(Let me warn you right here that this review is long and contains many pictures. If you're looking for a quick pros and cons review, this is not it! I do my best to provide my readers with as much information as possible. That's just my style, so if you're cool with that, please read on!)
I purchased the Green Eyes Trio for $10.99 at my local CVS, and I apologize for these photos of the packaging but my CVS insists on wrapping all new products in a heavy dose of clear packing tape these days. If I try to remove the packing tape, it will remove most of the packaging along with it, so I'm afraid we all have to endure these pics:
Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Gel Cream Liner for Green Eyes (retail: $10.99 at CVS)
I particularly like that these liners are fragrance free, safe for sensitive eyes and contact lens wearers, and also that they're paraben-free.
So let's end the suspense and bust into this package, shall we?
Look! It's an eyeliner Lego tower! I love how these snap apart but you can also just unscrew the level you want without having to take the whole thing apart every time.
To give you some perspective on the size of this little tower of liners, here it is next to a bottle of nail polish.
Here they are individually
And finally the liners themselves. Please note that the purple shade in particular is NOT accurate in most of these pics. With my camera, the purple appears FAR more blue than it actually is in person. In real life, this is a deep, true purple. I would say it is closest to #2627 on this Pantone Chart, if that helps.
Here are some pics with flash and without flash of each color:
(Again, please refer to that Pantone color above for a truer representation of this purple.)
These pics are actually not too far off from what the green looks like in real life.
And here's your basic black--OR IS IT??? You'll have to hold on for a second before I reveal the answer to that question!
Now when I first spotted the display for these new PF liners last week (click here for that post to see all of the available colors), I mentioned to you that I thought that each pot was roughly around the size of a Coastal Scents gel liner. Well I am delighted to say that my estimation was pretty darn close. In the pic above, my Coastal Scents gel liner is on the left and the PF gel cream liner is on the right.
And here's an aerial view so you can see that you get about the same amount of surface area in both pots:
Since the Coastal Scents gel liners retail for $6.95 each, I can confirm that $10.99 for the Physicians Formula Trio is indeed a pretty good deal! Also, as you can see in the pic above, I have used my CS gel liner in Truffle dozens and dozens of time (I looove it and contend it's one of the best browns out there--click here for my original review) and I still have barely scratched the surface. So each color in the PF trio will last you a long time, that's for darn sure.
So let's take a look at how these babies look on my eyes. In all pics below, I deliberately did not apply any eye shadow to my eyes so that the color would be as true as possible. The only thing I have on my lids is a light dusting of face powder:
Now, did you detect a bit of sparkle in this black liner? If you did, you wouldn't be wrong. I deliberately put the black liner on way thicker than I would ever wear it out of the house because I wanted to try my best to show that you that there is a surprise to this color. You can't see it when you look at the untouched pot, but once you press your brush into this black shade, look what magically appears:
Yep! That's teal green baby-fine sparkle!! Let me tell you, I was very pleasantly surprised that this hidden sparkle revealed itself because I need another basic black eyeliner like a hole in the head. I loooove this color because the sparkle isn't over the top (as you can see in my pics) but it does add a little sumpthin' extra...a little pizzazz, if you will.
Here are some swatches on my hand:
In this pic all three colors are pretty accurate but the green is pulling a tiny bit more yellow than it does in real life. And what's the most surprising is that both the green and purple, which look to be shimmery in the pot, are actually pretty matte when applied. That black though--woo, it's gorgeous.
And here are the same lines after I did a smudge test (with my index finger, I rubbed the lines back and forth for about ten seconds):
As you can see, the only area really worth noting is the area above where I placed the little black dots. It did smudge a bit there, but as you can see it's pretty minimal.
I also ran my hand under water for several seconds and when I patted my hand dry, the lines had not budged. But the best part? These liners remove easily with makeup remover. In fact, I was surprised to see that there were completely gone after just one application of remover with a cotton pad.
So let me try my best to break these liners down for you:
They are a fantastic deal money-wise, the colors are gorgeous, they apply very easily (they don't tug or drag) and the brush is surprisingly good. I was able to get right down into the lash-line with this brush, and it's very soft (no roughness on your lids) yet firm enough to apply a nice, clean line. The only problem with this brush is that it really won't give you one of those razor-sharp extra-fine lines. The line this brush gives is a little on the thick side, but not ridiculously thick.
As for the faults, the only one I can see so far is that the purple color in particular is a little streaky when first applied. I blame that more on me not knowing how much product to put on my brush on initial application (you need a bit more than with other gel liners) so I found myself having to go back over the line once or twice before it was fully opaque. Also, these liners did smudge a bit on my LOWER lash line, but everything smudges for me there. I have found that, as is the case with all liners in my life, the less I apply on my lower lash line, the longer it stays put without smudging. When I used just a tiny amount of the green color on my lower lash line and smudged it out, it stayed put all day. But as for the upper lash line, these liners stayed put for me ALL day and night, until I removed them.
Also, I used the black shade on my water line as well, and it seemed to stay put there for a few hours, which is a miracle for me.
All in all, I would definitely recommend the Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Gel Cream Liners to anyone who is already a fan of gel liners, as well as to those just beginning to dip their toes into the pool. For me, the color selection, value and staying power make these far more than just your typical gimmicky product with cute packaging.
Have you tried these liners yet? As always, I'd love to hear your thoughts!