Product Series: Mascaras

by Sarah

I love all makeup products but if I had to pick one product I couldn’t do without, it would be mascara. Otherwise known as the LBD of makeup, there’s no denying the instant transforming effects of mascara.

Seeing as we’ve already covered eyeshadows and eyeliners, we may as well complete the eye makeup portion of the Product Series with a good coat of mascara…

Product Series: Mascara

Product Series: Mascaras

Mascara is one of those products where the product itself is the star of the show. With other makeup products, although quality and consistency do help, how they’re applied also has an effect on the overall result. With mascara however, no matter how well you apply it, the end result is as good as the product itself.

Mascara is also a very personal product because everyone’s lashes are different and hence what one person wants from a mascara could be completely different to another. This is why mascaras come in so many different formulas, brush types and styles.


mascara-brushesVolumizing: One of the most popular mascara formulas, volumizing mascaras coat the lashes with plenty of product to make each strand look thick and hence voluminous. Volumizing mascaras are particularly good for those who have really thin and/or sparse lashes.

Lengthening: If you have short lashes and would like to add length for a doll-like effect, lengthening mascaras are the way to go. The brushes are designed to grab each hair and coat it with product all the way to the tip of the lash so it looks much longer than it really is.

Curling: Curling mascaras are great for people who tend to have a hard time using lash curlers or have straight lashes and would like to give them a lift to open up the eyes. Curling mascaras usually have curved brushes so it hugs the base of the lashes and lifts them upwards as you apply the product.

Waterproof: Talk about curling the lashes…as well as providing budge proof results, waterproof mascaras are also great in holding the curl of the lashes. If you have super straight lashes like me, and no amount of lash curler or curling mascara works, waterproof mascaras set each strand in place so the lashes stay curled until you decide to take the mascara off.

All In One: My favorite type of mascara ever! Providing volume, length, curl and holding the curl in place, I prefer not to mess around with my mascara and go straight to the all in one. This type of mascara gives me amazing looking lashes with couple of swipes and most of the time I don’t even feel the need to wear falsies.



For me, Lancome Hypnose Drama is that all-in-one mascara. I get amazing volume, rich black color and super long lashes which almost touch my brows. It’s easy to build up, doesn’t flake or crumble. I have a full post on this mascara including before/after pictures and tips and tricks here

Note: I use the waterproof formula as I have super straight lashes; and this ensures my lashes stay curled until I decide to take the mascara off. It is however also available in standard formula and has the same volumizing/lengthening effect.

Below are some of the cult favorite mascaras. I did not include drugstore options in this list, only because they constantly change. In general however, Maybelline and Rimmel stand above the rest when it comes to quality and variety.

Click on product pictures to shop

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Lancome Hypnose Drama / Diorshow Iconic / Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir / BeneFit They’re Real / Urban Decay Perversion / Too Faced Better Than Sex / Tarte


  • To prevent the mascara from applying too much product (getting clumpy) on the lashes, scrape the bristles against the opening of the tube. This will ensure the excess product will go back into the tube instead of being wasted by wiping the brush on a tissue
  • Resting the mascara brush on the very base of the lashes and moving the brush up in small zig zag motions will help coat each lash with even amount of product. The base of the lashes will also look fuller as if you lined your lashline with an eyeliner. Two birds, one stone.
  • Do not pump the brush wand in and out of the mascara tube as this will allow air to go into the tube and hence bacteria. Instead swirl the wand and scrape it against the inside of the tube which will transfer plenty of product onto the bristles.
  • If you have really straight lashes (like me) and no amount of curling or standard mascara formulas help keep the curl, you can switch over to a waterproof formula. Waterproof mascaras are designed to set and they help keep the lashes curled until you decide to take it off.
  • There are tips online to revive dried up mascara by applying couple of drops of eyedrops into the tube. Whilst this does thin out the formula of the mascara, I highly advise against using mascara that lost its initial consistency. Dried up mascara means it’s time for a new tube and better be safe than sorry when it comes to hygiene, especially when the eyes are concerned.
  • Also regarding hygiene, if you ever get a stye or eye infection, your mascara – regardless of how new it may be, should be the first to be discarded. Unlike other products such as pencils which you can sharpen, brushes you can wash, or eyeshadows you can disinfect, any bacteria from an eye infection can travel from the brush into the mascara tube where it can lay dormant and cause further infections.

Let me know in the comments below what your favorite mascara is…

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Meesh November 10, 2016 - 10:54 pm

wow ncie post! I am also a big mascara believer and I was like you I was constantly searching for the one. But then these days I got tired of looking for the one because I feel like it doesn’t exist :( so i resorted to wear falsies. I am also like you, have stick straight lashes. But waterproof mascaras are a pain to take off :( I need one that has the all in one effect as well! lengthen, volumize and holds curls! I am really tempting to try Hypnose drama after reading your post!

Sarah November 11, 2016 - 3:44 am

Hi Meesh! Your lash struggles sound so similar to mine! I also stayed away from waterproof mascaras cos they’re so hard to take off.
I’ve practically tried all different brand cleansers but Sephora’s own collection has a waterproof makeup remover and it works like magic with waterproof mascaras. It’s in a clear bottle (with half blue liquid and half oil). I don’t know why it’s so good but that’s the only remover I use with my mascara and it literally melts it off. I apply some on cotton pads, press it on my eyes for a few minutes to loosen the product; wipe off and it’s all gone!
Please update me if you try the Hypnose – and fyi Nordstrom usually has the best Lancome gift with purchase deals; I hope that helps :)


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