It’s not enough for a mascara to just color your lashes. Moving at the speed of light, mascaras are by far the most technologically advanced of all the beauty products out there, with formulas constantly being tempered into new super-sized proportions, and wands now crafted to glide through lashes with smooth, scientific ease. Which is great news for those of us who would never leave home without a few bats to our lashes. Here’s the top of the class for fall:
Rimmel Never Ending Lashes Lash AcceleratorMascara, $9.99
I love, love love Rimmel mascaras. Theirs always do what they say they do on the box, and even the most volumizing formulas somehow go on clump-free. This one is sort of a greatest-hits formula. It lengthens, it thickens, it separates, and it grows lashes. It's a little pricier than their others, but it's worth it. The formula extends the length of lashes with superfine microfibers, and fattens them up from the inside out with a keratin-and-anti-oxidant-packed formula. The slender applicator, packed with thin, grabby bristles that do an excellent job of getting to those hard-to-reach lashes in the corners of eyes.
Clarins Be Long Mascara, $25
A fusion of lash-growing serum and a glossy mascara. Clarins patented its own special growth activating complex just for this mascara, which promises a 1.1 millimeter of growth (in lash terms, that’s a killer growth spurt) in one month. I’ve only been using it for a week, so I can’t attest to those figures yet, but it is by far my favorite everyday mascara (meaning my lashes look longer and thicker and a nice inky black hue but in a subtle, natural way.) I’ll report back in three weeks on whether they grew or not. Oh, and I really like the brush. It's somehow small yet bristly enough so that I can get to all my lashes— even the bottom ones — without getting mascara on my face, which is a miracle.
Physicians Formula Organic Wear Jumbo LashMascara, $9.99
That rare best-of-both-worlds mixture that incorporates a green beauty philosophy — eschewing all synthetics for an all-natural, 70-percent organic formula — without losing an ounce of cutting-edge lashiness. The jumbo brush and thickening formula are instantly effective — two full coats really make a difference to lashes. I have sensitive eyes and wear contact lenses and most super-lush formulas irritate my eyes, but this formula didn't, so it's my new go-to big-night-out mascara.
Cover Girl Clump Crusher LashBlast Mascara,$6.45
Designed to mimic the full fan of lashes you get from a set of extensions, this super-formula has a stretchy, fiber-filled formula that glides over lashes to create buildable layer upon layers of fresh-looking, lengthening color. What really is great is the curved brush which works as a lash comb, as well as an applicator, separating and defining each little lash all the way from root to tip. Plus, the formula is really long wearing — I applied it at 9 a.m. and it didn’t budge until I removed it at 11 p.m. that night.
Estee Lauder TurboLash All Effects MotionMascara, $38
Makeup artists like to wiggle mascara back and forth as they apply it, because that movement surprisingly works to coat and separate each lash as the pigment goes on. This mascara takes that movement and amps it up with its own auto-powered vibrating brush. The results are dramatic — two full coats of this stuff translates into three or four coats of other kinds of volumizing/lengthening formulas. Personally, it's a little too much "oomph" for my fair coloring, but if you love that look,this is the equivalent of your cosmetic holy grail. Seriously, beauty editors I know are flat-out addicted to this mascara.