, pub-5075614835530024, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 10 Mascara Reviews: From Drugstore to High End | Classically Contemporary

Friday, October 9, 2020

10 Mascara Reviews: From Drugstore to High End

Best Drugstore Mascara for Volume

As a follow-up to my Best Lash Primers post, I wanted to share a big ol' post detailing my favourite (and some not-so-favourite) mascaras from the past year or two. I used to do a bunch of "Splurge or Save" comparisons with lots of popular mascaras featured, so check these out for some more amazing dupes:

What I'm Looking for:

  • Comfortable brush shape and style (I prefer classic fluffy plastic bristles vs. firm rubber comb bristles)
  • I have long, thin lashes that are quite dense, but they point straight down
  • I want a non-waterproof mascara that holds up well for a full day behind glasses, so it must hold a curl and not flake uncontrollably 

Dior DiorShow Plump 'n Volume HD $37 (10/10)

This mascara is featured in my swatch image below, layered over their HD mascara primer. It's a truly wonderful combination and I think the mascara is well worth the price. I get MASSIVE length and good volume, but truly otherworldly definition with zero clumping. Wouldn't use it alone though.

Dior Diorshow Mascara $37 (8/10)

I find this to be pretty similar to L'Oréal Voluminous, so I wouldn't say it's worth the high price tag. It's still good and performs well, but nothing super special.

Clinique High Impact Mascara $27 (8/10)

This is another great, staple formula like Dior Diorshow. No complaints, just a slightly slimmer brush and this one pairs really well over the Covergirl lash primer.
Touted to be "revolutionary, intense, super shiny color for lashes" I found this to be a decent formula for layering over the Dior primer, On its own, I'm not crazy about it. I find the formula to be quite drying and it can flake, especially when you try to build up volume. It is extremely black and shiny though, which is hard to find!

L'Oreal Voluminous Lash Paradise $14.50 (7/10)

A true dupe for TooFaced Better Than Sex, this mascara is a drugstore gem. Available in 4 shades and performs perfectly well on its own. I personally find it to be relatively clumpy like its primer counterpart, but a formula you can rely on that won't break the bank.

COVERGIRL Exhibitionist Mascara $12.50 (6/10)

Very polarizing reviews on this one (isn't that the case with most drugstore mascaras?) but I think it's OK and a more wet version of Voluminous. It claims to provide intense volume in one swipe with no flaking/smudging. The applicator does come our quite sloppily but for the price, it's fine. Would wear the Essence primer underneath.

NYX Worth the Hype Volumizing & Lenghtening Mascara $10.50 (9/10)

LOVE this mascara! And it just keeps growing on me! "If you want your lashes to look darker, fuller and lethally gorgeous all day long, then our new Worth the Hype Volumizing & Lengthening Mascara is your jam". It lasts longer and is a better version of the next tube I'm talking about, Voluminous Carbon Black.

L'Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black $10.50 (8/10)

This is a staple in my vanity: a very dark and plumping formula that layers well over its Voluminous primer counterpart. I believe the waterproof is also good, and this comes in a blue shade as well. I believe this and Diorshow are comparable as well.

Stila Magnum XXX Mascara $30 (7/10)

Let's let this one speak for itself "This mega-volume-building mascara is the optimized combination of formula and brush. Surprisingly lightweight, the creamy, non-clumping formula contains Curl Flex, a unique styling resin with exceptional curl retention and lash hold. It leaves lashes shiny and thick, full-bodied, yet flexible. It also contains 1% Diamond Powder for dramatic black color intensity and lash conditioning. The fibers of the super-size, blossom-shaped brush are carved in a statuesque, curved silhouette that channels just the right amount of formula for a lush, rich coat every time you apply." Lots of claims there people. Lots. It's good, and definitely bulks up lashes a lot. My only problem is the GIANT brush! I get the allure, but it just doesn't work the best for my eye shape. If you crave a giant brush, check this one out.

Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Mascara $30 (5/10)

Ugh, clump city. Just like it's partnering primer, I find the clumps to be a bit much. It's fine and I do find it to be less smudgy than some, but if you want that CHUNKY look just go for L'Oréal Voluminous Lash Paradise.


I really didn't like this mascara, but I also didn't try it out with primers/curlers/etc. "Full Frontal’s lightweight, ultra black formula was specifically paired with an exclusive flat-to-fat brush: The FAT side holds max product to quickly load and lift lashes; the FLAT side defines and curls. And thanks to the round, pointed tip, you can load up and reveal every little lash you never knew you had. We’re talking flat to fat… just like that." I get the hype so if you want a product that you can really play with, try it out. I didn't find it held my curl well at all though.

Mascara Review Drugstore

Best Mascara that Doesn't Smudge

Best Mascara Review

What mascara have you been loving lately? I bet it'll be the hottest product on the market now that we're all in masks! 

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