Finding a mascara that doesn’t smudge, can hold a curl, and provides bodacious volume and falsie-worthy length can be a difficult feat to achieve. Certain mascaras often excel in one area, but disappointingly fall short in another, but are there any mascaras that can do it all? Yes, this beauty fantasy exists beyond marketing hype. I chat the mascaras I love that will have people wondering whether your luscious lashes are falsies or your own.

This mascara contains fibres that naturally extend the length of your lashes and is the best pick for creating fluttery, soft lashes that aren’t clumpy. Unlike other mascaras that contain lash-boosting fibres, it doesn’t flake off. Originating from Japan, the Heroine Make mascara is legendary in Asian beauty circles for its lengthening prowess! Despite being a drugstore product, it’s frequently used by makeup artists and celebrities in elite entertainment circles who rave that it’s even more effective than luxury finds. You can peep KPOP star, Jessica Jung, using this product in her viral makeup tutorial. The mascara is superior at holding a curl, even lasting through serious humidity and a dip in the ocean. While I do find the mascara can transfer towards the end of the day, it requires virtually no touch up. Whenever I wear this mascara, friends have asked if I got lash extensions and one beauty therapist mistakenly thought I had applied false lashes and tried to coax me into getting a ‘lash perm’, saying I would no longer need to apply falsies. A side note: Applying this mascara fresh from the tube can look a little heavy. I recommend using a tissue and slightly wiping away any excess mascara, to ensure the finish is clean. Because it’s incredibly resilient (it has the longest wear time of the bunch), it’s also difficult to remove – with only oil cleansers able to dissolve this super-waterproof formula.

The Etude house lash perm is excellent at giving that fresh ‘no makeup-makeup’ effect. The specially curled wand separates lashes immaculately; the end result, a soft and wide-eyed look. Etude House is a cult Korean brand, but I discovered this mascara after being stunned by my how natural, but luscious my friend’s lashes looked. I immediately asked what she was doing and she recommended this mascara as a ‘godsend’ for natural beauty lovers who want that extra oomph. This is the best mascara for office goers and students, or for running everyday errands, because of its natural, clean finish. Its true strength lies in its curl-holding ability: I’ve found it not only holds a curl, but also boosts it for a cute, doll-like curve. Caution: This mascara shouldn’t be layered too heavily as it can end up looking spidery!  Simple micellar water won’t cut through this mascara, so like the Heroine Make mascara, an oil based remover is essential.

Best Mascara For Dramatic Lashes: YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils 

This mascara is my go-to for events where I want to amp up the glamour. It delivers serious old school Hollywood vibes, perfect for that fluttery, Bambi look. It also photographs beautifully because it provides great volume, without looking heavy or weighing down your lashes. While it provides decent length, it isn’t as lengthening as the Heroine Make or Etude house mascaras, but because the product is more dense it makes the lashes look darker and more visible. Longevity wise, this gem can hold down a curl and lasts the whole night without flaking. Although this is the best mascara for volume, because it is incredibly thickening, it can get clumpy if you apply too many coats. I suggest using a lash comb or toothpick to remove any excess.

Story by Kristina Zhou. Holding shot via Instagram @balmoan.

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