This month for my Beauty Fav Four, I reviewed four of my favorite mascaras. I have to admit, I take advantage of samples, rewards, and freebies at Sephora and Ulta enough that I rarely purchase mascara. But when I do, I have my favorite brands that I go to, because I know they work and provide the results that I’m looking for.
In my February Fav Four post, I featured an eyelash primer from Lancome called Cils Booster XL. I absolutely love this stuff, because I feel like it makes my lashes appear thicker and longer. For the purposes of comparing these mascaras, however, I decided to skip the primer so I could experience how each of them works on their own. I also used the same makeup routine all four days in order to get a fair comparison (same eyeliner, eye shadow, etc.).
One thing that is very important to me is that any mascara I use absolutely cannot irritate my eyes. I wear contact lenses and have found that a lot of mascaras, especially the ones with fibers in them to help your lashes look fuller, flake off into my eyes and really irritate them. If you wear contacts, you know the pain that a tiny little piece of dust can cause. Another “must have” for me is that it has staying power – it needs to last from early morning until evening without reapplication during the day. So here are my favorites, with the pluses and minuses of each.
Too Faced Better Than Sex
According to their website, this mascara “thickens, lengthens, and curls after just one coat” and they claim to be the #1 selling prestige brand mascara in the U.S. It’s been my favorite for a couple years; no other mascara makes my lashes appear longer or thicker. I also love the plush brush; it has lots of bristles to help the mascara go on a bit more evenly. I do have a couple complaints, though. One is it seems to dry out very quickly. I feel like a full size tube of this just doesn’t last as long as other brands. My second complaint is that it tends to clump on it’s way out of the tube. Sometimes I pull out the wand and there is the perfect amount on the brush, and other times it comes out with a big chunk of mascara on it. I have a feeling that whatever the formula is that makes it go on your lashes thickly also causes both of these downsides. It has staying power, lasting through a very sweaty workout! Its available at both Sephora and Ulta, as well as on the Too Faced website for $23.
Buxom Lash Mascara
This quickly became my second favorite after trying a sample. I immediately bought a full size, since I was getting low on my usual Better Than Sex. This is similar to the Too Faced Mascara in that it creates thicker, longer looking lashes. The brush is almost identical in shape to Better Than Sex, but the bristles are stiffer. They are more like teeth on a comb, which prevents clumping when it goes on. This stuff has incredible staying power. I can put it on early in the morning, and it won’t need any touchups before going out in the evening. It can be difficult to remove, requiring more than just a makeup remover wipe (it will remain in tact through a shower!), but any decent eye makeup remover will work. This, too, can be picked up at Sephora, Ulta, or on Buxom’s website for $20.
Clinique High Impact Mascara
I like this mascara because it goes on so smoothly; absolutely no clumping. You can tell it’s smooth when you pull the wand out of the tube, and it glides onto your lashes easily. You can apply a couple coats without it getting too thick or clumpy. It does make my lashes appear longer, but without the added thickness that the Buxom or Too Faced mascaras provide. It also doesn’t have the staying power of the others. By mid day it was working it’s way off my lashes and I needed another coat. However, even though it came off during my workout, it didn’t irritate my eyes. You can pick it up anywhere that sells Clinique, like your favorite department store, Ulta, Sephora, or Clinique’s website for $18.
Diorshow Iconic Overcurl
This is the most expensive of the four, coming in at $29.50, but it’s not my favorite of the lot. I love the curved brush – it’s much easier to get my bottom lashes with a curved brush versus a straight brush. This also lasts all day, but comes off easier than either the Buxom or Too Faced mascaras. I didn’t feel like it produced the length or thickness I was looking for, but it does help hold a curl if you use an eyelash curler. It does have a tendency to clump, so when I use this I keep it to a single coat. Available anywhere that sells Dior cosmetics.
Honorable Mention: Grande Mascara Lash Boosting Formula
I had never heard of Grande Cosmetics until I received a sample of this mascara from Sephora. It is quite thick, but does go on smoothly and evenly. I haven’t had it long enough to know how quickly it dries out or if it gets clumpy. It is supposed to condition you lashes to make them healthier over time. Again, I haven’t used it long enough to know if that claim has any merit, however I’m going to give it a shot for a week and see how it goes. It also has a primer that goes with it, but my sample didn’t come with the primer so I haven’t tried it out. You can pick it up for $25 on Grande Cosmetic’s website, at Sephora online, or from HSN.