7 Common Mascara Mistakes To Avoid If You Want Luscious Lashes

by Lynsey Macdonald

Mascara is one of my favorite beauty products. Even if you’re running short on time, a swipe of mascara quickly can transform your face and give you a wide-awake look that can only be achieved with extra sleep and a super large coffee. It can define your eyes, add drama to a smokey eye, or simply give you a little confidence boost. But as is the deal with any makeup product, it’s easy to fall into lots of little bad habits and routines, and there are certainly a few common mascara mistakes to avoid.

The mascara market is huge, and both drugstores and high end counters offer us an amazing choice. Whether you’re in need of lengthening, volumising, or both, the mascara for you is out there in the makeup aisle. Brands experiment with different wand shapes, from chunky plastic wands to tiny curved brushes, and the right mascara can truly transform your eyes. I still remember buying my first mascara as a teenager. It was the Maybelline Great Lash, the first mascara for many of my generation and, quite possible, the catalyst of my love affair with makeup. So whether you’re a seasoned mascara collector like myself or a total newbie, the following seven tips will help you get the best look out of your mascara.


You Forget to Replace Your Mascara

This is one regular shopping trip you don’t have to feel guilty about. While certain products can survive the apocalypse, mascara has an expiration date. Using an outdated mascara is not only less effective, but can also cause irritation to your eyes. Be sure to replace your favorite mascara after three months.


You Pump the Mascara Wand

A habit many of us fall into is trying to get as much mascara on the wand as possible by pumping the brush in the tube. But this trick can actually cause your mascara to dry out faster. Avoiding this means your new favorite mascara will have the best possible impact on your lashes for longer.


You Share Mascara

When you’re embarking on a girl’s getaway or prepping for a night out, it can be tempting to pool your makeup collections together and try out each others favorite beauty products. This is fine with some products but mascara is not one of them. The wand picks up even the tiniest bacteria, something we’d all rather not transfer to our eyes. So, to be on the safe side, make sure you keep your mascara to yourself.


You Apply Too Many (or Not Enough) Layers

During my daily commute, I see the same woman applying makeup every day. She applies mascara for a good five minutes every day, layering on coat after coat till her eyelashes stuck together in huge clumps. Not only is this not an attractive look, but it is really bad for your lashes. Most mascaras are designed to be layered twice, and any more than that can lead to dry, clumpy lashes, not to mention a nightmarish removal process.

Alternatively, if you only apply one layer, try popping on a second coat and see if it makes a difference to your peepers. That extra layer can really amp up your lashes if the occasional calls for it.


You Clean Mistakes Too Quickly

When you accidentally touch your mascara wand to your under eye area or, even worse, sneeze and smudge your still-wet mascara,it’s tempting to clean the mess immediately. But attending to it right away can lead to an even bigger smudge, while waiting for it to dry means you can, most of the time, just lightly scratch it off with your nail.


You Miss The Top Of Your Lashes

Many of us forget that the top side of our lashes could use an extra life too. Rather than just applying a coat to the underside of your lashes, look down and apply a coat to the top too, for a more intense look and thicker looking eyelashes.


You Stick To The Same One

If you have super sensitive eyes, this is a rule to ignore — stick to what you know agrees with you. But, if your eyes don’t mind you mixing it up a little, experiment with your mascara, and try out different wand shapes and formulas. There are so many to choose from on the market, it’s a shame to limit yourself to just one. You might use one that creates amazing volume for a big night out, but for daytime something different might result in a more subtle effect.