I am beginning a new series of posts where I talk about things I both like and don’t like, under a completely arbitrary theme. I make no promises with regard to frequency or regularity, nor do I promise to be comprehensive. What I do promise: I shall try to entertain and inform, through the trivial trials and errors of my life.

Let us begin.

As anyone who is a fan of makeup knows, mascara is a very personal and controversial item. Everyone has their HG product and I am not here to disparage yours. The following is based on my own life experience and any resemblance to actual persons (except for me), living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

I am a positive person so would normally start with Recs...but my experiences have not been that great, so let’s dive into the Wrecks.

Wrecks

There’s a lot of these because, as it turns out, most mascara is just the fool’s gold of make-up. Yes, even the fancy ones that are made out of volcanic ash. They are almost all of them LIES.

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Benefit-They’re Real: As in they’re really really just like spiderlegs sticking out of your eyeballs.

Too Faced-Better than Sex: Only if the sex was terrible and somehow got mascara everywhere.

Make up For Ever-Smokey Extravagant and something with Theatrical in the title: Gave me quite the dramatic look...as if I had been crying for hours.

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Clinique-High Impact?: Not terrible, but also kind of clumpy.

Bombshell: Run for cover. All kinds of mascara debris all over your face.

Smashbox-Fully Exposed and X-rated: I got these in trial sizes and thought fully exposed was much better than x-rated. Then I bought it in the full size and was sorely disappointed. The formula seemed different and it had awful clumping.

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Sephora-Outrageous Volume as well as the length/volume one: The outrageous volume gave me outrageous clumping. Length/Volume was not the worst offender in terms of that mascara melt underneath the eyes, but it was certainly still there.

Lancome-pretty much their entire line: So much mascara melt. People probably thought I was going through a tough time in my life and crying in the bathroom a lot, but really I was just going through some bad mascara.

Actual picture of me wearing Lancome Mascara. Notice how I look angry and am stress eating pizza to bury my feelings about it.

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Tarte-Lights, Camera, Flashes: Reminded me of Covergirl Lashblast, but the 2 step method they want you to use can cause clumping since it doesn’t build well.

The Balm-Mad Lash: Actually not terrible, but nothing special to take it over to the rec list.

Urban Decay-Perversion: It is perverse and possibly criminal how much urban decay is overhyped. If I do an eyeshadow edition, I will also have to talk about how they have miraculously marketed multiple successful naked palettes (of essentially the same colors) with some of the worst eyeshadow I’ve attempted to smear on my eyelids. But I digress.

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It-Superhero: Another one where I was duped into buying the full size after a successful run of the trial size. I think the trial formulas are a little dryer, because the full sizes just clump too much :(

Maybelline-Lash Sensations and the classic pink/green one: The lash sensations brush is interesting and I think could work well with a good formula, but this formula was...not good. I haven’t tried the classic pink/green one since I was a teenager, but my experience still sticks out in my mind. Just itchy and flaky and made many eyelashes fall out. Never trust it.

NYX-I think it was called Pin-up: Another one where the brush was interesting but the formula was garbage.

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Recs

Covergirl-Lashblast: I can’t use the waterproof version, it makes my eyelashes itchy. But the regular one is heaven on my eyes. So much volume, each individual lash gets coated with the mascara and I don’t even need to curl my lashes with this mascara. I don’t think there is anything special about the formula, I think it’s the brush. It’s perfect in every way and I don’t know why I keep searching for something better when it should become clear to me that this is my one and only.

A little long, I know. But I wanted to be thorough and if I can help just one person avoid the midday mania of furiously trying to rub the mascara circles off their face in their workplace mirror then realizing in a panic that they just made it 2x worse...then I can call myself a shero.

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So what are your mascara recs and wrecks?