When it Comes to Beauty Products, What Makes One
Product Shine over the Other?
When I mentioned that I was a bit bored with my mascara on Instagram, lots of my followers suggested their favourite cosmetic products.
There are so many cosmetic products out there; from the well known luxury brands, to the best drug store buys, to the natural cosmetics brands and brands you have never heard of. I will be reviewing L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D ($15.36AUD) and L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara ($15.36AUD) that I bought in Priceline in Sydney. Two of my followers suggested these. I will also be reviewing Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara ($47.50AUD), Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara ($43.50AUD) and Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara ($42.50AUD) in the luxury cosmetics brand area. I bought these from StrawberryNet because they are discounted but I also get a loyalty discount. Plus I will also be talking about Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara ($21AUD) which is a Japanese mascara. Another Instagram follower suggested Benefit They're Real! mascara, which I will hopefully have my hands on soon.
I will talk about packaging, they way they feel in my hand, their brush applicators, how they went on my lashes, we'll compare photos of each product when they are on my eyelashes and then rate them out of 5. Hopefully, after that we can work out which product is the Top Mascara for 2017 and finish the Set to Glow Beauty Review on a high note!
A lot of my regular income comes from the design industry, specifically packaging so I know a lot about it. Obviously, the type of packaging a company uses depends on their position instore and whether they have their own pop up within a department store or not. For example, Dior always has their own booth in Myer. Another reason packaging is different is down to the brand and how they want their product to be perceived. Is it a luxury brand? Are there foil finishes on the packaging?
Both the L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D and the L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara were hanging in Priceline, so their secondary packaging includes a hangsell. Both have pretty impressive close-up pictures of an eye with mascara on it while the L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D has a close-up of the brush applicator. The close-ups of the eyes look like they have false eyelashes on, which is false advertising really, if we are honest. However, I will find out definitely when I use the product.
The Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara, Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara and the Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara all come in cardboard boxes, which is better for the environment I think. The Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara and the Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara come in metallic board boxes so they have a premium feel. The Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara is in a high gloss black box with silver foiling on it. Only the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara has a illustration of an eye and the brush. Not a photo though, so I am not sure what I think about that. Less of a hard sell... These brands let their products and reviews do the talking.
I don't know very much about Japanese packaging other than they seem to like a lot of it and their products always seem to be in clamshell packaging. Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara is no exception. It is in a plastic clamshell with a paper insert. It has two illustrations, one of the brush head, and the other explaining how the product coats the lashes.
So How Do They Feel in My Hand?
The L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D packaging was super easy to open, you just pull the top of the box open and you can slide the product straight out. It is light to hold and you can get a good grip to open the product because of the contours on the mascara. The super bling silver mascara opens easily but it is a bit hard to close again. Maybe that will loosen with applications.
The L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara has a card backing and a plastic top. This type of packaging is called a blister pack. It is pretty easy to open, but I never like that the card doesn't come away from the plastic properly, and you always have to pierce the leftover card to access the product. In this case, I damaged the L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara with scissors. I put a scratch in the pink metallic paint on the lid. The Manga Mascara is smaller and nicer to hold than the Architect 4D Mascara I think. I feel like the lid twists on and off more easily too.
Now we come to the first of the more expensive premium products. The Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara packaging is really easy to open and the product slides right out. I find the lid a little tight but the product sits nicely in my hand since it is a rounded tube. Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara is heavier than the two drug store bought L'Oréal products which is good. Both the L'Oréal products are 9mLs each and the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara is 10mL. So that is good. It is more expensive but you get more product.
Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara is also easy to open. However it is only 8.5mL. I have never actually paid attention to the amount of mascara I am getting as a consumer, I must admit. It is a smaller, rounded tube with pleasant contours. And at this stage in my review it is the nicest to hold. It opens and closes really well and the tube is super black and glossy with a really nice little Giorgio Armani logo seal near the lid. It is not as expensive as the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara but has a nicer feel in my opinion.
The last premium mascara is the Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara. It is also easy to open this box and the product slides right out. Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara also has a similar rounded, contoured tube to the Giorgio Armani mascara, however it is slightly longer. This product doesn't open and close as well as the Giorgio Armani, however I like the Shocking brush script on the gold metallic tube. This is not as light as the two L'Oréal Priceline bought products but it is lighter than the Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara. This is the smallest amount of mascara of all the products at 6.4mLs!!
And now to the only Japanese mascara I have ever tried. Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara comes in a clamshell and I have to ruin the packaging by going at it with a pair of scissors. The Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara is small like the L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara but far lighter. Dejavu Lash Knockout is 8g and I really like the pink coloured packaging. It is easy to open and close.
Beauty Review: Mascara Brush Applicators
When I opened the L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D the brush applicator was already bent. The picture on the box was in no way representative of the brush as well. It was the right shape though, long and thinning at the end like the bottom of an ice cream cone. The product seemed to clump at the smallest end of the brush. The L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara was the same, the picture on the box is not representative of the brush. However it has the same brush shape as the L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D but you can bend the brush head it seems as there are lines in the arm about a cm away from the brush head. I will see how that goes when I apply it. When you look at the brush applicator for the Manga Mega Volume Mascara, the product clumps at both the smallest end of the brush as well as right at the start of the arm. There was quite a bit of product stuck there when you first open the Manga Mega Volume Mascara...
The Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara has a curved brush applicator a bit like how a pair of false eyelashes curve. It is thinner at the very end of the brush. The product only clumps right at the end of the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara brush. So far the Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara brush comes out the most cleanly from its tube. I really like the shape of the Giorgio Armani brush, it is long and thick and tapers to an end really quickly. The Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara has the same shaped brush as the Giorgio Armani brush applicator but it is thinner. The Yves Saint Laurent product immediately smells like flowers. It's very strong!! I think it smells like roses. I am not the best on fragrances because I don't often wear them. I also avoid skincare with fragrances. The product gets stuck at the end of the brush and at the start of the wand on the Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara.
The Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara has the same shaped brush as the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara however it has less of a deep curve. It also seems thicker to me. This brush is the cleanest of all the mascaras when it first comes out of its tube, however there is still some product at the tip of the brush applicator.
Beauty Product Review: Mascara Application
Firstly, let me just say that I have applied my mascara with no other makeup on so you can see each product in its natural state, but also so no other makeup ingredients affect the way each mascara performs. I have also done no retouching to any of the above photos.
There was a CLEAR winner half way through the process and whilst I was applying each mascara it became obvious as to why millions of women part with lots of money for mascara... Drug store/cheaper brands are just not as nice to use and the end results are not nearly as good... So there you go! You can all justify spending a bit of money on mascara!!
L'Oréal False Lash Architect 4D wasn't very easy to apply and you can see in the top left photo that my end lashes aren't coated. When I tried to use the end of the wand to coat my smaller end top lashes it ended up being a hot mess. This was because the product clumped on the end of the brush. I felt that my lashes were separated a bit better than when I used the L'Oréal Manga Mega Volume Mascara however. The Manga Mascara brush was really great to use. It sort of bent and sprung when I touched my lashes. I LOVE this brush, pity the formula wasn't great... It seemed to make my lashes stick together at the ends and therefore wasn't my favourite AT ALL (see the middle top photo above). I was a bit disappointed with Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara... Have a look in the top right photo above. The shape of the brush meant that it was easier to coat more of my lashes from left to right. It did open my eyes and they seemed more dramatic when my eyes were open... BUT if you look in the photo above, they actually appear shorter?? I give Lash Architect 4D a 3 out of 5 and the Manga Mascara a 3.5 out of 5 because of the brush.
Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara is my favourite of the more expensive brands. The simple brush is easy to use and the formula glides right on. It didn't make my lashes clump at all - it seemed to coat each one individually and opened my eyes right up. Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara separates your lashes really well and if you have a look in the bottom left photo above it seems to make them a bit more full. Even though it is waterproof, it was pretty easy to get off. It sort of flaked off in little pieces if that makes sense? Usually your cotton pad comes away with a big black smear on it when you take your makeup off. Giorgio Armani gets a 5 out of 5.
This brings me to Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara. I have never used a more horrible mascara. The smell was too much, it got everywhere, the formula was too gluggy and made my eyelashes clump together and seemed to coat them like wet paint. My lashes were webbed together by wet formula. It was horrible to get off and irritated my eyes. This is not worth the money AT ALL. Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara gets a 0 from me since it is so expensive, smelly and horrible to use.
Dejavu Lash Knockout Extra Volume Mascara ($21AUD) is actually a really great buy. It was similar to the Giorgio Armani Eyes To Kill Wet Length & Volume Waterproof Mascara in ease of use. And it doesn't seem to clump at all. It wasn't as good as the Giorgio Armani because it didn't make my eyelashes seem as full. However, for the money, it is better than both the Yves Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils (Shocking) Mascara and the Diorshow Iconic Overcurl Mascara. I give it a 4.5 out of 5 only because of the price. If it was more expensive it would have been a 4 out of five.