WE'RE all looking for mascaras that will lift, lengthen, darken and open up our eyelashes.
Unfortunately, what they often do too is clump, flake, transfer, sweat, slide and end up somewhere down south of where they were initially applied.
New generation mascaras promise to erase these problems - it's just a matter of weeding out the good from the bad (and there are a LOT of bad).
Throw back to simpler times in 2008, when all UK teens wanted from their mascara was the capacity to create a clumpy, noughties take on Twiggy's iconic spidery lashes.
For me, that involved applying lashings of gloopy formulas that dried to a thick crust, which I then separated with a pin (it proved to be quite dangerous on more than one occasion).
I've moved on since then, but still struggle with a big problem: if the stuff doesn't stick like glue, it gathers in black shadows beneath my eyes.
Avoiding putting makeup on the under-eye area can help with this - the oil from concealers and foundations will draw pigment in - but most of the time, it's to do with the type of products you're using.
This problem, afflicting some but not all, makes buying mascara difficult, and risky if it's expensive.
So, I've put a selection of mascaras (more than 40) through rigorous testing to find the crème de la crème
The results are surprising, with a lot of the high street buys under a tenner coming up trumps compared with luxury brands.
Rubber brushes are usually associate with separation more than lengthening but this one manages to do both, gliding through the lashes without clumping,
It has 306 bristles that fade from long to short (for those pesky inner corners) to aid an easy application with no transfer onto the eyelid at all - perfect for when you're in a rush!
After two or three coats, it creates the most incredible length, for both the bottom and top lashes, that will have questioning whether they are indeed your own. Plus, the staying power is like none other.
Verdict: well worth the investment.
Lancome Hypnose Volume a porter mascara, £25 from Boots - buy here
Ok, so I cheated and chose two star buys, but this mascara is absolutely AMAZING.
I'm not a huge fan of plastic brushes but the hard bristles on this one are super flexible and don't feel spiky on the lashline, plus the curved silhouette really helps to fan lashes out and create spectacular volume.
The best thing about this mascara is that it does not budge. All day. All night. I applied it in the morning and it looked just as pristine 12 hours later.
L'Oreal Paris Volume Million Lashes Feline Mascara, £10.99 from Boots - buy here
A makeup mainstay since 1971, there's a reason Maybelline hasn't had to change its Great Lash formula for nearly half a century.
This award-winning mascara won't give you false-looking lashes but that's what makes it such an everyday hero - it strikes the perfect balance.
This stuff is water-based so quite wet upon application but once it dries, it won't budge one bit. It's also said to condition your lashes while it works. Winning!
Maybelline Great Lash Very Black, £5.99 from Boots - buy here
Best mascara for volume and curl
Too Faced wasn't lying when it claimed this mascara could create 1944% more volume - the 'Better Than Sex' wand works wonders.
More than any other mascara out there, it creates dramatic impact in the most natural way. This is hard to get your head around but, basically, it makes you look like you were born with the biggest eyelashes ever.
It all down the hourglass brush and super soft bristles: they catch each individual lash and coat them with an incredibly thin layer.
So, you could keep on building and building (if you wan to - one coat will also do), and this mascara would never clump.
Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara, £19.00 from ASOS - buy here
Best bargain mascara
This mascara made waves in the beauty community for more than one reason...but mostly because it costs a mere £3.30.
Available in trusty Wilko, Essence's Lash Princess has a nifty wand that coats lashes with an inky pigment and creates incredible length.
Because it has quite a wet consistency (let it dry, people!) this mascara can smudge a little by the end of the day. So if you're going on a night out, try locking it in with a waterproof mascara.
Scroll down to see this mascara in action.
Essence False Lash Effect Mascara Princess Black, £3.30 from Wilko - buy here
Best waterproof mascara
Talking of waterproof mascaras...this is the queen right here. Eyeko's Beach and Yoga mascaras were put to the test and I was blown away by both.
They survived a dip in the pool, a subsequent shower, a 10 hour sleep and I still woke up the next day with perfectly separated, jet black lashes.
Take Eyeko's Beach mascara on holiday with you and wear its Yoga version to the sweatiest gym class you can find - you won't be disappointed.
Eyeko Beach Waterproof Mascara, £19.00 from ASOS - buy here
Eyeko Yoga Exhale & Extend Waterproof Mascara, £19 from ASOS - buy here
Best mascara for a false-lash effect
An oldy, but a goodie...because the people still want a dramatic, false-lash effect worthy of a 1960s pin-up.
Bourjois' mascara does what it says on the tin - creates super black, super bold, super long and voluminous lashes.
What makes this such a winner is the staying power, it really is made for a night of dancing in a sweaty club.
How is this achieved? The formula is actually laced with vinyl which might be alarming for some, but it comes off easily enough with bog standard eye makeup remover.
Bourjois Volume Clubbing Mascara Ultra Black, £7.99 from Superdrug - buy here
Best mascara for working out
Whether you wear makeup to the gym or not, it's good to be armed with a mascara that won't sweat off, sting your eyes and ultimately leave you looking like a panda post-workout.
And I can confirm, Clinique FIT's mascara is flawless: it lasted an entire yoga session, a dip in the pool and a hot shower. It's not too pricey either.
The small brush creates neatly separate lashes that look natural, but still really open up the eye - perfect if you're heading straight from work, to the gym and on to dinner.
Clinique Fit Workout 24 Hour Mascara, £14 from ASOS - buy here
Best mascara for sensitive eyes
I won't lie and say that this mascara is the best for dramatic volume (it's still very good) but it is hands-down, the softest and most sensitive product I've ever tried.
If you've been putting harsh tinting chemicals or extension glue on your lashes and want to repair them, this No7 mascara will give your eyes some much needed TLC.
Made with actual velvet flower, the creamy formula feels conditioning and hydrating.
The feathery brush catches every single strand but never pulls, gliding effortlessly through to the tips and coating individual strands with colour.
No7 Velvet Lash Mascara, £13.50 from Boots - buy here
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Source : https://www.thesun.co.uk/fabulous/7166832/beauty-best-mascara/