Empowering Every Woman to be Beautiful

Who Makes the Best Mascara?

As a makeup artist, I've had heated debates (with other artists, of course) over who makes the world's best mascara. Well, as in most cosmetic debates, there are three categories to consider: high end, affordable and natural - often broken down into department store brands, drug store brands and indie brands.

I unashamedly endorse Lancome for the best high end mascara makers in the world. Every one of their creations are wonderful - from Definicils to L'Extreme. When I want to treat myself (they are a bit pricey), I'll pick up one of their products.

As for drug store mascaras, I don't think anyone comes close to L'Oreal's Voluminous. It pumps up skinny lashes and accentuates length perfectly. And if scandalously dark lashes are your thing, carbon black is the color du jour. I'm wearing it in the above picture. $7.95, ladies. Go, L'Oreal.

Yeah, that's right. I said L'Oreal. I know I'm going to get heat about this from all of the Maybelline groupies out there. What is it about that little pink tube that elicits such ardent devotion? The mascara flakes, people. Get over it.

Moving along...I've yet to find a natural mascara that I like. I've tried quite a few and always walked away disappointed. Their performance has been minimal at best. And they don't stay put. I look like a raccoon three hours after application.

So, I wanted to get an expert opinion from someone who hand crafts natural makeup. I contacted my fave mineral cosmetic formulator, Kelley Maddison from Priia Cosmetics, to ask her what's the deal with natural mascaras.

"They don't have lengthening or thickening abilities. They only coat the lashes with color. Without polymers and acrylics (plastics) the product doesn't adhere to the lashes."

She also advised me to be careful of natural mascaras because their usage life is going to be shorter than mainstream mascara because they don't have preservatives. Sounds like an eye infection waiting to happen if you're not careful.

Thank you, Kelley.

But hold on. My girl, Milan, over at AGrlCanMac swears she's found the perfect organic/natural mascara by Physician's Formula. I hopped over to the the Physician's Formula site to check it out. They claim their Organic Wear mascara is 100% Free of Harsh Chemicals, Synthetic Preservatives, Parabens, Clumping, Smudging, Flaking, Fibers & Dyes. AND that it makes lashes look five times thicker and longer.

All of this for $9.95. I have to admit, I'm a little skeptical, but I haven't tried it - yet. Milan says it's wonderful. And she's a makeup girl all the way, so I should trust her assessment. I looked through the ingredients list for Physician's Formula mascara and saw that they've included beeswax. Could that possibly help with adherence? I don't know. I'm not a chemist. Just asking.

Any of you tried a good natural/organic mascara? What's your fave mainstream mascara (go ahead, Maybelline people, have your say now).