Battle of the Mascaras

Ahh – Mascara. One tool that makes your eyes look wide awake and ready to face the day. But in a world where mascaras outnumber the human race, how do you know what would suit you?

I’ve tested out a lot of mascaras over the years and I’ve reviewed a few to start off with. My preference is to use mascara that is not waterproof as I’ve lost count of the number of eyelashes that have sacrificed their lives while removing the waterproof mascara.

In the ring, I have included products across the range of affordable and high end mascaras. Some a cult classics while others are new (well, to me anyway).


Maybelline Lash Sensational Luscious mascara (AUD 21.95)

L’Oréal False Lash Butterfly Sculpt mascara (AUD 25.95)

Maxfactor Clump Defy mascara (AUD 25.95)

Milani Lash Trifecta mascara (AUD 17.95)

High End:

MAC In Extreme Dimension Lash mascara (sample received – full sized product AUD 42)

Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir Major Volume mascara (sample received – full sized product AUD 39)


The Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara is a matte black product which makes the little pops of lilac colour on the trim really stand out.

The L’Oréal mascara has a flat edge while the rest of it is rounded. This makes the product off balanced, which annoys the perfectionist blogger in me (it’s really hard to take flatlay photos with this product haha).

Maxfactor Clump Defy mascara looks has the classic shape of an affordable mascara with its bulky midsection and tapered ends.

Milani Lash Trifecta looks a little plain with its green and black combination as compared to the other flashier mascaras in the affordable category.

The MAC mascara is a sample I received; this packaging is quite reminiscent of the classic MAC packaging – all black.

The Marc Jacobs mascara is a little underwhelming with the plain black packaging and white lettering. To be honest, I would have mistaken it for a MAC product.


Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara has a conical shaped plastic wand. I personally prefer the brush bristles rather than the plastic ones. But I’m making my peace with it. The beauty of the conical wand is that the smaller end is quite useful to coat the lashes in the inner corners of your eyes without poking an eye out or smudging mascara everywhere else (and ruining that perfect inner corner highlight- the horror!!!).

L’Oréal Lash Sculpt mascara has a plastic wand too – this one is like the old school brow brushes (not the spoolies). It takes a while to get used to using this brush. If you’re handsy like me, you’ll get it on your lids – I’ve never not gotten mascara goop (a little Chandler from F.R.I.E.N.D.S. reference hehe) on my lid when using this product.

Maxfactor Clump Defy has a silicon wand with teeny tiny bristles. These are actually good at catching the short lashes especially in the lower lashline.

The Milani Last Trifecta mascara has a curved wand with plastic bristles. This also takes a little getting used to especially if you’re the type of person who twists the mascara wand as you comb it through the lashes.

The MAC mascara wand is a monster as compared to the packaging it came in. I was thoroughly surprised by the size of this plastic wand and was a little worried about poking an eye out.

Marc Jacobs Volume mascara has a typical bristled brush wand; this is personally my favourite type of brush when it comes to mascara wands.

Formula & Lasting Power

The Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara has a wet formula that takes ages to dry. I also found that it flakes a lot during the day, which irritated my eyes. I think that the wet formula also resulted in my lashes drooping quite quickly. This mascara didn’t help me retain the curves effectively. That said, the result was bad-ass glossy black thick lashes, which at the start looked amazing, but then drooped easily.

The L’Oréal Lash Sculpt mascara performed the similarly to the Maybelline mascara. It didn’t hold the curl too long. And this was after I used an eyelash curler too. I found that my lashes drooped down around the 3 hour mark. This mascara gave me the most natural looking lashes for everyday or quick trips to the shops.

Maxfactor Clump Defy has a dry formula in comparison to the Maybelline. The mascara performed like it claimed to – when I added a second coat to my lashes, it didn’t clump at all. I didn’t find that it added volume to my lashes though. I find it perfect for a natural minimalistic look when I’m heading out to the shops.

Milani Lash Trifecta performed 2 out of the 3 effects it claimed to do – it lengthened and held the curl beautifully, which lasted the whole day. However, it didn’t volumise as I hoped it would. But it didn’t clump nor flake either, which is always a good sign in my books.

I’m very conflicted by the MAC mascara as it didn’t seem to do much. I think my sample was quite dry or that the size of the wand was too big for the packaging and there wasn’t enough product in the sample to do a proper test. I didn’t find it too volumising; it held the curl relatively well – about 3-4 hours, after which my lashes dropped to their naturally straight self. It did clump when I tried to layer on more product. On the positive side – it didn’t flake on me.

Marc Jacobs mascara volumised my lashes well and held the curl beautifully throughout the day. It didn’t flake at all. However, it did clump as you try to load up the lashes to amp up the volume on your lashes. I do struggle to get rid of some of the more stubborn traces of the mascara from my lashes.

Overall Thoughts

I like each of these mascaras as they perform in their own way. About a year or two ago, I would have said pfft, it’s mascara, it does the same thing to the lashes. Not so my friends. Each formula works differently with different results. Some I like, some I love, some I’m not a big fan of. Hopefully, my post will have helped you decide what would work for you – at the end of the day, it all depends on the features you want in your product.

To be honest, I’m constantly switching up my mascaras and testing out what works for me. My rule is to not have any more than 2-3 mascaras going at the same time as I don’t like to waste product and I don’t  want to have my mascaras sitting out for a long time and risk getting an eye infection. So this post is actually a long time in the making haha.

But since I’m always testing out mascaras, I will have updated posts reviewing a bunch of them for you, so keep and eye out. Let me know if there’s a mascara that you’d like me to test out for you.

What’s your favourite mascara? Also, do you prefer the plastic bristles or the brush type wand?


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