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10 Mascara Hacks to Achieve Perfect, Sky-High Lashes


If there’s one thing you’ll learn during your makeup journey, it’s that mascara is far from the “swipe-and-go” trope you see in the movies. Applying mascara is a lot more complicated than meets the eye. Not to mention the fact that you need to sort through the billion and one mascara products out there with formulas that promise clump-free length, drama, and fullness. As your beauty besties, we’re here to give it to you straight: The formula is only half the battle. Brush shape, technique, the number of coats—those are just a few of the many factors to consider when applying mascara.

So, where do you start as someone who dreams of sky-high lashes but hasn’t figured out how to achieve them? We say: Kiss those broken mascara promises goodbye and learn the tips and tricks that really count. Read on to see our roundup of mascara hacks we think every mascara lover should know. And trust, you’ll have longer, thicker, clump-free lashes in no time.

1. Use a Lash Curler


It might seem obvious to some, but you’d be surprised at how much this step is overlooked. Curling your lashes with a lash curler is the easiest way to get those sky-high lashes we all dream of. Lash hairs are typically straighter than not, and curling them not only gives you that much-wanted flirty vibe, but it also highlights the true length of your lashes. We love using the ARACELI BEAUTY Lash Curler because of its  comfy grip and non-pinch crimper. Once lashes have been curled right at the lash line (be careful not to get your eyelid!), they’re ready to be coated with your fave mascara. Trust, every mascara you use will look 10x better with curled lashes.

2. Blow Dry Your Lashes

@ipsy #stitch with @Mia DeLuca #makeuphacks #mascarahacks #IPSY ♬ Rich Flex Carter Walsh Remix - CarterWalsh

Yes, you read that right. Blow drying your lashes might sound crazy, but it actually works (thank you, TikTok). The key to this mascara hack is to aim the blow dry below your lashes, directing the airflow in an upward motion. You also want to make sure you’re doing this while your lashes are still slightly wet with mascara for a longer-lasting curl. The idea is that you’re curling them up with gentle heat (like you would your hair) to give yourself that curled, wide-awake look that lasts all day.

3. Use a Mascara Guard

@ipsy Would you use this #Mascara tool? #MascaraHack #MakeupTools #fyp #fpy #IPSY ♬ original sound - IPSY

As we know by now, a perfect application of mascara can get tricky—but luckily there are tools that can help with that. Using a mascara guard, like the one from WOOSH BEAUTY, not only eliminates messy mascara getting all over your eyelid, but its ridges also help separate lashes for an even, clump-free application. Just place the tool along your lash line and under your lashes, then apply mascara like you normally would.

4. Hold the Wand Vertically

@ipsy #mascara #mascarahacks #IPSY ♬ Ac r7sheed - rhy 🎸🍃 🕸️

This mascara hack is specifically for your bottom lashes. Applying mascara to your bottom lashes gives you an extra flirty look, but it can get super messy. To avoid getting mascara all over your freshly baked under eyes, hold the wand vertically. Then, apply the mascara in gentle back-and-forth motions to coat your bottom lashes with your desired amount of mascara. We love this BENEFIT COSMETICS Fan Fest Mascara for this bottom lash mascara hack because the smaller wand gets every hard-to-reach lash.

5. Use Vaseline as a Primer

@boxycharm Vaseline on lashes? #boxycharm #fyp #mascara ♬ original sound - Makenzie Rencher

You’ve seen the multi-hyphenate product all over your FYP for skincare, but trust when we say you can use it on your lashes too (at this point, what can’t Vaseline do?). For this mascara hack, the gist is using Vaseline like a primer for your lashes. First, coat each last with Vaseline using your fingers or a clean mascara wand. Then, curl your lashes using your fave lash curler. The waxy Vaseline will act as primer to keep lashes curled.  Lastly, apply your mascara the way you normally would and watch your lashes reach new heights.

6. Remove Excess Product

@boxycharm Why your mascara looks so bad! #makeuphacks #mascara #boxycharm #greenscreen ♬ original sound - ★

Going straight to your lashes with a mascara wand (especially those curved wands like this ABOVE BEAUTY one) full of product is a recipe for clumpy, messy lashes. Or advice: Don’t do it. We suggest scraping off excess product from the mascara wand into the tube before coating your lashes with it, that way you’ll get clump-free, even coats every time.

7. Use a Lash Separator

@ipsy I’m still trying to figure this thing out. 🙃 @nats_tutorials #mascarahack #mascaratool #makeuptest #fyp #fpy #IPSY ♬ original sound - IPSY

This mascara hack is perfect for the girlies that can seem to never escape clumpy lashes. We suggest applying a single coat of mascara to your lashes and then taking a lash separator (or clean spoolie like this one from this brush set) to separate any lashes that may have clumped during the first coat. Then, repeat the process between each coat you apply to make sure each lash is covered with your desired amount.

8. Powder Your Mascara

@ipsy Would you try this mascara hack? ✨ @nats_tutorials #mascarahack #makeuptrend #makeuptest #fyp #fpy #IPSY ♬ original sound - IPSY

Powder? And mascara? We know it sounds strange, but stay with us. This mascara hack calls for mixing a loose powder with your mascara to amp up the mascara benefits like increased length, fullness, and no smudging. First, take your mascara wand and dip it into your fave loose powder, swirling it in the powder to cover the wand completely and evenly. Then, take your powder-covered wand and dip it back into your mascara tube, swirling it around again to make sure it’s evenly coated in the mascara. Lastly, apply the mixture to your lashes and BOOM. You’ll have yourself some thick, full, long lashes.

9. Start at the Root

Close-up of a model looking up while applying mascara

Have you tried a million and one mascara brands promising you long, luscious lashes, but have yet to see them? You could be missing one very important mascara hack: Start at the root. Applying mascara at the root of your lashes (a.k.a right at the lash line) and wiggling the wand upward will help you lift and coat every lash. Doing this technique with a curved wand like the ROCKINS All Night Bender one will even help you get those pesky corner lashes.

10. Add More Coats

Close-up of a model looking down while applying mascara

When all else fails, add more coats of mascara. One coat of mascara will rarely ever cut it—the more coats you add to your lashes, the more full, thick, and long your lashes will appear. Plus, when you use a mascara like HUDA BEAUTY Legit Lashes with a dual-end wand that’s made for multiple coats, you won’t have to worry about clumping.

Love these mascara hacks and want more beauty content and product faves? Take our Beauty Quiz now to get started with your own IPSY beauty subscription. Already an IPSY member? Refer your friends to earn points, which you can use toward products. Either way, don’t forget to check us out on Instagram and TikTok @IPSY.

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About the author
Alexandra Schultz
Alexandra Schultz
Alexandra is a senior copywriter at IPSY, a foodie, and a beauty lover. With over nine years of experience, her work has been published in both the fashion and beauty industries for brands including Savage x Fenty, Biossance, and NYX Cosmetics.
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Article Last Updated July 31, 2023 12:00 AM