I first started wearing eye liner when I was around 14 (I was a very late bloomer makeup wise - or was I?), when a girl on holiday I'd become friends with was doing my makeup for dinner on our last night on holiday. She lined both my upper and lower lash line with a standard black pencil liner, and as a makeup novice I loved it, starting an addiction to eyeliners I still have now, 12 years later.
I tried most black liners from the brands available in Boots, but it wasn't until years later than I branched out to pencil liners from other brands in any shades other than black. Urban Decay is where my love for different shades of liner started - they're 24-7 Glide-on-Eye Pencil range has a whole plethora of beautiful shades with a workable creamy formula that allows intense, opaque colour. They can be smudged in for a smokey lash line, but you have to be quick as these waterproof beauties dry pretty quickly. Individually, they're £15 which for the quality and how long they last, isn't too bad. But you can also snap up several shades in liners that are a smidgen smaller in length than the standard line, in gift-sets and collections - like the new Urban Decay Ten 24/7 Glide-on-Eye Pencil Set which costs £35 for 10 pencils in a variety of shades (working out at just £3.50 each!!).
If you want a truly waterproof liner, I'm talking won't budge until you get the bi-phase eye makeup remover out, then you have to try the Stila Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner range. By far the most waterproof formula I have tried, I really love using some of the paler shades for my lower lash line, the longevity is intense not budging or smudging a single bit throughout the day and the formula is lovely to work with. At £13 each, they're not the most purse-friendly, but like Urban Decay you can also pick up gift sets like the Stila Colour Outside the Lines Smudge Stick Set which costs £36, with a value of £65.
Some newer brands to join my collection have also quickly become favourites that I reach for often, like Bobbi Brown (from £17.50) and Clarins (from £18). I'm also really in love with Eye of Horus Goddess Pencil range which has some of the most beautiful, enchanting shades of teals, emeralds and amethyst shades that work really well to make my brown eyes stand out. A little pricer at £17, but totally worth it.
If you're on a smaller budget but want a pencil that will really last and have great colour pay-off and longevity, then I recommend checking out the Essence Long Lasting Eye Pencil range which formula wise, is one of my favourites and at just £1.49 they're a real beauty steal. I also love the formula and quality of No7, Rimmel, KIKO and Barry M pencil liners.