Review / theBalm Schwing Liquid Eyeliner

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Finding a good eyeliner has been one of the harder parts of going cruelty free, and I'm a sucker for a good eyeliner so I haven't been best pleased about it.  Just before I went cruelty free, I tried the Stila Stay-all-Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner pen and let's just say that it's pretty much ruined all other eyeliners for me because that sucker is amazing.  Sadly (or not so sadly, I guess), on point eyeliner that literally stays all day isn't worth animals being tested on as far as I'm concerned, and I've been on the hunt for a replacement ever since.

I picked up theBalm's Schwing Black Liquid Eyeliner for free from Superdrug's website when they were doing one of their 3-for-2 across all cosmetics offers, but it's usually £13.49.  You can also buy it from other online shops like CutECOsmetics and Feel Unique.  I'd read some pretty positive reviews of it, but I was still sceptical because I haven't used one of these styles of eyeliners for absolutely years!  I think I used the brush-in-ink-pot type ones for a while when I was first getting into makeup (and was absolutely rubbish at winged eyeliner) but I'd been using gels with brushes or felt tip pen ones ever since I realised they existed.

The website says: "Lining and defining eyes has never been easier. Built with a uniquely thin and tapered felt tip applicator, Schwing gives you careful control over subtle strokes and bold lines. Create winning looks with this rich matte-black finish that won't smudge, flake, or take forever to dry. Cool and compact, Schwing fits wherever you need it."

They aren't kidding about the thin, tapered applicator!  It's definitely the best I've tried of any liquid eyeliners of this type, and the bonus is that since the felt tip is actually stored in the eyeliner, it won't dry out like those pesky pens always do.  As much as I loved that Stila one and I still love my Soap & Glory SuperCat liner, both seemed to dry out very quickly even when I keep them upside down, which is a pain since they're not the cheapest things in the world.

The applicator is actually very easy to use and is very precise, resulting in neat, clean lines, and it's also very easy to get a sharp tip to your wings.  You can use this to create super thick, bold liner looks but with the tip being so fine, it's also easy to use to thinly line close to the lash line.  The actual colour is a matte black - I personally like the colour but I've seen some reviews that complain that it comes across as a bit blue-ish sometimes.  It dries quickly, but if you've piled on a lot of product in a short space of time you might need to wait a few seconds and be careful of it transferring or smudging while it dries.

I've been testing this out quite a bit for a few months now and it definitely lasts all day and it usually still looks great by the end of the day, but it does depend on how my eyes are behaving at the time.  If my eyes are particularly watery, I do find that it tends to bleed a little on the outer corner and fuzz up the underneath of my wing, so I wouldn't say that this is smudge-proof or waterproof.  It doesn't last long if you start sobbing or completely soak it, and it can also sometimes transfer to my upper lid if I'm super sweaty - although it has stood the test of a couple of gym sessions with very minimal smudging!  It doesn't flake though, and it's easy to re-apply product over the top if it if it needs a quick refresh.

All in all, this Schwing is a great little eyeliner and I'm pleased I finally decided to try it.  Despite my reservations about the applicator, I've actually found it really easy to use and I tend to get nicer shaped wings using this than I do with my gel liner or pen liners now, and I love the fine, flexible tip.  It's cruelty free and vegan, so if you're in the market for a new cruelty free eyeliner I would definitely recommend this one!  I'm already planning on repurchasing it whenever it runs out, and I don't feel like I really need to continue my search for a new liquid eyeliner any more.  At around £13 it's a little on the pricier side, but as it lasts longer than pen eyeliners and you might be able to snag it in a Superdrug offer, I'd say it's definitely worth the money.

Have you tried theBalm Schwing before? If you have any other cruelty free liquid liner suggestions, I'd love to hear them!


  1. I think the liner/red lips duo really suits you! This sounds lovely, I'm seriously tempted because a good liquid liner is hard to find (and a cruelty-free one even more so). I've been using the Makeup Revolution liquid liner and so far it's served me well :) xx


    1. Why thank you! I'll have to give that one a go some time too, can never have too many good liquid liners. :P

  2. Looks like a great product and the makeup looks amazing on you. Although I don't really buy liners with felt tip much. I prefer a brush.

    Wildfire Charm

    1. Thanks so much! It took me some getting used to, I had been using gel liners with brushes for yeeears before I went back to the felt tip style. I still use a bit of both tbh.


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