When it comes to favorite eye cosmetic products, mascara is king. Over $914 million was spent in the U.S. on mascara in 2018, more than eye shadow and liner purchases. That’s hardly surprising considering the classic beauty staple can instantly make eyes look awake and lashes look longer and fuller.
But for all the money we spend on mascara, there is a right and wrong way to put it on so that it looks natural. Read on to learn about common mistakes you may be making when applying mascara. Are you guilty of any of these?
Mistake #1: Not Curling Your Lashes Before Applying Mascara
This extra step may add a minute or two to your makeup routine, but taking the time to curl your lashes before applying mascara really makes them look longer and opens up your eyes. For even more curling power, gently warm your metal eyelash curler using your hairdryer (be careful not to make it too hot or you can burn your eyelid.) This step turns the tool into a mini curling iron for your eyelashes, but it does take some practice to learn exactly how long to apply heat to your curler.
Always apply mascara after you’ve curled your lashes, not before. A curler can stick to mascara-coated lashes and accidentally cause you to pull some of them out.
Mistake #2: Pumping Your Mascara Wand in and out of the Tube
A lot of mascara wearers like to pump the wand in and out of the tube, thinking that it will evenly distribute the product on the applicator. Unfortunately, it will also trap air inside the tube which can dry out the product quickly. Instead, twist the wand back and forth using a circular motion while keeping it completely inside the tube to collect the product onto the brush.
Resisting the temptation to pump the wand will help your mascara last longer. Some mascara tube openings are designed so that the right amount of product stays on the applicator when you slowly remove it from the tube.
Mistake #3: Not Beginning at the Lash Line
To help your lashes stay curled and appear fuller, always begin applying mascara at the base of your lashes, not the tips. Wiggle the applicator at the lash line to apply the product to the root area and then sweep or curl it up over the rest of the lashes.
Applying it to the tips first can weigh lashes down and create an uneven layer when you go over it. You should also try to apply less pressure as you sweep the brush through to the ends of the lashes.
Mistake #4: Not Separating Lashes Between Coats
No one wants the dreaded “spider legs” look that applying mascara incorrectly can make. One way to avoid it is to comb through your lashes using a lash comb or similar tool to help separate them. You can also use an old mascara wand as a lash separator; just clean it thoroughly first.
Try to separate them while the mascara is still wet; once it’s dry it will be harder to break up the lashes.
Mistake #5: Using Too Much Product
Applying mascara when there’s too much on the applicator can lead to clumps and smudges around the eye area. Less is more when it comes to using mascara, especially if you apply more than one coat. Scrape any excess product on the edge of the opening when you pull the wand out of the tube or wipe it with a clean tissue.
You should apply two or three coats max to your lashes. Any more can make your lashes look clumpy, heavy, and unnatural.
Mistake #6: Keeping a Tube of Mascara For Too Long
All cosmetics need to be tossed after a certain amount of time to prevent skin and eye infections. Mascara tends to have a shorter shelf life compared to other beauty products. It’s recommended that used mascara be tossed and replaced every three months to avoid any problems.
You can also sign up for a mascara delivery service that ensures a fresh tube in your hands just as the old one is starting to run out. If your mascara starts to get dry, it’s time to throw it away.
Mistake #7: Applying It Incorrectly to the Bottom Lashes
There are no rules that say you have to apply mascara to both your upper and bottom lashes. But if you like to coat your bottom lashes, there are a few ways of doing so to keep your lashes separated and the product evenly distributed.
Because your bottom lashes lie so close to your skin, it’s easy to smudge this area when applying mascara. Protect the area by placing a folded tissue, credit card, or the back of a spoon underneath your lashes before coating them with mascara.
Another trick is to apply mascara to your upper lashes first, and then apply to your bottom lashes without placing the wand back into the tube first. This way you’ll get just the right amount of product onto your bottom lashes.
Make Applying Mascara Easier
Applying mascara properly does require some practice to make it perfect. If you’ve been making any of the mistakes above, just know you’re not alone—just keep perfecting your technique and you’ll have perfect looking lashes in no time.
And to make applying mascara even easier, try our Best Little Mascara Ever. It was designed to be clump-free, smudge-free, easy to apply, and made with natural ingredients. And our mascara club means you’ll always have a fresh tube delivered to your home when you need it.
Shop our gift sets to find the beauty package that is right for you!