Holy Grail of Drugstore Mascaras: L’Oréal Voluminous Miss Manga

IMG_1487Description: L’Oréal Paris introduces new Voluminous Miss Manga mascara featuring the 360 flexor brush to build bold volume with high intensity from top to bottom. For the first time, L’Oréal Paris creates a flexible brush with a unique conical shape to catch those hard to reach lashes with an incredibly even application. The Mega impact Formula instantly builds volume for 15x lash (my box said 12x) volume in a flash. Top lashes are amplified and bottom lashes maximized for the ultimate wide-eyed Manga Look.

Where to Buy: L’Oréal.com, Ulta.com, Boots.com, Amazon.com, your local supermarket or drugstore

Cost: $7.99 MRSP but there’s a sale going on right now everywhere basically BOGO or 50% off (however you want to spin it).

Color/Shade Variety: 3 actually. Black Brown, Black, Blackest Black are all waterproof. The Miss Manga collection also has a Rock edition and a Punky edition.

IMG_1479Packaging: Super cute and relevant. It’s all plastic but the cap is a hot pink foil attached to the 360 flexor (flexible) wand and the base that houses the mascara product is black. The font and lettering is printed in a sky blue. The box is actually the cutest thing with wide-eyed manga decals allover the outer throwaway packaging.

The Brush: Conical brush with a notch on the wand that allows give during application. That’s how the brush is flexible. This brush seems to pick up way too much product on the tip so I would definitely wipe off the excess before application.

Promises to Do: Up to 12x or even 15x the volume supposedly with a wide-eyed effect. The small conical brush is supposed to be able to catch all of those little lash hairs on the inner corners of my eyes.

First Impression: Wow! The volume! I can see the difference right away and it delivered. I’m rocking the wide-eyed doe look. My lashes are extremely thick at the base and spiky at the tips. It dries really fast so I was able to layer up to three coats on before it started to look like a hot mess. One thing I noticed about this mascara formulation is that it holds the curl right where it is so make sure you take your time and curl your lashes exactly the way you want before application. The formulation is very thick and wet but it dries up quickly with no issue at all. Also, do not use a lash comb with this mascara once you’ve applied, it’s so stiff that the extended parts will break off!

Not much of a reader? Check out my first impression video below!

Layerable? Yes, but try not to go past 3 layers or else … well you’ll find out.

Flaky? Nope.

Holds Curl/Defines/Volumizes/Lengthens: Yes, the curl is held and maybe too well actually so there’s no room for curl modification. It defines well but since it does an even better job at volumizing, you’re not really here for the wispy, natural look anyway especially if it says Miss Manga on it. Now, my lashes look so amplified and flirtatious! It does lengthen but it took some work and I noticed you’ll need a lot more product to get it going compared to the other mascaras I have tried.

IMG_1489Cry Test: Held up just fine.

The Verdict: This is a great mascara if you take the time to curl your lashes really well beforehand and remind yourself to not use a lash comb after it’s dried. Don’t even try it. The effect is amazing and even if you’re not a volume girl, try this mascara out because it looks so good you won’t even need liner or eyeshadow if you’re running late. I also tried this on my lower lashes and surprisingly, it looked nice and applied well. I looked a lot like Elizabeth Olsen (yes, sister of the Olsen twins). I can’t wait to order the Miss Manga Rock edition and Punky edition to see how those look.

I hope you guys enjoyed this review and I’ll see you all next week!



Holy Grail of Drugstore Mascaras: Maybelline Great Lash Waterproof Mascara

IMG_1568Description: Great Lash® Waterproof Mascara conditions as it thickens. The lash-doubling formula glides on to build great-looking lashes while the lash-building brush makes it easy to get a full lash look. Allure Readers’ Choice and Best of Beauty Award Winner.

Where to Buy: Amazon.com, your local drugstore or supermarket.

Cost: $6.49 MSRP but it’s about $4 in Atlanta.

Color/Shade Variety: 2. The waterproof formula only comes in Brownish Black and Very Black. We’ll be testing out the Very Black color. They have a washable (non-waterproof version) with a lot more shades and the one that I definitely want to try out next is the Royal Blue (the pictures on the website do it no justice. I don’t know why spidery lashes are all the rage right now).

Packaging: It’s all plastic but it’s actually pretty cute because of the color scheme. It’s got a hot pink base to house the mascara product and the cap is a neon kiwi green. The plastic is surprisingly sturdy and resoundingly solid like a Corian countertop from the 60s. The font style boasts of a fun, retro vibe.

IMG_1570The Brush: Simple, double helical brush with v-shaped grooves cut into the sides

Promises to Do: Thicken and condition my lashes while doubling the length of my lashes.

First Impression: I’m not going to lie. I’ve been using this mascara for about a month now so I really had to dig deep and try to take a break from Great Lash so when I wore it again, it would feel semi-new (? … I tried). The formula is so light and thin so I’m able to apply several layers of even coats without it coming out all gunky and stuff. This stuff dries mega fast. I’m talking less than 30 seconds fast so if you like to comb out your lashes, be sure to have it close by. I didn’t see any clumps and the brush doesn’t seem to collect as much product on the sides and on the tip as the one from L’Oréal’s Voluminous Waterproof Mascara. The wand is on the stiff side so you’re not going to get too much give on this brush requiring a little more wriggling wrist action to getting all of your lashes coated.

Not much of a reader? Check out my first impression video below!

Layerable? Definitely.

Flaky? Not at all.

Holds Curl/Defines/Volumizes/Lengthens: The Maybelline Great Lash Waterproof Mascara holds the curl just fine. It’ll be the end of the day and my lashes are still curled as opposed to stick-straight. Because the formulation is so light, my lashes aren’t worn down and possibly has something to do with holding the curl as well. It does a great job at defining based on having a thinner formulation. As far as volumizing goes, it gives you just enough to get away with the smoking hot look at work and to pull off a “natural” every day make up look as well, but it’s got more of a wide-eye effect than a full-fan effect like the L’Oréal Voluminous or Maybelline Volum’ Express The Colossal. So on a scale of 1-10 of volumizing, it’d probably land on 7-8. And when it comes to lengthening, it does a fairly decent job. Lashes are quite pointed at the ends, lengthened to your desre yet extremely natural-looking with a soft-matte sheen (yes, I know matte and sheen in a sentence sounds weird but believe me it’s there), and there’s no weird separation of where the lengthening begins and ends on your lashes that comes with some volumizing mascaras.


Cry Test: So this is where it gets interesting. It’s supposed to be waterproof but I noticed that it tended to smudge when I wore it on my lower lashes. With this in mind, I experimented by only wearing it on my upper lashes and they were just fine. I don’t know if it’s because of my skincare routine with oil-based products but I’ll have to update when I get to the bottom of this. Anyhow, I swam with this mascara, worked out with it accidentally, and commuted to work in the sweltering summer and it held up just fine. It was just the lower lash thing that was weird but maybe it’s just not oleophobic.

Washable: To be waterproof, it’s easy to wash off (in a good way). I usually have to use a waterproof eye makeup remover and a lot of elbow grease. However, this Maybelline mascara requires none of that. I just apply my regular Christina Moss Naturals Organic Face Wash, let it sit there for a minute or so and then wipe it off with a hot washcloth before rinsing with more water. You can definitely use the waterproof eye makeup remover if that is easier for you. And … if you happen to have accidentally slept in your mascara (I’m not perfect so you know while I don’t try to make it a habit, I have done it before), this mascara isn’t going to glue your eyes shut or give you raccoon eyes either.

The Verdict: Overall, I love this mascara. To be honest, I have tried anywhere from $2 to $50 mascaras and this is my favorite mascara of all time. The funny thing is that it was the same one my Grandma used and I only happened to be able to remember it because of the damn packaging being pink and green. You’d think a $4 mascara would fail so hard compared to an Hourglass or a Givenchy but this is the best one that has ever held the curl on my lashes all day and every day without fail. Honestly, I’m glad it’s so cheap so I can stock up and at the end of the day, I quite like the retro vibe.