Let me ask you some questions.
How much money have you spent on expensive “high end” mascaras?
How often do you buy a new mascara?
What are your reasons for trying different mascaras?
If you are like most females, even those that don’t wear makeup that regularly, you likely have at least a mascara on hand. Maybe it’s old and been sitting in your bathroom drawer for a while waiting to be used on your next evening out, or maybe you have a drawer in your vanity dedicated to all your different mascaras. Either way you keep a mascara on hand to use because it is one beauty product you won’t go without in the time it is needed.
But what made you buy that mascara? What are you looking for in a mascara? Does the amount you spend on the mascara make a difference?
What’s the difference between drug store and high end makeup?
So your first thought might be, “shouldn’t I buy high end makeup if I can afford it? Isn’t it better quality?”
As an overall expectation about makeup, typically yes, higher end makeup will often provide better quality products verses cheaper or “drug store” products. This can be seen more clearly in such products like eyeshadows, foundations and concealers. The reason why, is because the factories that produce the products use higher quality machines, or have a more intricate process with creating the products i.e. a creamier high pigmented eyeshadow could be more finely milled and pressed more to achieve the desired application and pigmentation. Products such as these from the drug store tend to have a faster creating process to get the product out onto the shelves more quickly causing less time and/or process to be spent on the quality of the actual product.
So when you are thinking about what you are paying for, if you care about application, and buying something that will more likely give what the product claims to, then you would be “safer” most of the time to go with a higher end makeup.
Of course there are always exceptions to this rule and there have been many many high end products that have turned out to be a big flop, and you don’t really know how something will work for you until you try it. As well as different products with all different values work differently for everyone.
What’s The Deal With Mascara?
Now I am fully aware that not everyone will agree with me on these points, however being a makeup artist who has been in the industry for over 10 years, I have had my fair share of trying many different products from many different degrees of quality. There is no doubt in my mind that some products aren’t worth buying at a drug store level. However, when it comes to mascara, I have many reasons to why I choose to wear drug store level mascara as a part of my regular makeup routine verses high end. Here are my points:
1.They all seem the same.
When I say “the same” I mean that whether you purchase high end or drugstore mascaras, they all offer different style brushes, different colours, different wearing times, different effects on the lashes ie. volume, length, separation. They all are offering something similar, no matter the price.
2. The Brush.
It’s almost sad how many different style mascara brushes I have tried at a higher end quality that have provided the same brush I have used with a drug store brand. And the thing about mascara is that the brush plays a huge part in how the mascara will look on the lashes. So if I can get the same type of brush that I like for cheaper, wouldn’t I go that route?
Note: If you are interested in me writing a blog post on different mascaras comparing brushes and product, then leave me a comment below!
3. The Formula.
The formula of the mascara is where you want to pay a little more attention. It’s good to know what to look for in the formula for what you want to achieve. I break it down into just 4 main things.
- The Colour- I have the preference of a very black mascara. I don’t typically wear other colours unless I am doing a super fancy look that would be amped up with something like a blue mascara. So I always look at how “black” the mascara formula really is. I always buy a mascara that’s called black or blackest black, but until I open it I don’t know how black it will really be, and I can’t tell you how many different mascaras I have tried that are supposed to be black but look more grey. If that’s your preference then great, but I want black mascara that can be seen from across the room. I have purchased many high end mascaras where some offer a true black mascara and some that claim to be black but aren’t. I have had the same with drug store mascaras.
- The Application- I am also very picky with how the formula applies. Sometimes the application can be different depending on the brush, and sometimes it’s a standard brush but the formula is just not what I am looking for. When I look for a good mascara, I want the formula to cling to my lashes so that I can achieve the look that I am going for in as few applications as possible. I don’t want to be coating my lashes 3-4 times and they still not look as big and full as I would like. I have had this problem with both drug store and high end mascaras.
- The Ingredients- If you are someone that pays attention to ingredients because maybe you prefer a natural product on your eyes, or maybe you have extremely sensitive eyes and you know of a particular ingredient that irritates you, then this is something to watch for. There are some great “natural” products that are offered at a drugstore level as well as high end. But typically whether high end or not, you will see similar if not the same ingredients being used in most mascaras.
- How It Lasts- Typically mascaras are either offered in non-waterproof or waterproof. I have tried many waterproof mascaras from both drugstore and high end that have either truly lasted through tears or a day at the beach, or have claimed to be waterproof but have left me with streams of black down my face. I have also found no difference in how easy or difficult it is to remove waterproof mascara whatever the price it was. Also, when wearing a non-waterproof mascara, I have had the same experiences with both drugstore and high end as to whether the mascara will flake off throughout the day. This might be my number one pet peeve when it comes to mascara! I don’t want to be walking around with little black flakes on my cheeks and no one telling me. I have found quite a few great drugstore mascaras that I don’t have this problem with.
4. The Lifespan.
Have you ever been told that a more expensive mascara will last longer? The answer is no. Because all mascaras have the same recommended length of use before they start either drying out, have too much build up of bacteria in the canister, or the ingredients start to breakdown and not work the way they should or go bad. So there is no difference depending on how much you paid for it. Personally, why would I pay that much for a high end mascara that is going to be dried out or going bad in 3 months, when a cheaper one would too?
If I can find a drugstore mascara that offers me a great brush to formula combination for application, that gives me a great black colour, that lasts nicely throughout the day and is properly waterproof when I need it to be, why would I spend more on a mascara that offers me the same thing as a less expensive one does that I can also buy from my local shopping market?
The questions isn’t really “should I never buy a high end mascara?” It’s “what mascara offers me what I need and can I get the same thing at a less expensive cost?”
The answer to this question is only in you. If you happen to be completely sensitive to all the ingredients in every drugstore mascara you have ever tried but not to one that happens to be high end, then certainly you should wear the one the doesn’t irritate you. I happen to not be sensitive to makeup products so I have a little more freedom when it comes to choices. I am also not that picky when it comes to ingredients, maybe I should be and time will surely tell on that one. But I have found a few mascaras that I absolutely love from the drugstore, even more than their high end equal based on a point or two being a little better for me. Therefore, I would much rather save my money as I buy mascaras so frequently.
What are your thoughts on high end verses drugstore mascaras? Do you have a preference? What mascara do you love to use and why? Leave your answers in the comments below! I would love to hear from you!