January 3, 2013

Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Kohl Kajal Eyeliner Trio Review

The Physicians Formula Shimmer Strips Custom Eye Enhancing Kohl Kajal Eyeliner Trio in Nude Eyes was recently launched as part of a new shade selection for Spring 2013.

The actual Kajal Eyeliner Trio isn’t new by any means as Physicians Formula started offering them I believe last Spring if memory serves correct.

Now I seem to be in the minority as I dislike the Custom Eye Enhancing Eyeliner Trio. This seems to get raves across the board and I believe its because you get three pencils in one set. Hey, who doesn’t love more? However, I find the pencils dense, less than creamy, not in the least pigmented, and just meh…they bore me. I want intense, creamy eyeliner…these seem to dryly drag across my lids leaving behind lukewarm color.

Having said this I expected similiar results with this set.

As you can see you have yourself a nice three Kohl Pencil Set here. Even paying full price of $14.95, you’d still be getting a nice bargain per liner at $5 each. On sale at your drugstore? Even better!

More is always a pleasure with makeup but in this case I could do with less and a better formula versus more and a mediocre formula. Hey, one pencil with a creamy formula, a long wear, and decent pigment would be just fine by me.

The kohl tips are a precise point and widen out towards the bottom. To use them you’ll slide the side of the pencil across your eyes. I’ve never successfully created a thinner line using kohls so you will get a thicker to medium line with these for a more dramatic look. They have a very smooth glide across my eyes and leave behind ok, so so color. The colors don’t pop as much as I like. Colors include champagne, pewter, and black. All three shades produce decent results but I’d like something a bit bolder and with more pigment.

There’s a ton of shimmer in the mix here so if you’re sensitive you might want to second think the purchase. The shimmer is so refined it might not bother you at all, I didn’t feel it was bad in the least and it leaves a rather nice little sparkle behind. However, this does mean you’ll have to avoid waterlining with them.

Typically eyeliner doesn’t give me issues whether it is or isn’t waterproof. I rarely have problems with smudging since my eyes are drier. These actually smudge a good deal as well as fade. I’ve never an eyeliner fade…but color seems to lose its vibrancy within a two hour period and seems like I’m not even wearing eyeliner after four. If it does last out that time frame I end up seeing a bit of smudging on the upper and bottom lash line particularly on the bottom where color has a knack for migrating.

Moral of this story is don’t bother your time. Yes, the formula is a bit creamier than the original eyeliner formula but the smudging and lack of pigment are a sore disappointment.

Don’t get caught up in the “more” for less syndrome. You’re better off spending $15 at MAC for a single eyeliner that will work versus three that don’t.

Skip ’em!

Tried ’em already and do like them?

Tell me!

Hated ’em?

Share it!

I purchased this item.

About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

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  • Kristin

    I have a few of these (picked them up here & there at various drugstore clearance sales) and my biggest issue by far is I have to be *so careful* applying these, as they don’t twist up/retract; therefore they break off (at the base) quite easily- and after that they’re virtually useless.

  • charlotte

    Don’t care for these either.. but the retractable pencil liners are gorgeous, especially the nude collection, and most especially the new warm nude set. The original set is champange, taupe, and black with taupe shimmer.. and the warm are copper, bronze and black with copper shimmer. I find they perform just as well as most of my high end liners, and they are very similar to the ones I have from Stila.

  • Christina

    I didn’t like these at all! I got no colour out of them, and mine were so dry it was like using a regular HB pencil on my eyes! It’s too bad because I like the pewter colour!

    • the Muse

      thankfully not too dry for me christina, the regular pencil liners, oh god those are dry, they tug awful yet they get raves and raves and raves…dunno what I am doing wrong?!


    oy vey!

    I found the hands down BEST kohl kajal eyeliner at my indian grocer the thing is only 6$ and it just is so smooth and creamy lasts 2 days! I just wince at these “drugstore” prices, that are just too high for sub par quality!!

    • Melissa

      What is the brand you found or can you link to a picture? I would like to check our Indian grocer for the same.

  • Christina

    I actually like these, and all of the PF eyeliners. But these are kohls/kajals, and don’t apply or last like the mechanical or gel liners. I use them specifically because they do smudge, and don’t irritate my eyes when applied on the waterline. I can’t line my lids with them the same way using a pencil or a brush, but they aren’t formulated to work like that.

    • the Muse

      i must be totally doing something wrong I always feel like the PF eyeliners never work for me…all of them…gel, pencil, and kohls 🙁 boo!

  • Susan K

    Muse, you must have gotten a bad batch or something! Have all the pencil shades & the gels, and they great. The kohls however are terrible.

    • the Muse

      susan I tried two trio sets and each time no go 🙁 maybe give the new nude ones another try!? 😀

  • Christina

    I am sure you are doing nothing wrong, Muse! Your makeup looks picture perfect so you obviously know what you are doing. I think it has more to do with preferences. In fact, I like the PF mechanical and gel liners so much that I’ve bought multiple back-ups whenever I see them on sale. Kohls and kajals are really not eyeliners as in creating smooth, sharp lines so perhaps the packaging is a misnomer.

    • the Muse

      aw shucks christina thanks! but I’m winging it with my makeup, no great expert here hehe ;-D I think you’re right, I probably swear by a million things that everyone else thinks is rubbish and vice versa ;-D it’s about what you like!

    • Laurie

      Wow, already? They were part of a new collection just before Christmas.

  • Laurie

    I bought these before reading any reviews – which are pretty bad across the board. Fortunately, I had some CVS bucks and a coupon and got more bucks because they were on sale so they didn’t set me back too much. Unfortunately, they smudge like crazy even though the package claims they are great for the waterline. The package lies. Like crazy. I had to redo my makeup twice the other morning because my upper liner had smudged down into my lower lids after I applied mascara, making a royal mess of my concealer. I would not recommend this for upper or lower waterline use. I’ve also read a lot of complaints about the liner snapping off at the base but that hasn’t happened to me but probably because I’ve been extra careful after reading all those reviews.

  • makeupbycintia

    Definitely a waste of $16. I thought these would be great for my waterline, after watching Jordan Liberty’s smokey eye tutorial. When he used it, the kajal went on so smoothly and pigmented. I even warmed it up on the back of my hand…there was still no pigmentation. I think if I used a black crayon, it would of worked better!

  • 00trayn

    The only Kohl eyeliner I’ve found to love is the L’Oreal Voluminous Smoldering Eyeliner, which is a chubby kajal pencil. Hands down it has the best staying power of any of my kohl eyeliners. I wore it on New Years Eve for an awesome smoky eye using my Naked 1 palette and it survived a major meltdown (long story, bad NYE, haha). The eyeliner didn’t budge on my lower line! I have the PC ones for Green eyes and they made my eyes water like crazy. Can’t wear them!

  • Quinctia

    Hmm…hate the PF Kajals, because I was hoping they’d be like actual kohl kajal, but it’s just giant bullets of too-soft eyeliner that I can’t use without breaking, it seems.

    Sad because I liked L’Oreal’s HIP kohl powders (awesome for waterline) and I like every other iteration of PF eyeliner. Their trios are some of the few pencils that I a) like the application of and b) actally stick around on my lid. Usually, I’m stuck with liquid or gel if I want lid liner to last.

  • Liki

    I’ve used PF products before (I usually only purchase if on sale) because to me there product is not good quality. I have a bronzer by them and I have to apply several times until it actually looks like here is any makeup on my face. I have seen this product a few times In stores and was tempted to purchase, good thing I read this blog!:) thanks!!

  • Kim Kennedy

    The purple in the trio gave me an eye infection both times I’ve applied it. My coworker also had the same effect. The blacks and browns have caused no problems, but the purple is nasty…..took days for my eyes to return to normal with polysporin eye drops….