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Mascaramentals: Part Six |


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Mascaramentals: Part Six

Mascara can make you go from looking good to great, and it’s the one beauty product that actually makes you look more youthful and instantly polished.  Here are some final tips for bringing out the best lash curl, length, and volume with your application.  I prefer to heat curl lashes before I apply any lash primer or mascara, as I don’t want to risk pulling or breaking lash hairs.  This is especially important for fragile, thin, or sparse lashes, as it takes a long time for lost lashes to grow back in.  If you use a mechanical lash crimper start at the root of the lashes and then gently squeeze the curler as you move it up to the ends.  This adds the curl more gradually without lashes looking sharply “bent”.

Some artists believe in using two different brands of mascara to achieve length and volume, while others swear it’s the brush you use to apply it.  For me, it’s depends on the type of lash I am working with.  For example, with long lashes that are sparse I will use more of a volumizing mascara, whereas with short lashes that are thick I will stick with a lengthening mascara.  I can make any mascara brush perform the results I am looking for simply by angling the approach of the brush to the lash, along with placement and direction of the mascara build on the lashes. 

My favorite mascara to use will always be cake (the type you have to activate with liquid) because I can get beautiful customized results.  The tube style is always fast and convenient and there are great formulations out there to choose from.  However, avoid the habit of pumping the mascara wand in the tube as it will introduce an air pocket, which will dry out and shorten the shelf life of the mascara.  Simply roll the brush around in the tube, scraping the sides before you remove it.  Pulling the brush out slowly from the tube also greatly decreases the chance of an air pocket, as does putting it back in slowly while twisting the wand.  You don’t need to wipe the excess mascara off the brush with a tissue, as that can cause tissue fibers to stick to the brush.  Simply pull the wand out against the side of the tube so it is self-wiping against the tube opening

To make lashes appear longer I start by applying the mascara from the outer corners working it inward.  This helps to use the amount of mascara on the brush more evenly, so you don’t risk clumping too much on the inner corner lashes.  I like two coats of mascara: first to define and optimize length, and then the second one to add volume.  I wiggle the mascara wand in a “Z” like movement, by wedging the wand horizontally right under the roots, and working it up to the tip.  This helps make the lash base appear fuller while minimizing the lashes sticking together.  Keep lashes separated between mascara coats by using a lash comb.  Separation is a major key to achieving optimal length and volume, especially if you have used a lash primer.  I also turn the wand diagonally (about an 80 degree angle) to help fan out and separate them during an application, especially at the outer corners.

As a finishing touch I use a mini Taklon mascara brush dipped in the mascara to bring forward even the thinnest baby lashes into the lineup.  I also use it to touch a bit more mascara on the tips of the lashes to ensure the most length possible.  Should you apply mascara on the bottom lashes?  Absolutely, because it will help create balance with the volume and length of mascara on the top lashes.  Don’t overdo them, as you will end up creating the very thing you want to avoid: a clumpy lash appearance. Just use what is left on the brush and hold the wand perpendicular to the eye. Touch the wand tip very lightly, up and down, as you move it over the lower lash line.

As for the color of mascara to use?  It’s all personal preference, and available in the formula you prefer.  Keep in mind that the more pale or blonde the complexion or natural lash hairs are, the more high contrast or stark looking black mascara may be, especially for daytime, unless you are going for a “doll eye” effect.  I find that some brown mascara colors can also make lashes look dull with a “blunted” look, so I tend to stick with blackish brown colors instead.  I also mix mascara colors together to create a new color, such as a black navy blue, or black burgundy.  It’s fun to experiment and who knows, you may start your own mascara fashion trend!

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