If I were to plan in advance, I would rather review three mascaras with similar promises to see who really won out. However, somehow I ended up with all three of these open on my desk. With such a short shelf life (three months max!), I am usually very good at only opening one mascara at a time regardless of how many I manage to acquire in the mean time but for some reason, that wasn’t the case recently. So today I am sharing with you my thoughts on these three different mascaras.
First up is the Kiko Extra Sculpt Volume Mascara and my very first Kiko product! I have ventured into Kiko stores on several different European trips in the past but I always got overwhelmed and left empty handed so I was glad when this arrived in the December Glossy Box.
The tube is unique in shape which I don’t find affects the actual application in any way – good or bad. I quite like it, simply because it’s different.
The wand is even more unusual with thick bristles that vary between long at either end and short in the middle. I much prefer wands with bristles than those with plastic spikes so this was very promising from the start.
Kiko claim that this mascara is a volumising one for fuller looking lashes and a panoramic effect. Whatever that means. I should probably point out my preference in a mascara – thick, dramatic, jet black lashes, the fuller the better so this sounded right up my alley.
So before I show you swatches of the mascaras, I better give you a point of reference. These are my bare lashes. They are quite long naturally which is why volume is usually what I’m after. My lashes aren’t actually grey, they just got covered in foundation when I was doing my makeup.
I also feel the need to apologise for my eyebrows. I have booked in to get them done so I have been resisting every urge in my body to pluck them! These photos were taken over a week ago and my appointment isn’t until next week so I’m currently at a stage where I feel that I need to apologise to everybody I meet in person too!
So here are my lashes with the Kiko mascara on. They are dramatic! Now when I first used this, I thought it was the best thing in my life. The angels were singing. The formula is black, it adds a hell of a lot of oomph and it just generally wows. Now a lot of people say they dislike a mascara at first but once they use it a few times and it starts to dry out, it gets better. With this mascara, I think the opposite is true. I liked it at first but the more it dries out, the worse it gets.
Bear in mind, I got this in the Glossy Box at the beginning of December and I don’t think I opened it straight away either so this mascara is only about two months old but it has gotten gloopier and harder to work with. I also find that the wand blobs it everywhere. You can see in these photos that it is both under my eyes and along my upper lash line. It is hard to describe but I feel like the formula is quite sticky, making brushing through my lashes with the wand difficult and just generally unpleasant.
This mascara does offer the serious drama and volume that I look for but the formula is too difficult to work with for me to repurchase it. This is one for those with all the time in the world to perfect their look, not for someone rushing out the door on the way to work.
If you are still interested, it retails for €8.90 and is available from the Kiko website where shipping is an extra €5.90 unless you spend over €49.
The next mascara I have to show you is the Soap & Glory Thick & Fast High-Definition Collagen-Coat Mascara (say that three times fast!). I picked up the biggest Soap & Glory gift set on sale in Boots over Christmas and this was included. (I already reviewed the skin care products here). I had only briefly dabbled with Soap & Glory before and so I was excited to give this a go.
The website teaches me that there are three versions of the Thick & Fast Mascara available – this being the HD one, with regular and lash extensions also in the range. This is easily told apart by its gold tube which I think looks rather flashy. I like it.
The wand didn’t appeal to me too much as it is quite skinny – something I don’t usually go for. However Soap & Glory call this a lengthening and volumising mascara for doll-like lashes which very much appeals to me! They describe the brush as being a 7-sided fan-flare 180 brush with a V-groove for volume, intensity and a network for combing and curling surfaces to give length, definition and drama. It is said to feature lash-strengthening collagen pre-peptides, long stretch polymers that wrap lashes in a flexible, lengthening film with no-flake 24 hour technology.
In comparison to the Kiko one, when it comes to drama, I find this one a little lacking. For all of its promises, it just seems to add a black colour to my lashes and perhaps a little length. Saying that, a customer in work asked me what mascara I was wearing when she was searching for one of her own but I just couldn’t recommend this one as I find it so underwhelming. It is fine. It doesn’t flake, smudge or smear and the brush is precise – unlike the Kiko one.
However this is just not a mascara I would repurchase. I’m glad that I got this in a set because if I had paid the full €14.50 for this, I would have been sorely disappointed. It is available at Boots where they currently have €2 off it.
My final mascara in this little show-and-tell is the L’Oreal Mega Volume Collagene 24h Mascara. This is another that sort of fell into my possession. Before Christmas there was an offer on L’Oreal where if you spent a certain amount, you got a free gift box. This full size mascara was inside along with a nail varnish, eyeshadow palette and eyeliner pen – it was such an amazing gift! You should definitely keep your eyes peeled for those sort of things next time you’re shopping although some are better than others. I had never heard of this mascara before but I had heard good things about L’Oreal mascaras in general so when the Kiko one started giving me trouble, I whipped this guy out.
This has a fairly standard thick bristled wand – which is not a bad thing in my books! With volume in the name and this wand, I was really looking forward to trialling this one.
This claims to offer 15 times more impact for the ultimate volume look. It is mega black and promises ultra charging volume. It contains collagen to plump lashes. It has double the brush size to coat lashes generously without clumping. It is also said to feature an innovative, breakthrough formula with collagen biospheres and black booster pigments to achieve breathtaking individual lash by lash volume.
Despite the large, thick brush which usually promises volume, this seemed to merely add a little length and definition. Perhaps I’m being harsh. Looking a little closer, I think I can see some more volume near the roots. Fifteen times the volume? Not even close.
This mascara is nice. I like the brush. The formula was nice. But I don’t want nice. I want the showstopping, breathtaking, everybody in the room goes silent kinda drama that I keep getting promised again and again. Of all three mascaras I reviewed, this could be my favourite. Or perhaps not. I just feel so MEH about it!
This will set you back €13.99 and appears to be available on the Boots website despite them claiming it was discontinued two years ago so act fast if this seems like your kinda deal.
All in all, these three mascaras left me feeling cold and I won’t be repurchasing any of them. Here’s hoping that the next one I whip out of my drawer is a winner!
Have you tried any of these?
What do you look for in a mascara?
Disclaimer: No press samples were featured.
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