so I wanted to try some eyeliner stencils and stamps to see if they could help. I tapped my fellow coworker and beauty lover Michelle to test out a few with me. Here's what worked—and what didn't.
Colleen and Michelle test out some eyeliner stencils and stamps to see if they'll give them the winged eyeliner of their dreams.
Eyeliner Stamp No. 1
The product: Generic dual-ended winged eyeliner stamp with a felt tip (our brand was called Miss Rose, but it seems to be the same thing as this eyeliner stamp.)
How it works: This eyeliner pen had two ends, one with a self-inking stamp and one with a self-inking felt tip. You simply stamp the wing on first, then use the felt tip to draw the line across your lid. If you value your bathroom decor, DO NOT SHAKE IT to make the product come out faster.
The verdict: Love!
Who would have thought that a generic eyeliner stamp would be good? Michelle, who tried it out during our video, thought the stamp side in particular was helpful. "It made it easier to draw the line because the line was already started. Plus, it stamped a nice shape on my eye—I felt like I was already half-way done," she says.
"I think this would be a good tool for someone who has a tough time making a consistent eye shape across both eyes," she added.
And I completely agree. Because I can't draw a straight line, I have a hard time making my wings look even. When I took this stamp home to try it out in real life, I was able to get the same wing on both eyes for the first time ever. One may have been angled up slightly more than the other, but it wasn't terribly noticeable, and I know I can fix my angles with some practice.
I also thought I would have issues with the formula since this is a generic brand, but when I took it off after six hours, it was still holding strong.
Eyeliner Stamp No. 2
The product: Generic dual-ended winged eyeliner stamp that came with a waterproof liquid liner in a cushion pot and a felt pen to complete the look
How it works: To use this stamp, you dip it into the cushion pot to pick up the liner, then quickly press the stamp against your outer lid. The stamp is dual-ended; one side is for your left eye and one is for your right. You finish the line across your lid with the felt pen.
The verdict: Eh.
I tried this one out during our video and was not impressed with it. Part of the problem was the stamp itself. It seemed to be made out of plastic and had a hard time holding onto the ink. That meant that it couldn't create a crisp wing. Plus, the stamp had a curve in the base that was supposed to nestle around your upper lashes (I think), but it just made things more confusing.
The only good thing about it was the formula of the eyeliner, which resisted smearing when I ran my finger across one wing.
Pizza-Cutter Eyeliner Roller Wheel
The product: Revlon ColorStay Exactify Liquid Liner
How it works: This waterproof liquid eyeliner has a wheel applicator that resembles a pizza cutter. The idea is that you can roll it across your eye to create a smooth, straight line.
The verdict: Loved it at first, then hated it. But it might have been the mirror's fault.
This one was interesting because at first, Michelle really, really loved it. She had an easy time applying it during our video—an especially impressive feat considering she used it on her eye that twitches sometimes.
But when she tried it a second time at home, she HATED it. She couldn't get it to look right and just kept applying more in the hopes that it would right itself. It did not. She actually had to take off all of her makeup because it looked so bad.
She had a theory, though, that her mirror angle was the issue. "I distinctly feel like I needed to be looking down into a mirror like I was during the video," she says, and not straight on like she was at home. Because she really loved the product the first time, Michelle did say she would try again while looking down into a mirror.
Eyeliner Stencils That are Shaped Like Cats for Some Reason
The product: Two eyeliner stencils that are shaped like a skinny cat and a fat cat for some reason
How it works: You position a winged eyeliner stencil against your eye and use it as a guide to create a variety of shapes. It also can be used to create graphic looks with eye shadow.
The verdict: Save it for a novelty gift for a cat lover.
Michelle tried the fat cat, I tried the skinny cat, and we both determined that these stencils were difficult to use. "They were more trouble than they were worth," Michelle says.
My main issue was that even if I held the stencil tightly against my eyelid, it was hard to keep my felt eyeliner tip from sliding underneath the stencil and ruining the crisp lines I was trying to draw. The inflexible plastic also kinda hurt when I pressed it against my skin. And just positioning the cat in a way that made sense was tricky.
However, there's no denying that it's cute and would make a fun novelty gift for a cat lover. Plus, I suspect that if you use just press an edge of the cat's body against your eye, instead of following a specific shape, you can at least create a straight line.
Sticker Eyeliner Stencils
The product: Sticker eyeliner stencils in various shapes
How it works: You peel off the sticker from the sheet, stick it to your eye, and then use it as a guide to draw on your cat eye.
The verdict: It works, but there are some downsides.
The whole reason these stickers work as a guide is that they're ultra sticky. Your eyeliner tip will not slip under these so you can create a good shape—one of the best out of all of these tools, in fact. But as Michelle points out, "it's not that they don't work, it's that they would take off the rest of your eye makeup."
I actually noticed my eyelid turning pretty red when I peeled these off, so I can't imagine how much eye shadow they would take off.
"I would buy these if your makeup skills were tremendously deficient but you needed a clean, elegant look," Michelle explains. "But you'd have to apply eye shadow after your eyeliner."
"In general, I thought all of these were training-wheel tools," Michelle says, adding that someone who had already mastered a winged look would find these stencils and stamps to be totally useless.
However, if you're a total novice or like me, really bad at doing cat eyes, consider getting a self-inking stamp. The more I use mine, the more I fall in love. Soon, I just may become an eyeliner master who doesn't even need a stamp. Until then, though, I'm happy.
Photos by Michelle Klosinski, Groupon
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