Buxom Waterproof Smoky Eye Sticks review

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Want sweet, sexy, smokin’ eyes? The answer is in the stick!

photos: we heart this

Chrissy Hynde. Joan Jett. Brigitte Bardot. Elizabeth Taylor. Tough. Sweet. Sexy as hell. Smoky eyes are the secret weapon of any sexual being – lion or kitten, rock star or goddess. However with the wrong arsenal, some attempts to create that smoky-eyed look can look more Bride of Frankenstein than Brigitte Bardot.

To create the perfect smoky eye one needs a precise instrument capable of bold sweeps and meticulous lines. Bold is Buxom’s middle name and they’ve got new Waterproof Smoky Eye Sticks that do it all – shadow, line and smoke – with precision.

Bare Escentuals made a name for themselves with Bare Minerals. Their foundations made us all strive for that “natural” perfect skin-look, that you-only-better-look of which we all hear so much. Everyday pretty made simple.

While I love, love, love that natural look (especially for foundation), I also love to experiment with the darker and the bolder. Usually, that means having to go to a makeup counter on the other side of pretty, but Bare Minerals has an alter ego – a femme fatale named Buxom.

The Buxom line by Bare Escentuals is darker and bolder than the collection that made them famous. I’m already a fan of the Buxom Lip Polish and the Big & Healthy Lip Stick (both lip products that plump up the volume in a bold, minty way) and it seems logical that Buxom also supplies the smoky eye to balance that healthy pout.

The Waterproof Smoky Eye Sticks ($18), available only at Sephora, can help anyone get that sultry, smoky look! Housed in silver metallic casing the Eye Stick (seen in Smokin’ Pistol above, with the Buxom Smoky Eye Brush) is a thick crayon with a tapered tip that screws up from its case.

To keep the tip pointy and precise there is a built in sharpener on the bottom of the tube (disguised as the color identifying cap) that pulls off rather easily for use. The sharpener itself is a little difficult to use – I found myself pulling off a chunk of shadow stick as I sharpened. Use a delicate touch, not pushing down on the stick with the sharpener.

Speaking of secret weapons, the colors are a sexy-sounding and even sexier looking bunch!

Shown above, from left:
Nunchucks: blackened blue with metallic blue flecks
5″ Stiletto: shimmering dark plum
Bow & Arrow: shimmering dark khaki
Smokin’ Pistol: sooty black creme

I tried the Smokin’ Pistol and found it to be a primo liner. I especially like this for lining my top lid a – la Marilyn Monroe. The tapered crayon makes it really easy to go from a thin line to a fat one, from lining the bottom and the corners without mess, to making that cat-eye wing. A steady hand and a stiff brush can produce a nice smudge. Stef, our resident MAC expert, likens these to their greasepaint sticks and claims the deep pigment of the Buxom Smoky Eye Stick makes the perfect smoky eye base for a night on the town.

Buxom Waterproof Eye Stick stays put until you take it off. I might as well have put Sharpie on my face – you will need some makeup remover and a good rub to remove this effectively. I do, however, love that this means there is no transfer from lash line to lid. Having received the black coal color, I can’t say I used this as an all-over eye color. And considering how well this stuff sticks, I don’t plan on doing so. I can’t wait to see how my fellow testers with other hues fared! (Check the comments for their thoughts.) It’s official, Buxom Babe is hot stuff.

we heartsters and testers – do Buxom Waterproof Eye Sticks whisper sweet nothings to your sultry, sexy bombshell side?

Shop Buxom at Sephora and get 3 Free Bare Escentuals best sellers! Enter code BEBARETRIO for the original formula or BEMATTETRIO for matte.

Sherri is co-author of What Would You Do With This Room? My 10 Foolproof Commandments to Great Interior Design, and of course, a wht writer!

Disclosure: This review includes products that were provided by the manufacturer/PR firm for our consideration. It also contains an affiliate link, a link that gives us a small commission if you purchase the item. For more info, or any questions, please see our disclosure policy.


  • sherrishera

    Sherri is a writer, dog lover, old movie fanatic, history detective, political junkie, fashion pundit and social media consumer advocate. “A fancy dinner and expensive champagne are better than writing a rent check any day of the week.” skin tone: NC 25 skin type: oily/sensitive favorite beauty product: anti-aging anything

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  1. @sherrishera – Buxom sounds like something I must check out in person! I love the packaging, and the built in sharpener seals the deal for me. Nunchucks, here I come!

  2. I didn’t receive one to review but I spent some time playing with these shadow-sticks on a recent trip to Sephora. They have much better stay-power than the fat shadow-sticks from Tarte and slightly better than shadow sticks from MAC. Think of them like fat Urban Decay 24/7 pencils. And they’re great for less makeup-artist inclined girls who want to try out a smoky eye! The purple is my fave color.

    I gave them four stars!

  3. These are easy sticks to use @kate2004rock, and they are smooth from first swipe. Smooth application that doesn’t skip across the skin and the fact that it is so long-lasting make this product really worth it. I like this much better than my Tarte.
    4 stars for this one…that sharpener requires such a delicate touch to make a pointy tip. I hate taking a whole star off for that, though…consider my four-star rating to really be four-and-a-half

  4. I have to admit, I don’t use too much from the Bare Minerals line – I’m not a huge fan of loose powders in any form. But the Buxom line is becoming a fave! i tested the Smoky Eye Stick in Smokin’ Pistol – a nice deep black. I love the silver packaging, the super smooth formula, the great pigemnt and the staying power of this liner. Just like @kate2004rock claimed, they are as good as the 24/7 pencils, but in a thicker width – much better for all sorts of eye liner application tricks!

    If you want to get a very fine line, you can use the built in, pull out sharpener – it takes a little fiddling but it works. I prefer a medium to thick eyeliner myself, so I rarely need to sharpen this great stick.

    My only complaint? I wish it had a bit more “smudging time” before drying – but for the long wear it’s a fair trade! 4 stars

  5. I’ve used the Buxom Lip Polish and Lip Sticks, and have mixed feelings about them. I love the colors and the packaging, but the minty taste is almost medicinal, and the tingling is a bit intense for me (like I’m sticking my lips on an ice cube). And the twist up lip pencils can be a little fragile.

    But I’m a sucker for eyeliner, and the colors on these look gorgeous. I’m going to have to check them out next time I’m at Sephora!

  6. I received Smokin’ Pistol to review and I’ve been having some major fun with this one! Super pigmented, super smooth, and totally steadfast, this liner is a winner. Like @LipglossandSpandex I had “issues” with the Buxom line in the past, so I was a little wary. Happily this liner is much sturdier than some of the lip liners and there’s none of that intense tingle that comes with the lip products.
    The only down side to this liner is deciding how I want to wear it! I have oily eyelids, so I have to use a good primer to make sure my eye makeup doesn’t crease. Using primer makes it nearly impossible to smudge the Eye Sticks, so if I want to use the liner to create a smokey eye I need to skip the primer. Then I run the risk of having a crease at the end of the day, so it’s really a tough decision.
    Overall I give the Buxom Waterproof Smokey Eye Sticks 4 stars. The staying power is amazing, but I do wish I could smudge it just a bit more. (Ironic, really, who ever wants their eyeliner to smudge more? LOL)

  7. I got 5″ Stiletto to try out and I love it! It goes on a bit thicker than my other eyeliners but , I kind of like that look. It’s really easy to smudge out and make a Smokey eye look too. I just used a Q-tip and BAM! magic. I think the thick line helps me out with that look too. It goes on super smooth and I only needed to apply it once to get the dark plum color to show up. Usually I apply two coats to get a nice dark liner. I couldn’t do a cat eye with this but, I don’t think you should listen to me on this part of my review, I’m not good at doing cat eyes to begin with. It does have staying power! I wore it all day at work, worked out for 30 mins, took a shower (only splashed my face), and it was still looking good! I did apply it again to go out that night but really it looked pretty good after my long day!

    Also, I really liked the plum color when I wore my light purple eye shadow. looks super springy and made my eyes really pop!

    The only thing I didn’t really care for is the sharpener. I didn’t even realize it was there until I read this post! I tried it out last night and like @sherrishera said, don’t use a heavy hand. I smushed the tip off…. :(

    But overall I give this 5 stars!

  8. I got to try Bow and Arrows and I think it’s a definite 4 stars. Bow and Arrows (which I thought was more of a green than a khaki. And also, why is there no name listed on the tube??) has MAJOR staying power. I enjoyed the thicker width because it definitely needed to do a smoky eye (at least for me) but that sharpener has some work that needs to be done on it. I rarely sharpen my pencils very fine anyway, but those that do will be disappointed in its lack of ease.

    But had it had a nice smidge stick in there, this would TOTALLY be 5 stars. Especially since it dries so fast, in order to get a nice smudge you need a sitck close at hand!

    4 stars!

  9. Anything that has major staying power is good in my book…I have a bad habit of rubbing my eyes a lot because of my contacts, so I haven’t bothered wearing eyeliner for the past few years. Might have to look into these though!

  10. @lyssachelle – I *think* we may have gotten pre-release samples that didn’t have stickers on them. But I can’t be sure of that. Anyone buy these from the store? Can you confirm that they have the shade listed somewhere on the tube? Or if someone looks next time they’re at Sephora – let us know pls!

    1. I got my first stick about 3 weeks ago and “BRASS KNUCKLES” is printed in silver accross the colored cap that holds the sharpener.
      I found Smokey Eye while looking at the Buxom Big & Healthy Lip Stick, after getting a sample of Amsterdam with a Sephora order. I agree, this is a great product but I give it only 4 stars because you have to work quickly as the product dries fast.

  11. There is something about the BUXOM eyeliners that just draw me in…

  12. I’m a big Buxom fan. Love the tingly lip products, love the character names they give their glosses (who wouldn’t want to wear “Kandi” instead of “Pink 142”?) and love the personality that is infused into the whole line. It’s fun!

    The Buxom liners have also found a fan in me. They are very similar to MAC’s greasepaint sticks (a bit drier, but also not Limited Edition, so lose a point, gain a point!) They make a fabulous chubby liner, but I prefer them as a base for a smoky eye. Here’s how…

    I have Smoking Pistol, the creme black. But you could do it with any shade.

    Buxom’s smoky eye brush is perfect for this, but any brush that is short and dense will be fine. Swipe the brush across the product (that’s right, don’t apply the product to your lid then try to smoke. You’ll have a dark, non-budging mess on your hands, err…eyes) In a small buffing motion start at your outer lash line and move in, the product gets lighter as you go (as you have less on the brush). Then, starting back at the outer eye, move upwards getting lighter as you move towards the crease. Keep in mind a little goes a long way, and you can always add more.

    The reason I find Smoking Pistol to be the most versatile color is that you can add any shade over it to create a blackened _____ (gold, green, plum, blue). It brightens up a smoky eye, but still has that sexy depth.

    When you’re done adding color, use Smoking pistol as a liner, add a ton of mascara and go get’em tiger!

    This is a 5 star, work horse of a product! Love them.

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