Mascara Reviews

Mascara is one of those products that can be highly personal — some prefer a more natural lash look while others prefer a bold lash. Personally, I prefer big dramatic lashes but realize that others like it more natural. For that reason, I won’t give an official score to each mascara but will give my impressions of it.

Products are organized by price range. Each product has a picture with and without mascara to show the difference (the no mascara picture is the left eye picture).


High End Mascara


Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Mascara

Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Mascara retails for $32USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a sleek black tube with an asymmetrical applicator. This mascara is also available in a waterproof formula.

This mascara definitely gave a lengthening effect but was just okay in terms of volumizing. The applicator was easy to use and did not clump or smudge.


Chanel Le Volume de Chanel Mascara

Chanel Le Volume de Chanel Mascara retails for $32USD at Nordstrom. The mascara comes in a sleek black tube with an applicator that combines long and short bristles. This mascara is also available in a waterproof formula.

This mascara gave good volume and length. What stood out about this formula is that it only took one coat to get the full effect while other mascaras took multiple coats. The applicator worked well and the mascara did not smudge throughout the day.


Dior Diorshow Original Mascara

Dior Diorshow retails for $28.50USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a black tube with the Dior logo, and the applicator has larger bristles in the brush. This mascara also comes in other colors.

This mascara did a good job lengthening and a decent job volumizing. The applicator was easy to use and did not smudge throughout the day. My only point of concern is that this mascara is strongly scented, which may bother some people.


Dior Diorshow Iconic Mascara

Dior Diorshow Iconic is another mascara in the Diorshow line that retails for $29.50USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a silver tube with the Dior logo, and the applicator has oblique cut bristles. This mascara comes in other colors.

This mascara did a better job volumizing than the original Diorshow but not as good of a job lengthening. However, it does hold a curl well and does not have a fragrance like the original Diorshow. I personally like to layer Diorshow and Diorshow Iconic together to get the most length and volume.


Lancôme Définicils Mascara

Lancôme Définicils mascara retails for $27.50USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a thin black tube with a narrow applicator. This mascara is also available in other colors and a waterproof formula.

This mascara did an excellent job lengthening lashes but not much for volume. The smaller size of the wand made applying the mascara without clumping easy.


Lancôme Hypnôse Drama Mascara

Lancôme Hypnôse Drama Mascara retails for $27.50USD at Sephora and Ulta. The full size mascara comes in a curvy black tube (note my picture is for a travel size). This mascara has a very unique S-shaped applicator with short bristles.

While I found the final look of this mascara decent, I didn’t think it was the easiest to use. The formula is very wet and clumped a lot for me. It was also heavily scented which may bother some.


Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara

Lancôme Monsieur Big Mascara retails for $25USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a black and pink tube with an applicator with medium sized bristles. This mascara also comes in a travel size for $12USD.

Lancôme claims this mascara gives intense volume, but I actually found it to be better at lengthening. Of the three Lancôme mascaras I tried, this was my favorite (and it’s the cheapest too!). The applicator was easy to use and the formula didn’t clump.


Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara

Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara retails for $26USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a sleek black tube with a slightly hourglass shaped applicator. This mascara is also available in a travel size for $14USD.

This mascara gave good volume and lifted the lashes. I think this formula exceeds in holding a curl, so it would be a great choice for those with straight lashes.


Trish McEvoy Lash Curling Mascara

Trish McEvoy Lash Curling Mascara retails for $31.50USD at Nordstrom. The mascara comes in a thin black tube with an applicator with thin fluffy bristles. This mascara is unique in that it’s a tubing mascara, a mascara that forms tubes around the lashes.

This mascara was decent at lengthening and great at holding a curl, however, I feel that it didn’t give as dramatic of lashes as some of the other formulas. The tubing formula made the mascara very smudge resistant, which would be great for someone with oily lids or watery eyes.


Yves Saint Laurent Babydoll Mascara

Yves Saint Laurent Babydoll Mascara retails for $32USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a gold tube with a thin applicator with small bristles.

This mascara gave super long dramatic lashes with decent volume. The small bristles on the wand made coating each lash without clumping easy, and the mascara lasted the whole day without smudging. I can also confirm that this mascara survived swimming in the ocean.


Yves Saint Laurent Faux Cils Mascara

Yves Saint Laurent Faux Cils Mascara retails for $32USD at Sephora. The full sized mascara comes in a gold tube (my picture is of the travel size) with an applicator full of fluffy bristles. This mascara also comes in other colors.

This mascara gave good volume although not as much length as Babydoll. The smaller size of the applicator made coating each lash without clumping easy.


Yves Saint Laurent The Shock Mascara

Yves Saint Laurent The Shock Mascara retails for $29USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a black and pink tube with an hourglass shaped applicator. This mascara also comes in other colors.

This mascara did a good job volumizing and a decent job lengthening. I found the formula a little more prone to clumping than the other Yves Saint Laurent mascaras, but it was still workable.


Emily’s Favorite High End Mascara: I would say that Yves Saint Laurent Babydoll was my favorite for its extreme lengthening effect and a small precise wand. The Chanel Le Volume de Chanel mascara was also very good for bold lashes. In terms of curling, I would say the Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir was best.


Mid Range Mascara


Benefit Bad Gal Lash Mascara

Benedit Bad Gal Lash Mascara retails for $19USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a black and silver tube with a large fluffy applicator. This mascara also comes in a travel size for $10USD.

This mascara didn’t really do much for my lashes other than tinting them and slightly curling them. If you want a more natural look, this would be a good mascara as it applied well and didn’t clump.


Benefit Roller Lash Mascara

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara retails for $25USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a black and pink tube with a unique curved applicator. This mascara also comes in brown and a travel size for $12USD.

This mascara did a good job of defining lashes. However, where it really shines is its ability to curl lashes. It gives a lash curling effect without having to use an eyelash curler, and the curl stays pretty well throughout the day.


Benefit They’re Real Mascara

Benefit They’re Real Mascara retails for $24USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a gray tube with a plastic applicator that has a ball of bristles on the end. This mascara also comes in other colors and a travel size that retails for $12USD.

This mascara defined the lashes well and gave good volume. I like the ball of bristles on the top of the applicator because it made getting the lashes near the corner of the eye easy.


Blinc Original Mascara

Blinc Original Mascara retails for $26USD at Sephora. It comes in a silver tube with a narrow applicator. This formula is unique in that it’s a tubing formula. Instead of painting lashes with the mascara, it forms tubes around them that are smudge resistant. This formula is also available in brown.

This mascara defined lashes well and gave pretty good length. It was very smudge resistant so it would work well for someone with oily lids or watery eyes. While the tubing formula was good for smudge resistance, I don’t think it could produce as dramatic of a lash as the more traditional formula.


Bobbi Brown Smokey Eye Mascara

Bobbi Brown Smokey Eye Mascara retails for $30USD at Sephora. The full sized mascara comes in a silver tube (my picture is of the travel size) with a thin applicator with medium sized bristles.

This mascara gave decent volume and length. However, I think it’s a little overpriced for the effect that it gives; cheaper or equivalently priced mascaras can give better volume and length.


It Superhero Mascara

It Superhero Mascara retails for $24USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a black tube with a narrow, straight applicator. This mascara is also available in a travel size for $12USD.

This mascara gave good volume and decent length in addition to defining the lashes. The applicator was easy to use and the formula didn’t smudge.


It Tightline Mascara

It Tightline Mascara retails for $24USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a silver tube with a very thin applicator with tiny bristles. This mascara is unique in that it can be used as a mascara, eyelash primer, or eyeliner. It also comes in a travel size for $10USD.

As a mascara, this gave a more natural lash effect. However, it did work well for its advertised purpose: tightlining. I think this mascara would work best paired with another mascara to get a bold lash effect.


Make Up Forever Excessive Lash Mascara

Make Up Forever Excessive Lash Mascara retails for $25USD at Sephora. The mascara comes in a black tube with a thin applicator.

This mascara gave decent volume but not much length. I feel like this a decent mascara, but there are definitely better out there, even for lower price points.


Stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara

Stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara retails for $23USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a gold tube with an hourglass shaped applicator.

This mascara defined the lashes well and gave excellent volume with decent length. The hourglass shaped applicator worked well to avoid clumping.


Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara

Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes Mascara retails for $23USD at Sephora and Ulta. The packaging is unique in that it comes in a fabric case (note that the case is normally purple, my picture is of the limited edition one from the Make Believe in Yourself collection). The applicator is straight with medium sized bristles.

This mascara gave good volume and length. The applicator was easy to use and the formula was not prone to clumping. Note that this formula does have a fragrance.


Tarte Maneater Mascara

Tarte Maneater Mascara retails for $23USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a gold leopard print tube with a plastic applicator with small bristles.

This mascara gave good volume and decent length. What really stands out about this mascara is that it leaves lashes feeling natural instead of giving that crunchy feel that many mascaras give.


Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara retails for $23USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a pink tube with an hourglass shaped applicator. This mascara is also available in a travel size for $12USD and a waterproof formula.

I’m frustrated with this mascara because I really like the volume and definition it gives my lashes, but it flakes throughout the day. I know I’ve heard complaints about this from others as well as those who say they have no problem with it. It may be worth checking out the waterproof formula to avoid flaking.


Urban Decay Perversion Mascara

Urban Decay Perversion Mascara retails for $23USD at Sephora and Ulta. The mascara comes in a thin gun metal tube with a narrow applicator with fluffy bristles. This mascara also comes in a travel size for $10USD.

This mascara did a good job volumizing and a decent job lengthening. The slimmer wand made applying the mascara to each lash easy without clumping.


Emily’s Favorite Mid Range MascaraI would say I’m a fan of both Tarte mascaras. I think Lights, Camera, Lashes gives excellent length while Maneater gives well defined natural lashes. In terms of curling, Benefit Roller Lash was easily the best.


Drugstore Mascara


Covergirl Clump Crusher Mascara

Covergirl Clump Crusher Mascara retails for $7.99 at Ulta. The mascara has a green plastic tube with a curved plastic applicator. This mascara is also available in a waterproof formula.

This mascara really didn’t do much for my lashes beyond tinting them. However, true to its name, the mascara did not clump. For a more natural lash I think this would be a good option.


Covergirl Lash Blast Volume Mascara

Covergirl Lash Blast Volume Mascara retails for $8.99USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in an orange tube with a thick plastic applicator. This mascara also comes in a waterproof formula.

I really wasn’t that impressed with the volume this mascara delivered. Instead I felt that this formula gave a natural lash. Additionally, the spiky hard plastic of the applicator was kind of painful to apply. If you want a natural lash, I think Covergirl Clump Crusher is a better option.


Essence Lash Princess Mascara

Essence Lash Princess Mascara retails for $4.99USD at Ulta. This mascara comes in a black and green tube with a thin conical applicator.

This mascara gave nice definition and volume, but I found the formula a little difficult to work with. The formula was very wet and prone to clumping. I think this mascara may improve by letting it age and dry out.


Heroine Long and Curl Mascara

Heroine Long and Curl Mascara retails for $24.97USD on Amazon (with Prime free shipping!). This is a Japanese brand of mascara and is not sold in most American stores. The mascara comes in a pink and black tube with a curved applicator.

This mascara does an excellent job lengthening and curling lashes. While it curls lashes pretty well on its own, using an eyelash curler will maximize the effect. The curl held well all day.


Heroine Volume and Curl Mascara

Heroine Volume and Curl Mascara retails for $13.55USD on Amazon (with Prime free shipping!). This is a Japanese brand that is not sold in most American stores. The mascara comes in a black and silver tube with a thin straight applicator.

This mascara gave excellent volume and curl, and the curl lasted all day. In terms of lengthening, I found this formula to be comparable to Heroine Long and Curl. One thing to consider with this mascara is that it’s very difficult to get off — Heroine actually makes a makeup remover to take off this mascara.


L’Oréal Lash Paradise Mascara

L’Oréal Lash Paradise Mascara retails for $9.99USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a pink tube with an hourglass shaped applicator. This mascara also comes in a waterproof formula.

This mascara defined the lashes well and gave good volume. The formula didn’t smudge or flake throughout the day either.


L’Oréal Miss Manga Mascara

L’Oréal Miss Manga Mascara retails for $7.99USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a black and pink tube with a conical applicator.

I actually found this mascara to be better at giving length than volume. Overall, it defined lashes very well without clumping.


L’Oréal Telescopic Mascara

L’Oréal Telescopic Mascara retails for $9.99USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a conical black tube with a very thin plastic applicator. This mascara is available in other colors as well.

This mascara gave excellent length and definition to my lashes. The thin applicator made coating each lash without clumping easy and helped with definition.


Maybelline The Falsies Push Up Drama Mascara

Maybelline The Falsies Pus Up Drama Mascara retails for $9.49USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a red and pink tube with a plastic applicator with small bristles. This mascara also comes in a waterproof formula.

I did actually like the definition in the end result of this mascara, but the short spiky wand made it hard to apply. Additionally, I found some smudging throughout the day with the formula.


Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara retails for $8.99USD at Ulta. The mascara comes in a curved pink plastic tube with a curved applicator. This mascara is also available in a waterproof formula.

This mascara curled lashes well and gave decent volume. I didn’t encounter any problems with application or smudging throughout the day.


Emily’s Favorite Drugstore Mascara: I honestly liked all of the L’Oréal mascaras although I will say that telescopic was my favorite due to its small precise wand. The Heroine Volume and Curl was also great for curling and voluminizing lashes, and I swear it will stay on through the apocalypse.