A byproduct of my Scandivian heritage? Very light colored eyebrows and eyelashes, the latter of which I’ve been darkening with mascara ever since I begged my mom for a tube back in the seventh grade. I’ve experimented with a variety of brands and shades over the years, and while my work from home makeup routine is extremely minimal, I almost always swipe on a few strokes of mascara just to feel a bit more put together. These days, it truly is all about the little things, even that means hopping on a late Saturday afternoon Zoom call with friends only to be greeted with, “Wait, you’re wearing eye makeup on a weekend?”
As I round out the final year of my twenties, I’ve become more willing to splurge on special skin treatments and anti-wrinkle potions but prefer to keep my day-to-day basics a bit more budget-friendly. Pre-pandemic, my daily schedule was pretty jam-packed, and my makeup bag lived in my work tote, where it made its way from 7 a.m. spin class to after-work drinks. I never wanted to carry around pricey products in fear that they’d get misplaced or damaged.
So when I noticed a few of my favorite influencers raving about a mascara that cost a mere $5 and was available on Amazon Prime, my interest piqued. Swipe up made it extremely easy–too easy–to see what the fuss was all about, and the message was immediately clear: this affordable product had some pretty rave reviews (nearly 100,000 of them, in fact). Clearly, I had no choice but to order a tube!
How It Stacked Up
As soon as the mascara arrived, I was eager to test it out. I’ve always preferred mascara wands that have a slight curve to them and make eyelashes look all the more flirty and dramatic, and this one fit the bill perfectly. Could the wand itself be nicer? Likely, yes, but keep in mind the fact that this product costs less than a Starbucks latte!
While the product makes my lashes appear more prominent, it doesn’t result in that spidery look that we all dread. Is there still some clumping? Sure, but that may sometimes be due to user error (think: me frantically swiping mascara on my eyelashes approximately two minutes before my first video call of the day). But as a whole, I love how much more awake and put together my face looks with just a touch of the product.
The deep black color stays on all day long, but at $5 a pop, you could certainly order a few backups to keep in a desk drawer or glove compartment for touch-ups. In the photos above, you’ll see how much darker the black shade is compared to another brand I tried out recently (which honestly felt “barely there” and not in a positive way!).
I’ve since repurchased the mascara over the past several months because I think it’s that great, and honestly, it’s made me less skeptical about going for the beauty items that seem “too good to be true.” It reminds me of how my hairdresser always tells me that a $10 Wet Brush is just as beneficial as a $200 Mason Pearson–sometimes one doesn’t have to shell out a ton to find a product that truly does the job.
This mascara is so good that I’m patiently waiting for the day when I can once again swipe it on prior to a glam night out with friends or an IRL first date to truly appreciate its effects in the wild.