Make Up For Ever – Aqua Liner review

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Our beauty scientist puts these liners to the test – 3 of them!

photos: we heart this

Smudged eyeliner is only sexy when it’s intentional, otherwise it’s the bane of my existence. As a Texan, I deal with hot, humid days and sweaty skin for about nine months out of the year. Finding waterproof makeup with staying power is super important to me, especially in the summer. Lucky for me, I got to try two Aqua Liners from the legendary Make Up For Ever just as the temperature started to creep up above 100 degrees on a daily basis.

Beauty scientists will appreciate that the Aqua Liners ($23) are created with hydrophobic macromolecules called acrylic coploymers containing essential amino acids (from apple juice!!) And these liners are designed to stay put withstanding not only normal daily wear, but sweat and even water. Surely, such a high tech product needed a serious scientific study. Well, as scientific as you can get from someone who’s biggest science influence is Mr. Wizard.

Test #1 – Daily Wear
I expected Aqua Liner to excel in this, and it definitely did. The applicator on the wand is a tapered foam tip, that makes it almost impossible to apply too much color, so getting a thin or thick line is a breeze. And makes cat eyes so easy you’ll want to do them all the time!

My eyeliner went on smoothly even as I hastily applied it in the car and lasted all day, even through sweat from a workout, without a smudge, smear or fade in sight.

The two colors I tested, Diamond Multicolor Black (black with multicolor sparkles) and Diamond Lagoon Green (sparkling blue green), looked almost as vivid as the moment I put them on. Both have itty-bitty glitter flecks in multi-colors; heavy on the pink and purple for the Black, and silver and greenish-teal for Lagoon.

Test #2 – Wearing to bed
I know, I know, you should never wear your makeup to bed. But this is science, remember? Applied to clean skin right before bed, Aqua Liner pulled through, with only a little wear at my inner corners.

As for removal of this liner – it is super easy; the liner balls up and peels off in pieces rather than dissolving, similar to Blinc eyeliner.

Test #3 – Water
A quick jump in the shower and my Aqua Liner was still there! Of course, I ruined that by rubbing my face dry with a towel, but until then, Aqua Liner stood up to my very hot shower. Still, very impressed.

Next, in order to test Aqua Liner against my waterworks, I applied and watched an episode each of my worst crying culprits; Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice. Two hours later, Aqua Liner was still hanging in strong.

A few days later I tested both colors against a Buffy marathon, but after six hours there was some peeling and wear. But in Aqua Liner’s defense, there was copious amounts of sobbing, eye rubbing and fist shaking at the sky at Tara’s death. No makeup could withstand such conditions.

Finally, the best praise I can give is that I’m already planning on buying Mat Black (matte black) and Diamond Black Purple (deep violet sheen). If you long for a waterproof eyeliner with great color, Make Up For Ever Aqua Liners are your new best friend.

Intense, bold and vivid colors
Formula – Super staying power
The tapered foam applicator picks up just the right amount of product

Price, a bit more than I like to pay for eyeliner

In conclusion to my super scientific analysis; Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Liner is one of, if not THE, best waterproof eyeliners I’ve ever tried and receive 5 stars from me.

we heartsters – have you put Make Up For Ever’s Aqua Liners to the test? Share your results in the comments!

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.


  • lyssachelle

    Alyssa is kinda geeky, kinda girly and all the way in love with her cowboy husband who can say words like, “ornery” with a straight face. She live in Texas and is working on her Masters, being a good cook and the art of looking cute in the morning AND being on time for work. skin tone: NC42 skin type: oily to normal favorite beauty product: nail polish and mascara

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  1. Excellent review, I now want both of these colors. The applicator looks great and the wear time sounds amazing.

    1. I think you’ll love it! I thought the applicator was a brush at first, but I was so pleasantly surprised to see it was foam! It gives you a lot of great control…

  2. Alyssa, You are a girl after my own heart. I love that you are willing to commit the ultimate sin/ makeup rule and wear makeup to bed in the name of science for the WHT readers.

    1. I do have to admit, the added bonus of waking up with sexy cat eyes at 6am on a Tuesday was kind of nice. ;-)

  3. ohhhh, I’m left wanting now!! Make up for ever here I come! That Aqua liner looks fantastic! I’m leaning toward the Diamond Multicolor Black (black with multicolor sparkles)but you know I’ll be checking out the Diamond Lagoon Green too! I’m so excited about these! Great review Alyssa! You sold me big time!

    1. I know you’ll love it! The Diamond Black dries lighter than it applies so it’s not a true black, which makes it great for daytime AND night. However, I can’t give up my addiction to pitch black eyeliner, so Mat Black MUST be mine! ;-)

  4. Ohhhh, this makes me want them more!!! I cry so much during certain movies and my eyeliner ALWAYS melts! I. Need. These. NOW.

    1. Honestly, I was really surprised at how well it stayed on! I mean, I knew it had staying power, but even through crying? And not tearing up, but real crying over the trials and tribulations of Derek and Meredith?? It’s impressive.

    2. Oh, you should test it to the last 20 minutes of Marley & Me. I bawl everytime I watch that movie. I don’t actually cry watching Grey’s Anatomy (maybe this is where the Autism makes me immune?) There was one episode of It’s Me or the Dog that had me bawling for two hours though. It’s not so much what was happening with the owner, it was something that Victoria described that had me bawling.

  5. Alyssa, I love your review, and your dedication to thoroughly testing out the product :) $23 is a bit more than I’d like to pay for eyeliner too, but maybe if I just pick up one, in a staple color, for summer, I can justify the cost.

  6. Thanks! :-) While I do love the glittery Diamond colors in the line, I think the more standard matte finishes would be a better investment.
    But make sure and hint about a Sephora gift card for your birthday and then get the Diamond ones! :-)

  7. @lyssachelle – your review made me laugh AND made me want to run out and buy at least one… most likely the gorgeous Diamond Lagoon Green. Thank you for your extreme testing dedication!

    1. Thank you! That green is SO pretty and vivid; I was wary of it because I’ve never worn green eyeliner, but it was a really interesting and fun look!

  8. The applicator + formula definitely puts this product on my makeup wish list. I’m always looking for the best stay-put eyeliner. I feel like pencil liners that claim to stay put (including MUFE’s) don’t work its best on me…So this is a great one for me to try. Thanks for your awesome review @lyssachelle !

    1. The formula is great, but the applicator is amazing. It makes cat eyes ridiculously easy and you can really get into your lash line without overdoing it. LOVE it…

  9. Alyssa! what a great review. I hardly ever splurge on make-up (last time I bought make-up was.. for my wedding. 16 months ago) but you’ve got me wanting to run to the nearest Sephora for serious.

  10. Oooh, Diamond Lagoon Green is just *begging* me to wear it poolside. And really, who am I to say “no” to a pretty eyeliner? The next time there’s a good sale it shall be mine!

  11. I love Make Up For Ever so of course I had to read through this post. I’ve heard of this aqua liners, so thanks for an awesome review! Both are super pretty. Hmm…the black one might be going on my to buy list :]

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