Benefit's She Laq, is being discontinued.
As a long-time devotee of this product, which lacquers drawn-on eyebrows into place for over 24 hours, I'm gutted. (The decision, by the way, has been confirmed by their UK head office, although I'm afraid I don't know how widespread the discontinuation is.) This wonder bottle was the product that first reassured me of the power of cosmetics and beauty products to recreate what I'd lost facially, and I know that many other hair-free ladies feel the same way.
Which, in the spirit of indefatigable optimism, leads me to the good news: I have realised it makes poor sense to put all your eggs into one lacquer bottle, and to rely absolutely on a single product. Cosmetics companies are businesses like all the others, and, as frustrating as it is for those who love them, certain products do get withdrawn from sale. So, in between panic-buying my local department store's She Laq reserves and hoarding them in my underwear drawer, I have decided to embark on a mission to road-test all the alternatives I didn't even know were out there, for your lacquering and sealing pleasure. Testing will be fair and rigorous, judging products on a range of consistent criteria. First into the fire is a new one on my radar:
Weather Everything Liner Sealer by Bare Escentuals
Price: £13 ($18 to our American friends, over on Bare Escentuals' US site) for 14.8ml
Application: A lot less simple than She Laq, which has a little brush built-in to the bottle's lid - but, to be fair, that's because Weather Everything is primarily designed to be mixed with eyeliner itself in the little containers and then applied - not painted over (as I will be doing). The sealer comes in the form of a squeezy plastic bottle with a droplet cap, and no brushes are included. To apply, I squeezed a little into the container provided, and dipped a little brush into it, which I then painted over my faux-brows. No running or smudging of colour occurred - good stuff.
Feel: good - no stiffness or irritation for me.
Staying power: passed the 'rub-test' (in which I ferociously rub the sealed eyebrows) extremely well. Left to its own devices, this kept my eyebrows in place beautifully, with no discernible deterioration in appearance, even after a day.
Sleep test: eyebrows sealed at 8.30am Monday morning, and slept in Monday night. Woke up Tuesday morning, and they were still there. Thumbs up.
Overall judgement: as a sealer, Weather Everything is brilliant, and very well-priced. Not having a built-in brush is a drawback, but then that's not what the product was originally designed for, so it seems mean to judge it harshly on this issue. Easily as good as She Laq on the sealing and longevity front. It might run out more quickly due to the potentially wasteful application method, but it's reasonably priced, so I can't complain too much there.
This is, it's fair to say, a most excellent start in the quest for the best eyebrow sealer out there. If you have another sealer or lacquer product you think stands up to scrutiny and deserves to be mentioned, let me know!