With so very many mascaras to try, I’m hardpressed to share the best mascara. In fact, I asked my social media friends and followers for their favorites and received over 20 suggestions in forms of replies, tweets, comments, DMs, PMs and emails. Sadly, that’s too many mascaras for me to buy and try.
Our Favorite Mascaras
So instead, Kelly and I are sharing our favorites and I’m sharing a few secrets to mascara application that will change the way you see, and style, your eyes. Because, let’s be honest, it’s all about the eyes, and a lady should never be without her mascara.
Favorite brown mascara
A few summers ago, I decided that while I like to wear mascara each day, there are days where I don’t need as drastic and harsh a look as a bold, black mascara. But browns, I learned, are hard to find. After searching and trying a few, Ulta’s Amped Lashes ($10) became my favorite. It’s lightweight and opens your eyes gently, with great separation. It’s not particularly volumizing but, again, that’s not why we wear brown mascaras. It also isn’t waterproof, so don’t wear this one if you’re planning a day of crying, swimming or sweating. It’s perfect for a day I don’t like to wear a lot of make-up and am just running errands, taking it easy.
Favorite lightweight black mascara
Similar to Ulta’s brown mascara, Arbonne’s It’s a Long Story ($36) offers a very lightweight black coating that’s healthy for my eyes. This mascara is tops for lengthing and separating and coats them well for hours. It’s not waterproof and it comes off really easily when it’s time to remove. I love that the ingredients are healthy ingredients.
Favorite WOW mascara
Benefit’s They’re Real Mascara ($23) is my ultimate mascara when I’m going out on the town or to an event and want my eyes to wow. This mascara adds length and volume and separates and coats my lashes.
Favorite video mascara
I love filming YouTube videos and take time to prep my eyes before filming. Often, I host a mascara martini and mix mascaras for effect (check out this LA Times article to learn how — I hear DiorShow is a great mascara that I’m going to have to try soon because I’m curious now.) But when I film YouTube videos, I know I’m going to need extra depth, volume, length and separation — even more than with They’re Real. So I use my dotting method (see below) and coat my lashes with MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Smoky Extravagant ($24) that adds volume, length and curl to my lashes like no one else.
Favorite drug-store brand
Many people say that they don’t have to get any more than a pharmacy brand. My mom swears by Maybeline’s Great Lash ($5.99) and others love Cover Girl’s many mascara varieties (most under $10). I should probably go back and try both, again. I’ve been a fan of a Neutrogena brand that’s no longer available, so I’ll be searching around CVS again soon.
Favorite sensitive mascara
My eyes aren’t sensitive, so I asked Kelly for help. She shared with me: “I have very sensitive eyes so most mascaras end up making me itch them away-NOT a good look. The only one I can wear is Physician’s Formula ($10). I still have to take it off after an evening out, but it doesn’t give me raccoon face in the middle of the evening.”
Mascara application tip
I referred to one of my new, favorite resources, Toss the Gloss: Beauty Tips, Tricks & Truths for Women 50+, for tips on how to apply mascara and love the suggestion Andrea learned when she was chatting with a woman “of a certain age” whose eyes were show-stopping:
Before using mascara, she curled her lashes. Her mascara routine was unlike any I had seen before — she applied the wand close to the lash line and moved it back and forth several times before pulling it through the lashes and followed up by holding the wand vertically and moving it back and forth like a windshield wiper.
(While Toss the Gloss is written with tips for women 50+, this 40-year-old can’t get enough of Andrea Q Robinson’s beauty suggestions. The book was provided as a sample.)
Julie’s Dot Trick for Applying WOW Eyes
While, often a coat or two of mascara is enough each day, on the days that I’m filming video or want to step up my eyes a notch, I use Pixi Lash Line Ink in Black Silk ($14) as my secret tool. Before applying mascara, I dot the skin on my lash line, between the roots. Next, I apply a thin line directly above the lashes. Finally, I curl my lashes, then apply at least two coats of the mascara (usually I do this when I wear They’re Real or Smoky Extravagant), getting as close to the lash line as possible.
The dotted line fills the tiny gaps between lashes and gives my eyes a much stronger volumizing pop. Want to see the outcome? Here’s a recent video shoot where I used Pixi Lash Line and Make Up For Ever’s Smoky Estravagant Lash. (Pay attention to the lashes, not the shadow, which I’ve realized is completely uneven. Yikes!)
What are your favorite mascaras? What tips do you have for perfect mascara application?