When propositioned with the question What single makeup product would you want if you were stranded on a desert island? many women would quickly respond Mascara!
It seems like a no-brainer, really. Mascara has been used to beauty women for centuries. Records show that in 4000 B.C. Egyptians were using kohl to darken their eyelashes, eye rims and eyebrows. Kohl was used to mask the eyes to ward off evil spirits and protect the soul. Pretty cool, huh?
The product that we all know and love did not originate until the nineteenth century after chemist Eugene Rimmel developed mascara with petroleum jelly. In 1913, T.L. Williams created a similar product for his sister Maybel. In 1917, he began selling his mascara via mail-order. This company would later become Maybelline.
Women may opt for lip gloss instead of lipstick, bronzer instead of blush, or powder instead of foundation; but there is no substitute for mascara.
Harper's Bazaar ranked the 10 best mascaras of all time. Here are the top 10 wands that made the final list:
1. Maybelline Great Lash Mascara: This iconic pink and lime green tube has been around since the 1970s, proving the age-old adage if it ain't broke, don't fix it. (maybelline.com, $6.40)
2. Diorshow Mascara: The list of Hollywood makeup artists who swear by this pick might run longer than the credits after a movie. The XXL brush builds incredible volume while the formula's silica powder boosts the diameter of individual lashes, said Harper's Bazaar. (dior.com, $25)
3. Lancome Defincils High Definition Mascara: Harper's Bazaar cites this mascara as a top-seller, with one sold every three minutes. (lancome.usa.com, $25)
4. CoverGirl LashBlast Volume Mascara: From personal experience, this mascara has proven itself to be something of magic when it comes to voluminous, plump lashes. (covergirl.com)
5. Benefit 'They're Real!' Mascara: Sephora recently promoted this mascara as one of its spring must-haves. Bazaar concurs, emphasizing its ability to lift, define and curl lashes. (benefitcosmetics.com, $22)
6. Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara: So genius of Bazaar to put a bottom-lash mascara on its best list! Women oftentimes forget how the lower lashes need TLC all their own. Clinique's Bottom Lash Mascara gives that perfect doe-eyed look. (clinique.com, $10)
7. L'Oreal Voluminous Volume Building Mascara: There have been numerous additions to the Voluminous line of mascaras, but the original is still the best for creating a feathery soft effect, said Harper's Bazaar. (lorealparisusa.com, $7.29)
8. NARS Larger Than Life Volumizing Mascara: NARS is known for its super-successful Orgasm shades and this mascara, which separates and defines, can definitely compete with the best of them. (narscosmetics.com, $25)
9. Shu Uemura Ultimate Natural Mascara: This mascara is perfect for those women who want a subtle, natural boost for their eyelashes without the clumped, spidery effect. (shuuemura-usa.com, $28)
10. Guerlain Noir G Mascara: Luxurious in every way! Besides the formula that does it all (lengthen, thicken, curl), the carbon pigments that deliver the blackest of colors, and the super-soft brush that fluffs up lashes, it also comes in a refillable case that clicks open to reveal a mirror for chic and easy touch-ups on the go. In a word: obsessed, said Bazaar.
Click here to read Harper's Bazaar top 10 best mascaras list, with feedback on each stunning product.
Mascara Tips and Tricks
Applying mascara is an everyday process for most women. It is the necessary beauty product for a complete, pulled-together look and it is the go-to product for those who want an easy, natural pick-me-up. Here are some tips and tricks for applying your mascara.
- When applying mascara, make sure your lashes are clean of any makeup from the day or night before. Some women like applying powder to lashes first. Powder gives the mascara something to stick to. Sephora offers a multitude of mascara primers as well. Dior's DiorShow Maximizer Lash Plumping Serum & Primer (Sephora, $28) combs, curls and coats each lash for an even application all while nourishing the lashes with its special serum-formula.
- Always curl eyelashes before applying mascara. If curling is done after mascara is applied, your eyelashes could break. Heat your eyelash curler with a hairdryer for extra oomph.
- Instead of doing quick swipes with the mascara wand, slowly wiggle the wand left to right while moving in an upward motion. This will coat each lash much better.
- Do not pump when getting more mascara on your brush. Instead, place the wand in the tube and swirl it around before removing. This will prevent air bubbles from forming and will you give a more coated brush.
- Opt for a thinner brush to get every tiny lash in the corners of your eyes.
- Apply multiple coats for a thick, luscious look. First, apply a separating, high definition mascara like the Lancome Defincils High Definition Mascara. Next, apply a volumizing mascara, like NARS Larger Than Life Volumizing Mascara, for a bold look.
- At night, make sure to protect and nourish your eyelashes with a revitalizing serum. Tarte's MultiplEYE Lash Enhancer (tartecosmetics.com, $65), when applied once daily, can reportedly increase the appearance of lash length by 152 percent. For those who do not want to splurge too much, regular ol' Vaseline will help keep lashes supple and conditioned.
Best Looks for Spring
Mascara should be your best friend this spring. Some of the hottest beauty trends from the Spring 2012 runways need mascara as a final touch.
- Cat Eyes: The cat-eye look was hugely popular on Spring 2012 runways. Models flaunted sexy, winged eyes for a fierce shape. Kat Von D's Tattoo Liner (Sephora, $18) will give you that perfectly sharp wing. Complete this look with a multi-purpose mascara, like the Diorshow Mascara.
- Dramatic Brows: Bold brows stood out on Spring 2012 runways. Define your brows with Anastasia Tinted Brow Gel (Sephora, $21). Nothing complements full brows like full eyelashes. Opt for a volumizing mascara to get the perfect peepers.
- Red Lips: Red lips popped on Spring 2012 runways adding sultriness and sophistication to every feminine ensemble. Tom Ford's Lip Color in Cherry Lush (Bergdorf Goodman, $48) begs to be paired with long, willowy eyelashes and little else.
- Primary Colors: Spring is all about color and even eyelids rocked brilliant primary colors, like Make Up For Ever's Aqua Cream (Sephora, $22). If you are feeling a little daring this season, match your eyeshadow color with colored mascara.
Check out YouTube makeup guru Michelle Phan's spring makeup tutorial below.