Urban Decay Smoked Eye Pencil Set – Swatches & Review

Urban Decay releases sets of its 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils every season, and I purchased one such set this past winter. The Smoked Set features six travel-sized (0.8g) pencils – Zero, Uzi, Demolition, Smog, Empire, and Mainline. I debated on whether or not to post about the set because it is no longer available. However, as all of the limited-edition pencils in Smoked are now part of the permanent collection, I decided to post swatches after all.

Urban Decay Smoked Set

The formula on all of these liners is pretty much the same – smooth, creamy, and pigmented. I love these liners because they glide across the lid without tugging and once they set, they don’t budge (with the exception of one in this collection). The downside, in my opinion, is that I can never get back the great point that all of the pencils start with. Because the liners are so creamy, they round out as you use them and keep that rounded tip when sharpened, which makes it a little challenging if you want to use them for winged eyes. My solution? Using a fine eyeliner brush like I would with a gel liner. Anyways, enough about that – let’s get to the swatches!

Left to right: Uzi, Zero, Demolition One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Left to right: Uzi, Zero, Demolition
One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Uzi is a gunmetal gray with a little shimmer and fine silver microglitter. It is a little sheer by UD standards with one swipe, but builds up to a nice opacity with a few passes. The silver microglitter is noticeable up close but I don’t notice it on my eye unless I’m looking for it (especially when wearing shimmery UD shadows with Uzi) – in other words, you don’t need to worry about looking like a disco queen or little girl when you hear the words “silver microglitter.”

Zero is Urban Decay’s standard, go-to black. I groaned a little when I saw this in the set because I’m pretty sure UD puts Zero in almost every shadow and liner set (which means I have about five). I was really hoping they would have put Perversion in instead, which is a darker, creamier black. However, every girl needs a basic black liner that won’t budge, so I can’t grumble too much.

Demolition is a deep matte brown. As a brown-eyed girl who rocks a lot of brown and neutral shadow looks, I love Demolition. Like Uzi, Demolition is better with a few swipes rather than just one. It’s dark, matte, and doesn’t budge – love it!

Left to right: Smog, Empire, Mainline One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Left to right: Smog, Empire, Mainline
One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Left to right: Smog, Empire, Mainline One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Left to right: Smog, Empire, Mainline
One pass on left, multiple passes on right

Smog is a copper shimmer that, like Uzi and Demolition, is much better with a few swipes across the lid. I actually like this shade a lot more than I expected. It’s a great liner to wear alone with mascara or a more subtle, yet noticeable, liner to wear with shadow. I really love using this on my lower lash line to define my eye without the liner overpowering it.

Empire is a deep eggplant purple and my favorite liner of the set. I love using purple liners as fun alternatives to black, especially when doing purple smoky eyes. Empire is a little weak on one pass but perfect with two or more. Despite being so dark, it doesn’t budge once set. It can read a little black from a distance but you can tell it’s purple when closer. Empire was limited edition when the Smoked set came out and I may or may not have bought two sets for it…

Mainline, a blue-green matte, is both a surprise favorite and let-down from this set for me. I absolutely love the color – it’s both bright and deep, and surprisingly wearable (and that’s coming from a girl who always shrinks away from anything blue on her eyes!). So what’s the problem? It migrates. I have always been able to put UD liners on and go and find them in exactly the same spot by the end of the day; not the case with Mainline. I put it on and went to run errands. When I came home I looked in the mirror and discovered that it had traveled a little under my eyes from my lower lash line and to the crease of my eye from my upper lash line. Gahhh! Now when I want to wear Mainline I set it with a little matching eyeshadow, although it still migrates a bit sometimes. I still scowl at Mainline every time I want to use it.

Top: Uzi, Zero, Demolition Bottom: Smog, Empire, Mainline

Top: Uzi, Zero, Demolition
Bottom: Smog, Empire, Mainline

Overall, I’m really pleased with this set. All of the colors are great everyday liners and are fun to use on their own or together. With the exception (kind of) of Mainline, all of the liners live up to UD’s usual formula standards and have fabulous staying power. I think I paid around $20 for this set at Ulta when it went on mark-down back in January, which is a steal for six travel-size UD liners. You can now purchase each of these liners individually for $19 from Urban Decay or major beauty retailers like Sephora and Ulta.

What’s your favorite UD liner shade? Is there another liner brand that you swear by?

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