How to Get Cry-Proof Eye Makeup, No Matter What Your Sister Says

Ella Petrushko (Marilyn) wears L.L. Bean vintage cable turtleneck and ball necklace by Efva AttlingPhotographer: Justin Bridges. Makeup Artist/Hair Stylist: Ashley Rebecca. Fashion/Beauty Editor: Alyssa Shapiro.

‘Happy Holidays’ is perhaps a misnomer of sorts. Presents are happy. Cheer is happy (in moderation), but what can more often be a source of greater stress than excitement and merriment is a week+ home with one’s parents, extended family, nosy aunts, overbearing grandmas… you get the picture.

Between “when might I have a grandchild,” the ticking clock of hours to go, obligations to fulfill, it’s enough to make any girl succumb to tears. This season, though, tears won’t mean streaky inky Pollock-esque face paintings. Endless testing of liners and mascaras later I can promise you that you can storm off to your childhood bedroom, dig your teary face into your pillow and still look like the beautiful snowflake you are when you’ve calmed down, no reapplying required.

Among the countless beauty items I never planned on having (all-purpose balms, stress-relieving body washes, more than 10 kinds of primer), one I often skimp on is fancy eye makeup remover. But with the products selected here, it’s kind of a necessity. I found my long-forgotten Bioderma (for the refined French woman I surely have inside of me,) a necessity as I conducted my experiment.

Here are the liners and mascaras up to the Herculean task of a cryproof Christmas, NYE, holiday season…


For a sultry cateye, Burberry’s Effortless liquid liner, is in fact as effortless as a liquid liner can be. Its no-nonsense applicator is precise and won’t budge. Pen-like liquid liners are much easier to use than those that need to be painted on. Another precise, long-wearing, and more budget friendly option is Eyeko’s Eye Do which comes with the invaluable Alexa Chung seal of approval.

For the lower lid, or just a smudgy, non-cateye look, liners with a gel formula work wonders and once dry, stay in place.

For a jet black, pick…Trish McEvoy Intense Gel Eye Liner.

For a smudgy gray, pick…Urban Decay’s 24/7 Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil in Lure

For a classic charcoal, pick…Revlon Colorstay Eyeliner in Charcoal

For a bold blue, pickEstée Lauder Double Wear Stay-In-Place Eye Pencil in Electric Cobalt


For mascaras that can stand up to the toughest holiday battles, sibling fights, or just a teary viewing of an old favorite movie, try Urban Decay Cannonball or Eyeko Sport.

We wish you as few tears as possible, but if it happens, you’ll be all good in the makeup department. Promise!

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