Some mornings we actually wake up with enough time to go through our full makeup routine. Other mornings (*ahem* most of them), we have about 15 minutes to get ready for the day. In either scenario, there’s one beauty product that’s non-negotiable: a great mascara.
A few swipes of this daily essential can make your eyes look bigger and wide awake, no matter how much sleep you got the night before. When it comes to mascaras, there’s one for every budget, from drugstore mascaras (like the iconic MAYBELLINE Great Lash Mascara) to cult favorites (like DIOR Diorshow Mascara). There’s also a mascara for every lash type and beauty goal. Do you want one that volumizes, lengthens, curls, or all of the above? Are you on the hunt for a formula that won't leave you with raccoon eyes after a dip in the pool? If so, waterproof mascara will be your best bet.
With literally thousands of options to choose from, it can be hard to narrow down the search. Luckily, we've done the hard work for you. Below are 30 of the best mascaras for all different types of lashes and makeup looks.
“My lashes are too long,” said no one ever. So if it’s lush, long lashes you’re seeking (join the club), this mascara-serum hybrid will get you there both instantly and over time. It’s made with red clover peptide that helps strengthen and lengthen your lashes while also protecting against fallout, so they’ll eventually look thicker, too. "MY NEW FAVORITE MASCARA," says member sunny5512197. "This mascara added so much fullness and length without any clumping at all."
Want an immediate lash boost? The paddle brush helps to lift and define them for major wow with every swipe.
This is one of our holy grail mascaras for major volume, separation, and lift. Unlike some mascaras, it coats each lash individually in rich, kohl pigments to build volume without any clumping—and the tapered tip reaches even the teeniest corner lashes. It’s the perfect finishing touch for all your smoky eye looks, but it’s also versatile enough for everyday use. If you’re short on time, reach for this baby and you’ll feel pulled together in a flash.
"It really worked like a dream," writes one fan. "It separated my lashes really well, no transfer, and no clumping at all—literally my favorite mascara I’ve ever used so far."
Whether you’re looking for ultra-defined Twiggy-esque lashes or spider-like lashes for Halloween, this mascara will do the trick. With the blackest of black pigment and a precise, micro-brush applicator, it's designed to reach and coat every lash individually. Member Frecklebomb says, “This mascara is fantastic!!!! Does not flake off, does not burn my eyes, not clumpy, smooth application. I didn't think I would enjoy the tiny spoolie, but it's legit awesome. So easy to catch every eyelash and separate them. I LOVE this mascara! And I'm very picky!”
Use it horizontally to coat your lashes, then turn it vertically to define each one. The longwear, smear-proof, and smudge-proof formula will last all day and won’t rub off on your under-eyes.
Major volume, length, and curl—with all these great features, we’ve got one word for this multitasking mascara: amazing. The unique, hourglass-shaped brush wraps every hair in rich, carbon-black color and gives your lashes five times the volume with one application (yes, we said five). It’s easy to build up quickly, won’t clump your lashes together, and lasts for hours and hours without smudging. Swipe this on in the morning and your lashes are set for the long haul.
IPSY member cynthpipp8 says, ”This is my new favorite mascara! It's thick without clumping. I don't have to do layers to get the job done.”
Feathery, flirty lashes that stay lifted all day? Look no further than SUGAR’s gravity-defying mascara. The sister brand of TARTE (whose mascaras also made our list) created this ultra-creamy fiber formula that’s made with nourishing ingredients to help your lashes grow fuller and longer. Plus, the uniquely curved wand sweeps every lash up for a fanned-out effect.
IPSY member ButterCupBabe says, “I was very surprised with this mascara. I was not expecting it to actually curl my lashes. But it did—I applied it quickly without using my curler as I always do. My lashes actually curled and looked great. I’m a mascara snob and this was really good.”
Addison Rae’s ITEM BEAUTY is a go-to for easy makeup with a dose of love and healthy ingredients. Lash Snack is made with conditioners like castor seed oil (amazing for growing lashes and brows) and coconut oil, which keeps lashes strong and healthy. It even includes a multivitamin serum for an extra growth boost. IPSY member a_a_mo says, “I was pleasantly surprised by this mascara. It’s easily washable but actually kept my lashes curled and feathered my lashes out beautifully. The brush on this mascara is fantastic. It’s smaller than most brushes but it made it easier to build volume without terrible clumping and it reached all of the tiny lashes that are hard to reach. I love it!”
The micro-wand separates, lifts, and coats each lash for up to three (!!!) times the volume. Plus, it's cruelty-free.
This classic mascara's unique Hook ‘N’ Roll wand easily grabs, lifts, and curls your lash hairs in one fell swoop. The curve-setting formula keeps a curl for up to 12 hours while it conditions your lashes in good-for-you ingredients. K_curcio2019 says, “This is by far my favorite product in the Glam Bag. I'm obsessed with this formula. No clumping, lightweight, and a little definitely does go a long way. It gives the impression of natural-looking falsies, without the hassle of glue or eyeliner!”
To sum it up, this no-fuss mascara will become your holy grail for every day and every occasion.
Extreme volume, intense definition, and instant length—there’s not much this baby can’t do. CIATÉ LONDON Triple Shot Mascara XXL is made with diamond powder and unique flower-shaped fibers that work together to give lashes a gorgeous, fully fanned, baby doll-like finish.
IPSY member mpservices 928 says, “Omg I cannot say enough good things. The brush was awesome, the application was easy and the length it gave me was phenomenal. Love it.”
If your lashes are on the straighter or shorter side, this mascara is (like its name) pure magic. The curved brush doesn’t miss a lash no matter how small it may be, and it coats them all in rich black pigments. It’s also made with keratin and shea butter, which condition your lashes to keep them healthy and growing without weighing them down. Plus, it’s water-resistant, so feel free to make a splash or head out in the snow—it’s a go-to all year round.
Cheyenna_campbell says, “My favorite mascara. It really made my eyes pop and other people noticed. Can last through any weather!”
Tubing mascaras can take a little practice, but when they’re made like this, they’re so worth it. This volumizing fiber formula wraps your lashes to thicken, lift, and define them for a look that mimics lash extensions more closely than most tubing mascaras we’ve tried. The Orchid Stem Complex helps nourish your lashes and encourage growth, and it lasts all day long with no flaking.
IPSY subscriber cdonahue18 says, “THIS IS MY NEW MASCARA! Lasts soo long and makes my eyelashes magically seem like they can just easily touch my eyebrows. The tubing technology makes it so easy to take off, but it honestly will last you overnight if you need to wake up looking good!”
Want an in-depth review of this cult-favorite formula? See our full THRIVE CAUSEMETICS Liquid Lash Extensions Mascara™ review.
This mascara wins for its combination of staying power and healthy ingredients. The sweat-proof formula doesn’t budge, smudge, or flake and feels weightless on your lids, so it’s perfect for a quick workout or looking cute on that weekend hike. It’s also made with algae extract to soothe and protect and vitamin E to condition your lashes with every use. Need another reason to love it? The tapered bristles on the brush reach every length of lash to lift and curl. One word: LOVE.
Member griffinc159 says, “I think you can never have enough mascara and this baby is a bonus to my life. Easy application and great volume.”
This formula is creamy, buildable, and versatile enough for a variety of beauty looks, whether you want natural lashes or something more dramatic. But the coolest thing about this mascara? The wand has alternating short and long bristles so they can catch onto your lashes to majorly define them. This clump-free, smudge-free formula will also stay locked in place from sun-up to sun-down.
The classics are classics for a reason: TOO FACED's iconic Better Than Sex Mascara is a favorite amongst makeup artists and beauty buffs alike. "Makes my lashes look full and thick almost like I'm wearing fake lashes, amazing product," says amtaylor3.
This version gives the iconic formula a waterproof upgrade that takes the brand's legendary formula one step further to make it extra long-lasting. With its famous hourglass-shaped brush, this mascara dramatically lengthens, curls, and volumizes for lashes that are truly showstopping.
If you’re looking for volume like never before, BUXOM’s best volumizing mascara is about to become your new beauty BFF. This one has a spiraled X-shaped wand that creates reservoirs for the creamy formula. When it grabs onto your lashes, it deposits just the right amount of color that builds onto your lash for intense volume and major drama that’s smudge-proof, flake-proof, and lasts for up to 12 hours.
Kristaaeiker2011 says, “It’s almost empty already 😩 lol I’ve legitimately worn it every day since I received it—yet again another great product I absolutely loved."
We don’t know about you, but we’re always looking to edit down our makeup stash (OK, fine, maybe we’re not trying that hard). But when we met this curler and mascara in one, we knew we discovered something genius. The built-in lash curler is so easy to use, even if it’s your first time using one. Just curl your lashes for a few seconds, then twist up to reveal the wand packed with the lash-lifting formula.
Member katlync92 says, “My absolute favorite mascara! I use it every time I do my makeup and I'm going to be so sad when I run out! I'm definitely going to have to find some more of this!”
This dermatologist-tested and ophthalmologist-tested mascara is gentle, safe, and hypoallergenic. If you wear contact lenses or have sensitive eyes it's a great pick—but just because it's gentle doesn’t mean it lacks powerful results. PintSizedFashionista says, “5/5 or 10/10 this mascara is bomb! A balanced wet formula that builds well, doesn't flake, and has major staying power!”
Lash Paint is made with triple-black mineral pigments for lashes that look like a work of art. Rice bran wax and cellulose (a plant-derived thickening agent) help boost volume and length while also nourishing and softening the skin around your lashes.
This mascara is packed with powerful, lash-boosting ingredients like biotin, peptides (known for their strengthening properties), polymers, and collagen to lift, lengthen, and plump your eyelashes. On top of that, this mascara stays put for hours without flaking, so your lashes remain strong and long all day.
One member writes, "This has been the absolute best mascara I have ever used. My eyes have become sensitive to makeup products over the last year, but this mascara not only gives me tons of volume, but it doesn't cause any irritation to them whatsoever!"
This nourishing, longwear formula coats your lashes in rich black pigment for dark, dramatic lashes. Use it to boost a smoky eye or to create the illusion of eyeliner along the lash line without actually having to apply any eyeliner. It’s also made with good-for-you ingredients like babassu oil and hydrating glycerin to condition and strengthen with every use. And did we mention it's vegan, paraben-free, and cruelty-free? Gold stars all around.
We’ve tried and loved tons of waterproof mascaras, and this no-fuss formula never fails. It’s loaded with coconut oil and fruit extracts that nourish your lashes and SPF that protects your lashes from UV rays (which, admittedly, is something we’ve never thought to do). Swipe it on to lengthen, add volume, condition, and protect on sunny days.
Egb1011 says, “This product stayed on THROUGH MY SHOWER!! I rubbed my eyes to try to wash it off a little and it didn't budge!! I left it on overnight just to see and it was still ok in the morning—less pronounced but still natural-looking.”
This lash-fattening formula gives you a super fluttery, ultra-lush set of lashes instantly. The secret is in the chubby wand, which is able to coat every last lash (and we mean every single one). "What a great product," says one fan of the formula. "I love it for daily wear. It gives a perfect amount of volume without going overboard."
This wand also features long bristles on one side to lengthen and short bristles on the other side to volumize. All in all, this inky black mascara formula gives you boosted eyelashes that you'll want to bat all day long.
Aside from the amazing formula, perhaps the best part of this mascara is its built-in grip on the tube, which makes application easier if you have an unsteady hand. “I love the full coverage with just one coat. It’s even better with 2,” says one IPSY member.
Even if you already have full lashes, this mascara can still make it look like you have extensions. “I liked how separated my lashes were instead of being clumped together. Absolutely love the brush,” says one IPSY subscriber. Our editors can attest to this—we’ve found that the brush is amazing for evenly applying the formula and fanning out your lashes.
We cracked up when we read this review: “A coworker claimed my lashes looked fake after applying this mascara. I would buy this again.” But we say, the faker the better, especially when your lashes are the real thing! Plus, if you love a volumizing formula but want it to stay all day, this Lash Brag mascara is perfect since it’s waterproof.
A biotin-infused mascara offers the best of both worlds: a quality mascara and the growth ingredients of a lash serum. “Omg! This is one of the best mascaras I’ve tried and I hate using mascara because of the removing process but this was so long lasting and made my lashes look full and long all day!” said one person when reviewing this product. The formula is easy to remove, infused with lash growth–promoting ingredients, and keeps lashes lifted with volume all day long.
“Loved it and will continue to use it. Just discovered this brand and love it. It says it's vegan, no animal cruelty and no toxic ingredients. I recommend,” said one of our members. What’s also impressive is that this plant-based mascara is made with nourishing oils like castor and argan, yet it still lifts the lashes like you just had a professional treatment.
Mascara that flakes isn’t the type of mascara that we want. We need something that holds all day and keeps our makeup look locked down. “It makes my lashes long and spidery,” commented one of our members reviewing this mascara. This product stays put all day long and then some.
This mascara from WANDER BEAUTY is water-resistant and filled with nourishing ingredients for your lashes. Castor seed oil, trehalose (known to help lengthen), and fortifying peach leaf extract help extend and lift your lashes while contributing to their growth.
Courtesy of TOWER 28
If you have sensitive eyes, simply dread taking your makeup off before bed, or both—we have the perfect mascara choice for you. TOWER 28 is a makeup brand geared towards sensitive skin, so their formulas all wash off easily when it's time to take the day off (minimal wiping, rubbing, and irritation here!). But this mascara doesn’t compromise how your lashes will look. They’ll still be lifted, separated, and filled with volume.
Courtesy of GLOSSIER
GLOSSIER knows how to nail a makeup product that’s perfect for the model-off-duty, no-makeup makeup look. Plus, the brand’s recently launched Lash Slick in Brown looks great with any eye color (we love how it makes green eyes pop!).
Courtesy of ESSENCE COSMETICS
This mascara is one of the drugstore’s best-kept secrets. Clocking in at just under $5, this high-performing formula is a game-changer when you’re looking to build your beauty stash for less. Snag one for your purse, your desk, your vanity—at this price, what’s stopping you?
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