#BeautyReview: This $12 Eyeliner Is a Dream

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, the Tom Ford Eye Defining Liquid ($56) is the greatest eyeliner, ever.  It suffers from two serious problems, however.  First, the obvious issue, the price.  I’m not averse to paying for a great product, particularly one that lasts for 3-months-plus, but this feels excessive.

The second?  You cannot travel with this eyeliner.  I don’t know whether it’s the pressurized cabin or the tumble and toil of the inside of a suitcase, but twice, my eyeliner exploded after a trip.  So when I went looking for a replacement, I decided that throwing away a $56 eyeliner was not an experience that I wanted to repeat.

I tried a few old standbys from Stila and Bobbi Brown.  I even switched back to pencil liner for a while.  But you cannot do a proper smoky eye without liquid liner, so I headed to Ulta to find a strong drugstore-priced performer.

The name, Physicians Formula Eye Booster 2-in-1 Lash Boosting Eyeliner + Serum ($12), doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue.  But what caught my eye was the box, which promised me, not only a great eyeliner, but also a serum that would help me grow fuller and thicker lashes.

First, let’s talk about the eyeliner.  The brush on this liner is phenomenal.  The tip is substantial, but flexes and bends to create both pencil thin lines and wider strokes.  (See examples, here.)  It also dispenses the perfect amount of product.  It’s one of the better brushes that I’ve seen on a liquid liner.

The liner comes in brown, black, and ultra black.  If you’re looking for black, just buy the ultra black, it’s the color you need.

As for the serum, I can’t tell you whether it works.  I’ve only been using it for a couple of weeks, and haven’t noticed a change.  Other users have noticed a change, however.  But frankly, I love the liner so much (and the price), if the serum doesn’t work, it isn’t a significant loss.

This is one of the best eyeliners that I have ever used.  It draws the perfect line nearly every time, no matter how rushed or careless I’m being.  From now on, I will spend a very respectable $12 on eyeliner, and I won’t even miss my Tom Ford.  Because a product that’s almost as good, at one-fifth the price, is definitely the way to go.



  1. HH says:

    Belle – how well does it stand up to watery eyes? I’m talking seasonal allergy level watery, not “I was just fired” level of watery. I’m pretty sold on this eyeliner, but almost always use waterproof liner. Thanks!

    May 18, 2017/Reply
    • Belle says:

      It says it holds 24-hours, but I can’t verify that claim.

      May 18, 2017/Reply
  2. Whitley says:

    Bonus…you can get this for $7 on Amazon. Very excited to try this, I’ve been using Clinique’s $20 liner but excited to try this way more affordable option.

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  3. Rachel says:

    I’ve tried to like this eyeliner so many times, but it just doesn’t have the staying power I need for my perpetually watery eyes and it’s not dark/inky enough. May I suggest you also try Wet n Wild’s Megaliner? It’s only $3, one bottle lasts 3+ months for me, and I swear that stuff is indestructible; it even stays on through my sweaty workouts. And bonus: it’s cruelty free!

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  4. Anna says:

    On sale at Ulta- Buy 2 get 1 free!

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  5. Molly says:

    Anything with eyelash serum makes me nervous because of Latisse’s reaction with blue eyes – does anyone know if this product’s “serum” has any kind of light-eyed color reaction?

    May 18, 2017/Reply
    • Jenna says:

      I’ve been using this eyeliner for years and have not seen any changes in my blue eyes. I’ve never tried Latisse because I’m afraid of the potential discoloration.

      Of course, you’re probably not going to see Latisse-type results with this OTC serum. For me the results have been minimal if at all.

      May 18, 2017/Reply
  6. SN says:

    Airplane pressurization is not at atmo, but slightly less, say 65% since the human body tolerates it. My guess the slightly lower pressures caused it to explode.

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  7. SN says:

    Sorry i meant surface pressure.

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  8. CS says:

    FYI – It’s $8 on Amazon. I just bought it!

    May 18, 2017/Reply
  9. txattyjen says:

    Interesting on the explosion issue – I’ve used the Tom Ford one since it first came out and fly with it 4-6 times a month and never had that happen. Did you call Tom Ford and ask? They’ve always been good with me about replacing anything that broke (or that I dropped and shattered…).

    May 18, 2017/Reply
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