For people with oily skin, especially oily eyelids, finding makeup can be a hard process. It can seem like you’ve tried every combination possible and still end up with a shiny face or irreparably smudged eyeliner at the end of the day. Luckily, we’ve found the best eyeliner for oily skin to make sure you never have to deal with that kind of smudging again.
Although we’ve got plenty of options to pick from, our favorite has to be the iMethod Eyeliner Stamp Pens—and you’ll find out why below:
Best Eyeliners for Oily Eyelids: Our Top 8 Picks
When it comes to eyeliners, you want something that won’t smudge and will remain in place all day or night. For people with oily eyelids, you’ll specifically want liquid eyeliner that’s water-based because it provides the best non-smudge coverage possible. Not sure where you need to start searching? Here are our top picks of best eyeliner for oily skin.
1. Best Overall: iMethod Eyeliner Stamp Pens
- Comes with two pens–one for the left wing and one for the right
- Perfect for any and all eye shapes to get the perfect cat eye
- Will always result in a perfect, symmetrical cat eye
- Pairs well with any eyeshadow design or color
- Cruelty-free formula
While eyeliner stamp pens may seem gimmicky, they genuinely work! iMethod’s stamp pens come in two sizes: standard and kitten, for those who want a smaller wing. The beauty of this product is that you can use the eyeliner pen by itself or make a completely symmetrical cat-eye depending on the style you’re going for.
Because of its super pigmented color, these eyeliner pens won’t need touch-ups throughout the day. As a general rule of thumb, people with oily eyelids should always use an eyeshadow primer before putting on eyeliner, even if you’re not planning on wearing eyeshadow. There are plenty of neutral colors available that would pair well with these long-lasting, smudge-proof pens.
2. Most Popular: Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen No-Skip Eyeliner
- Ophthalmologist tested, so people with sensitive eyes or contacts can use it
- Easy application
- Non-shiny, matte finish
- Felt-tip is perfect for precision application
- No cracking or flaking
Maybelline’s felt-tip eyeliner pen is uniquely designed with a hexagonal shaft, so you can easily control its felt-tip brush without fear of slipping and messing up your eyeliner. Their formula also glides on easily with no skips or breaks and is even waterproof. This eyeliner is sure to stay on all day and night, rain or shine.
Though it only comes in the “Pitch Black” color, you can’t go wrong with classic black eyeliner. Their pigment will last up to 24 hours with absolutely no smudging. For people with oily eyelids, this eyeliner is water-based and, therefore, one of the best you could invest in when it comes to long-lasting eyeliner. This will stay put whether or not you’re wearing eyeshadow
3. Best Long Term: Honest Beauty Liquid Eyeliner
- Hypoallergenic and ophthalmologist tested
- Vegan and cruelty-free
- Flexible tip for precise application and easy control
- No flaking or smudging
Honest Beauty’s liquid eyeliner is made with plant-derived ingredients that create satin-smooth lines that last up to 8 hours without flaking or smudging. The flexible tip makes it easy to control, creating thin and defined or bold and dramatic lines. Also, Jessica Alba made the Honest Beauty line to create clean beauty products that last just as long as high-end products.
People with sensitive skin cannot say more positive things about this eyeliner! It’s gentle on the eyes and lasts throughout the day without giving that raccoon look that comes from smudging. Just be sure to shake the product well before use and make sure to let the product dry for anywhere from 10 to 20 seconds before adding more to thicken the line.
4. Most Environmentally Friendly: Zuzu Luxe Liquid Eyeliner
- Has a fine calligraphy tip
- Water-resistant formula
- Vegan and cruelty-free
- Easy application thanks to jojoba oil-infused formula
This water-based liquid eyeliner comes in 7 different colors, so you can go for a subtle or dramatic makeup look. What makes this eyeliner so interesting compared to the others is that its formula is gluten-free in addition to being vegan and cruelty-free. Zuzu Luxe makes its products in the U.S. and does not contain things like parabens.
The all-natural ingredients that go into this eyeliner help to ensure that oily skin doesn’t break out during its use. Zuzu Luxe’s eyeliner is water-based, meaning it will stick easily to eyelids with or without eyeshadow. Though it may be a little more expensive than other brands, you have to remember you’re paying for all-natural, cruelty-free makeup.
5. Best Budget Option: NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Matte Liquid Eyeliner
- Ultra-fine precision tip
- Cruelty-free and vegan
- Great for building bold lines
- More flexible than a felt-tip pen
NYX products are high quality for a low price, plus they’re never tested on animals. This liquid eyeliner is a dip-style, meaning you have to dip the wand into the formula and then swipe it across your eyelid. With a little practice, it becomes super easy to navigate, and you can make thin or bold eyeliner looks in no time at all.
For those with oily eyelids, this eyeliner is perfect if you’re on a budget. It’s a creamy, fast-dry formula that you can leave thin or build up for a thick liner or cat-eye look. It stays on all day or night and never smudges or flakes off. It takes a little skill to get this eyeliner just right, but it’s more than worth it for the price tag and long-lasting formula.
6. Alternate Budget Option: NYX PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP Vinyl Liquid Liner
- Glossy finish
- Long-lasting for full-day use
Much like its sister product, this NYX water-based liquid liner is great for those with oily eyelids who have mastered liquid liner but want a glossy, rather than matte, finish. Both are similar price points and formulas and are always cruelty-free. The difference is solely in the glossy versus matte finish, which ultimately comes down to what you want more for your makeup look.
Like we mentioned already, products with a free-swipe brush will need practice if you’re unfamiliar with them. However, NYX’s formulas are top-notch for both quality and application. If you’re serious about eyeliner, learning how to use a liquid like this will ultimately help you in the long run.
7. Best High-End Option: Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
- Fine marker-like tip
- Perfect for precise application
- Long-lasting, won’t smudge or run
- Smooth application with no pulling or skipping
This liquid eyeliner comes in 9 different colors and 3 different pen styles: original, original tip, and intense. However, not all colors are available for the three different pens. Stila’s liquid eyeliner formula is waterproof and fast-drying for easy application and long-lasting wear. Though it’s more expensive than other brands on our list, the quality is top-notch.
Much like other eyeliners on our list, this is water-based and perfect for people with oily eyelids. The pen design is great for those who aren’t incredibly skilled with liquid eyeliner yet who want to build their skills. This pen won’t bleed, smudge, or pull, leading to near-perfect application. For best preservation, this liner should be stored horizontally to make sure the tip doesn’t dry out.
8. Best Gel-Based Option: Physicians Formula Shimmer Eyeliner Trio
- Made with sensitive skin in mind
- Best for natural eyeliner looks
- Great pigmentation
These gel-based eyeliner pens are great for those with oily eyelids who want a more natural look. Physician’s Formula is a well-known brand that is hypoallergenic, and dermatologist approved, so people with sensitive eyes or contacts don’t have to worry when using this liner. Plus, they’re super pigmented with hints of glitter that brighten eyes without being too dramatic.
You can use these pens sharpened for a thin line or go bold with a more blunt, bolder line. These gel pens go on smoothly and won’t smudge on their own. If you want a more natural, subtle look, you can easily smudge the line with your finger, but it won’t smudge because of natural oils on the lid. Because it comes in three colors, you can choose the best fit for you.
Oily Skin: Guide & FAQ
If you have oily skin, it’s important to make sure you’re taking care of it properly. Correct skin care can reduce the oil on your face and lead to fewer acne breakouts. Sometimes, our diet can cause acne breakouts. Here are some essential things to keep in mind when caring for oily skin. You can even check out some at-home oily skin remedies here.
What Causes Oily Skin?
The good news is that everyone has oil on their skin. Just below the surface are glands called “sebaceous glands” that produce sebum, or oil, to keep the skin healthy and hydrated. However, if you suffer from oily skin, it means your glands are producing too much oil, leading to shiny, almost greasy looking skin.
Having oily skin isn’t all bad, though. Compared to your friends with dry skin, you’re more likely to have fewer wrinkles and thicker skin.
There are a few different factors that contribute to oily skin—some of which you can control and others that you cannot. For example, oily skin runs in families, so if one of your parents has oily skin, you can thank them for your shiny skin and increased breakouts. Oily skin leads to more acne breakouts because excess sebum and dead skin cells combine and lead to clogged pores.
The environment you live in can also have a large impact on how much oil is on your skin. If you’re in a humid, tropical climate, your skin may naturally produce more oil than necessary. In fact, you’re more likely to have excess oil during the summer than you are in the winter or fall. The warmer the weather, the more likely you are to have increased oil on your face and skin.
How Do I Care for Oily Skin?
Another contributing factor to oily skin is that you may be using the wrong products or even overwashing your face—talk about an oxymoron, right? Though washing your face removes excess oil, overwashing or exfoliating can lead to your sebaceous glands working overtime to replace the oil lost. This leads to even more oil and shine on your skin.
When choosing products for oily skin, you need to remember two key terms: “oil-free” and “non-comedogenic.” They both mean the same thing, but some companies will use either term. Essentially, companies make these products with ingredients that will not clog your pores. You also need makeup that is oil-free and water-based to ensure your pores remain unclogged.
Choosing gentle, non-abrasive facial products will help you find the right balance between just enough oil and too much. You want to remove excess oil, but not strip your skin and dry it out. The most important tip, however, is to make sure you don’t touch your face throughout the day. This can be difficult and nearly impossible for some, but your skin will thank you in the long run.
Tricks for Achieving the Most Impressive Eyeliner
Eyeliner is a game-changer when it comes to makeup looks, but it’s hard to perfect when you don’t know where to start. We’ve compiled some easy, tried-and-true tips to make sure your eyeliner looks come out incredible whether you’ve opted for just the liner or a full look with eyeshadow and lashes.
To make eyes easy to line, gently pull on the upper corner of your eye to stretch and smooth the eye before lining. This will help eliminate bleeding and aid in smooth application. Also, don’t be afraid to practice lining your eyes in your free time. The more you practice, the better and more even your lines will be, leading to symmetrical liquid liner looks.
Don’t be discouraged if you mess up your liquid liner at first. It takes time, practice, and patience to get the perfect line, especially if you’re going for a thin look. Sometimes the best thing to do is remove the liner and start from scratch—if you have time, of course. If you’re new to liquid liner, we recommend starting with a pen before moving on to free stroke dip-brushes.
Also, it’s imperative that you do not put liquid liner on your waterline! Water-based liquid liners are great for oily eyelids because they stay in place and go on easily, but they are not meant for use on the bottom lash line. Putting liquid liner on your waterline can damage your eyes and dry them out. For lower lashes, it’s best to use a gel or pencil to get a safe, pigmented waterline.
As you can see, the best eyeliner for oily skin is definitely anything water-based. Water-based liquid eyeliners can be tricky to navigate the first few uses, but with practice, anyone can be a pro at application. Plus, anything that’s liquid and takes a few seconds to dry means that it’ll be more smudge-proof and long-lasting than any other gel or pencil eyeliner that’s available.
Keeping all of this information in mind, it’s no surprise that iMethod’s Eyeliner Stamp Pens were the choice to beat. From coming with two separate pencils to being able to stamp on a winged look with ease, there was almost no competition. Because they’re pens, they’re perfect for beginners and seasoned liquid liner users alike, plus they give a symmetrical look every time.
As a last piece of advice, always let your liquid liner dry. This goes for both pens and free-swipe brushes—letting the liquid formula dry makes sure your lines don’t smudge. If you don’t allow your lines to dry before building them up, you can end up with a lumpy, runny mess. Eyeliner is supposed to look precise and sharp, especially with a cat-eye look. Let it dry before building up!
If you have oily skin, make sure to care for it properly and invest in one of these best eyeliners for oily skin to achieve a flawless eyeliner look.