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Kajal Quest: Tarte.

The smoldering, kajal rimmed eyes are a Southeast Asian beauty staple. For years I was strictly a liquid liner kind of girl, however lately, with the myriad of products on the market for lining the inner rim (aka the waterline) of ones eyes, I have been on the hunt for a kajal pencil that really does the job. Be warned that a lot of the traditional desi kajals may contain high levels of lead which is considered unsafe particularly near the eyes.

So what am I looking for in a kajal pencil? Only two things really. I want a rich, black color in a long lasting formula. Since I am transitioning from lining my lower lashline with absolutely smudge proof liquid liner, I am accustomed to applying it in the a.m. and then not worrying about it all day. With pencils, I am wary of smudging and the dreaded racoon eyes.

The first product that caught my attention on my quest to find the perfect kajal, was Tarte's emphasEYES. According to Sephora's web site, the product usage instructions are as follows: "Twist the top and apply to the inner rim of the eyes.No need to sharpen, this pencil keeps it super fine point use after use." So at this point, I thought two things: (1) EmphasEYES is intended for inner rim lining so that's a plus, and (2) yay! no need for sharpeners. Being a net savvy consumer, I also checked out some product reviews and noted that most costumers found this product to be long lasting. "Bonus!" I thought.

After shelling out $18, I quickly learned that I was very wrong. This product might be long lasting, but it's nearly impossible to tell because it goes on so lightly in the first place. EmphasEYES totally and completely failed my rich pigmentation requirement. It didn't even go on close to "jet black" (which is the color I purchased). If I had to say, I'd say it went on more like a very very light grey. What a disappointment! Ladies, I'd definitely skip this one!

Next Up: Stila Kajal.
Photo Source.


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