Mascara Monday: e.l.f. Studio Mascara Primer

It’s e.l.f.! I haven’t reviewed anything from my favorite brand in quite some time and so I figured it was time to hop to it. Plus, I’ve been getting a lot of questions about their mascara primer. Their $3 mascara primer. Their $3 mascara primer that works as well as the higher-priced ones. Yep. And this is why e.l.f. rules.

Price: $3 at EyesLipsFace.com and Target stores
Packaging (brush wand): 3 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “Lengthen and volumize eyelashes instantly with this Mascara Primer. Revitalize lashes with Pro-Vitamin B5, Hydrolyzed Wheat and Soy Protein-enriched formula. An excellent conditioning base for mascara. Coat each lash with this nourishing primer for lashes that appear naturally thicker, longer and stronger!” (source)

The Truth: Always wanted a mascara primer and didn’t want to drop pennies on one worth more than $10? This one is sooooo worth your $3.

What I Loved About It: This baby really helps thicken lashes quickly.

What I Didn’t Like: The wand doesn’t suck but getting into those inner corners sucks just a bit.

Overall: Primers, primers, primers….do ya need ‘em? I guess it’s a personal thing. As a mascara junkie, I always like to keep a good primer on hand. And considering e.l.f.’s is so affordable and does a REALLY good job, I’d go with this one. It’s hard to review primers because on one hand I feel like they are all so similar. Except for the wands…


The wand for this one is just okay. Getting the corner lashes is tricky but if you accidentally get some primer on your lower lashline, it’s no biggie. You can simply wipe it off and keep on truckin’. That’s the best thing about primers…they do REALLY good at “prepping” the lashes for the mascara. This primer lengthened my lashes and bulked them up a bit and by the time I came through with the mascara, the lashes were already voluminous.

Another great thing about primers is that they make it so that you don’t need to wear more than one coat of mascara. While I normally feel the need to wear 2-3 coats of mascara, this primer gave me the look I was looking for with only 1 coat of mascara. Score! And while 2-3 coats of mascara would normally leave my lashes brittle – the primer kept them softer. Not that I NEED soft lashes but it was a nice little perk.

Do you need a primer? Not really. Especially if you’re okay with how your mascara performs. But if you’d like to push it to the limit to see if the mascara can be enhanced, this $3 primer is worth a try.

 

 

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 1 coat of primer

 

Lashes with 1 coat primer, 2 coats of mascara

Lashes with 1 coat primer, 2 coats of mascara

 

Lashes to the left are just 2 coats of mascara. Lashes to the right have primer and 2 coats of mascara.

 

 

Do I recommend it?: Sure. But only if you want to try something new.

Are you a fan of primers or do you find them a bit pointless?

Mascara Monday: Urban Decay Lush Lash mascara

Huge news, y’all! This mascara review makes the 150th mascara review added to the Clumps of Mascara Mascara Bin. It’s hard to believe that I’ve tested over 150 mascaras AND wrote reviews for them. Is there a Guinness World Records section for something like this? Seriously. In honor of the 150th mascara review, I’ll be giving away UD’s Lush Lash. Aaaaand, it’s an International-friendly giveaway! Details after review!

Price: $20 at Sephora stores and Sephora.com
Packaging (brush wand): 4 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “A thickening and lengthening mascara formulated to help lashes actually grow longer. ” (source)

The Truth: The wand is a dream!

What I Loved About It: This mascara lengthens nicely.

What I Didn’t Like: You probably won’t get the complete benefits of this mascara unless you use it in conjunction with Urban Decay’s Lush Lash System (Growth Accelerating Serum and Conditioning Mask). And that goes for $42.

Overall: Here’s the dealio, because I can’t spend weeks reviewing a mascara, I won’t be able to say much about this mascara’s ability to make the lashes healthier over time. What I will do is rap on the awesomeness that is the wand, the formula and whether or not the mascara’s overall performance is up to par.

Let’s take a look see at the wand.


Nice, uh? This is the perfect wand for maneuvering through wonky lashes. The bristles are smaller than I’d like but at least they are sturdy.

Formula-wise, I think this one’s formula is nice. It plops itself on the wand easily and distributing it on the lashes is easy. It flaked a bit on me throughout the days I wore it but this can be alleviated but applying a coat of your favorite mascara primer before applying the mascara.

This baby promises to thicken and lengthen and I think it does a darn good job. Like I think it does better lengthening than thickening, I love that I can apply 2-3 coats without it clumping up on me. I didn’t get insanely longer lashes with Lush Lash, but I find it be the perfect everyday mascara. Aaaand, if I weren’t too busy reviewing so many other mascaras, I would definitely use this for days and weeks at a time to see if helped lead me to healthier lashes. It’s been such a long time since I’ve reviewed an Urban Decay mascara and it’s a plum shame because Urban Decay is one of my favorite brands.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 3 coats



Do I recommend it?: Sure do. Especially if you need a good separating mascara.

Have you tried this mascara yet? What do you think?

 


Mascara Monday: Eyeko Skinny Brush mascara

One of the reasons why I love beauty blogging is because it allows me to connect with so many people allll over the world. I feel like blogging is one huge portal of pen pal-ing and I love it. I first heard about Eyeko from a UK blogger and since then I’ve checked out their polishes and have been crossing my fingers they’d bring their skinny brush mascara to the States.

The mascara angels were on my side, y’all. The mascara has hit Sephora stores nationwide on February 23, 2012 and will formally launch online at Sephora.com on February 26, 2012. Wooo hoooo!

Price: $19 at Sephora stores and soon on Sephora.com
Packaging (brush wand): 3 out of 5
Overall: 3 out of 5

What It Claims: “Eyeko Skinny Brush Mascara Long & Tall creates dramatic lash looks, while it’s conditioning formula locks in jet-black colour with incredible staying power and creates a gravity defying hold–leaving lashes flawless, yet soft and supple.” (per press release I’ve received)

The Truth: Whoa! The wand really is skinny.

What I Loved About It: This mascara gives super volumized lashes with only one coat.

What I Didn’t Like: Buuuuut because the bristles aren’t elongated enough, separating is tough and the formula clumps up quickly.

Overall: Okay, first things first…how adorable is the packaging? This isn’t the first time I’ve seen a mascara in a tube like this. Some time ago (or maybe they still have them…), Victoria’s Secret had mascaras like this and I remember going bananas over them then. Packaging is A LOT for us beauty aficados and those looking to try something new will definitely be scooping this baby up.

Let’s take a look at the wand…


It’s REALLY skinny, uh? And skinny wands aren’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I prefer them to large wands. Skinnier wands allow you to really get into those teeny tiny lashes and elongate them. Skinnier wands are perfect folx with crazy lashes like me. And as much as I love the width of this wand, it’s the bristles that are a little weird. Long bristles would be better suited for a mascara like this but since it has reallllly small circular bristles that go around the wand, it makes it tough to really wiggle and bring out the lashes. And since the bristles are soooo close together, it makes clumping too inevitable.

Formula-wise, it’s average but appears to be thick when applying on the lashes. Again, I think that has a lot to do with the wand. It’s a long-lasting formula that doesn’t smudge or flake throughout the day so that’s awesome. Also, because of the packaging, you will definitely get your $19 worth. It looks like this mascara holds more than the average mascara wand does so yay for that! Doesn’t mean you should hold on to it for more than 3 months, but hey, it is a perk, uh?

Also – along with this mascara comes a mascara shield and according to Eyeko it’s a simple tool to help lengthen lashes and maximize curl without smudges.

Image Source: http://www.eyeko.com/eyeko-skinny-brush-mascara-p-187.html

Nice little addition! This work really well. But only if you’ve got the time to mess around with it. I like to use it to help lengthen the lashes. And hey, if you’ve got a guitar, this works as a fantastic guitar pick. 8) I grabbed a picture from Eyeko’s site that demonstrates how to use the shield.

Overall? It’s not a bad mascara. In fact, I think it would be better if the wand had longer bristles. I recommend only applying ONE coat and using the shield for added length. The mascara does pretty well with providing volume and while lengthening is so-so, the shield will help you push it to the limit a bit.

Oh. And and the mascara smells like a bottle of bubbles. You know…the bubbles that come with wands that kids and grown kids play with. Not a bad smell but it definitely brought me back to being 4 years old. Ha!

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 1 coat


Do I recommend it?: Yep, I do! Especially if you have smaller lashes.

Any Eyeko fans in the house? Whatcha think about this mascara?

 


Mascara Monday: Hourglass Film Noir Lash Lacquer

This is the first time I’ve reviewed such an amazing product. Y’all know I love mascara but let’s face it…mascara can get old. From the exaggerated claims to the same 3-4 brushes, there isn’t much originality in the mascara world these days. I know lash lacquers aren’t new either. But considering this is my first time trying one, I was through the roof yo.

Price: $28 at Sephora and Sephora.com
Packaging (brush wand): 3 out of 5
Overall: 3 out of 5

What It Claims: “Formulated for application on top of mascara, Film Noir Lash Lacquer transitions your eyes from work day to cocktail hour, or vamps up your look for an extra kick of drama any time you desire. It features a unique brush applicator and latex-like formula that fans lashes out to sensational proportions.” (source)

The Truth: Well. This is interesting…

What I Loved About It: If you’ve got some time to spare, it can really help lengthen lashes.

What I Didn’t Like: If you aren’t careful enough you can clump your lashes up somethin’ serious.

Overall: Okay, simply put: if you don’t have the time to invest in putting on this lacquer, don’t even think about getting it. And I don’t mean “time” as in a minute or so. Applying this takes precision and time; two things that a lot of us getting ready for work at 7am don’t have much of. I love mascara and consider it a staple in my makeup routine. I’ve managed to apply it within 2 minutes. I thought I could apply the lacquer within that 2 minute span and uh….no. It’s just not that simple.

Take a look see at the brush…


Looks like it belongs in a nail polish bottle, uh? It is shorter and stiffer than your average nail polish bottle. I can’t say if it’s “good” or “bad” since I’ve never used any other lash lacquer. Since I have nothing to compare it with, I can only go off what the claims say it should do. That said, I ran into some trouble applying this lacquer.

Formula-wise, the consistency is much reminiscent of a nail polish. It isn’t watery but isn’t thick like your average mascara either. The brush works well with the formula and you are able to pick up a liberal amount and apply to your lashes. Applying is the tricky part. You are supposed to apply to the tips of your already coated with mascara lashes. Sounds easy in theory, right? Welllll, it’s tough in this thing called real life.

If you apply too much lacquer, the lashes clump up immediately. If you don’t apply enough, you don’t see any results. It’s hard to get comfortably in the middle and it took me several runs to get a handle on things. But when I did, I noticed a good amount of added length. But to be honest, I’d rather save the trouble and just apply a fiber mascara if I’m in need of extra length.

Even so, I do love how this lacquer is without parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes and synthetic fragrances. Now THAT I can appreciate. Is it a necessity? Only if you really like to push it to the limit when it comes to lengthening. The price point is up there but it’ll last you for quite some time. Removal is easy too. Simply wet your fingers and gently massage away and off it comes.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 1 coat of mascara

 


 

Lash Lacquer added to lashes


Do I recommend it?: Only if you’re really in the mood to try something different. It’s a pricey mascara product and unless you can dedicate the time to learn how to use it, you’ll be wasting your money. But it does work. I just wish it didn’t clump so easily.

Have you ever seen anything like this? Whatcha think?

 


Mascara Monday: NYX Pin Up Tease macara

So. Check this out…NYX has recently released an entire collection of mascaras. And by “entire collection”, I mean SEVEN! How cool is that? Even awesome-r is that each mascara has a special function. Some brands don’t even release 7 mascaras in a year and they are hittin’ us with lucky 7 in one collection. Very very cool of you, NYX. I’ve got my hands on all of them and will incorporate them individually in Mascara Monday posts. I won’t review them back to back but I will sprinkle them around. While some peoples’ professions require them to read thesis papers, perform heart surgeries or chase down criminals, part of my profession requires that I select which mascara (of 7) I will review first.

I know. Such a daunting task, right? Considering I’m down with the curves, I selected the curvaceous Pin Up Tease mascara.

Price: $6 at Ulta stores and NYXCosmetics.com
Packaging (brush wand): 4 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: “To darken and curl lashes. Hard bristle combs to separate and curl lashes.” (source)

The Truth: Niiiiiiiiiiiiice!

What I Loved About It: It gave me really nice separation.

What I Didn’t Like: I found it a little difficult to remove.

Overall: This mascara reminds me so much of myself. Okay, wait…before you call me nutty, hear me out. I look at mascaras with packagings like this and always shake my head. I assume, “Large Tube, Huge Wand”. And most times I am dead on with that assumption. But Pin Up Tease surprised me. Her wand is surprisingly slender. And it curls too!


I mean, that is SO me. I’m like a size 12 14 (do I get a cookie for being honest?) and while you would think that my girth means I’m sluggish or anything but athletic, I am actually a freaking beast in the gym. So yes, Pin Up Tease. I identify with you. You are my mascara soul sister. But anyway…

Yeah. The wand totally surprised me. And in a good way. I mean, just look at it. It’s got a nice sturdy shape and the bristles are long enough to breeze right through the lashes. I never find much use out of wands that do that loop-y U thing. I don’t find them to be particularly helpful. But they aren’t bad either. My theory is that brands make the wands look like this to encourage you to curl and HOLD your wand to give your lashes added curl. Do I think it works? Sure. But I do the same thing with regular mascara wands too.

Formula-wise, this baby was a beaut. She went on with ease and lasted throughout the entire day. If you’re looking for a mascara that just won’t budge,  consider this one. As far as curl, though…I’m a bit of skeptic when it comes to curling mascaras. I really don’t think there is an ingredient that can lift your lashes into a curl. My belief is that the only way to really curl lashes is by using a lash curler and rolling the mascara and holding it in place. So no, I can’t say Pin Up Tease gave me any extra curl alone.

But did she give me separation? Oooooh yeah! I love mascaras that separate well. I’ve got those crazy and wonky-kind of lashes so this is the ideal mascara for me. She separated the lashes beautifully and with ease. I didn’t get a mess load of length or volume but sometimes I need just a darn good separating mascara and Pin Up Tease did it for me.

Removal was tricky. She didn’t come off with a makeup remover. So I tried the same method I use for removing fiber mascaras. I wet my finger tips and gently massaged the mascara off. It worked! Pin Up Tease didn’t “appear” to apply like a fiber mascara but considering removal was much like one, maybe there are some fiber speck thingies in there. You won’t hear me complaining about that though.

Two coats should do it. Any more than that and Pin Up Tease starts clumping up. And as promised, it realllly darkens the lashes. So while I didn’t get a ton of curl or length, I was impressed with how dark it looked on the lashes and how well it separated.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 2 coats


 

Do I recommend it?: Fo sheezy!  If you are looking for a dynamic separating mascara that will last allllll day, check this baby out.

Have you tried this mascara yet? What do you think?

 


Guest Post: How to Effectively Apply Fiber Mascara

It’s Ishah here, from over at Beauty Mamas – a blog for women who live life to the fullest and still want to look beautiful ;) My all time favourite type of mascara formulas is the fiber mascara. It builds up on your natural lashes to lengthen and volumise like no other. There is a trick to applying it, however, that can really make a big difference in the end result of your lashes!

For today’s post I am using Dolly Wink Long Mascara, but the concept is the same for other fiber mascaras. I have used this method with Maybelline The Falsies as well.


DSC_0164

Here is the video tutorial, but if you prefer text & pictures just keep on scrollin’.

                                                       Source: IshahBeautyMamas 

As you can see on the brush and on my hand, the mascara has a bunch of little fibers that are supposed to grip onto your lashes as you swipe.


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The traditional method of applying mascara isn’t the most effective with this type of formula. Firstly, we focus on lengthening: to really get the most fibers on your lashes and lengthen them as much as possible, use the tip of the wand first and swipe the brush up vertically, . This way, you are placing the fibers right where they need to go, on the ends of your lashes.


DSC_0177

Swipe each section, all the way from your inner, to your outer lashes. Using the tip ensures that you can catch every single lash and build them up. You will be able to see the fibers attaching to the ends of your lashes and making them beautifully looong! I do two coats, just to ensure I’m building the length up as much as possible.


DSC_0216good

Once you have gone over the lashes with the tip of the wand, it’s time to go back to more familiar territory. To build volume and separate, swipe the wand in a ‘zig zag’ fashion at the roots of your lashes, then sweep upwards to the tips.


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Make sure you get every lash! I give them 2 coats, but make sure you’re loading your lashes with as much of the mascara that’s on that brush. I feel like many women do too many coats and cause clumping, when what you should really be doing is using one or two coats and going over and over your lashes thoroughly with each coat. Did I explain that right? If you’re confused, see the video.
The top lashes

L: no mascara R: 2 coats of mascara applied vertically, 2 coats applied horizontally.


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Although I wouldn’t recommend doing any more coats than that, you can continue to build as much as you want with the mascara and fibers that are on the brush. With each coat I literally go over and over my lashes until they are as long and lush as I want them. If you have a good mascara (like Dolly Wink or Fiberwig) you wont get any clumping or flaking. In the video I actually went over the eye I used for the tutorial more thoroughly than the eye I had done beforehand, so it ended up looking a little more dramatic.

Oh, and don’t forget those bottom lashes! They can really pull a look together (like this one!)


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Fiber mascaras can do wonders for your eyelashes if applied right! Maximise the potential of this great formula by taking the little bit of extra time to do it right ;)

What are your thoughts on fiber mascara? Worth the extra time and effort?

Thanks for reading, beauties!

Ishah xx

Mascara Monday: Revlon PhotoReady 3D Volume mascara

Well, well, well…what do we have here? A mascara from Revlon. It’s been a long time and I do mean a LONG time since a mascara from Revlon has impressed me. If ever. And I know that sounds harsh, but I’ve got to be honest. So yah. Like all Revlon mascaras, I didn’t have high hopes for this one….

Price: $9.99 in drugstores.
Packaging (brush wand): 4 out of 5
Overall: 4 out of 5

What It Claims: Per the packaging…

The Truth: Wow. This isn’t bad. I’m serious. This is actually pretty good.

What I Loved About It: Dude, the length is REALLY good. I was impressed.

What I Didn’t Like: It’s okay with 2 coats but 3 coats of mascara sent me straight to  Clumps City. Not an epic fail, really. I didn’t HAVE to use 3 coats, ya know?

Overall: Well, well, welllll. Look who has it goin’ on. Simply put, I surprisingly liked this mascara. I’ll stop the “Revlon’s mascaras suck” bit for awhile and give you a sturdy review. The mascara promises big and bold volume and honey, it delivers. My lashes look phenomenal when I wear this. So much so that I’ve been wearing it for a week straight.

The wand….

The wand is niiiiice. The bristles aren’t super stiff so you are able to not only untangle unruly lashes, but you can also get a good handle on wiggling from root to tip. There is a bit of a “dagger” at the end of the wand but it’s hard to use. When you pull the wand from the tube, the tip of the wand is coated in mascara. No bueno. Sure, you can wipe it off on the side a bit but it’s hard to get enough off to use the dagger end. Still. Despite that, I was able to effectively use this wand with no problem. Oooooh yeah!

Yes, it’s a volume mascara but it still does a great job with lengthening too.  As far as volume, you will get it. And in a major way. This is fantastic mascara for when you really want your lashes to stand out. Most days I’m too lazy to put on eyeshadow, but I always wear liner and mascara. This is the kind of mascara I’d wear for some real pop. The one thing that prevented this mascara from getting a perfect score is how wonky it gets throughout the day. Some mascaras flake. Others just disappear but this mascara  made my lashes feel gel-like. If I went to rub my eyes, my lashes would lean whichever way. And they’d stay that way. It was easy to remove with water so while the formula gets all weird ‘n stuff, I just can’t knock how great the volume and lengthening power of this baby is.

Could it be? Did Revlon win me over? If their next mascara is so so, I’ll put them back on my good side.

Who am I kidding? I am already having a love affair with Revlon’s Lip Butters. I want to marry those things. But I digress…

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 2 coats


Oh! I forgot to mention something. You know how Revlon is notorious for those HUGE holes that the mascara wand comes out of it?

Yeah well, this mascara has it. There is a stopper that prevents you from taking out a whole heap of mascara but I don’t understand why they have to manufacture the hole so large in the first place. I don’t get it. Every other brand seems to get it except Revlon. *shrugs* It isn’t a big deal but still..the hole can make wiping off excess mascara a bit messy.

Do I recommend it?: Yep! It’s pretty good.

Have you tried this mascara yet? What do you think?

 

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Mascara Monday: Rimmel ScandalEyes mascara

POW! If there was ever a mascara whose packaging could literally knock you in the face, it would be this kid. I mean yeah, I thought COVERGIRL Lash Blast’s bright orange tube was bright. But man – that has nothing on ScandalEyes. It’s neon orange yo. Aside from that, it’s a pretty massive tube which means one thing: a large wand.

Brace yourself for this one, gals…

Price: $8.99 in drugstores. Of course you can probably get it cheaper with a coupon.
Packaging (brush wand): 2 out of 5
Overall: 3 out of 5

What It Claims: “The new MaxDensity brush, that’s 50% larger* and thicker, covers your lashes with attention – from corner to corner. With scandalous eye opening volume, this mascara should need a license. Watch false lashes become a thing of the past, as ScandalEyes mascara becomes the ultimate beauty weapon in your make-up bag. This Rimmel revolution has 3x the collagen* for plumper, sculpted lashes, 3x the keratin* for strong and healthy lashes and… 3x the attitude to guarantee scandalous behaviour!” (source)

The Truth: This wand is just…way too big.

What I Loved About It: I love obnoxious colors like neon orange so the packaging was definitely up my alley.

What I Didn’t Like: Because of the wand’s size, it makes separating and lengthening the lashes difficult.

Overall: Wow Rimmel. Some way to start the year, uh? With a massive neon orange mascara. Talk about showing some presence! While the packaging blew me away (in a good way), I wasn’t terribly excited about trying out this mascara. How can I put this gently?

Okay. I can’t.

I hate mascaras with huge wands. They just don’t make any sense to me. I suppose these brands want YOU to think that a larger wand = larger and more voluminous lashes, but come on….you don’t have to have an enormous wand to achieve voluminous lashes. If anything, I find wands this large to be quite the nuisance. Especially if you’re new to applying mascara. And especially if you have smaller lashes or lids. Wands this large can be intimidating. Oh. I guess it would help if you got a peek at the wand in question, uh?

It’s massive, uh? Another downer? It makes applying mascara to the lashes tricky. If your lashes aren’t long, you’ll have a tough time wiggling the mascara through your lashes. And by tough, it’s almost impossible. I struggled with applying this mascara. The funny thing is, if the wand was slimmer or at least had bristles that were stiffer, I’d do just fine . The formula was nice and thick and lasted throughout the day. So really this mascara gets lower ratings from me because of the wand. Everything else was up to par.

And since I’m a member of the Small Lashes Club, this wand was tough to maneuver thus resulted in mediocrity. *sigh* Did it deliver volume? Not for me. Lengthening was decent. On a good note, this mascara didn’t weigh my lashes down. They were wispy and light.

Bare Lashes


Lashes after 2 coats


Do I recommend it?: I think this mascara will work better for ladies and already have long and voluminous lashes. For the rest of us, we should just stick to slimmer wands.

Have you tried this mascara yet? What do you think?

 

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