Finding The Perfect Everyday Mascara

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ultra-curly, extra-long, Bambi-style lashes have their time and their place – the spring/summer 2016 Marni, Francesco Scognamiglio and Alberta Ferretti shows among them – but for everyday, our needs are a little different. Disney-length lashes can feel a little too much when you’re sloping around a farmers’ market, or dropping in at a friend’s for lunch. Even a day at the office calls only for a bit of concealer, a layer of BB cream, some tinted lip balm and a subtle slick of mascara – after all, the idea of a daily beauty uniform is increasingly appealing as you consider the extra time in bed in the morning.

In the same way that our collective beauty mood has shifted toward fresh-looking, glowy skin, lashes that are separated and defined (but not clumpy or overly dramatic) feel modern, no-fuss and sophisticated. Less about making an impact and more about enhancing and defining.

Finding the perfect clump-free mascara, however, is another story. The clear mascara of the Nineties was good for curl hold and a natural finish, but a coloured version makes lashes look instantly longer by tinting their almost-transparent tips. Estée Lauder and Benefit have both launched tinted lash primers in the last year, offering a subtle coating of colour without causing product build-up and clumps. Both can be applied under mascara for an extra boost, but when worn alone they make you look as if you have such naturally great lashes you don’t even need mascara – and nobody needs to know you’re wearing anything at all, do they?

If you’d like a little more definition, a mascara with a more buildable formula will offer custom coverage. Rubber wands with evenly-spaced bristles don’t hold as much product, so offer more control too. Gently curl lashes first to fan them out, then apply a couple of coats – stopping before any tell-tale clumps ruin your efforts. A dry mascara wand (you can easily find a big box on Amazon) combed through afterwards will further redistribute any build-up.

At Carven’s spring/summer 2016 show, make-up artist Nina Haverkamp mixed mascara with brow gel for a more subtle effect. At Emanuel Ungaro brown mascara was applied where necessary then brushed through, whilst Pat McGrath stopped after just one coat at Stella McCartney.

Whatever your choice of application, a minimal and natural-looking approach feels fresh and real for everyday life – and you’ll thank yourself each evening when it takes a single cotton pad to remove it all

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