Well, the Bobbi Brown eyeliner twisty-stick was all very well except for several things.
1. It gets used up fast. It is a far, far worse buy than the little jar of cream/gel eyeliner. Many times worse. Let me calculate: for around the same price, you get about 1/10 of the volume of product ($24 for a 3g of Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner vs. 0.35g of Perfectly Defined Gel Eyeliner twist-up pencil).
So long as you already have an eyeliner brush, the stuff in the jar is a better buy. Even if you don’t, that brush will pay for itself over the lifetime of a jar of eyeliner compared to buying several twisty-sticks over the same period.
I’m not going into comparisons with traditional pencils, the kind you sharpen, because I dislike them and therefore never use or buy them. It’s the sharpening that gets me. Or rather, when you get a sharpening-shaving in your eye…
2. The end of the twisty-stick becomes a nub, then you have to sharpen it (or just sort of wear it down to a point on the back of your hand), and you lose more eyeliner than you’re using on your eyes.
3. The cap cracks. Partly because it’s the wrong shape for sticking on the other end of the eyeliner while using said device on eyes, so you either sit on it or try to wedge it on the end of the eyeliner.
4. I’m going to count the cap not fitting the other end as a whole point of annoyance in its own right. I mean, come on: would you buy a (writing-)pen whose cap couldn’t be stuck on the non-business end?
5. The eyeliner inside broke. Wasting yet more of the stuff.
6. Not very eco-friendly delivery method: that’s a lot of plastic for a small quantity of product. Wasteful and less recyclable than glass.
This is no criticism of Bobbi Brown. All the above Several Things are true of all eyeliner twisty-sticks I’ve used plus others from other companies that I investigated (poking, prodding, and generally probing in shops until made to go away by SAs pointed attempts to “help”). Almay (sticks only; quite a lot of people only do sticks), Becca, Buxom, Chanel, Clinique, Lancôme, MAC, Make Up For Ever, Maybelline, NARS, Rimmel, Sephora, Shu Uemura, Smashbox, Stila, Tarte, Urban Decay. Etc.
It’s a shocker. What a rip-off. Or: I wouldn’t mind if I knew the price-difference were going directly to pay for recycling, funding research on minimising packaging and waste and on sustainability, and subsidising a cheaper more environmentally-responsible jar.
Back to the jars of cream/gel eyeliner then, accompanied by one of my marvellous old brushes (free with Clinique’s potted liner). A change of brown, too: away from my previous Chocolate Shimmer Ink to Sepia Ink. Also a back-up of Laura Mercier cake in Mahogany; the last one I bought (just after reformulation) was terrible, this one claims it *can* be used with water (how exciting: so that would be like before the last version… back full circle… ).
Morals of the story:
- beware false economies and laziness
- buy once, buy better
- choose the less wasteful, more recyclable option