How To Remove Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner or Die Trying

Are you looking for the perfect beauty tool to tell the world “I want to look super cute for six hours and then spend the rest of the week looking like the ghost of a seasick raccoon?” Well look no further, because waterproof liquid eyeliner is here for you. Liquid eyeliner can help you achieve that fierce Bad Bitch Sailor Moon Villain aesthetic you’ve always dreamed of — until you decide to take it off because as it turns out, that waterproof, semi-permanent face goop isn’t going anywhere. But no worries: I’m here to help you master a technique to get all that junk off your face (or at least upwards of 40% of it).



Step 1

Reflect upon your foolishness. Why did you think you could deceive the world into thinking your eyes were slightly bigger than they really are? Repent to the deity of your choice for your vanity.

Follow whatever ritual your chosen deity requires of you. If they smile upon your efforts, you might even get your face clean enough to wear eyeliner again sometime before you die.

What you need for this step:

  • Candles? probably?
  • Holy water??
  • A sacrificial dagger???
  • One snow-white goat born under a full moon or vegan substitute
  • Regret




Step 2

Dowse approximately an entire bag of cotton balls in whichever drug/grocery store eye makeup remover you probably already have on hand. You probably have, like, an eighth of a bottle of that stuff somewhere in your bathroom if you already wear makeup of any kind. It will not be enough to clean both eyelids but just go for it anyway. Rub vigorously until your fragile, sensitive eyelids are red and burning with pain.

What you need for this step:

  • Jank ass makeup remover you forgot you owned
  • Somewhere between 100 to 15 million cotton balls
  • New eyelids to replace the ones you will definitely rub clean off your face



Step 3

Now that you’re out of both cotton balls and eye makeup remover, run some water over whichever bullshit 1-ply toilet paper you keep in your bathroom. Desperately rub it on your eyelids as sooty, inky eyeliner tears stream down your face. Any additional tears resulting from the pain of rubbing course butt paper on your already-raw eyelids will only help you get your face clean.

What you need for this step:

  • Toilet paper
  • Running water
  • 1,000 pounds of raw nerve

Hard mode:

  • Substitute toilet paper with paper towels



Step 4

Okay so that didn’t do anything. Shit. Shit shit shit. It’s late. You want to go to bed. Goddamn it. What now? Okay, think. [Deep sigh]. Okay.

Frantically google “eye makeup remover DIY.” Ransack your kitchen/bathroom for any of the following:

  • Olive oil
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Hair conditioner
  • Eye of newt
  • Male tears
  • Coconut oil

Also scour your bathroom for any undesirable cotton balls that may have fallen out of the bag and into your bathroom cabinets. They might be a little dusty but at this point, your options are:

  • Soft, absorbent cotton balls that may or may not be sprinkled with dust and spider legs
  • Coarse ass paper that is literally stripping the skin from your eyelids

Dab any of the substances above on the cotton balls and hope for the best.

What you need for this step:

  • Any/all of the products listed above
  • A dusty cotton ball
  • (Alternatively) more toilet paper, heaven help you



Step 5

At this point, you probably still have Bellatrix Lestrange-levels of eye glob surrounding your stinging peepers. That’s good! You could probably pretend you just failed at pulling off a smokey eye tutorial. Go to bed, comforted by a job sort-of well done.

What you need for this step:

  • A level of exhaustion that erodes your pride until you feel comfortable with your new life as an early aughts mall goth.



Step 6

Walk around with eye makeup remnants on your face for days. Fall down the Beauty Youtube rabbit hole and order way too many fancy beauty product knockoffs on Amazon. They will have no effect. Go to a Sephora and buy whichever products the immaculately wing-tipped staff recommend to you. They will also have no effect. Finally, conveniently forget you tried Step #4 and conclude that maybe the problem is that you’ve been trying too many chemical-based products. Decide that what you really need is a more natural approach. Besides, maybe you’re just really bad at DIY chemistry? Go to a hip-ass beauty store like Lush and get their fancy eye makeup remover. It, too, has little (if any) effect.

What you need for this step:

  • A job
  • Emotional resignation


Step 7

Give up and just weep for an hour about whatever you want. Think about:

  • The meanest thing a well-meaning relative has ever said to you
  • The fact that you have done this to yourself; you decided to put this makeup on and have in fact caused all of your own pain, just like you do in all the other areas of your life; when will you learn, you foolish child! When will you learn!!!
  • The literal stinging pain that is ripping through your bloodshot eyelids

Lean into that pain. Those salty tears will just flow right out of you.

An hour into your cry-a-thon, take a step back to look at your ghastly visage in a mirror. God, you’ve definitely seen better days. On the other hand: look at that! You’re free! That hour of weeping achieved what mankind’s greatest scientific/cosmetological achievements have not — the complete removal of your waterproof eye makeup curse. Jump for joy if you still have the energy, for you have been freed from your shame-prison of beauty failure.

What you need for this step:

  • Tear ducts
  • Assorted sorrows



You might be thinking, “Couldn’t I have just skipped all this other bullshit and headed straight for the tears? What was the point of all of this other nonsense?? Also, YOU DID NOT ACTUALLY TEACH ME HOW TO GET THIS SHIT OFF OF MY FACE, DOOFUS.”

But my dear reader — like life on this mournful planet, eye makeup removal is more about the journey than the destination. Don’t question divine intervention. Pledge fealty once more to the deity of your choice and return to Beauty Youtube for an assortment of eye makeup techniques to begin the cycle anew tomorrow. Prepare yourself by slathering whatever lotion you haven’t already globbed all over your face onto your aching eyes and forgetting all the hard-won lessons you learned today.


CC Calanthe

CC Calanthe

If you prick your finger and write “Cat Fancy” on your mirror during a harvest moon, CC will appear behind you and make you put human clothes on your pets. CC is Head Crone in Charge at POMEgranate Magazine, as well as the co-host of Moon Podcast Power MAKE UP!!
Rachel Weiss

Rachel Weiss

Rachel is a designer and artist from Texas. She is pro-feminism, pro-crones, and pro-dogs. She's also Boss Crone at POMEgranate Magazine, and one day hopes to be able to drink her tea without so much milk and sugar.
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