Bobbi Brown

Perfectly Defined Gel Eyeliner

for $ 24.00
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Brand Overview

Bobbi Brown’s Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner earned a spot among the best eyeliners out there, so when they launched this pencil version we were intrigued—and so were many of our readers! Unfortunately, Perfectly Defined Gel Eyeliner falls short of its predecessor, particularly in terms of staying power.

Touted as “ultraprecise eyeliner that creates a perfect, smudge-resistant, and fade-proof look”, we didn’t find that to be entirely true. The soft, cream-gel texture glides across skin, producing a smooth, even line of color. That’s wonderful, but it takes a while to set and once that happens it can smudge/transfer a bit as the day wears on (especially true if you have oily eyelids).

Not all of the shades go on as deeply pigmented as you might hope, either. The metallic/shimmer shades (Sapphire, Scotch, and Violet Night) offer weaker color saturation, while the matte options (Chocolate Truffle, Pitch Black, and Steel Grey) can build up to richer intensity after a couple passes but don’t initially go on with great depth.

In terms of preciseness, Perfectly Defined Gel Eyeliner comes with a built-in sharpener that allows you to hone the point (although you’ll never be able to get a razor thin line if that’s what you’re after).

On the plus side, the formula is both fragrance-free and flake-proof, but given its otherwise mediocre performance, we suggest spending your money elsewhere. See our Best Eyeliners list for a nudge in the right direction.


  • Twist-up pencil with built-in sharpener for added convenience.
  • Creamy-gel texture goes on smoothly and doesn’t flake.
  • Fragrance free.


  • Can smudge/transfer.
  • Colors don’t go on as pigmented as you’d expect.
  • Overpriced for such mediocre performance.

Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes

Bobbi Brown At-A-Glance

Strengths: A good cleanser and eye makeup removers; some impressive foundations, with options for all skin types and preferences; very good blushes and eyeshadows (powder and cream); several top-notch mascaras; mostly excellent brushes.

Weaknesses: Multiple moisturizers in jar packaging, otherwise great products hindered with irritating fragrant oils or fragrance components.

It all began with lipsticks. In 1991, New York based makeup artist Bobbi Brown debuted a collection of ten lipsticks at Bergdorf Goodman, expecting to sell about one hundred units in a month. She sold more than that the first day. From there, it's been mostly success after success, as Brown launched her classic foundation stick, wrote her first book, Bobbi Brown Beauty The Ultimate Beauty Resource, and enjoyed continued attention as an in-demand makeup artist and beauty educator.

Today, Bobbi Brown's makeup that continues to excel with superior foundations, true matte blushes and eyeshadows, and with all of the other basics that are essential to anyone's makeup wardrobe. It isn't the least bit surprising that this makeup collection continues to do so well, because for many it's one-stop shopping that combines classic makeup application techniques with enough fun-yet-functional products to keep customer's interest piqued season to season.

Turning to the skincare collection, there are a few excellent formulas, but unfortunately, many are packaged in a jar, which means their beneficial ingredients are rendered useless due to air exposure (and bacterial contamination from spatulas or fingers). In addition, some suffer from the inclusion of potent fragrant essential oils. Those that should be avoided are noted in their respective reviews. That aside, color is without a doubt Bobbi Brown's strong point, but you will find a few sleeper hits among the selection of skincare products.

For more information about Bobbi Brown, call (877) 310-9222 or visit www.bobbibrowncosmetics.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.

Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.

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