Eyeliner vs Eyeshadow

Eyeshadow being applied to womans face

If you use eyeshadow and only 3 colors each week for 3 days of each week, it will take you almost 51 years before you run out of eyeshadow. 1 color 1 day of the week should last you about 19 years, then 2 colors 6 days a week can also last you about 50 years.

What is Eyeliner?

Woman's face with full makeup

Eyeliner is exactly what its name says it is. It is a beauty product that lines your eyes so that they can either become larger than life or smaller. How your eyes will look will be up to you.

Plus, eyeliner comes in three formats, gel, liquid, and pencil and each format has its own special application process. It is best for beginners to start with the pencil format as that is the easiest of the three to apply.

All formats come in a variety of colors so you can match your other make up easily.

What is Eyeshadow?

Close up of one eye wearing makeup with metallic eyeshadow

Eyeshadow is a make-up powder that is spread over your eyelids and sometimes a little beyond that boundary. It comes in a variety of colors called palettes and you have an unlimited number of colors to work with.

There is a debate on which you should apply first, but the powder of eye shadow can decrease the depth of the eyeliner when it goes on second. There is only one type of eyeshadow and that has to be applied by a brush for the best results.

Then most women would not think of wearing eyeshadow without using eyeliner.

How are they Different?

Purple gloved hand applying eyeliner to a face

One difference is that eyeliner is designed to stay close to the shape of the eye. It goes on the eyelid and helps highlight the contours of your eye. Eyeshadow also goes on your eyelid, but it is not restricted to that one spot.

Then eyeshadow comes in one format only. It is a powder that needs to be applied gently and lightly by brush. Eyeliner can be applied either through a gel stick, liquid, and brush, or a pencil.

Eyeshadow is less concentrated and covers a broad area of the eye while eyeliner has the specific areas it has to be applied to.

How are they Similar?

Eyes made up in bronze tones

There are really no similarities between the two beauty products other than purpose. Both eyeliner and eyeshadow are designed to bring attention to your eyes. This is done through decorative liner drawing or applying a variety of colors.

Both products do come in a variety of colors which helps you find the right combination to make your outfit and fashion sense outstanding. Other than those two aspects there is little the two products have in common.

What’s Better About Eyeliner?

Close up of eyeliner being applied

The fact that you can apply eyeliner in three different ways is one reason it is better than eyeshadow. You get to choose which format would look best for your event. Plus, if you are not confident enough to use liquid or gel, you can use a pencil without losing any of eyeliner’s benefits.

Plus, the many colors you can use helps you attract more attention to your eyes no matter what color they happen to be. Then the ability to create designs around your eyes help make them pop and gives you new fashion territory to explore.

What’s Better About Eyeshadow?

Variety of eyeshadow containers and an applicator.

The sheer number of colors at your disposal makes this product a little better than eyeliner. You will not run out of eyeshadow color even after you are too old to wear makeup.

Then when you are applying eyeshadow, you do not run the risk of making mistakes that happen when you apply liquid eyeliner. You shouldn’t have to worry about getting eyeshadow on your clothes.

The brush-on technique is simple and easy to master, and you should be a pro at apply eyeshadow in no time. Eyeshadow should come off your eyes a lot easier and cleaner than eyeliner will.

Who Should Get Eyeliner?

Eyeliner being applied with a fine liner brush

This is not for every woman or young girl. Eyeliner should be saved for special occasions while growing up. There is no need to look older than you really are. About college age is when women should start buying this product and using it more frequently.

Women older than middle age should use it sparingly as well. It is a specialty product for those women who want to be seductive, alluring, and mysterious.

Who Should Get Eyeshadow?

Full front view of a face having eyeshadow applied

This is up to women of all ages. Some eyeshadow looks nice on certain women while others do not know how to apply it correctly. Their ‘beauty’ look turns more into clown make up thus eyeshadow should be used by young adult women on up to senior citizen age.

If the girl does not have experience with eyeshadow she should wait until she is ready for that look as it is so easy to make the wrong application.

Quick Comparison chart

  Category    Eyeliner    Eyeshadow


  Quite a few

  A myriad of different colors


  Gel, liquid and brush & pencil



  Make eyes look bigger or smaller

  Adds depth to your eyes


  Eyelids around your eyes

  All over your eyelids and beyond


  Can be affordable

  Can be affordable

Close up of woman's eye having mascara applied

Eyeliner VS Mascara

Woman in make up with one eye without

Eyeliner VS No Eyeliner