Review: Benefit They're Real! Pushup Liner

So, a few months ago I wandered into Sephora in search of a new liquid eyeliner. I had been using an Eyeko one that I liked a lot, but towards the end of its life, the brush got all wonky and I couldn't get a precise line. I decided I was done with the felt-tip liner and wanted to go back to a brush applicator. 

Surprisingly... nobody wants to make that anymore except like NYX... which they don't sell at Sephora. So I asked the nice saleslady for a recommendation. And she pointed me to Benefit (a company I find to be mostly miss with occasional hit). She had me play with the liner, showed me how dynamic this rubber applicator is. The gel comes out of the middle, so its always even! She even tried to tell me that its impossible to get off at night, thats its only drawback, and then pushed the $18 eyemakeup remover. I declined and she said "I'll see you back tomorrow!" (spoiler alert: my cleanser and my towelettes take it off with no problem).

thanks to vampy varnish for letting me steal your picture
Ok, so I get it home and I try it out. There's a huge learning curve with this thing. First of all, it takes about 1,045 turns to get the liner flow started. Then, using a rubber tip to apply a gel... is tricky. It took me a few weeks to figure out how to vary the weight of the line. And even longer to figure out how to use the sort of wedge shape of the applicator to make wings. 

They claim that its one click per eye to use. What they don't tell you, is that you've got to smudge and work the liner around a lot in order to make it one click per eye... and you don't get a precise, dark black line when you only do one click. I've found two or three gets the dark line that I want. But here's the rub... I can't seem to get a razor thin, precise line. It never gets narrower than a few millimeters, which is frustrating if you're trying to go for something a little more subtle. The applicator also gets covered in gunk, which is hard to get off without squeezing product out of the middle and wasting some. 

I will say, its extremely long lasting. I've worn it two days in a row with almost no problem, and I swam in the ocean with it, and it stayed on. The applicator claims to be revolutionary because you can get super close to the lashline... I still had to lift and stretch my eyelid to get it right next to my lashline... which I have to do with every liner. So, getting liner next to your lashes is about skill, not applicator. I could see it being useful for doing retro/vintage looks, because the line is thick and dark, but its not a great daily use. The staying power might be great for people with oily lids where makeup just slides off. I could see that being a plus, but oily lids are not an issue for me. I probably won't rebuy, but I may keep it around. 

thanks makeupandbeautyblog.com for letting me steal your picture
PS: photoshop trickery on the packaging. see those three eye images? claiming that the liner makes your eyes look bigger? look close at the iris size of the third compared to the first two. it looks bigger because it IS BIGGER. More proof? look at the corner of the eye on the bottom and the edge of the frame, compared to the same corner above on the other two. Its a zoomed in photo that they were hoping we wouldn't notice.

I'm really going to try. I plan to do reviews on Tues/Weds and then looks on Fridays. Thats sorta the current plan. I also intend to take my own pictures, apologies to the bloggers that I stole from, I'll happily take them down if you're upset. I just didn't have the product with me at work. Also, everyone totally needs to see my applicator covered in gunk.