LOVELY LASHES

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - THE PANEL -

It’s hard not to be ir­ri­tated by those pho­tos of celebri­ties that ap­plaud their make-up-free face. Most of the time, to even the most ca­sual cos­metic wearer, it’s pretty ob­vi­ous that they’re not en­tirely bare-faced. At the min­i­mum, al­most all have ap­plied some mas­cara, the won­der item that ev­ery­one can mas­ter, af­ford and the ef­fect of which is im­me­di­ately ap­par­ent. No won­der, then, that we buy so many of them.

From the teenager who be­lieves that she can’t face school with­out some slap, but can’t be too ob­vi­ous; through the school-run mum who needs to look awake, but has no time for any­thing more; to the full-on make-up diva who knows that lush lashes lend weight to any look, mas­cara is magic.

By na­ture, most women’s eye­lashes are lack­lus­tre, the best lashes be­ing wasted on tod­dler boys, but how much you want to ramp them up varies from per­son to per­son.

Some see glam­our in loaded lashes, where oth­ers see only clumps, and where one per­son ap­plauds a barely there ef­fect, an­other be­lieves that make-up should an­nounce it­self.

Which ex­plains, in part, why we seem to need so many mas­caras.

BEST OVER­ALL

Lan­come Hypnose Star, €25.72, Lan­come counters na­tion­wide This mas­cara has a dual-sided brush: one side is flat and the other side is curved, which re­sults in sep­a­rated, curled lashes. How the mas­cara it­self dif­fers from the other avail­able Hypnose mas­caras is that it’s a very glossy gel that doesn’t im­part glit­ter as the name and pack­ag­ing might sug­gest, but just a shine that gives a vis­ual im­pres­sion of abun­dant lashes. Avail­able only in black. “I like some­thing be­tween a so-called nat­u­ral look and a bit of glam­our,” said one pan­el­list, “but I can’t abide clumps. This gives a thick-lash ef­fect with­out be­ing thick and clumpy.”

BEST NAT­U­RAL LOOK

Max Fac­tor Clump Defy, €13.99, avail­able na­tion­wide The brush is one of the win­ning fea­tures of this mas­cara — it’s a curved tool that catches even the small lashes at the eyes’ in­ner and outer edges very eas­ily and saves you go­ing at them in­di­vid­u­ally, which can of­ten lead to over­load­ing. Avail­able in black and black/brown, it’s a slightly glossy mas­cara that lends day­time-friendly vol­ume. “The brush works well on both up­per and lower lashes and it doesn’t get clogged with prod­uct, ei­ther, a prob­lem that blights even the best brushes,” a pan­el­list said.

BEST HOL­I­DAY HELPER

Ca­trice Water­proof Top Coat, €4.99, Dunnes; Pen­neys; se­lected pharmacies na­tion­wide Water­proof mas­cara is one of those things that is par­tic­u­larly tricky to get right. Even the water­proof ver­sion of your favourite mas­cara will not be quite the same as the orig­i­nal, be­cause tex­ture is key in a mas­cara and the water­proof in­gre­di­ents must al­ter that. This top coat is a great idea, be­cause it means you can build and blacken your lashes with your pre­ferred mas­cara and then seal them with this prod­uct. “It’s a great ad­di­tion to the sum­mer-hol­i­day make-up bag,” a pan­el­list said. “And a great price, too.”

BEST LOADED LASHES

Rim­mel Scan­daleyes Flex, €8.95, avail­able na­tion­wide This is one for the per­son who loves lashes that are hard to miss but easy to ap­ply. The brush is of the big and fat va­ri­ety, but not overly so, which means that you don’t end up with mas­cara all over your eye­lids or cheeks. The prod­uct it­self lives up to its vo­lu­mis­ing prom­ise; it is the den­si­fy­ing kind that will please the types who love false lashes but some­times can’t face the fuss. Avail­able in black. “My lashes flut­ter right in front of my eyes like big batwings,” ex­plained a pan­el­list, “and that’s ex­actly what I’m af­ter.”

BEST SUM­MER COLOUR

Chanel Inim­itable Water­proof in Blue Note, €30, Chanel counters na­tion­wide This is one of four limited-edi­tion colours, with an­other, lighter blue, a lime green and a yel­low also avail­able. They’re best used as hints of colour, ap­plied to the tips of your lashes, where they will flash brightly as you flut­ter your lashes, rather than to cre­ate an Eight­ies’ Lady Diana look. “Bril­liant with a tan,” said a pan­el­list. “And the water­proof el­e­ment means I can nearly con­vince my­self that it’s a prac­ti­cal choice, too.” Sarah Caden Pic­tured, from left: Lan­come Hypnose Star; Max Fac­tor Clump Defy; Ca­trice Water­proof Top Coat; Rim­mel Scan­daleyes Flex; Chanel Inim­itable Water­proof in Blue Note Email thep­anel@in­de­pen­dent.ie

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