The viral hack with over 12 million views is exactly what it’s called – a cocktail of two different tubes of mascara, layered carefully to create more length and definition. While cocktailing may seem like a eureka moment for us, it’s by no means novel. Make-up artists have been doing it for years, our beauty expert tells us.
Kimia Nourtajalli, a Dubai-based makeup artist and stylist, with 12 years of industry experience in editorial and TV commercials, said: “Mascara cocktailing is a way of giving lashes extra volume, length and definition. By mixing a few different types or brands of mascara together, we can achieve the desired effect. As a make-up artist, I would definitely use this technique as I always prefer to enhance the natural lashes of my models or clients, rather than applying false lashes.”
Hence, a blend of mascaras is a safer, easier alternative to falsies, if you want fuller, longer lashes on a night out.
What is the best way to apply a mascara cocktail?
We’re all aware of the universal mascara frustration – clumpy, weighed-down eyelashes. Over-layering or purchasing a product of poor quality can do that to you. So, naturally, with mascara cocktailing, things can go south pretty quickly.
“The technique works really well, but you have to make sure not to be heavy-handed with the layering, as the result will be sticky lashes with mascara particles on them. This can drag the eye look from natural to unprofessionally unnatural,” explained Nourtajalli.
Instead, apply a lengthening mascara first and let it dry halfway on your lashes, before coating them with a volumising mascara. “If I’m satisfied with the look, I’ll leave it there. If there’s room for either length or volume, I’ll add another layer as a final touch,” she added.
Which mascara is the best for this trend?
Beauty enthusiasts should carry out the technique with the aim of protecting the health of their eyelashes. Nourtajalli strongly advises against double-layering with waterproof mascaras.
When we coat the eyelashes in two or more layers of waterproof products, taking off the stubborn layers at the end of the day is going to cause some damage. She said: “You might harm your eyes by rubbing them too much, using more of the eye make-up cleanser, or pulling your lashes when cleansing. Therefore, I would not suggest waterproof mascara for the cocktail technique.”
In case you’re headed to the beach or the pool, and you want to waterproof your look, try our make-up expert’s quick hack. She layers a non-waterproof formula first and tops it off with a waterproof formula last.
People with sensitive eyes should ideally avoid fragrance in their products. Mascaras of better, higher quality will also steer clear of preservatives like “plastics, formaldehyde and synthetic dyes”.
We’ve compiled a list of the best volumising and lengthening mascaras, from which you can mix and match your own cocktail formula. Nourtajalli also adds that your mascara duo can be from the same brand, and this could be a more budget-friendly option. For her lashes, she’s personally found a match in the top two products recommended below.
Score up to 40 per cent off this Beauty Week on Amazon, and shop make-up, skincare and body care items by the biggest brands in the industry. Use the ‘BEAUTY’ code to get an additional 20 per cent off. Offers last until September 26.
Don’t forget to check out Beauty Week discounts and shop with an Amazon Prime membership to try mascara cocktailing as soon as today.
1. Best for Length: Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Push Up Lashes
Lengthening mascaras have a brush wand that’s designed differently. The bristles are shorter and thinner, while the head is longer to comb out even the smallest of lashes, just as is the case with the Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Push Up Lashes Mascara. “The formula is loaded with lash-lifting polymers derived from the larch tree, and it also contains carnauba wax and keratin to keep the lashes lightweight and conditioned,” Nourtajalli said about her pick. The mascara is smudge- and humidity-proof, as well. Reviewers are especially fond of the tapered wand and like that there’s no clumping so it’s easy to remove. Some have received the brown mascara in the range instead, so do watch out for that.
2. Best for Volume: Rare Beauty Perfect Strokes Universal Volumising Mascara
A volumising mascara would carry a thicker brush to distribute more product on the lashes. These mascaras tend to be clumpier, which is why the Rare Beauty Perfect Strokes Universal Volumising Mascara is our expert’s choice. “It’s mixed with a touch of castor oil to keep your lashes feeling like your actual lashes, and it also helps to prevent flaking after layering it on, which I believe is a great option for creating thick and volumised lashes,” said Nourtajalli. It is a water-resistant formula, aside from being cruelty-free and vegan, so this should be the last step in your cocktail.
3. Best Budget for Length: L’Oreal Paris Telescopic Mascara Magnetic Black
L’Oreal Paris’ range of affordable mascaras is a longtime favourite of the beauty community. Nourtajalli recommends its famous Telescopic product for lengthening. With its patented precision brush, the wand promises to extend your lashes by up to 60 per cent and comb apart each lash for a clump-free result. Like our Rare Beauty pick, this mascara is fragrance-free and allergy-tested for sensitive eyes, so you can even give your lashes a lift while wearing contact lenses. The formula shares some of its ingredients with high-end products, containing carnauba wax, beeswax and jojoba oil. Reviewers have had it in their rotation for over 10 years, swearing by this classic.
4. Best Budget for Volume: L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Makeup Lash Paradise Mascara
Pair the Telescopic with L’Oreal Paris’ Voluminous Lash Paradise mascara, says Nourtajalli. It uses a soft wavy brush made up of more than 200 bristles to catch every lash and coat it in a dense black formula. Besides carnauba wax and beeswax, the mascara is infused with floral oil to condition your lashes. Don’t worry, it’s also been tested for sensitive eyes. Buyers say their lashes have been mistaken for falsies with a coat of this mascara. The tube does seem to dry out in a few months, they add.
5. Best Length for Sparse Lashes: Lancome Paris Lash Idole Lifting and Volumising Mascara
A TikTok-favourite combination is one by Lancome Paris. Go in with a few coats of the Lash Idole mascara to lift and lengthen the lashes. It’s an easier task with the curled wand, featuring 360 micro bristles in 250 different sizes to fan out each lash. We love the lightweight gel formula, which helps retain a natural finish without triggering any reaction for sensitive eyes, and the infusion of white tea extract, which conditions and provides antioxidant protection. Reviewers find the gel creamy and fluid, making it a breeze during application. Those with sparse lashes get brilliant results and like that it separates their lower lashes, though the curled design can take a while to get used to.
6. Best Volume for Sparse Lashes: Lancome Paris Monsieur Big Grand Volume Mascara
Follow up with the root-lifting volume mascara Monsieur Big. Featuring the same gel-like creamy formula, the mascara creates up to 12 times denser lashes, thanks to ultra-black pigments and a wand with wavy fibre bristles. You don’t have to worry about smudging and flaking with this one for the entire 24 hours. Reviews say the brush collects a lot of product in one pass and suggest scraping off the excess to avoid clumping. Otherwise, it’s a hit among longtime users who always return to Big Monsieur, whether for long lashes or the removable formula.
7. Best Length for Straight Lashes: Benefit Roller Lash Curling and Lifting Mascara
If your current mascara is struggling to hold on to a curl, then you need specific curl-defining formulas. For the length, start out with Benefit’s Roller Lash Curling and Lifting mascara, an often recommended TikTok product for cocktailing. This may not freeze a lash curl for the whole day, but does enough to last for a 12-hour outing. It uses a hook ‘n’ roll brush to create an eye-opening effect, where each bristle has its own fin that catches the lashes for curling. The wand evenly coats with the conditioning formula consisting of provitamin B5, carnauba wax and serin. Several five-star reviews are impressed with the curling feature, with users noting how they go without their eyelash curler sometimes.
8. Best Volume for Straight Lashes: CoverGirl Lash Blast Volume Waterproof Mascara
Pick up the CoverGirl Lash Blast mascara to up the density and volume of your curled lashes. After gaining traction from a viral TikTok clip, the mascara quickly became popular among straight-lashed users. It adds an understated dramatic effect, without making the lashes appear too gummy, and it’s all due to the unique spin-shape brush. CoverGirl uses a hypoallergenic waterproof formula, so it’s perfect for layering over the Benefit mascara to get a water-resistant cocktail. Reviews wear it to the pool and the beach.
Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.