Here’s something that will come as no surprise to anyone: I love makeup. Barely a day goes past where I’m not wearing it (basically I have to be at death’s door not to) and my cosmetic collection (ok, lipsticks particularly) is on the vast side. But I’m not a snob about brands and I’m always ecstatic when I find a high-street/drugstore product that works – and I thought it was about time I paid tribute to some of these makeup greats, starting with this one (anyone who read my interview with Chronically Vintage will remember I mentioned a post of this nature was coming soon!). And this is one of those I start writing wondering if I’m about to alienate all of my readers outside of the UK with what is probably (?) a very British brand… but here goes nothing!
There was nowhere else I could have started but here: Collection’s Fast Stroke Liquid Eyeliner. I’ve been wearing this eyeliner pretty much daily for over a decade. I’ve dabbled with more expensive brands and different consistencies, including gel, and I always, always come back to this one. It’s barely increased in price since the first day I bought it and not only is it my longest-used makeup product, it’s also probably the best value for money.
Why is this eyeliner great?
- It doesn’t smudge or flake and it stays on all the live-long day as long as you don’t rub your eyes (albeit it can fade a little and I will touch it up if I’m going out in the evening)
- The wand – if you’re a thick line lover like me, the shape of this wand is so easy to use to create a great big catseye wing. It’s still precise enough to get a nice point too
- It dries pretty darn quickly so none of this waiting for it to set before you can do your mascara malarkey
- Did I mention it’s cheap?! £2.99 to be precise!
- One little bottle will last you a while – with daily use for thick lines I can get about 4 months out of these (but see a couple of comments below on what might make you want to replace it sooner)
Those reasons alone mean that despite some of its flaws (which I’m getting to), it’s always going to be one of my favourite products. Because, here’s the thing, it does everything I need an eyeliner to do. So why would I upgrade it to a more expensive model?
However, like I say, it’s not perfect. I actually don’t find myself that bothered by its ‘quirks’ these days as most of them come from having a well-used bottle and for the price I’ll just buy a new one, but to give it a fair review…
What’s not so good
- While with daily heavy use (which I consider mine to be!) this takes months to run out, at about month two you will notice something: the bristles will start to come out. They’re easy to spot when this happens and I tend to just pull them out, wipe the product off my fingers and carry on. It’s cheap, so whatever…
- At about month three or four the liquid might get a little bit more ‘gloopy’ – this doesn’t seem to happen with all of my bottles so perhaps it depends on how long it’s been sitting on the shop floor, but I do notice it with some. When it happens, though, I just wipe the excess off on the bottle top and continue – and it’s fine
- As I mentioned above, it does sometimes wear off a little during the day and if you have any issues with your eyes running this probably isn’t going to be the eyeliner for you. It’s not waterproof, but you wouldn’t expect it to be!
- The waterproof version actually sucks, which is such a shame. It applies just as well but it flakes. I HATE flaking eyeliner. A whole chunk of your beautifully-drawn line just randomly disappearing during the day is not a good look
So there you go… that’s my favourite steal beauty product (and actually, I’ve got another from this brand I might share in future too). However, I’m still half-heartedly looking for a decent gel eyeliner too for a softer look, so do give me any recommendations? I should probably try Collection’s, to be fair! And don’t recommend that awful Benefit push-up pen – the worst smudging of an eyeliner I’ve ever experienced!