What Eyeliner Is the Safest for a Contact User?

Contact-friendly liners can give you a worry-free, liquid-liner look.

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A poor eyeliner choice can be disastrous for someone who wears contact lenses, resulting in a smudgy makeup job at best and a raging eye infection at worst. Rather than taking your chances, trust the advice of professional makeup artist and former contact lens wearer Josephine Fusco. She earned her bachelor of science degree in health care management before working in Dr. Mauro C. Romita's Fifth Avenue aesthetic and reconstructive surgery practice. Partnering her professional experience with cosmetics expertise imparted by Romita, Fusco is confident her recommendations for contact lens users will be winners – both aesthetically and cosmetically.

Estee Lauder

The Automatic Eye Pencil Duo by Estee Lauder delivers a soft, blendable line every time you use it, Fusco says, and the color tip always keeps its great shape. The creamy liner is packaged in a twist-up tube, with a smudging tool on the other side. It has been opthamologist and dermatologist tested to be contact-lens safe and nonirritating. The liner is sold loaded with a color cartridge and has one refill. You can purchase additional refills at a cost savings. For a super-defined line that lasts up to 15 hours, Fusco recommends ophthalmologist-tested Estee Lauder Double Wear Zero Smudge Eyeliner. "The look you create in the morning is the look you'll see when you get home from work," Fusco promises. The waterproof formula is a score for contact lens wearers who have to use wetting drops when they suffer with dry eyes.


Another of Fusco’s favorites is the Le Crayon Khol Waterproof made by Lancome. This waterproof eyeliner has been opthalmologist tested, and its fragrance-free formula is excellent for contact lens wearers. "It glides on smoothly, giving that intense eye look and blends beautifully, leaving eyes irresistible!" You can find Le Crayon Khol Waterproof in three shades: black, blue and plum.

Makeup For Ever

The Aqua Eyes liner by Makeup For Ever is guaranteed to be smudge- and tear-proof – a double whammy for contact lens users. The liner has a foam-tip applicator designed to give you the easiest and most precise application. With a whopping 25 colors to choose from, you can stock your beauty bag to the brim to build a complete palette of ophthalmologist-tested pencils for virtually every occasion and outfit. To apply, sharpen the pencil if necessary and then draw directly onto the skin, smudging the line rapidly with your finger or a cosmetic sponge for an ultraintense look. Tightly cap the liner when not in use, or its tip will dry out.

Xtreme Lashes

The Glideliner long-lasting eye pencil by Xtreme Lashes is a traditional pencil that contains the benefits of a liquid eyeliner in the form of a gel that glides on gently. You can achieve nearly any look you like, from precise to smoky to a defined wing, says Fusco. This eyeliner sets quickly and stays put all day. The Vitamin E-enriched formula blends upon contact, drying into a finish that will not smear.

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