If, as they say, the eyes are the windows to the soul, then there’s no point having a pair of god-awful curtains up. It is for this very philosophical reason that I have been on a quest for the perfect mascara for many years now.
Mascara is the one makeup item that I change frequently, generally buying a new brand each time my current one runs out. Partly, this is because I’m a sucker for a promotion and new gimmick (“this wand CURVES? Well, this will definitely change my life, here is my Boots card”), but also no mascara has ever really wowed me enough to convince me that there’s nothing better on the market.
My favourite mascara to date has been L’Oreal’s ‘Volume Million Lashes’. When I first used this mascara, people actually asked me if I was wearing false eyelashes (well, one person did) (and it was Lauren who was probably just sucking up to me). But it was one of those instances where I loved the product, and then when I re-bought it it didn’t seem to be quite as good. Has anybody else ever experienced this? It can be hard to tell which product is the exception, the good one or the bad one? In case the good version was the fluke, I continued my quest for the perfect mascara.
I have wanted to try Benefit’s ‘They’re Real’ mascara for a really long time now. It is apparently the UK’s best selling mascara, and is raved about all over the internet. After noticing that Debenhams had an offer on some of their makeup, I finally bit the bullet and ordered it. Three days after the postman attempted to deliver it to my house and it ended up being sent back to the depot for being too large (is there really any need to package a teeny tiny mascara in about three metres worth of bubble wrap?) I finally received my ‘To Claire, From Claire’ present.
I have to admit I am quite drawn to nice packaging on makeup products, and this shininess appeals to the magpie in me. It retails at around £20, which I always thought was a bit steep – but I suppose if you think of that as being equal to two high-street £10 mascaras that leave you unimpressed then it can be justified if it works.
So… does it work?
I have to say, I’m incredibly happy with ‘They’re Real’. It made my eyelashes instantly longer and curlier, but I think the fullness and intense black colour it provides are really what impressed me.
The best thing I have found about this mascara is its staying power. I apply it at around 6:30a.m. before work, and at the end of the day its still holding up. In fact, it’s an absolute nightmare to get rid of it without a good eye makeup remover – but that’s what we want really, isn’t it?
On the downside, I still think it’s a bit expensive for mascara. Also, it could never be a replacement for false eyelashes – it is only mascara and not a magic stick after all, so I doubt anybody is actually going to ask me if “they’re real” any time soon (unless Lauren fancies sucking up again). But then, I think that’s a pretty unrealistic expectation and I quite enjoy sticking extra bits of hair to my face before a night out anyway.
So my overall opinion is extremely positive. I think whether I give up my quest and re-purchase this mascara will be decided by how long it lasts me and whether I think enough time has passed for me to justify the next £20.