4 Disappointing Mascara Reviews

November 11, 2010

L1007145.JPG  by Irving Penn at MoMA

Because of Loreal’s animal testing, my favorite Loreal Voluminous mascara has been banished from my bathroom.  I used it for years and years, and loved it.  But it’s gone now.  Permanently.  Adios, animal tester!

If I don’t like a product, I usually don’t review it on BigSisLilSis.  We all get enough negativity in our day without me being Negative Nellie and adding to it, right?

It turns out however that it’s UBER hard to find a good mascara that isn’t animal tested, so I’m making an exception to my rule.  I’ll share my thoughts about what I’ve tried lately, and you can take my comments with a grain of salt.

I’m sorry to say that of the last four mascaras I’ve tried, I don’t like any of them.  Not one ding dang one!  Boo!

Here’s what I’ve tried and tossed:

  • Smashbox Hyper Lash ($21) – I had really high expectations for Hyper Lash after hearing rave reviews on the radio from a local DJ, so I bit the bullet and spent more than I ever do on mascara.  First off, the brush on Hyper Lash is really different.  It has bristles on one side to apply the product and a comb on the other side to separate the lashes.  The first coat went on truly clump-free.  Hurray!   The only problem is that one coat was very thin and skimpy, so I needed two additional coats and that caused a lot of clumping.  I didn’t get any volume or lengthening, and I felt that my lashes just didn’t show up.  I got some fine flakes under my eyes by the end of the day, and my lashes looked dry.  Hyper Lash isn’t waterproof, but was hard to remove.  This mascara was pricey and it went back to the store.
  • Tarte Lights Camera Lashes ($19) – I like Tarte’s nice big normal brush, but the product was fairly thin so I didn’t get any volume, similar to the result I got with Hyper Lash.  I didn’t get much clumping, which was great, but this mascara provides an extremely natural look and I just need more from a mascara.  If your naked eyelashes look like Bambi’s, this mascara may be enough for you, but it’s not for me.  It removed fairly easily, but I did have some flaking during the day.  It isn’t a bad product, but for the price, I expected better results.
  • MAC Zoom Lash ($14) – I wanted a thicker formula than what Tarte and Smashbox offered, so I guess I should be careful about what I wish for.  I went into a MAC store and asked for their best mascara for volume without clumping, and Zoom Lash was their recommendation.  Zoom Lash is radically thick to the point of being gloppy, and the small short-bristled brush made it impossible for me to apply it without a huge goopy mess.  It also straightened out my just-curled lashes. Rats!   This may be my least favorite MAC product ever, I’m sad to say!  I should have taken it back; I hate it that much.  Why didn’t I?
  • Revlon 3D Extreme ($7.50) – 3D Extreme is super thick too, and has another weird brush.  What happened to plain old big brushes that reach every lash?   This one is flat with short bristles on each side with a rounded bulb kind of a thing at the end of the wand.  I don’t get it.  What am I supposed to do with this contraption?  What I did get was clumping galore, and straightened lashes like Zoom Lash gave me.  Fail!

I’m disappointed at what I’ve found so far, and I haven’t even restricted my search to vegan mascaras.  Sheesh!  The search for a good mascara will continue though.  I’m not encouraged, but I’m also not giving up and resorting to wearing false eyelashes every day!

Hey, volume-building, clump-free, perfectly-thick, cruelty-free mascara!  Come out, come out, wherever you are!

photo credit: Susan NYC


7 Comments so far

  1. Posted by Emily

    November 14, 20108:32 pm

    I really loved The Body Shop’s mascara and I highly recommend it! http://www.thebodyshop-usa.com/mascara/prod4940003

  2. Posted by BigSis

    November 14, 20108:40 pm

    Thanks, Emily! I hadn’t even thought of Body Shop for mascara for some reason. Thanks for the suggestion; I’ll check it out as soon as I use up this stuff I don’t like!

  3. Posted by LilSis

    November 16, 20104:02 pm

    I thought I liked the Clinique one that I bought recently, but it’s already gotten really glompy! :-(

  4. Posted by BigSis

    November 21, 20101:53 pm

    Oh boo, LilSis! Nothin’ worse than glompy mascara!! We’ll keep looking for the good one that HAS to be out there!

  5. Posted by Janeen

    December 3, 20109:57 am

    I have 2 favorite mascaras right now, but I do not know if they’re cruelty free or not so check that out first before considering them:
    Buxom Lash Mascara (http://www.sephora.com/browse/product.jhtml?id=P228204)
    Laura Mercier Full Blown Volume Lash Building Mascara (http://www.sephora.com/browse/product.jhtml?id=P268213&shouldPaginate=true&categoryId=5809)
    I find that they give me volume and length without a clumpy mess. :)

  6. Posted by Karina

    December 13, 20109:22 pm

    Great post. I always struggle to find a good mascara.

  7. Posted by Mim

    April 19, 20145:02 am

    hi there,

    i just stumbled upon your blog.. i have a question re/ the mascaras. in the close-up picture of your eye, which mascara did you put on on the right side??

    thanks in advance! n i hope you´ve found your perfect mascara by now…. (:

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