There are SO MANY new products hitting the drugstores lately that it's a bit overwhelming trying to cover even a small portion of them. So when I was shopping a few weeks ago, I decided to purchase BOTH of the new L'Oreal Infallible liners and do a little compare/contrast with them. I hope this helps you to determine which one might be a better fit for you and your liner needs.
Also, with summer here, there's no better time test long-wear eyeliners, right?
L'Oreal 24HR Infallible Never Fail Lacquer Liner in Dark Slate (retail: around $9.99, 0.08 oz)
L'Oreal 16HR Infalliable Never Fail Eyeliner in Slate (retail: around $8.99, 0.008 oz)
These products are not yet on the L'Oreal website, but according to the Target website, the Lacquer Liners come in five shades. I'm unable to determine how many shades the automatic liner comes in because the Target site doesn't have the color I purchased, Slate, available. So I'm guessing there's five shades of the automatic liner as well (but I could be wrong).
click to enlarge:
Both liners are paraben-free, and it's interesting to note that the first or second ingredient in both liners is cyclopentasiloxane, which is a very popular ingredient in many face primers (such as Smashbox, Hard Candy, etc.):
Let's take a closer look at each liner:
L'Oreal 24HR Infallible Never Fail Lacquer Liner in Dark Slate
This liner comes in a traditional pot and it comes with a (very good) brush.
I'm serious when I say that this a very good brush. In fact, it rivals my e.l.f. Small Smudge Brush, which is my favorite brush of all time for applying gel liners. The L'Oreal brush is not like the first generation brushes that came with drugstore gel or cream liners--this one is of high quality and very soft. It's got a fine point for really getting deep down between your lashes, and it's firm yet not too firm, enabling you to create a nice smooth, clean line. You can also draw a very precise, thin line with this brush, if that's more your taste.
A closer look at the pencil:
L'Oreal 16HR Infalliable Never Fail Eyeliner in Slate
This is a standard double-ended automatic liner. On one end is the pencil, and on the other are the sharpener and smudger:
Both shades are of the dark gray/taupe variety. I'd say the gel liner is a truer dark taupe, while the pencil is a bit more of a dark charcoal gray.
Now, I wanted to show you what happened after my typical smudge test (I take my index finger and rub with a good amount of pressure back and forth for about 10 seconds):
Disaster! But I realized that I did my smudge-test too soon. So please note that it takes a few minutes for both of these liners for set.
So I drew two NEW lines, waited a few minutes and here's the result:
Both liners held up pretty well, right?
So now I'd like to show you some before-and-afters on my own eyes.
LACQUER LINER MINUTES AFTER APPLICATION:
Notice how I was able to achieve a nice, clean line with the L'Oreal Lacquer Liner and accompanying brush. I also was able to wing out my liner a bit, which is really easy to do with this brush:
LACQUER LINER AFTER EIGHT HOURS OF WEAR:
Boo! This liner transfered and smeared for me in about six hours, but I waited two more hours before I took these pictures. What really bums me out is that I didn't even apply this liner to my lower lashline and you can see the smudges in that region. I'll talk more about this at the end of my review, but let's just say this really made me sad because I didn't even do anything terribly strenuous this day (I didn't walk a lot in the heat or anything like that).
AUTOMATIC LINER MINUTES AFTER APPLICATION:
AUTOMATIC LINER AFTER EIGHT HOURS OF WEAR:
More smudging and transferring, but it's harder to see because I accidentally applied mascara to my bottom lashes for this test (oops!). But I made sure, for BOTH of these liners, that I wore a mascara that I know for a fact does not smear or transfer on my skin, even in hot weather.
Also, if you notice in the "before" pics, I also applied this liner to my waterline. But as you can see below, it didn't hold up well in that regard:
For the record, I have NEVER had good luck with L'Oreal liners, or L'Oreal mascaras for that matter. I'm convinced that there's a particular ingredient in L'Oreal liners and mascaras that doesn't agree with the natural oils in my skin, and that's why, for literally decades now, every single L'Oreal liner and mascara I have ever used ends up smearing, smudging and transferring on my eyes.
But let's put all that aside and focus on how I think these might work for YOU:
LACQUER LINER: The formula of this liner is DIVINE. I love love love it. It's got a cushiony feel to it when you dip your brush into the pot, and it's easy to pick up just the right amount to successfully line each eye without having to go back to the pot multiple times. I love the ease of use of this liner, and I think it would be great for both gel liner experts and newbies because it's extremely user-friendly. It feels like a high-end gel liner, and I think the color payoff of Dark Slate is wonderful. This line takes a few minutes to set, so you've got plenty of time to go back over your lines if needed. I've heard that, on others, this liner has incredible staying-power, so again, it could just be me and my weird chemistry that's making this liner run and transfer. I've got very oily skin and I've tested this a number of ways (applying eye primer first, applying it to bare skin, applying it over face primer, setting it with setting powder, etc.) and every time I do, it transfers and smudges for me in about six hours. I'm really sad about this because it's such a luxurious formula and a joy to apply. But for me, this one's a cold-weather-only liner.
AUTOMATIC LINER: Automatic liners are my favorite types of eyeliners and, thus, I've tried a zillion of them over the years. This one is absolutely average in my book--not terrible but not out-of-this-world. This liner has a drier consistency. It's definitely not the creamiest automatic liner I've ever used (that award goes to Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Automatic Liners, which are my holy grail automatic eyeliners). This liner can tug a tiny bit during application, but its dry consistency is also what makes it hold up better on my oily skin vs. the Lacquer Liner. But the thing is, I'd deal with the drier texture of this liner if it meant stellar staying power, but that's not the case for me. So I'd rather stick with the Physicians Formula automatic liners because those feel like gel pencils that glide across the lids effortlessly and they have great staying power. Also, I wish this one would last longer on my waterline, but that's not the case.
FINAL VERDICT: Considering all factors here, I'd say that L'Oreal 24H Infallible Lacquer Liner is the one to get if you're contemplating a purchase. Granted, it didn't hold up even close to 24 hours on my oily skin, but I told you before that I've never had good luck with L'Oreal liners, so this didn't surprise me. HOWEVER, don't let my results sway you into not making a purchase, because I've heard from many readers who say this liner holds up all day and night for them. Also consider that the texture of this liner is absolutely fabulous and, combined with the excellent accompanying brush, you should really enjoy the experience of using the product. As for the Infallible Automatic liner? I say skip it. There are better automatic liners out there that don't have the dry consistency that this one has. There's just nothing stand-out about this automatic liner that would make me feel like I could justify a purchase.
As I always say, if you're on the fence about a purchase, buy this product at Walgreens, CVS or Rite Aid and keep your receipt. All three of these drugstore chains accept returns and exchanges on USED products, so you've got nothing to lose if they don't work out for you.
Have you tried either of these new liners from L'Oreal? Thoughts?