Three mascaras in my daily makeup bag may seem excessive. Surprisingly, I found myself reaching for each one often enough that it made sense to keep them all together. They're all that good.
Here's the rundown:
1. Lancome Definicils Mascara in Black
My description: Basic, everyday mascara.
Lancome's description: "Natural but noticeable lashes."
Price: $27.50, the most expensive in my roundup.
Best suited for: Daily wear for work, errands, casual events.
One coat: Gotta run, already running late, clump-free lashes with definition and length.
Two coats: Guaranteed compliments, zero clumps, eyelashes reaching eyebrows.
This is my go-to mascara. I have been purchasing it consistently since 2004. That's a decade of commitment, making my opinion of this mascara tried and true.
The wand itself is thin and easy to maneuver across the lashes. I appreciate the square-shaped end of the wand, as this allows me to achieve a precise and consistent application with each use.
With a classic Christmas tree shape, this mascara is perfect for anyone: makeup beginners, makeup devotees, and occasional makeup users alike. The formula rarely clumps. It applies with ease and yields excellent results. This mascara will always hold a special place in my makeup bag (and my heart).
2. Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara in Jet Black.
My description: When basic just won't cut it.
Smashbox's description: "Volumizing and lengthening."
Price: $19.50, the median-priced mascara in my roundup.
Best suited for: Some time on your hands, a desire to have standout lashes, and somewhere to go.
One coat: Lash definition, possible clumping maintenance required, eyelashes reach eyebrows.
Two coats: Total lash definition, definite clumping maintenance required, zero flaking, lashes will look fanned out and flashy.
I reach for this mascara when I have a little extra time on my hands and if I choose to emphasize my eyes in my overall makeup look for the day. This is not to say that I wouldn't pair this mascara with a bold lip-- if I use a single coat of it, I can have the best of both worlds, emphasized eyes and a bold lip.
As you can see, the wand of this mascara is huge. This is why I allow myself some extra time when I use it. A bigger wand means a higher chance of making mistakes, like mascara clumps or getting the formula on your skin instead of on your lashes.
Overall, I am impressed with this mascara. I love the results I get from it, and I like that even though this is a mascara I use for a statement eye, I can still use it for everyday wear by reducing the amount I apply. There is something to be said for its versatility. However, this mascara will definitely require clumping maintenance, as the wand is roughly the size of a toothbrush. Also, the formula tends to gather at the base of the wand. I frequently wipe off the base of the wand to avoid clumping, but this wastes product. It's a sacrifice I'm willing to make, but it's also a deterrent in terms of the likelihood that I will repurchase this mascara.
3. Benefit They're Real! Mascara in Jet-Black
My description: Fake lashes from an actual mascara. Heavenly, beautiful, statement lashes.
Benefit's description: "Jet-black mascara that lengthens, curls, volumizes, lifts, and separates lashes for a spectacular 'out-to-here' look."
Price: 0.14 ounces, $10, the cheapest in my roundup; 0.3 ounces, $23, second most expensive.
Best suited for: Formal events, statement eyes, impressing everyone with your majestic lashes.
One coat: Long, full lashes that truly look like false eyelashes, black as the darkest night sky.
Two coats: You're going to be asking yourself if your lashes are real. Clumping maintenance may be required at first, but not as you get used to the formulation of the mascara and the uniqueness of the wand.
When I use They're Real, I know it's a special day. If I want my eyes to be the primary focus of my makeup look, this is the mascara I use. It is absolutely stunning. I could write pages of praises for this mascara. It is the mascara I use the least often, but it is my favorite of the three. I purchase it in the smaller size, and two tubes of it will last me the entire year.
The wand is unique because the bristles are spaced out more than other mascaras and made of plastic instead of synthetic fibers. The top of the wand has bristles as well, which is wonderful for reaching the inner and bottom lashes.
They're Real should be in every woman's makeup bag. The small sized tube is comparable to the pricing of drugstore brands, but the high-end formulation is superior to any mascara I have ever used. One coat of this mascara is all you need to give the appearance of false eyelashes. Amazingly, one coat of They're Real will rarely clump if you are taking your time when applying it. Two coats will likely clump, and I have had some disasters when attempting two coats. One coat is plenty for dramatic, statement, perfect eyelashes.