Mascara Reviews

51

Here are a couple of mascara reviews as requested. As you can see, most of them are from drugstore brands. The reason why I *love* drugstore mascaras is that mascaras need to be replaced once every two to three months. So why spend $20+ on a high end mascara when you can spend only $6-7 on a drugstore one?

Bourjois Volume Clubbing Mascara ($17)
Oh my god this is hands down the most sweat-proof, tear-proof and friction-proof mascara ever! It never smudges or flakes and stays intact until I take it off with an oil-based remover. The formula contains vinyl and feels really moist but I really like the way it wraps itself around my lashes and the dramatic effect I get from it. I swear my Asian lashes are darkened like 100 times when I wear this. It also comes with a dual maxi-reservoir brush and delivers decent volume with zero clumping. No wonder they advertise this as the mascara for clubbers!

Chanel Cils A Cils Mascara ($24)
This contains film-forming gels, beeswax, silk fibers and pro-Vitamin B5 to deliver buildable volume and length. I really like it and it does do a decent job lengthening and thickening my lashes without clumping too much. My only complaint is the price. $24 is simply too much for a mascara, you can definitely find something similar out there that costs less.

CoverGirl LashExact Mascara ($7)
I really like this. The plastic bristles picked up every single little lash that I did not know existed. Plus unlike traditional brushes, this one does not make my lashes clumpy and I do not have to comb them. It does not flake on me nor smear onto my undereye area either. I will definitely stock up on this during my next trip to the drugstore.

CoverGirl LashBlast Mascara ($7.99)
After seeing the Drew Barrymore ad, I literally ran out there and picked this up! It comes in a HUGE bright orange tube that is very cute and it claims to differ from other mascaras by having 50% more bristles so lashes look “their biggest, without clumping!” I personally find the brush a little hard to work with. It is true that it has a lot of bristles so you can keep building up the volume but the bulkiness also makes application so much more difficult. I cannot reach my smaller lashes without smearing mascara onto my eye! So despite the fact that it does not flake and it does add fullness to my lashes, I will not be repurchasing this.

L’oreal Bare Naturale Mascara ($9.95)
This is my first mineral mascara. It is paraben and fiber-free and contains an unique luminous ingredient complex to help protect and condition lashes while providing a natural luminosity. I definitely like that it does not contain harmful ingredients and it does wear pretty well. The formula, however, can be better. It has the tendency to clump if you apply more than 2 coats and it did not deliver as much volume or length as I wanted. Try Voluminous instead.

Lancome Definicils Mascara ($22)
Even though this won the Allure’s Readers’ Choice Award and Glam.com Beauty Award, it was a disappointment. Unlike the “lavishly long, perfectly defined lashes” it promised, it only lengthened my lashes a little and barely did anything to make them look fuller. It is definitely not worth the $22, skip this and get L’oreal instead.

Max Factor Lash Perfection Mascara ($6.89)
This has totally blown all the other mascaras away! Initially, it feels a little wet on my lashes but with just a couple of coats, it darkened and thickened them like 10 times! Plus the revolutionary new iFX brush worked wonderfully and there was absolutely zero clumping. No wonder this is voted as one of the In Style Best Beauty Awards!

Max Factor Volume Couture Mascara ($7.99)
Selected as the Official Mascara of Milan Fashion Week, this mascara has an iFx brush just like the Lash Perfection. It does not lengthen a lot but it does deliver volume (not as much as the Lash Perfection) without any clumping. It also stays on pretty well and I barely get any smudges until I take it off at the end of the day. Overall, it is a good mascara that does its job but I definitely prefer the Lash Perfection over this.

Maybelline Great Lash Mascara ($4.49)
This has been raved by makeup artists all over the world and is always listed as one of the best mascaras. I have it in Very Black and it does darken my lashes a lot without clumping but there is nothing “great” about it. There is no significant lengthening nor thickening at all. If you are looking for something more dramatic, skip this one.

Maybelline Volum’ Express Turbo Mascara ($5.89)
I use this in Very Black and I really like it. It thickens and darkens my lashes significantly and dries pretty fast too. It does clump a little but one swipe with a lash comb and I am good. My lashes also stay curled up all day. The only thing I do not like is the packaging. It is rather bulky and it takes up almost twice as much space as other mascaras.

Maybelline Lash Discovery Mascara ($5.99)
I have this in Very Black. The only thing I like about this mascara is its mini brush – it is perfect for reaching your lower lashes. But other than that, it does not do much. I do not see any difference in the length nor volume of my lashes. I only recommend it if you want a natural look or definition for your lower lashes.

Click here to see a picture of me with and without the mascara.

Rimmel Lash Maxxx Mascara ($7.99)
I have this in Extreme Black. It comes with a breakthrough applicator that claims to make your lashes 3 times as thick without clumping. I do like the brush a lot. The comb-style design helps to define AND separate lashes at the same time meaning I can apply as many coats as I want without clumping. It also works great on my tiny lower lashes. As for the thickening factor? Well let’s just say this baby lengthens more than it thickens. All in all, this mascara does a pretty good job and barely smears at all. Plus who can resist the hot pink + black packaging – that is just way too sexy! Me likey!
Phyllis Li is the Founder and Editor-in-chief of Makeup For Life, one of the top 50 beauty blogs that focuses on celebrity makeup breakdowns, product reviews, makeup tutorials and all things beauty. Having lived and traveled in North America, Europe and Asia, she was exposed to different techniques and products at an early age and hopes to put a global perspective towards beauty. Phyllis won the Best Content Award by Total Beauty in 2008 and has been featured in various publications and websites including ELLE, Glamour.com, Yahoo Shine!, AOL Stylelist, Nylon Korea, VOGUE China, Ming Pao Daily (Canada) and Shanghai Weekly. In 2010, she was appointed one of the nine Real Women Ambassadors in the United States to take part in the Latisse® Wishes Challenge, working with Hollywood celebrity Kathy Ireland and raised over $400,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation to grant wishes for approximately 54 children. In 2012, she teamed up with luxury skincare brand TATCHA and released a limited-edition 3-Piece Set of her favorite beauty products. Phyllis currently lives in Chicago, US. She is a regular contributor to Shanghai Daily's StyleHai Magazine and a member of the Glam Beauty Network.

51 COMMENTS

  1. yay! thanks for this review! i was so close to buying the Loreal Extend…..

    voluminous is also my holy grail! love the stuff!

  2. hey great site you have here. i come here very often for updates. thanks for making this site and keep it up! ^_^

    i would very much like to know more about make up bases.. about the yellow, pink, purple, and green ones. im not sure about the exact way of using them.. also those coloued concealers (purple, green, yellow…). i heard each suits different colours that you want to conceal.. (like for eyebags, if they’re black, use so-and-so colour, and if they’re greenish, use so-and-so colour). i hope to know more on these 2 stuff, and would greatly appreciate it if you could elaborate on the exact functions of these in a coming entry.

    once again, thank you very much for this blog.

  3. hey lovve ur blog!! umm can you do an entry on eyeshadow? how to apply itt? CUZ im not suree..welll im not sure if im doing it right ..x__xx and say if we have a 4 shades eyeshadow thingg how are we supposed to use all the colors?? and how do i make eyeshadow stay cuz it never seems to stay and they say get concealer but IM really not sure which tone to get cuz alot dont workk..soo yeahh can u help on that ?! =DD

  4. Hi, I was wondering, does all those smudge, or is there a way to prevent it/
    I know the first one smudges =\ (is there a way to stop that >< )

  5. I was just wondering if you ever found an mascara that gives volume, lenghtens, and the curl stays the whole day? Mascaras tend to be just one or another and that really makes me mad T_T. The lancome l’etreme i bought is very disappointing.. the l’oreal featherlash is great for the natural look but i was looking for something that gives volume, length, and keeps the curl at the same time.

  6. thank you for the review on different mascaras. i’ve been looking for a good mascara so i think i’m going to try maybelline volum’ express turbo.

  7. thanks for the reviews!!
    -maybelline “volume turbo boost express” or whatever lol..i really like that one…and maybelline “unstoppable” is good too!!
    -don’t like rimmel “volume flash” or this other mascara called “fantastic lash”. clumpy & dries up fast & flakes.

  8. woot! thanks for this!
    although you should test out sky high curves (maybelline) and tell us if that’s better than the lash exact/loreal voluminous (sorry if i got the name wrong)
    again thanks! i’ll def go try out lash exact now :]

  9. I love Maybelline Volum’ Express Turbo. It is wonderful!—
    Me too!, i bought it yesterday at the drugstores and its really dramatically makes my lashes look black and thick. I would recommend Lash Stylist, the comb is super cool! and never clumps. Cute pakaging too!

  10. oh darnn :( i bought the maybelline great lash this morning
    and i was hoping for a lash lengthener.. oh well it was cheap

  11. hey thanks so much for the review
    was wondering what do you think of the imju fiberwig mascara, apparently it works wonder?x

  12. The CG Lash Exact and the MF Lash Perfection have the same brush. Is the Max Factor one all that much better? They seem to me like they’d be the same, or is the Max Factor’s formula better?

  13. hey, thanks for all the info!
    just wanted to know if you had a personal favorite for affordable lengthening eyelashes. thanks!

  14. wow makeup over there is really cheap! here in new zealand the drugstore brands are like $30-$40 for mascara and chanel and shiseido etc is like $50+

  15. Hello. I saw that you listed a few reviews on mascaras, and I noticed there were a few that you liked. I’d like to ask: which one out of all of those is your favorite most of all?

  16. Sorry to repeat the question that someone earlier said, but which brand of mascara is your ultimate FAVORITE over all?

  17. anonymous i think MAX FACTOR would be a better brush. I LOVE max factor so much!!
    Ive never used cover girl but pretty much all their stuff is not that great..

  18. my 2 cents…im asian and i’ve been using loreal telescopic mascara in the silver packaging..ive also used telescopic in the gold and black packaging but ive found that the silver one really lengthens…another thing i do is after the first coat, i brush my lashes lightly with powder then build with second coat etc.., it helps with volume and lasts a long time!

  19. Thanks for the review! It’s awesome! I’m wondering if you have tried Maybelline Intense XXL mascara. How do you like it?

  20. Thanks for posting these!!!
    I was pretty sceptical abt the Lash Maxx and Glam Eyes but now i feel a lot better abt buying one~

    If you have time, could you prettyplease make an entry on Mascara bases????

    Thankkyouuu_* =)

    Your blog is like my holy grail!!!!

  21. I like to consider myself a mascara fanatic and I have probably tried almost every mascara thats out there. I found it kinda weird but I pretty uch disagreed with almost every review. I'm not trying to knock them in any way because everyone is entitled to their own opinion; I just thought I'd express mine.

    My two favorites are Cover Girl Lash Blast & Lancome Definicils. I love Cover Girl Lash Blast because of its brush, it separates and adds tremendous volume. Not the best at lengthening but the separating definitely makes up for that. Plus the price is extremely reasonable.

    My other favorite, Lancome Definicils is the absolute best lengthening mascara out there in my opinion. I constantly have people on the street asking me if I have fake eyelashes or what kind of mascara I am wearing. It's not heavy at all and works wonders.

    So those are my two all-time favs. But I'm always constantly trying new brands and types…you can call it an obsession. :)

  22. Hey, thanks for the reviews… i was wondering have you ever try the Blinc mascara? or their eyeliner. Im trying to look for a mascara that doesnt smudge because I have oily eyelids and the waterproof mascara smudges on me even the ones that says smudge proof, still smudge on me a little.

  23. Hey, I was wondering have you ever tried the mascara call Blinc, or the eyeliner. I heard good things about the product but not sure if i should get it or not since the product isnt cheap. I tried many mascara before but, they always smudges. The mascara that stated smudge proof or waterproof still smudge on me because I have oily eyelids…..

  24. For Max Factor, have you tried the 2000 Calorie mascara? The one with the curved brush totally lengthens and volumizes my lashes.For me its the best drug store mascara I have ever tried.

  25. Thanks for all of the great mascara info! Everything I have tried flakes on me after a few hours but after reading your reviews I am going to try Loreal Voluminous. Thanks again!

  26. I love Lash Exact too. =) My Stiletto one doesn’t smell bad; in fact, it smells a lot like roses. I thought that was interesting. I like te lengthening on that one too, although I don’t see the patent shine either. I’ve tried a combo of both and I like the results. Try it out! =)

  27. this post is awesome. i’m a huge fan of lancome definicils but the price tag was too steep for me! i’ve been in search of a great mascara, so i’ll be putting your list to use.

    of note, i do like loreal featherlash. it might be a marketing thing though — they always have the most gorgeous ladies in their ads!

  28. I’ve read several times now about the wonderfulness of Voluminous, but when I bought, it instantly de-curled and clumped my lashes. Do you use the waterproof kind or the regular? (I’m still trying to find out why you consider this to be your holy grail…)

  29. I have the Maybelline Colossal Volum’ Express, i thought the same thing too with the smell. thanks for the reveiws, soo helpful!

  30. I’m debating with myself which of these would be best:

    L’Oreal Extra Volume Collagen Mascara
    or
    Maybelline Colossal Volume Express

    Since both are mainly for volume, I’m also in debate about which volume mascara would be best:

    L’Oreal Clear Definition Telescopic
    or
    Covergirl LashBlast Length

  31. (Clicked enter accidentally, sorry D:)

    I’m debating with myself which of these would be best:

    L’Oreal Extra Volume Collagen Mascara
    or
    Maybelline Colossal Volume Express

    Since both are mainly for volume, I’m also in debate about which volume mascara would be best:

    L’Oreal Clear Definition Telescopic
    or
    Covergirl LashBlast Length
    orr,
    Maybelline Lash Stiletto

    You praise all of the above mentioned, and so they all look great. But.. I don’t want to spend $43 on all 5 of them :|

    I love your site~~ Thanks for the reviews and everything else! :D

  32. I was always reluctant to purchase mascara over 20$ too.. so thanks so much for the review :) so many great choices with affordable prices!

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