As anyone who regularly dabbles in a limitless cornucopia of makeup brands, prices, and formulas well knows, it can be next to impossible to find a definitive answer for the “best” version in each category. There are far too many variables: A product can be great for its price but only fine overall or, conversely, an amazing product may not necessarily be worth its splurgy price tag.
Naturally, it’s rare to find a gem of a product at any price than we’ll deign to call the best in class. The “best,” of course, is totally subjective, but when it comes to makeup, it pretty much comes down to products that do what they say. If a mascara claims lasting power and ends up sliding off after an hour, it is most certainly not the best. If a lipstick claims to be moisturizing and leaves our lips cracked and dry, it may very well be the worst.
So when we proclaim that something is, in fact, the best the market has to offer, it’s safe to assume that we’ve taken it for a test drive or ten. This is especially true of liquid eyeliners: A formula that works wonderfully one day may not be so great on another, depending on how shaky your hands are or how oily your eyelids happen to be. So trust us—please, trust us!—when we proclaim that Maybelline Line Stiletto Ultimate Precision Liquid Eyeliner is the best in its class.
What, exactly, makes Line Stiletto the best drugstore liquid eyeliner and beyond? Let’s start with the brush: It’s not a brush, but rather a flexible, easy-to-use felt tip that’s positioned in such a way that it’s nearly impossible to get anything other than a smooth, perfectly curved line with just a flick of the wrist. Both the brush and the formula are smooth, so tugging or dragging isn’t an issue. But the real coup is in the lasting power, which is simply unrivaled. The packaging claims 8 hours, but (shhhh) we’ve managed to drag it out for 24. If that isn’t deserving of a standing ovation, we don’t know what is.
Line Stiletto comes in a soft brownish black, for natural-looking lining, and a deep, rich black that’s perfect for the sharp cat eye we crave. For under $5, you can find this superior liquid liner at any drugstore—or, at least, every drugstore we’ve ever been in. Buy it. Then, when you run out, buy it again.
Read more from Daily Makeover: Liquid Liner 101: All the Tips and Tricks You Need for Perfect Application