Get Smudgy with Stila Kajal Eye Liners

Published in: Makeup, Product Reviews

Mirror, mirror on the wall, which eye liner’s the smoothest of all?


Stila’s Kajal Eye Liner ($18) lays smooth smack down on pencil liners that tug and skip along lash lines. Available in eight shades, it literally glides across the skin, creating solid, intensely colored lines — no muss, no fuss.

Available in 8 Shades

I tried two of them, Emerald and Amethyst. Both performed admirably when used on my upper and lower lash lines, creating both soft and sharp lines with a single swipe. The tip texture feels unusually soft and creamy, and it was a cinch to smudge out lines for smokey looks.

Similar to MAC Kohl in Smolder

Smudginess — is that even a word? I don’t know if it is, but either way I think it accurately describes the texture and feel of this formula. Kajal reminds me of MAC Kohl Eye Liner in Smolder, a pencil I often use in my smokey eye looks.

The MAC Kohls cost a few dollars less ($14.50 vs. $18) and come in a wider selection of colors (15 vs. 8), but I think Stila Kajals perform just slightly better. Both brands have enough muscle to last the day and deliver seriously intense color, but the Kajals are just a wee bit easier to apply and to smudge. Now, do they perform 24% better than the Kohls? — because that’s the difference in price. Of that, I’m not so sure.

Waterline Trubs

Gotta say, I love Stila Kajal on my lash line, but its staying power on the waterline falls short compared to my current favorite waterline pencil, Lancome Le Stylo Waterproof. On the waterline, the Kajal liners stay put for about an hour, tops, and that’s it.

A Great Option Everywhere but the Waterline

It doesn’t pass muster on the waterline, but I really love how these Kajal liners glide across my skin. The rich colors and smudgy texture combine to produce beautifully sharp, as well as lusciously soft lines. If you don’t frequently wear liner on your waterline, you can’t go wrong with Stila Eye Kajal Liners.

Stila Kajal Eye Liner

Price: $18
Use: A super smooth, smudgy eye liner; not great on the waterline
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: B+

Set a Course for Crazy Cat Lady

Today felt like it came and went except for the 45 minutes I spent waiting in line at the post office. The highlight of my day was this impromptu photo sesh with the grumpy cat (I call him Meow Mix) who hangs out in the parking lot at work.


Do you do stuff like this, or is it just me? Do you snap pictures of other people’s pets?

Sometimes I think I’m heading full speed toward CRAZY CAT LADY territory…

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 42 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Justine says:

    I mostly use gel/creme liners (my favourite right now is Bobbi Brown’s Longwearing Gel Eyeliner in bronze for a neutral eye) but I use Guerlain’s Terracotta Loose Kohl for all my waterlining, which far outstrips those liners in price. But I <3 it. I can do my liner in like 10 seconds, and it lasts for hours (and sometimes stays put despite my makeup wipes).

    Justine´s last blog post..Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog

  2. Karen says:

    Hi Justine,

    I like gel liners for the waterline too, when I have extra time (and when my 212 brush is clean, eek).

    I haven’t tried Guerlain Terracotta Loose, so I just put it on my list! Thanks for the rec. 🙂

  3. Marisol says:

    I have Tigers Eye but it smudges on me if I use it on the waterline. I will be checking out the Lancome one.

    Marisol´s last blog post..Gotta love men with accents

  4. Glosslizard says:

    I am loving the Stila colors, but I think I gotta check out the Lancomes! I did look at Bobbi Brown’s gel liners, but oddly enough, the grays weren’t gray enough (too dark, they looked black)! Off to Le Stylo I go! I have also heard amazing things about the Guerlain Terracotta loose powders, so I suppose those have to go on my list as well! Ah, will the search for a perfect liner never end? No, prob’ly not! 😉

    And, yeah, I’d so take pics of other peoples’ cats too, if they were such fab divas as that one! CCL’s of the world, unite!

  5. Karen says:

    Hi Marisol,

    Tigers Eye is next on my list! What have you paired it with?

  6. Karen says:

    Hi Glosslizard,

    The Stila Kajals have a *lot* of payoff!

    Oh yah, the Le Stylo in Noir is a *must*.

    Tabs is here and he says, “MeoOoOw!”

  7. Justine says:

    Oh, if you end up getting the kohls (be careful, I bought one, and now have all four colours… *sheepish*) I would look up the tutorial about Oriental kohl application! Otherwise the applicator looks alarming. XD;

    I might pick up the Lancome liners, since the Bay is doing a nice bonus…

    Justine´s last blog post..Dr. Horrible’s Sing-A-Long Blog

  8. Karen too says:

    Lancome’s Crayon Khol is my long-time liner companion. I’m running low on brown though so I need to get a new one – maybe it is time to try something new? I’m picky about the color, it must be a deep brown with no red in it. Is the Le Stylo Waterproof good for smudging too?

    I take pictures of cats A LOT, lol! How funny your little picture series was, it gave me a good start this morning. 🙂

  9. Erica says:

    Do you have oily eyelids Karen? I cant seem to find a good eyeliner for oily eyelids. Even my MAC Eye Kohl in Smolder always tends to smear on me when I use it on the lower lash line, and even on the top lash line. 🙁 I would love if you could recommend me a good eyeliner for oily eyelid users. I have been using some Covergirl eyeliner, that doesnt smudge as much as others, but its not so smooth.

  10. Brittany says:

    These look nice, but I have to say my all time favorite is Rimmel’s Soft Kohl Kajal eyeliner. I’m pretty sure I have them in every color that they make. They’re one of the best eyeliners I’ve ever found and cheap too.

    I often wonder if I’m drifting into crazy cat lady territory too, but then I realize I’m probably already there 😛

  11. Rachel says:

    yay you reviewed them! i’m excited 🙂
    i wonder, maybe the black has a longer life on the water line than the others, cause i usually don’t have to reapply it too much.
    and all these eyeliners people keep suggesting sound amazing, i might have to check them out myself!

  12. Amy says:

    I am so curious about the Guerlain too…I think I read somewhere that Angelina Jolie uses it to line her eyes. Love the pics of Meow Mix…;)

    Amy´s last blog post..Easter Jesus

  13. Dao says:

    I may try this one, my Teddy eye kohl smudges a lot but the color is so lovely. Maybe Tigers eye is similar to Teddy, you think?

    Meow Mix is so cute! Once there was a cat who tried to get food out of my car and that was all the cat goodness I got 🙂

  14. Natalia says:

    Hi Karen,
    how are you? My name is Natalia and I read your blog every day. I live in Brasil – miles away – and the only thing I can say is that I’m very jealous of the variety you have in US. Here, we have a problem: products like MAC, Dior, Shiseido and even Revlon are very, very expensive here. So, i have to make a list, save money and travel abroad to buy all I want.
    Like you, I LOVE cats and cosmetics.

  15. Karen says:

    Hi Justine,

    Ahhh, thanks for the tip! Hey, I figure if you like them and you use them you might as well get all the shades! LOL, at least that’s my excuse for my Fluidline addiction. 🙂

  16. Karen says:

    Hi Karen Too,

    Le Stylo is pretty good for smudging, but it’s not as smudgy as MAC Kohl or Stila Kajal, so I don’t really use it for smokey eye looks. However, I do like to wear it smudged out on my lower lash line because it gives a lil’ something without looking too harsh or over the top. Oh, and it also comes with a sponge smudger thingy on the opposite end of the pencil, which is very handy!

    LOL, glad to know I’m not the only person out there constantly looking for cat models.

  17. Karen says:

    Hi Erica,

    My lids are combo oily and dry. They used to be *really* oily when I was in my 20s. I’ve found that if I wear liner it helps for me to apply primer underneath. Some people really love Urban Decay Potion Primer, but it’s not my fave because I find it hard to blend shadows on top of it. I really like Too Faced Shadow Insurance. Here’s a link to a review I did a few months ago:

    Too Faced Shadow Insurance Review

    Hope this helps!

  18. Karen says:

    Hi Brittany,

    I like that one, too. Do you have the all mighty Jungle Green?

  19. Karen says:

    Hi Rachel,

    Hmm, I’ll have to try the black then. I am always looking for a good black liner so I think both Tigers Eye and the black shade are next. 🙂

  20. Karen says:

    Hi Amy,

    Angelina always looks immaculate… especially her makeup. I’m so glad she decided to go classic with her look. It’s really flattering on her!

    Meow Mix is such a grump! I love him, though. 🙂

  21. Karen says:

    Hi Dao,

    Awww, I’m sure there are more cats in your future waiting to give you some good lovin’ and snatch your food when you’re not looking.

    Would you believe I am probably the last person on earth without MAC Teddy? Next time I’m at the counter I’ll take a look and then try to compare it with Tigers Eye for ya.

  22. Karen says:

    Hi Natalia,

    Thanks for dropping me a comment! You know, I watch a lot of travel shows, and Brazil seems like a very neat place to visit!

    Your beauty shopping vacation sounds like it would be a dream come true. 🙂

    Have a good day!

  23. Tekoa says:

    Parking lot dangerous for kitties! Ah, well at least Meow Mix has ID. Did you get any of the MAC Pearlglide liners? They’re also very smooth.

  24. Karen says:

    Hi Tekoa,

    I think he lives next door. My office is on a street where there’s also residential housing nearby so I think his family is within skulking distance. Plus, our parking lot doesn’t get a lot of traffic.

    I *love* the Pearlglides. I have Black Russian, Rave and Bankroll. Did you pick any up?

  25. YadiQ says:

    lol while i love the review of this potentially fab liner (loving the sapphire)

    i must say i am loving meow mix lol

    dont worry if this puts you in crazy cat territory i am with ya homegirl

    when it comes to cats and other animals i am as crazy as they get i do snap pics of random peoples pets all the time as well

    i have a cat similar to meow mix outside my building at home i call him meow because when he sees me he runs to me and starts meowing like crazy – then we have tiger nose who looks just like tabs but with a pinker nose he runs the stray cat crew hes the regal one of them all lol i wil have to send you pics one day lol

  26. Dao says:

    Thank you Kare, you are so sweet! My downstairs neighbor has 6 cats and she moved last week already. Now all the smell from her apt comes up for us to enjoy, boo! One of her cats really looks like Garfield, I miss that cat.

    Dao´s last blog post..Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser: Basic Face Wash for Everyone!

  27. Almira says:

    Cute cats xDDD

    Eyeliners are good for… my lips! I use them to color on my lips and they have staying power! Yeaaah!

    But I hate them for my eyes :0

    Almira´s last blog post..She Was Raped! LOL!

  28. Gina says:

    the cat pics are sooo cute!! I am a fellow crazy cat lady, it’s ok embrace it! hhehehe

    Gina´s last blog post..Who Do You Want to Be?

  29. Amanda says:

    I’ve have emerald for a while now, it is very smooth and smudge-y. hm, I need to pull that baby out, haven’t used it in a while. I never line my waterline so I don’t have an issue with the disappearing act.

    Meow Mix is cute too-maybe Tabs needs a buddy?

  30. Brittany says:

    I do. Love it! I also have a bright blue color that I like a lot.
    I think my favorite one is the blackest black or something like that though. I’ve gone through a couple of them. It’s just the perfect staple black eyeliner.

  31. Karen says:

    Hi YadiQ,

    Meow Mix is such a grump, but oh so loveable! You’d love him because he’s definitely a diva.

    Aww, I always give random names to the animals in my hood, too. I want to meet Tiger Nose! 🙂

    You should totally send me your pictures. CCL SOLIDARITY!

  32. Karen says:

    Hi Dao,

    Ewwww! You should leave some Fresh Step or something on her doorstep as an anonymous gift. 😉 Or perhaps steal one of her cats. All you gotta do is start feeding it… not that I’d know.

  33. Karen says:

    Hi Almira,

    Back in the early 90s I used to wear black liner on my lips and then top it off with dark red lipstick. Ahh, those were the days.

    What liner do you use on your lips?

  34. Karen says:

    Hi Gina,

    LOL, I’m headed there soon. I actually picked up an issue of Cat Fancy at the bookstore and read through it.

    Next stop: CCL.

  35. Karen says:

    Hi Amanda,

    I though about stealing Meow Mix, but I don’t think he cares for me much! He’s always giving me really dirty looks… what a beast.

    What do you pair Emerald with? I’m thinking golds would be nice…

  36. Karen says:

    Hi Brittany,

    Yay, Jungle Green rules! I have to take her for a spin; it’s been awhile. I will have to look for that bright blue. I used to have an aversion to blue liner (I think it was my 80s upbringing) but now I’m totally down with it!

  37. Jaimie says:

    lmao those cat pictures are the best. and i have that liner. it rocks my life.

    Jaimie´s last blog post..Spook My Face Contest Participants List # 1

  38. Miss Fred says:

    Oh my goodness, Emerald is so beautiful!!! I’ve been wondering about these liners for a while, since I’ve heard a lot about them, but I wasn’t sure if these liners were too easily smudged. I mean, I love a smudged smokey look but there are other times when a cleaner line is on my mind.

    Great reviews, as always 🙂 I hope there’s an upcoming FOTD with these!!

    Miss Fred´s last blog post..A (Queen) B Sting

  39. lexi says:

    I haven’t tried these pencils but I have always been curious. Have you ever tried the lip glaze pencils? They’re great – it’s the gloss in pencil form. I’m always amazed how a pencil can be so creamy but also there’s the drawback – if you have a heavy hand with your gloss – this pencil won’t last for long but it does come with it’s own sharpener.

  40. Marisol says:

    Hi Karen-

    I tend to pair it with MAC’s Coco Beach & Deckchair pigment. It gives the look a pop. I will also use it with BB Burnt Sugar trio. I hope that you get it because you will like it.

    Marisol´s last blog post..Gotta love men with accents

  41. Glosslizard says:

    LOL! Tabs can say whatever he wants, he already has perfect eyeliner!

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