Mascara Master Class
Around the same time we start seeing hair where we don’t want it (on chins and necks or, worst of all, growing out of noses), we suffer the double injustice of having it grow sparser where we do want fullness, like along our lashline. Thanks very little, hormonal fluctuations.
There are a number of lash-growth serums, most notably (and effectively) prescription-strength Latisse, that help lashes stick around longer before they fall out, and thus, get longer and thicker. Most take about three months to work (and they do work; I’ve used Latisse on and off for years). But, for more immediate results, I prefer this three-step kit: an eyelash curler, a volumizing mascara (the kind with an oversized, fluffy brush and a thicker formula) and a lash comb. Right now, I’m using Kevin Aucoin The Eyelash Curler ($21; sephora.com), Tarte Lights, Camera, Flashes Mascara in Black ($21; sephora.com) and a clean mascara wand like those you’d find at any beauty supply store or in the Sephora Collection Disposable Wand Collection ($7/twelve wands; sephora.com).
First, I curl my lashes by crimping once in the middle of the lashes, then a second time near the roots. Because lashes do not grow as long as they once did, some never get long enough to curl on their own, so this step helps make your fringe bend consistently. (It also helps if you are using a growth serum like Latisse, which can make your lashes grow so long they curl in disparate directions.)
Next, I remove the wand from the tube of mascara and gently wipe off the excess on a tissue. Most volumizing formulas are quite thick, so the quick wipe minimizes clumps before you swipe it on. After that, I apply two coats only to my top lashes. Some makeup artists probably disagree with me on this step, insisting mascara be applied to the bottom lashes as well. But I've found applying to the bottom leads to smearing beneath the eyes, which plays up dark circles and makes me look exhausted (which I often am but try not to advertise).
Finally, I use the clean mascara wand to swipe through my lashes to separate each strand and make sure the goo application is even, root to tip. Note: I always finish by rinsing off that extra wand in warm water so it’s clean next time I de-clump.
Other mascaras I like for skimpy-lash plumping: Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara ($23; sephora.com) and Giorgio Armani Eyes to Kill Excess Mascara ($32; giorgioarmanibeauty-usa.com).