Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Product Review: Cover Girl LashExact Mascara

So, between all the ANTM and the Queen Latifa and Cowgirl Warrior's recommendation and all the hype on MUA, it was inevitable that I would purchase this mascara. Even though I have FAR too many mascaras for a girl who doesn't even use them all that often.*

Lash Exact's main selling points seem to be the brush, Jade, THE BRUSH, and its clump-free application. I picked up a tube in Blue, simply because I could. The purple tube is on the giant side, but it sure is purrty.

Let's get to talking about THE BRUSH then, shall we? This thing is plastic and spikey-looking, and is supposed to be key in providing separation and definition like you've never seen before. I liked that it pulls out of the tube cleanly -- there's no globules of excess mascara at the end of the wand to deal with. However, this shit hurts if you accidentally get too close to the lashline. With a traditional mascara wand with softer bristles, this usually leads to a big ol' smear, but it's not too painful. With the Lash Exact brush, there's much less smearing (yay!) but rather more pain (nay!). The answer to this problem is to not be a jittery klutz like me. Put DOWN the coffee before putting on the mascara, G! When will you learn???

As for the no clumping promise? There's certainly no clumps of the "chunk-of-mascara-on-a-lash" variety. But, while the mascara goes on my right eye splendidly, I somehow always seem to muck up the left eye (I am right handed) and get the lashes all stuck together. I've had to run a lash comb through them to separate them a few times. Since it defines my RIGHT lashes beautifully, I am inclined to think that this may be a problem with moi and not with the mascara. That being said, I am definitely not a mascara novice, so I'm not really sure what Exactly (har) is happening.

I have found that the best way for me to apply Lash Exact is to first curl the lash, then tilt my head back and look down my nose at the mirror and apply the product with a very light, feathery stroke. With the right eye, I have to twist my hand around so that the brush points towards my nose, not my ear -- this seems to solve my clumping problem. For either eye, any more than 4 strokes leads to clump city, but fortunately, you really don't need more than 2 or 3 strokes to coat the lashes thoroughly.

If you can get past all that, LashExact really is a very good mascara. It lenghthens and defines as promised -- it gives a natural, pretty, "casual lash look". Lashes feel soft, not brittle, and they hold a curl well. Most of all, I am amazed at its staying power! It does not smear. EVER. Not even on that spot under my left eye on which all mascaras smear. Not even after a long nap. Not even after an all-nighter. I haven't cried with this on or anything, but so far, it's impressed me very much me with its longevity. It's not even technically a waterproof mascara!

The Cover Girl website says that this is a good mascara to apply to your bottom lashes, a thing which I had never considered before. Because: a) my bottom lashes are so damn sparse I'd be lucky to find them with my mascara wand, and b) hello, if I can't keep mascara from smearing off my top lashes, how the hell am I supposed to make them stay put on the bottom ones??? While there's not too much to be done about the first point, Lash Exact's amazing stay-put-ability makes me willing to actually *try* mascara-ing my bottom lashes. And also willing to make up new words, apparently.

So, while LashExact takes a little extra time and care to apply properly, I'm willing to reach for this on those days when I just want to be sure that my mascara won't budge. As many others have said, it doesn't do a whole lot in the volume department, but it adds a nice amount of length and definition. (FYI, you can build with multiple coats, but there will be much brushing out of clumps required, and it still doesn't look as good as a proper volumizing mascara.) Oh yeah, it also smells kinda weird, but I'm not much for sniffing my own lashes, so whatevs.

For me though, the most rewarding part of owning this mascara is hearing Danielle say in my head every morning, in her southern accent: "The cluhmp stops herrrre!"

* Actually, I wear mascara ever single day now, for no reason other than the fact that I have all these freakin' tubes of the stuff lying around. This is most likely how people get addicted to crack and gambling.



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