The Ultimate Eyeliner Test!

A few weeks ago I met the beautiful Tonia Couch, 23, who will be competing for Team GB in the Olympics this summer. Synchronised Diving. SYNCHRONISED DIVING, PEOPLE! As if diving from a ten metre high board wasn’t petrifying enough, she has to do it in sync with somebody else. I can’t even carry a pint through a pub without sloshing it all over the place, so the level of co-ordination needed for synchronised diving is way beyond the realms of my imagination.

Actually, sport in general is way beyond the realms of my imagination. I am not a sporty person – I’m too scared of injury. Running, fine. Skipping, fine. Cycling on a bike that’s fixed to the floor, inside a gym, fine. Diving, roller-skating, skiing, hurdles, proper cycling, high jump (ARGH!), all very not fine.

So it will come as no surprise to you that when I had the opportunity to interview Tonia, I was most interested in her hair and makeup and not in her diving technique. Thankfully, she turned out to be quite a girly-girl and a bit of a glamourpuss and seemed to welcome a bit of frivolous makeup chat!  I was desperate to know how she kept her blonde hair in such good condition and – more importantly – how it was that she always had impeccable eye makeup even when she had just thrown herself into a pool at a thousand miles an hour.

AMR: Hello Tonia! [Insert here a few minutes of my best banter, which, to be fair, is world class. I covered prisons, stalkers and psychopaths in the space of 3 minutes and 12 seconds!] Can you please tell by what sort of wizardry you are managing to keep your eye makeup on whilst diving?

TC: I wear the Urban Decay Liquid Eyeliner on my eyes and also the primer – Eye Potion. It’s really hard to find makeup that stays on when you’re in the water all the time – this is the best one I’ve found and I wear it all the time now.

(Time Out! Can I just say, I have worn Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner pencils IN THE SHOWER and they wouldn’t come off! Just wanted to add that in…) 

RC: I suppose, though, that it shouldn’t really be about looks, more about the sport…

TC: Yeah, but on TV they shoot straight up into your face, your hair’s all slicked back and your face is wet! You don’t look your best, so the eye makeup definitely helps! [Points to her very sexy eyeliner.]

RC: Any tips for handling nerves, seeing as you’re flinging yourself from the equivalent of the top of a three-storey building?

TC: I’ve been competing since the age of seven, so I’m kind of used to it. Now, if I go into a competition and I don’t have nerves…I can’t seem to get myself up for it! So having nerves is something I need. I like getting nervous. But not overly nervous!

RC: Do you have a fanpage?

TC: No, but someone’s done one for me.

RC: Oooh. That’s kind of weird!

[Tonia’s Dad, who is sat on the other end of the couch shakes his head at this point and mutters darkly.]

 RC: [rapidly changing subject] How about skincare? You’re in chlorinated water and you’re sweating when training in the gym…what’s your routine?

TC: I don’t really do anything like that. [Cue me fainting.] I just moisturize and use any old shampoo and conditioner.

[Short interlude as I have to be fanned and splashed with cold water to bring me back to my senses.]


TC: Yeah, just because I’ve tried everything and nothing seems to work. All I like to do is put my makeup on.

TC’s DAD: and you rub shaving cream on your shins…

TC: Yeah, something grippy on your legs, like men’s shaving cream, stops you from slipping out of your tuck-shape mid-air.

RC: [pale] I’ve never dived into water in my life.

TC: Never? You’ve never even stepped in?

RC: I’ve never put my head before my feet.

TC: Oh.

RC: So what do you think about in the very last few seconds before you dive?

TC: Nothing really, it doesn’t bother me at all. Ten metres is just like I’m on a bit of a step. I’ve landed flat on the water so many times and really hurt myself, so I know what to expect. I’ve slapped my face, had headaches, legs have been black and blue..

RC: I’d land flat every time. Belly flop. You must have to be a certain type of person to do this, with an…an innate sense of bravery. Does it feel strange, like you’re living some kind of dream?

TC: Yes!

So, there you go – brave and very lovely girl Tonia Couch – no skincare routine, but a whizz with the eyeliner. I’ve just been in the kitchen plunging my face repeatedly into a full sink of water, and I must say that the 24/7 liners are brilliant when it comes to length of wear. They just don’t shift! If you want to have a look at the waterproof liners, they are £14 each on

You can wish Tonia luck on Twitter, if you fancy! I’m sure she’d appreciate it. She’s at: @toniacouch

I’ve just realised that I used the liquid liner when I went to Bestival as “Dolly Parton”. (An insult to Dolly, unfortunately, as you’ll see in the post!) Bestival and Boobs post is here





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  1. July 4, 2012 / 7:08 am

    She is stunning! How lucky she is to be so low maintenance and so fabulous looking!

    Side note: the makeup for ever aqua range (aquacreams etc) were developped especially for the French synchronised diving team, so that’s guaranteed to be waterproof as well. But those UD products are really really working great too!

    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 7:15 am

      Ah, shall look into that! x

  2. Amanda
    July 4, 2012 / 7:25 am

    Brilliant interview Ruth (love your style) and Tonia is absolutely gorgeous!! :)

  3. Love in a mist
    July 4, 2012 / 7:33 am

    Stunning girl! Amazing even with just eyeliner on! Can’t believe she has no skin care routine OMG, I think I would have been passed out right there with you lol!
    Really interesting post, good luck to Tonia xxx

  4. lisa
    July 4, 2012 / 7:50 am

    hilarious interview Ruth!
    I need these giggles every morning :-)

  5. Love in a mist
    July 4, 2012 / 7:56 am

    Ooohhh just had to Pop back on lol! Glamour mag ( out today) are giving a FREE TRAVEL SIZE of balance me either skin wash, wonder eye cream, balancing face moisturiser or rose otto lip salve, just managed to get moisturiser so far (20ml so descent size :-))this morning on way to work, feel fab and smells lovely on my hand lol! I’d get this quick as I think it’s going to be popular, my newsagent had already sold 8 mags and this was before 8am !

    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 12:00 pm

      Oooh, I’ll have to pop up the shops! x

  6. MakeUpNaive
    July 4, 2012 / 9:09 am

    Wow for someone to look that beautiful and no gruelling skincare regimen? Speechless! Her eyes really do stand out, she’s like a sexy nymph/siren in her element.

  7. July 4, 2012 / 9:57 am

    This has got to be your best review ever, the funniest, most clever. Absolutely loved every bit of it. Yes, love the UD potion but must try the liner. Oh my…I’ll be chuckling all day! Thanks!

    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 11:59 am

      Thanks Upa! x

  8. Tiff
    July 4, 2012 / 10:10 am

    Hi Ruth, i jus watched your tom ford bronzed makeup tutorial again. I see that the bronzer and brush for bronzer are not cheap at all. Do u think they are worth the money? Can any other bronzers and brushes achieve the same effect? Ive been looking around for the perfect brush for bronzers but cant find one. The chanel one u used in no. 3 cant be found anywhere in the uk i think. Its not even on their website. Any recommendations? Thanks!

    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 11:59 am

      Maybe that brush is discontinued – I’ll check! Of course you can use any similar bronzer at any price-range. You’ll never get the EXACT same look, but you could try NARS Laguna or similar! x

  9. Jessica
    July 4, 2012 / 10:48 am

    “I’ve just been in the kitchen plunging my face repeatedly into a full sink of water…”

    Only you, Ruth. Love it!

  10. Sophia
    July 4, 2012 / 1:41 pm

    Wow she is beautiful! I was actually looking into purchasing the urban decay eyeliner pencils! They look really good! xxx

  11. Marsi
    July 4, 2012 / 2:08 pm

    What a funny coincidence, I bought a 24/7 last night: Demolition, a blacky-brown with zero shimmer or glitter. I noticed that it did. not. budge. on my eyes until I was ready to take it off with my Bioderma — and then it came right off like a dream. So many waterproofs leave so much residue, but not this one. At all.

    Anyhoodle, first time commenting after having read you for the last couple of months. Love your chatty, funny, conversational writing style. Hope you’ll keep up the good work.


    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 2:18 pm

      That’s good to know, Marsi – I’m about to go and look up that shade! x

  12. Minshu
    July 4, 2012 / 2:58 pm

    I have to try UD now! By the way, can you recommend any eye pencil that doesn’t smudge? I’ve tried billion, from Bobbi Brown to Rouge Bunny Rouge, they all smudge as hell! Help!!!

    • Ruth
      July 4, 2012 / 5:40 pm

      The 24/7 Pencil! xx

  13. Charlotte
    July 4, 2012 / 3:59 pm

    I don’t know why you haven’t been snatched up by a beauty magazine because this was a fantastic article! Love your style!

  14. July 4, 2012 / 9:10 pm

    always wanting to try the eyeliner, definitely going to give it a go now!

  15. Leila
    July 5, 2012 / 5:27 pm

    I have to say, I love that top picture of her since I first saw it (newspaper article online, but anyway).

    The lighting, colour, makeup, everything is just perfect. She looks like some kind of siren or mermaid emerging from the water.

    I liked the interview too – sorry, that isn’t an afterthougt, really! I just loved the picture so much, it had to go first! Your style always makes me laugh, it’s so fun to read.

    • Ruth
      July 5, 2012 / 10:56 pm

      Yes, she is stunning isn’t she? x

  16. lahna
    July 6, 2012 / 3:37 am

    i was wondering if you had tried urban decay’s lipsticks? i was wanting to try a nude/neutral colored lipstick that was not crazy expensive. any recommendations?

    • Ruth
      July 6, 2012 / 9:53 am

      Have a look at Jemma Kidd Glosstick in Bridgetown

      • lahna
        July 6, 2012 / 7:26 pm

        actually went for dior addict extreme in “cherie bow”. i dont think jemma kidd is easily available in the states. my first dior product! :)

        • Ruth
          July 6, 2012 / 8:21 pm

          Oooh, congrats! x

  17. July 6, 2012 / 10:36 am

    Yes, there are women out there who aren’t borderline obsessed with skincare and cosmetics….LOL! I suppose it’s because you have to be so single-minded and dedicated to reach the competitive level required to be an Olympic athlete. Great interview Ruth.

    Ali x

    • Ruth
      July 6, 2012 / 10:56 am

      Thanks Ali! xx

  18. Jo
    July 11, 2012 / 3:46 pm

    This could have been a dull interview if written by someone else ;)

  19. Laure CD
    August 31, 2012 / 12:21 pm

    Based on this recommendation, I purchased the stay all day waterproof liquid eye liner in carbon black of UD. I am slightly disappointed by the result. The color is not very black more grey on my eyelids, which might be intended. It doesn’t resist a gym class and the following shower and becomes quite cake-ish like a paste at the end of the day when no water brushed it off.
    Too bad!

    • Laure CD
      August 31, 2012 / 12:26 pm

      I take it back – I bought the wrong brand!!
      I bought Stila, which is displayed on the same shelf at Sephora!


  20. tracey
    September 25, 2014 / 10:12 am

    Hi Ruth, have you ever tried the Eyeko Alexa stuff? particularly the Eyedo liquid eyeliner. Really want one that stays in place and hoping it’s not celebrity-endorsement/style-over-substance. Many thanks

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