Best Mascaras

Whether you’re looking for volume and drama or just the perfect natural looking mascara to wear to the beach, mascara is THE unanimous makeup bag essential.

Best Mascara for Volume

Yves Saint Laurent Volume Effet Faux Cils Luxurious Mascara
Color Black
# of Reviews: 56+

Best Mascara for Short Lashes

Benefit Cosmetics They’re Real! Lengthening Mascara
Color Beyond Black
# of Reviews: 1669+

Best Mascara for Long Lashes

MAYBELLINE the Falsies Lash Lift Washable Mascara
Washable Lengthening Mascara: Get an instant lash lift effect from a mascara; This eyelash extension mascara infused with fibers delivers dramatic volume, length, and lift for lashes that gives you a false eyelash effect
# of Reviews: 17632+

Best Waterproof Mascara

Covergirl Lash Blast Volume Waterproof Mascara
MAX OUT THOSE LASHES: Designed to max out every lash, this Lash Blast Volume Mascara creates 10 times more volume instantly
# of Reviews: 27090+

Best Mascara for Sensitivity

Lash Princess False Lash Effect Mascara
NO FALSIES NEEDED! Lash Princess False Lash Mascara defines and separates lashes while achieving a bold look.
# of Reviews: 194000+

Why should you even wear mascara in the first place?

Mascara comes in all shapes and sizes. You can buy it at the drugstore or at upscale department stores. It’s one of the best makeup staples for both prolific makeup wearers and those who prefer a natural look. The best mascara enhances the eyelashes, darkening, thickening, lengthening, or defining. The tricky part comes in when you have to decide what effect you want your mascara to have.

We chose some of our favorites by looking at things like formula, the shape of the mascara’s wand, safety, and ultimate effect.

What makes mascara great?

First you need to decide whether you want a voluminous look, clumps or no clumps, or perhaps just a bit of extra length. Maybe you’re looking for drama, an all natural look, or simply an added pop. You’re the boss. We will help with detailing a few things you should take into consideration when choosing your mascara.


This is the most important first thing to consider when shopping for a mascara. Different formulas serve different purposes. From film-forming polymers to collagen and waterproof blends, there’s a mascara formula for everyone. Take extra note if you have sensitive skin, eyes, or if you wear contact lenses. Natural formulas may be a great fit.

Wand Shape

Formula combined with brush is what determines a mascara’s effect on the eyelashes. For the most part, mascara wands come either with twisted wire brushes or rubber bristles. Twisted wires are great for those who like clumps while thin, rubber bristles are best for those who do not.

The bristles may come in the form of a comb or a ball. Combs are great for a natural and separated look while a ball applicator helps in rounding out of the detail of each individual lash.

Applicators can range in width from fat to skinny. The fatter the wand, the more formula that’s picked up each time you dip the applicator into the tube. So if you’re the one-swipe type of mascara user, you may want to opt with a fatter, twisted wire brush.


Mascaras come in colors ranging from black or brown to blue and purple. Different mascara colors have varying effects on people with different eye colors. Black is the most obvious and the most popular. If you have light features, however, it may not give you the optimal effect. Funkier colors like blues and purples are great for those with blue eyes. It brightens the whites of eyes and can give a more alert or awake effect to the face.

How to apply mascara

There are different ways to apply mascara. Some prefer a quick application in a single swipe while others carefully apply their mascara in multiple layers.

  1. Open your eyes and look up
  2. Start at the base of the lashes and begin coating
  3. Wiggle or sweep the wand up
  4. Repeat to your desired effect, building in layers

Clumps or no clumps?

For a no clump effect, pull the wand slowly through the lashes in a combing fashion. If you like the clump look, wiggle the wand back and forth instead of sweeping.

Bells and Whistles

There are a few accessories you may want to consider along with your mascara. Mascara can dry out your lashes and with that in mind you may want to consider a conditioner. Apply at night or underneath your chosen mascara.

The other essential to consider is an eyelash curler. Curlers get mixed reviews. Some people find them uncomfortable to use, but they have serious benefits in the appearance of lashes. You only need a single coat of mascara after curling.

This one goes without saying but eyeliner can be just the trick one needs for accentuating their lashes. We recommend applying eyeliner to the water line for the best pop.

The last accessory you should consider which is absolutely essential is a gentle mascara or makeup remove. We love cleansing wipes because they’re easy to use and come in large packs.

Best Mascara for Volume

This mascara is so good it’s deceiving. In fact, the effect it has is almost too good to be real. The intense black formula both thickens and lengthens the lashes without smudging under or around the eyes. The fat and fluffy brush creates ample volume. Only apply a single coat to get the bold effect.

Beauty with a purpose

One of this lash’s best assets is its formula which includes Moroccan argan oil and vitamin B5 to keep the lashes conditioned. It’s pricey, but if you’re a makeup lover it’s worth it.

RR Rating:
# of Reviews: 56+
◘ Color Black
◘ Item Volume 7.5 Milliliters
◘ Wand shape: Twisted brush

Best Mascara for Short Lashes

This wand is a fan favorite amongst cult beauty enthusiasts. It’s in the mid-range for price but also incredibly effective, enhancing the lashes to double their length. The beauty in this best mascara is its natural effect, giving it an “anti mascara” mascara result.

Known for its brush

When speaking of brushes, this one has an especially innovative wand. The unique tapered brush coats each lash for ultimate separation and non-clumping. It’s ideal for people who want to add length to short lashes.

RR Rating:
# of Reviews: 1669+
◘ Color Beyond Black
◘ Skin friendly ingredients

Best Mascara for Long Lashes

Not only does this mascara bring on all the drama, but it uses ophthalmologist tested ingredients. This makes it suitable for sensitive eyes and those who wear contact lenses. People with stubborn and straight long lashes swear by this mascara. You won’t need to invest in a pricey lash lift if you’re using this product.

It’s all in the lift

The double curved applicator and fiber-infused formula grabs lashes at the roots for a lifting and curling effect. The formula acts like glue, stretching and lifting your lashes upwards.

RR Rating:
# of Reviews: 17632+
◘ It's All In The Eyes: Subtle lines, smokey vibes, custom brow looks, classic tones or a shot of color; Our eyeshadow, eyeliner, brows, and volume mascara collections are designed to transform your look
◘ Explore Your Creativity: We're committed to celebrating beauty, self expression and creativity with our full line of makeup, from foundations, concealers and bronzers to eyelash growth mascara, brow pencils, eyeliner and lipstick
◘ Washable Lengthening Mascara: Get an instant lash lift effect from a mascara; This eyelash extension mascara infused with fibers delivers dramatic volume, length, and lift for lashes that gives you a false eyelash effect
◘ Lifting Brush: Our double curved mascara separator brush and fiber-infused volumizing mascara formula grabs lashes at the root to lift, thicken and lengthen; No clumps, smears, or flakes, just volume and the look of longer eyelashes that lasts all day

Best Waterproof Mascara

This big-look mascara is an oldie but a goodie. It comes in different shades, notably the translucent shade. Clear mascara is great for those with already dark lashes or those looking for a super natural effect. Overall the mascara is great for fine lashes and doesn’t have a “too-wet” effect.

In sweat and tears

If you’re planning on going to the beach, sweating, or watching a tear-jerking film anytime soon, this is the best mascara option for you. It gives a great bang for its buck too.

An added bonus is the cruelty free nature of the mascara which is never tested on animals.

RR Rating:
# of Reviews: 27090+
◘ ZERO CLUMPS: This volumizing mascara evenly coats each lash with no clumping or flaking
◘ CRUELTY-FREE: Covergirl products are Leaping Bunny Certified by Cruelty-Free International, meaning they are never tested on animals
◘ MAX OUT THOSE LASHES: Designed to max out every lash, this Lash Blast Volume Mascara creates 10 times more volume instantly
◘ MEGA VOLUME IN AN INSTANT: Instant blast of fullness and length
◘ PICK YOUR SHADE: Available in 4 different colors, so you can choose how bold you want to go

Best Mascara for Sensitivity

Say goodbye to falsies and hello to a once-a-day application. This stuff seriously doesn’t budge, from the morning before work to the post-office gym session. For the price, it’s shockingly effective.

Cruelty- free and proven sensitive formula

For those with sensitive or dry eyes, this mascara is a must. It is ophthalmologically tested and the wand was a winner for top rankings in a GH Beauty Lab test. This means your eyelashes will shine without any guilt.

RR Rating:
# of Reviews: 194000+
◘ LASTS ALL DAY: go about your day free from flaking & fading! This mascara does not flake, fade, or wear, making it a perfect all-day, longlasting mascara.
◘ CRUELTY FREE: essence cosmetics is certified and acknowledged by PETA as a cruelty-free brand. We do not test any of our products on animals.
◘ NO FALSIES NEEDED! Lash Princess False Lash Mascara defines and separates lashes while achieving a bold look.
◘ DRAMATIC VOLUME: the conic shape fiber brush delivers dramatic volume and sculpted length WITHOUT clumps or globs.

FAQs about Mascara

Can mascara be bad for the lashes?

You may be wondering if it’s okay to wear mascara everyday. While over-wearing mascara can lead to dryness and inflammation, the key is to remove your mascara with a gentle solution at the end of the day.

Is expensive mascara worth the investment?

This is up to your budget and the importance you place on your lashes. If mascara is your go to makeup staple, it’s worth the investment. Seal it tight in your makeup bag so you don’t lose it!

How many coats should I use for this best effect?

This depends on taste and product. If you’re a perfectionist, fewer coats leads to less clumping. If you like an extra dark effect, apply away at your own discretion.

How often should I replace my mascara?

This ones important so listen up. You should replace your mascara often, or every three months, to keep the formula fresh and to avoid styes and other eye infections.


We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Reviews you may be interested in