Best Eyeliner: The 2024 Glam Beauty Awards

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Eyeliner is arguably one of the trickiest makeup products to apply, and it doesn't help if the one you're using doesn't perform well. It can either smudge easily or crumble on your lids upon application. And forget about liquid liners — they require a certain level of dexterity and concentration or you end up redrawing that cat eye over and over again. That said, different eyeliners have certain functions. As mentioned, liquid ones are used for drawing precise lines, while pencil and kohl liners are great for creating smokey eyes.


Here at Glam, we tested 10 different eyeliners for the 2024 Glam Beauty Awards, narrowing down one winner and an overall top five that are worth your time. We took the guesswork out of the equation for you so you have informed liner options to choose from. And if you need one (or several), you can rest assured that we handpicked the best of the best. Whether you're looking for a budget buy or want to splurge on a more luxurious liner, there's something for everyone on our list.

Best Overall: Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Waterproof Eyeliner

For an eyeliner that can make a mean cat eye and also be smudged for a smokey look, Urban Decay's 24/7 Glide-On Waterproof Eyeliner is the clear winner. It comes in a pencil form so it can be sharpened anytime the tip becomes dull if you want a clean line. The formula is super creamy, so it doesn't tug on the skin, and once applied, it's easy to smudge, which makes this liner very versatile. However, after it sets, this eyeliner isn't going anywhere. It's truly waterproof and will stay on all day, rain or shine, making this one great for tightlining your eyes. After wearing it for hours on my waterline, it didn't transfer at all.


What's more, you'll never get bored with Urban Decay's line of pencils. The brand offers 38 colors, including lime green, hot pink, and shimmery silver. You can choose from five finishes, too: matte, satin, metallic, glitter, and shimmer. From creating geometric shapes on your lids to even using it as eyeshadow, the 24/7 Glide-On Waterproof Eyeliner can do it all.

Purchase the 24/7 Glide-On Waterproof Eyeliner at Urban Decay for $25.

Best Liquid Eyeliner: Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner Eyeliner

There is no one-size-fits-all liquid liner, but Benefit Cosmetics' Roller Liner Eyeliner comes pretty close. I tried the brand's black shade, and the formula is super pigmented, so if you love bold eyeliner, this one's for you. With liquid liners, you sometimes have to go over your first application with another one, but just one pass was enough for an opaque look that dried into a beautiful matte black shade. The felt tip is extremely giving yet stiff enough to create a precise line, which is key in choosing the perfect liner. There's a reason Glam chose this one as Best Eyeliner for the 2023 Glam Beauty Awards.


The waterproof formula is truly waterproof. The eyeliner didn't even budge under running water, making the Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner Eyeliner perfect for weddings and humid weather. It does dry pretty fast, so be sure to have some Q-tips and makeup remover on hand for mistakes, but with its ease of application, we're sure there will be minimal to none.

Purchase the Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner Eyeliner at Sephora for $22.

Best Drugstore Eyeliner: Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen No-Skip Eyeliner

You don't have to spend dozens of dollars for a great liner, and the Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen No-Skip Eyeliner proves it. It comes in long, slim packaging that almost looks like a pencil at first glance, but this liquid liner is a powerhouse in disguise. The Pitch Black formula glides on gently and deposits a strong, inky color in just one application. The super-fine tip allowed me to draw the finest lines without any trouble, and I also didn't have any problems creating a strong cat eye.


The quick-drying formula is waterproof, which is essential with liquid liners. Once applied, I attempted to smudge it to see how it would hold up, and it didn't go anywhere — there wasn't even a hint of color on my finger. As far as drugstore liners go, Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen No-Skip Eyeliner absolutely delivers — and for under $10, it's quite the steal.

Purchase the Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen No-Skip Eyeliner on Amazon for $7.59.

Best Eyeliner For Smokey Eyes: Neutrogena Smokey Kohl Eyeliner

Sometimes, an occasion doesn't call for sharp, winged eyeliner, and we need a stick to create lived-in smokey eyes. The Neutrogena Smokey Kohl Eyeliner is perfect for just that, as it has a creamy texture that is highly blendable. Once applied to my lids, I was able to smudge the liner easily, and I experienced no crumbling or flaking that sometimes happens with kohl liners. The slightly pointed tip also made it easy to draw a fine line on my waterlines, and I found that it didn't smear once it was set. This liner seriously stays on for hours without budging despite not claiming to be waterproof.


Neutrogena Smokey Kohl Eyeliner comes in a roll-up pencil case so it can't be sharpened. The pencil, however, is thin enough that I don't foresee that being a problem. If you need a sharper point, you can always rub the sides of the tip onto a paper towel or tissue until it's sufficiently thinner. While I tried the Smokey Gray shade, the liner also comes in Jet Black, Deep Navy, Rich Plum, and Dark Brown — all great colors to create the perfect smokey look.

Purchase the Smokey Kohl Eyeliner at Neutrogena for $9.19.

Best Eyeliner For Fine Lines: Clinique High Impact Easy Liquid Liner

Creating very fine lines isn't easy even for the most experienced makeup artists, but this is where Clinique High Impact Easy Liquid Liner comes in. The long, slim felt tip makes drawing a smooth line so easy, as indicated by the liner's name. Thick, bold strokes are also super achievable, and the brush's flexibility ensures that the color goes on smoothly without any skipping. This liner isn't as highly pigmented as others and the first layer was a bit transparent in spots. However, a second coat was enough to give it a strong, opaque finish.


The formula is smudge-proof and after testing it under running water, I found that while some of the color faded, it didn't run, which makes this ideal for those whose eyes tend to tear a lot. According to Clinique, the High Impact Easy Liquid Liner is great for sensitive eyes and is ophthalmologist-tested, making this product optimal for contact lens wearers.

Purchase the High Impact Easy Liquid Liner at Clinique for $18.90.