Eyes · Uncategorized

Kat Von D Tattoo Liner versus Ink Liner – What’s the Difference? Photos, Swatches, Comparison


 Kat Von D Tattoo Liner has to be one of her products with the biggest following. It has definitely reached cult status and I almost find myself rolling my eyes when I hear someone mention it such is its infamy. I had also heard about the brand doing another pen-style liner known as the Kat Von D Ink Liner and how people had often accidentally picked it up in place of the Tattoo Liner yet found it completely different. So while I was in New York, I ended up picking up both to see if the Tattoo Liner could live up to the hype and what the difference was between it and the Ink Liner.


Firstly, allow me to introduce the infamous Kat Von D Tattoo Liner, labelled a waterproof liquid liner. It is only available in two shades; Trooper – which I bought – claims to be a satin black. The other is Mad Max Brown, a rich chocolate.


I picked up the Kat Von D Ink Liner as part of the Bow N Arrow Look Set which included an Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in the shade Bow n Arrow. (I have a full review and a look at every shade of Everlasting Liquid Lipstick I own here.) My Ink Liner is in mini form but it is available to buy in a full size also. Again I purchased the shade Trooper, which they define here as an ultra black. The Ink Liner comes in ten shades in an array of greens, blues and neutrals. The tube also labels this a waterproof liquid eyeliner.


Personally, I find it odd that a brand would release too different types of pen eyeliner. A liquid, a gel and a pen – sure, but I can’t see the point in two pens so let’s try to get to the bottom of how they differ.

The Tattoo Liner claims to have a highly pigmented, 24 hour wear formula that is waterproof and transfer-resistant.


When you look at them both side by side, even the packaging is nearly identical, bar the name!

The Ink Liner is supposed to provide intense colour saturation and waterproof long wear.It is also said to have a rich, saturated formula for instant bold payoff and high definition lines.


Back to the Tattoo Liner, it claims to have a precision brush tip for super fine lines. It is said to contain 325 flexible bristles that come together in a tight crisp point. The supple, saturated brush is said to glide across lids in silky, smooth strokes.


When it comes to the Ink Liner, they call the brush a crisp, fabulously pointed felt tip.


Side by side, at first glance, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell them apart! The Ink Liner (in front) looks slightly fatter and stiffer while, this close, it is nearly possible to see that the Tattoo Liner’s brush is made up of bristles. When it comes to their claims, I thought they sounded pretty similar! Both waterproof, pigmented and long wearing!


Swatched side by side, the Tattoo Liner (left) proves to be thinner and more precise while the Ink Liner is bolder and more pigmented but bled into the lines in my skin.


Here I have the Ink Liner on the left eye and Tattoo Liner on the right. Again, the differences aren’t immediately apparent. Both bled on my inner corner when my eyes watered. I easily removed both with a cotton bud but left it alone here for the sake of the photographs.


While neither line is Instagram-perfect (you try doing liner and then taking photos close up in HD!), the Tattoo Liner (right) was a lot more user-friendly as the tip had a little give to it. I think the Ink Liner shows signs of a struggle when you look closely. The wing was definitely more challenging as the nib was so rigid. Although the Ink Liner appeared so much more intense in the swatch, on the eyes, I think it is next to impossible to tell a difference in colour. Both liners have a similar satin finish.


Here is a close up of the Ink Liner where you can see my struggles towards the outer edge and wing.


If you ignore the pooling at the inner corner, I think the line achieved with the Tattoo Liner is much more uniform, a testament to the fact that it was easier to use.

When I took these photographs, it was my first time using either liner so it was not a case of me having practised with one over the other. I wore the liner all day and despite the initial bleeding, which – as I said – wiped away, I found them both to be very long lasting with no signs of fading or movement on either.

I am not a huge fan of pen eyeliners in general. I find them trickier to use than a gel and brush so they would never be my first choice. However, the slight give of the Tattoo Liner’s nib really gives it the edge over the Ink Liner, in my opinion. In terms of colour saturation and wear time, I really found little difference between the two.

Both liners retail for €20 from Debenhams ($20 from Sephora) but the full size Tattoo Liner contains 0.7ml of product while you only get 0.55ml in the Ink Liner, making the Tattoo Liner better value for money. Even if the contents were switched here, I would still recommend the Tattoo Liner over the Ink Liner as I really feel the Ink Liner is too difficult to use, at least for me, anyway. While the differences aren’t too apparent in the pictures, when you use both liners one after the other, there really is no competition.

Have you tried either of these liners?
Which type of eyeliner do you find easier to use?

Disclaimer: No PR samples were featured.
No affiliate links were used.


One thought on “Kat Von D Tattoo Liner versus Ink Liner – What’s the Difference? Photos, Swatches, Comparison

  1. I got the Tatoo liner in an Ipsy bag and I like it. I am a fan of the pen-type liners but have never tried using a brush and gel. My Holy Grail is the Stila Stay All Day Liquif Eyeliner. It is the best.


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