What You Should Really Look For When Choosing A Mascara

When it's time to tackle your makeup routine, you might stick with a few tried and true basics, like foundation, lipstick, eyeshadow, and eyeliner. Of course, you may also opt to apply mascara in order to complete your look. Although you may have been using the same mascara for years and putting it on the same way every day, you might want to consider elevating your aesthetic. You can do that by taking advantage of mascara hacks and being aware of what you need to know when choosing the right mascara. As for the latter, you should first be aware of what you don't want to find while looking for mascara.


If you're able, check out the ingredients of the mascara that you're interested in and watch out for problematic and potentially harmful substances. That includes benzalkonium chloride, also known as BAK, which is a preservative that may lead to toxic issues, according to Intoxicating Beauty. On top of that, BHA is another preservative and has been connected to cancer. In addition, keep an eye out for ethanolamines and formaldehyde, which have all been linked to various health issues, including cancer as well as allergic reactions. Finally, you may want to do your best to avoid any mascara that includes retinyl acetate, as well as parabens and fragrances.

Beyond that, there's more to consider when choosing your mascara.


Pay attention to what the mascara offers

While some people may be looking for a mascara that will stay in pristine shape throughout a lengthy workout or won't smudge in reaction to their natural oils, others will prefer a mascara that makes their lashes look longer or help improve their health. Whatever your particular needs and wants happen to be when it comes to mascara, there are a few things that everyone who uses it will want to keep in mind. "When looking for a good mascara, the most important factors for me are long-lasting; doesn't have fallout; a user-friendly mascara wand; and that the product does not look too clumpy," celebrity makeup artist Shadi Malek told Marie Claire. Malek also suggests considering the mascara's type and formula, specifically whether it's tubing mascara or not, saying, "The main difference between tubing mascara and non-tubing mascara is that tubing mascara encases each eyelash whereas regular mascara uses oils and dyes."


Additionally, Malek notes that you'll want to see if the mascara has been made with fibers, which can end up presenting you with an unwanted mess. She explains, "Usually formulas that 'flake' are those that have fibers in them — therefore a non-flaky formula would be one in which would have no fibers in them."

Of course, you'll want to know how to choose the right color of mascara, which is why you'll want to keep a few other tidbits in mind.

You also want to choose the right color of mascara

Before you automatically reach for a classic black mascara, you should figure out what shade actually suits you best. While that could very well be black, there are other shades that might suit you better. When it comes to black, it's an option that tends to be a safe choice, according to The Beauty Bar. It's ideal for people who have dark skin or lashes, although they may want to find the darkest black available. Those with skin that could be described as a medium or olive shade can try black-brown mascara, and if your complexion is on the lighter side or you have eyes that are blue or green, then you might want to go with brown mascara instead.


However, those aren't your only options. Hair and makeup artist Abraham Sprinkle told Essence, "Swapping a colored mascara for your regular black can make the overall look a bit lighter or whimsical. It can also compliment an eye color or shadow if paired properly."

For instance, if you have brown, light green, or gray eyes, you might want to try blue mascara, per The Beauty Bar. Those with green eyes may also find purple mascara flattering, as will those with blue or hazel eyes. Finally, green mascara can work for anyone with hazel or brown eyes and can be used along with an anchoring black to complete your stylish look.