Monday, December 20, 2010

Sisley Black Diamond Phyto Khol Star Eyeliner

I'm fully aware that feeling an intense love for an eyeliner kohl pencil might be a new height of makeup geekery, especially when said pencil is an obscenely priced Sisley. But let's talk eyeliners for a few minutes, it's a good topic. I've been thinking of myself as more of a gel/cream eyeliner person for years now. Pencils were the very first makeup item I've tried in my teens- they're cheap and easily available , all brands offer them and one can go to town with them and do the Momsen (or whatever was the 1980s equivalent of this look) to the complete horror of parents and teachers everywhere.

Eventually you become a lot more sophisticated both in product choices and their application. You realize that pencils are not the most luxurious liners around. As a matter of fact, this is the one makeup item where I can easily say that some drugstore brands are doing as good a job (or even better) than many fashionable department store brands (Chanel, I'm giving you the stink-eye). In recent years the only eyeliner pencils I bought (excluding chubby shadow pencils that are a different breed) were those that offered an interesting and unusual colors, not blacks and browns for everyday wear. I've also adjusted my expectations, thinking there's only so much one can expect from a pencil and that it will never be as good as an eyeliner gel.

I was wrong.

And that's why I fell for Sisley Phyto Khol Star Eyeliner. Hook, line and sinker. Sisley is a company that doesn't play around. They make ultra-luxurious products, price them accordingly and make sure they deliver, even when we're talking about a simple khol eyeliner. Phyto Khol Star is the softest and creamiest pencil I own- you don't need to use any pressure when drawing a line. Yet, it doesn't smudge (unless you smear it on purpose), migrate or move even sixteen hours later. The line stays in place, looking every bit as precise and dark as when you first applied it in the morning.

The color itself is also in a league of its own. The pigment is intense and glossy like a gel or liquid eyeliner. But you don't need an extra brush or to work on your skills, making this Sisley pencil a huge help when doing your makeup quickly on the go (or packing it). If I understand correctly, the entire Phyto Kohl Star line is shimmery. This is definitely the case with Black Diamond and the other liner I have, #4 Deep Silver (I'll show it later this week). You can see the tiny glittery particles in the swatch, but they are not too prominent to make the liner a shine-fest and I find it perfectly acceptable for day-wear as long as you apply everything else judiciously.

The packaging is as beautiful as you would expect from a top product. Personally, I'd prefer Sisley would maybe skip the Swarovski crystal they placed at the end tip and lower the price a bit, but I do like the velveteen pouch that comes with the pencil- I hate when things get scratches and chaffs when I pack makeup in a bag or a train case.

Bottom Line: You get what you pay for.

Sisley Black Diamond Phyto Khol Star Eyeliner ($53) is available from top department stores as well as online.

All photos are mine.


  1. Looks wonderful, but you know what? At $

  2. I have the Sparkling Bronze, and love it. Horribly expensive, but gorgeous.

  3. A Swarovski crystal? Oh dear. I am curious about one thing: does it smudge when you don't want it to? I know that many kohl liners aren't of "long wearing" ilk, such as the Urban Decay 24/7 liners (where you have about 30 seconds to play, then it sets). I've avoided kohl liners because my eyelids are very small and can be eaten up by my browbone pretty easily, and that's when the unwanted smudging occurs and leaves a semi-circular line right above my lid.

  4. Can you or did you try it on your waterline?

  5. Can you use it on the waterline?? Is the Deep Silver store only? I didn't see it on the web at this does look quite nice though.....

  6. It would be nice to see a green in that eyeliner..... just a thought!

  7. Sue, I agree-the price is obscene. still it's the best of its kind, so I almost understand the price point.

  8. Grace, yes, I looked at the Sparkling Bronze and admired it. I also love the blue one.

  9. Carrie, I've had this liner for about a month so I didn't get a chance to test it in horrible melty NYC august, but so far not one smudge. I always use a primer underneath and often some eye shadow over the liner, so that probably also helps.

  10. Jellytea, I haven't used it on the waterline and since my eyes are super-sensitive I don't intend to try- anything with particles can be an irritant. I also looked through the leaflets and direction and it says nothing about using on the waterline. The pencil works great right under the lower lashes, though.

  11. Elizabeth, a green would be fabulous, indeed!
    Deep Silver is available online from, so it's not in-store only. Not sure what's the deal with Neiman.

  12. Thank you Gaia for the response. I also enjoyed the getting to know you write-up by Amy, nice to get to "know" you.


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