Berkeley Parents Network >
Beauty & Fitness >
This may sound trivial but I have never worn mascara because
I wear contacts. As I get older, I am finding that my
eyelashes seem to be disappearing! Can any contact wearers
recommend a mascara that won't flake into your eyes? It's a
I've worn contact lenses (gas-perms) for more than 20 years.
I've always worn mascara -- the plain-old Maybelline Great
Lash variety. Works fine for me. Karen
I have worn contacts for nearly 10 years and have used Yves
Saint Laurent Mascara Volume Effect Faux Cils for almost as
long. It's pricey at $30, but it doesn't flake into my eyes
or smudge onto my face. And it washes off easily. Nicole
I've worn contacts for almost the same length of time I've
worn mascara -- nearly 30 years now. And I've honestly
never had any trouble with mascara flaking into my eyes, or
at least not since the 1980s! So I'd advise you not to
worry. You might want to start with something that's
labeled for 'sensitive' eyes but I choose my mascara based
primarily on color (I'm a redhead, for whom none of the
standard variations on 'black' tend to look right). I like
the 'match your eye color' lines from both Almay and Cover
Girl. I do tend to avoid waterproof mascaras, as I find
them unreasonably difficult to wash off at night. Pick
something not too expensive that suits your color and
texture ('thicken' vs 'lengthen') preferences and give it a
I wear rigid gas permeable lenses and use waterproof mascara
every day. I'd been using Physician's Formula Aquawear
mascara but it's impossible to find locally anymore so I
just switched to one of L'Oreal's waterproof mascaras. It
actually seems a little better than Physician's Formula, but
I've never had significant problems with flaking. Seems
inevitable that some mascara will get in your eyes--just
part of life for contact wearers. Merrie
I don't wear contacts but I have sensitive eyes and can feel
every little speck. I like mascara by Jill Iredale and
Clinique. Mascara that is billed as 'lengthening' or
'thickening' does contain little bits of things that can get
into your eyes, such as nylon or rayon fibers. Mascara can
also include ingredients like rice bran, talc, mica,
aluminum powder, all kinds of other stuff including mercury.
I think waterproof mascaras are particularly toxic. Check
the Environmental Working Group's Cosmetic database - they
list ingredients for practically every brand.
http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ mascara wearer
Does anyone have a favorite drugstore-brand mascara that they
love? A make-up expert once told me that buying expensive mascara
was a waste of money, because you have to replace them so
frequently. She said that she always used drugstore mascara on
her clients, but I don't remember what brand she recommended.
I've been having terrible luck with awful mascara choices. Any
looking for cheap glamour
Try Al May. When I need mascara on the cheap this has served me
signed, Al May (no kidding)
maybelline, great lash
hands down. Been using it for 20 years
Kiss Me Mascara is the BEST I've ever used, I've tried
everything from all the cheap brands like covergirl to all the
most expensive like MAC and Channel. And in the end no matter
what they said, waterproof, smearproof etc. they all ended up
under my eyes looking like black raccoon eyes by the end of the
day. Kiss Me is weird it's not like other mascaras it says it
'tubes them', and it does, it's very liquid but once you apply
it sets rock solid, and NOTHING (well apart from lots of water
and rubbing) gets it off. When it does come off, it comes off in
weird little spider leg tubes. Mine lasted the 3 days I was
stuck in hospital after giving birth to my son, yes and through
the birth too! It's not the cheapest at $24 a tube, but it's
totally the BEST.
Kiss Me fan
I'm not a mascara-wearer so I can't speak from experience but
almost every article I've ever read about beauty bargains
mentions Maybelline Great Lash mascara as being great and used
by celebrities (i.e. people who can afford any brand).
I think you are looking for love in all the wrong places...cheap
mascara is and will always be just that, cheap. There is so much
hype about the Great Lash pink and green tube from the drugstore
it makes me want to lay down in the middle of a busy street.
I'll bet many people will tell you this is the one to get. No
professional make up artist I know uses this stuff although
every magazine makes that claim. (I've been in the biz for 20
years in NY,LA and SF)
Trish McEvoy makes a fiber mascara that
does not run or smudge beacuse the formula is made of fibers and
the beautiful thing is it washes off with water in seconds. It
just rolls off your lashes in little black shreds. Never again
will you have black under the eyes. You can find it at Nordstrom
in Walnut Creek. The best thing is if you do not like it just
return it. Costs about $29.(I know...breathe) but worth it, I
promise. Sephora has Kiss Me Mascara another fiber/tube formula
made in Japan. Again, you can return it there if you are unhappy
with it. About $30. Now, if you must have a cheap mascara after
knowing about the fiber miracle, go to The Beauty Center and get
Sharani for $2.99. It can smudge, so be prepared to clean it up
during the day (a huge drag) or get the waterproof formula (blue
tube) and be prepared for the nightly removal ritual(ugghh). If
you factor in your time, energy, make up remover, cotton balls,
creating wrinkles by rubbing off the mascara - it really is
worth getting the fiber mascara.
obsessive, Virgo, makeup artist
I'll say she recommended the Maybelline, the outside is pink and
use the waterproof, if you don't want your lashes to go down and
uncurled, try this one, doesn't make your lashes go straight at
all. Everyone uses this one, even actresses.
I have used Maybelline Full & Soft for a few years, usually
waterproof but sometimes regular. It's not a super
thickening/lengthening mascara, but darkens/slightly
thickens/enhances your regular lashes (If you want a lush lash,
try L'Oreal Voluminous). Almost every mascara I've tried, pricey
or thrifty, eventually gets clumpy, so I wipe the wand w/ tissue
before applying. Oh, and Longs Drugs often runs buy one get one
free coupons for cosmetics in their weekly ad, good opportunity
to stock up.
-cheap mascara user
The reason many of us don't buy cheap mascara is because of what they
put in it. Type in ''mascara'' into this database and see how toxic or
safe the one you're interested in is. The beauty industry is totally
unregulated in terms of chemicals and what's considered safe.
I'd rather spend the money
I used Max Factor - waterproof, but recently tried
Maybelline-also waterproof. I think I like the Maybelline
better. These products stay on better than the more expensive
kinds and I've tried them all, pricey and drugstore brands.
Unstoppable Mascara, Maybelline. Cheap, works great. And, of
course, an eyelash curler beforehand.
Lover of mascara
... one that is over the counter preferably and goes on dark dark
black and doesn't run for someone with oily skin and therefore
oily eyelids as well?! I'd appreciate your suggestions.
Try mascara from Blinc (Kiss Me Mascara). It's really good - won't budge until you
remove it with water and a little pressure from your fingers.
max factor aqua lash stays on and absolutely doesn't run. don't try revlon-it's like
using tar. mm
Try Estee Lauder's More Than Mascara. It's expensive (compared
to drugstore brands) but for me is worth the expense. I
periodically try a different brand but always have to toss it and
go back to Estee Lauder. It's the only mascara that does not
create circles under my eyes. Rich black is a nice dark black color.
I can highly recommend two mascaras for you: Neutrogena
Weightless Volume and L'Oreal Featherlash.
The L'Oreal Featherlash product comes in a water-resistant
version that isn't as thick or hard to take off as a full-on
waterproof mascara. It gives pretty greath length, if that's what
you're looking for.
The Neutrogena Weightless Volume is a new find for me. I
absolutely love it. It just adds a bit of length and oomph to my
lashes, so it looks very natural, never rubs off under my eyes,
and is never thick and clumpy.
And they both come in a very dark black, which I think is what
you were looking for.
Maybelline Greatlash waterproof mascara!
Try ''Kiss Me'' mascara. It applies on so smooth and doesn't run. Makes your
eyelash look so long and so really. It's like a plastic or microfiber. Stays on so well.
It comes off with just warm water. It's a little pricy. But it worth it. I have super
sensitive eyes. I can not wear regular mascara, until my facialist suggest me ''kiss
me'', I can wear mascara again. I got it at Lucia's Health and beauty. Her number is
The fire bird
I have very sensitive eyes and when I wear mascara it is
really irritating. Can anyone recommend a good mascara
for me that will not irritate my eyes.
I rarely use mascara because of the irritation. Instead, I get
my lashes ''tinted'' every 6-8 weeks at Benefits on 4th street.
The dye they use may irritate a little during the procedure (15
minutes of eyes closed with goop on them), but then my lashes
are dark brown or black for weeks! Good luck
I have extremely sensitive skin and eyes, and the ONLY mascara that I
have been satisfied with is made by Dr. Hauschka. Not cheap (aprox.
$12, unless you can get someone to bring it from Europe, where it is
about half the price)-
Unquestionably the purest ingredients - no chemical, perfumes, etc.
Cleansing tip: get your hands wet and with your eyelashes between
your forefinger and thumb, gently pull downward, repeating until no
more mascara is on your fingers. This avoids having to use eye makeup
reomover and prevents mascara from getting in your eyes-
I am not sure how severe your eye allergies are but I use Shanti
hypo-allergenic mascara. This has worked great for me. I
bought mine at the Beauty Center on Solano next door to Peet's.
You have to ask for it as it is behind the counter. The cost
was about $6 or $7. Good luck!!
My sister has the same problem. Try ''dry'' mascara, you know, the
type where you have a brush and a black pallet. It is much more
sanitary than putting the mascara brush in the tube over and
I'm looking for a very, very natural, sophisticated permanent eyeliner expert. I'm
willing to travel outside of the Bay Area. Thanks in advance for recommendations of
true experts. Thank you.
Ready for makeup ease
The very best is located in the Palm Springs area - if you every go there. She
New Age Glamour
Permanent Cosmetic Make-up
72-880 Fred Waring Drive
Palm Desert, Calif. 760-341-6606
extremely happy 10 year customer
I had my permanent eyeliner done about three years ago b/c I was tired of
runny/eyeliner aggrevated by my allergies. I do not wear a lot of make-up and
most days I wear none at all. I LOVE my eyeliner and everyday I am so happy I
had it done. I would highly reccommend Brenda Tiner at 925-254-7293. She is
located in Walnut Creek and is great! I have no regrets and am thrilled I was
able to find her.
Call Tashana at Master Waxing Studio in Alameda. 510.865.6200. She is on
A Happy Client of 4 Years
For 20 years, I have used Lancomeís liquid eyeliner (the one in
a tube with a little brush). They have discontinued making it
and I canít find a good replacement! I tried the other liquid
eyeliner Lancome makes (the one that looks like a marker) but
didnít like how it went on (too thick). Two friends suggested
Bobbi Brownís gel liner but it ends up all smudged around my
eyes by the afternoon (apparently I have very oily eyelids).
Can anyone recommend a liquid eyeliner with great staying
power? (I find that liquid stays on better than pencils, but if
you have a recommendation for a good pencil, Iíll try it!).
No Raccoon Eyes
You don't need to buy those expensive dept. store brands (check
out Paula Begoin's ''Don't Go To the Cosmetics Counter Without Me''
book, she rates cosmetics and often the drugstore brands are just
as, sometimes better, than their more $$ counterparts --
sometimes they're all made by the same company in the same
factory!!). I've been a liquid eyeliner addict for over 10 years
and have tried 'em all -- L'Oreal makes a great one, lasts all
diggity dang day. Lineur Intense has a brush (not a ''marker'' tip,
those are just wonky -- avoid the confusingly named Line
Intensifique). The brush is very well shaped and holds up well, the
liner itself stays on all day and night but washes off easily.
Also, if you can find a color you like (look beyond the
disgusting color name ''Roach'' to admire the pretty sparkly brown)
and are willing to pay a
little more, Urban Decay makes a great liquid liner (the brush is
very small but very nicely shaped). Sephora (and Sephora.com)
carries them -- they're $14.
I have been using liquid eyeliners for years. I like them much better than pencils.
I am using Maybelline. If it gets smudged, I clean with Q-tips.
Try Bare Escentuals. They have a mineral eye liner (in lots of
colors) that you mix with water to your desired thickness.
Then you apply it with an eye liner brush. It looks great and
stays put all day.
Try Lancome Artliner. It
goes on like liquid and works the same way as liqued eyeliner, but uses
a more firm
brush. This is not one which is like a marker, but actually has a
resevoir of fluid that the brush dips into. Signed: Lydia
Stila makes a gel eyeliner called Smudge Pots. It comes in a
little jar, and you use a liner brush (I don't think it comes
with a brush, you may have to buy separately). My sister uses
this and loves it because it doesn't smudge (she's got the
smudge problem & oily eyelids)
Trouble with Eye Makeup
Hi - I have never been much of a makeup wearer, but as I get
older (I'm 43!), I want to wear a little bit to brighten up my
face. So a few months ago, I started just using mascara and a
little eye liner. Unfortuntately, I now have a tiny rash below
each eye, which maybe is from the products themselves, or
maybe the eye makeup remover (i used a lancome product, as
well as tried something else from the drugstore) The rash
looks a reddish, is slightly puffy, and is dry like excema.
So I now I look older than ever! Once I stopped the make-up
routine, the rash went away. So is it the products I am
using? What can I do? Is there a really super gentle makeup
Always look at the ingredient list and make sure your
skincare stuff doesn't contain parabens, phthalates, mineral
oil, is ph balanced, preferably botanically-based.
And wear eye cream every day and night!
58 with fantastic skin here...
I had terrible skin problems when I tried Lancome products.
I went back to using Clinique and the problems went away.
The only Clinique product that I have had an issue with is
a daytime moisturizer (Repairwear) with sunscreen in it. No
problems with anything else but I haven't tried anything
else with sunscreen in it.
My skin is sensitive too
You should visit a dermatologist. It might be just a coincidence that your rash
appeared when you started using make-up. I had a rash below my eyes for
months that didn't go away even though I was changing all my products in and
out and paying a lot of attention to ingredient lists. I happened to mention the
rash at a regular check-up and my GP referred me to a dermatologist. It turned
out to be a very common type of dermatitis that usually appears under the eyes.
It had nothing to do with the products I was using. The doc prescribed a cream
and it went away.
By the way, I got this same rash during both my pregnancies (wasn't using
makeup then) -- it went away after I gave birth. This time I got it in menopause.
I think it might be hormonally related.
Makeup, and other skincare products, can be really tricky. All kinds of crap that
is really not good for your skin gets put in -- and gets touted as really great.
But, there are all kinds of really good stuff too (and there's no real relationship
between price and how good it is for you; some really expensive stuff is bad,
some really cheap stuff is good). I've got pretty sensitive skin and it makes me
One way to sort it all out is to look at the makeup and skincare reviews on this
website: http://www.cosmeticscop.com/ The woman who writes them is very
clear on what is good for you and what is not. She wrote a book, too; I think it's
called ''Don't Go to the Makeup Counter Without Me'' or something like that. She
reviews all of the ingredients of different products, whether or not they are
healthy for your skin.
She actually has products too, that I buy (and LOVE), but you don't have to buy
her stuff. She's really objective about all the other products out there.
I have the same problem. First, switch cosmetic products for sure.
Then, use a cream-based cleanser rather than a gel-based cleanser
on your face, if you aren't doing so already. I use Epicuren Apricot
Cleanser. Not sure if it's a salon-only item. It's not the cheapest but
it's a far cry pricewise from Lancome and other department stores
I switched to a moisturizing cleanser rather than a liquid soap on my
body too and noticed a huge difference. There are great ones at
Don't ever scrub or rub around your eyes, use a cotton ball to gently
remove make-up, and moisturize with a rich cream/lotion/eye
treatment twice a day. Limiting or reducing coffee should help too.
You don't mention your complexion or hair color, but if you're not
super-fair and don't want to add a lot of definition you can brighten
your eyes with eye-shadow (top and a little at the bottom) instead of
mascara and liner too. Much gentler going on and off. Mineral-based
cosmetics come in some really rich colors.
bummer! sorry you are having a reaction to something. i'm no
expert, but my child has eczema, so i do know that dove soap
(original, unscented, hypoallergenic) is a great mild, pure
soap. (when i mentioned it to my facialist, she said she
uses it herself- which was pretty annoying since she had
been pushing expensive cleansers on me for years!) and
cetaphil lotion is a good moisturizer, also hypoallergenic.
both of these products have the bonus of being quite
affordable as well.
For as long as I can remember, every time I've tried to wear
eyeshadow, I break out in a red, bumpy rash on my eyelids.
I've tried all different brands, Clinique, Estee Lauder, etc.,
but have the same result. I'm wondering if anyone else has had
a similar experience and can recommend a product that they've
had success w/. Or has any idea what I'm reacting to? Thanks
Have you tried a mineral make-up? There are a few different
brands, and you can even learn to make your own. The women in my
family have a plethora of skin issues, and the one type of
make-up all of us can wear is minerals. It doesn't cause us to
have break-outs, itchiness or redness.
My skin loves minerals.
I get a rash from anything that lists ''silica'' in the ingredients.
Brand doesn't matter, I
just have to look for specific colors that don't include silica. Maybe
there is something
similar for you -- look through the ingredient list for a commonality
across a bunch
that have given you a rash, and then see if you can avoid it.
I've had increasingly sensitive reactions to eye make-up too.
Lately, I've had really good results with neutrogena lash tint,
and physicians formula mineral eye shadows and liners. Both are
drugstore items, but better than most department store things
I've tried, and very gentle. I also really like the physicians
formula cream eye make-up remover.
this page was last updated: Aug 29, 2012
BPN is now a 501(c)(3) non-profit and we are building a new website!
Read more, and see how you can help:
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2015 Berkeley Parents Network