My all time favorite mascara was L’Oreal Le Grande Curl. It was one of those miracle products that did everything I want, nothing I don’t, and I never even considered trying out another mascara, so faithful was my love.
So naturally it got discontinued.
Ever since then (because it has been YEARS), I’ve been on the hunt for a mascara that could even come close. L’Oreal didn’t replace it with anything similar, and I’ve tried options from more brands than I can count. No dice. My primary concern is curl – I have fairly straight lashes and am not super great with a curler, so I need something that will maintain and hold all day long. Sadly, my lashes are also fairly thin and short (oh what I would give for the crazy length I had in my youth when my lashes actually used to touch my glasses!), so I like a bit of lengthening and volume as well, but only a little. I try to go for a ‘no makeup’ look, so I don’t want giant spider lashes. But I have four kids and there’s never enough sleep, so I definitely need something to make my eyes pop.
I’ve been venturing into the world of natural beauty for a while now, trying to replace the products I’m not completely obsessing over with less harmful options. I’ve found some absolutely amazing stuff (I’ll discuss in future posts), but I haven’t dipped a toe into the mascara pond until now. Naturally my first instinct is to buy them all and do one big review with my results, but of course that gets a little expensive. So seeing as mascara is one of the few products you need to replace fairly often (as opposed to say, eyeshadow which can last for ages), I decide to try one or two new brands on a monthly basis and report back on my findings. That way you can benefit from my experiences and I feel like I’m providing a service instead of just trying a bunch of (hopefully not) lousy mascaras.
First up is Physicians Formula, chosen primarily because it is the cheapest option. I got two kinds: the Organic Wear 100% Natural Origin Mascara in Ultra Black, and the Organic Wear 100% Natural Origin Curl + Care Mascara in Black.
Physicians Formula Organic Wear 100% Natural Origin Mascara (green cap), Physicians Formula Curl + Care (silver)
Both of these mascaras are basically identical, with the curl and care having a slight advantage in the curl department simply because the brush is shaped differently. They are also almost indistinguishable from not wearing mascara at all. The formula is really nice – it somehow feels conditioning on the lashes (I don’t know what this means, but its true), and it stays put all day. I haven’t had a problem with smudging or smearing (although it does rub off on my fingers if I touch my lashes so the potential is there), and I haven’t had any issues with flaking.
However, it is REALLY subtle. There is no lengthening, there is no volume, it is seriously just the thinnest coating of black along your lashes. Perfect for a super natural look, or if you have very pale lashes and just want to darken them. Hopping out of bed in the morning, I need a little more oomph to look awake and put together, and these wouldn’t work AT ALL for a more dramatic night time look.
Also, I realize this shouldn’t be an issue, but the packaging really knocks some points off for me. I like to feel like I’m using high end products even when I’m not, and these bottles (jars? wands?) just look really cheap to me. My kids absolutely LOVE the shiny silver and the leaf shapes, but I prefer something a little more elegant.
- feels nice on
- no smudging or flaking
- natural ingredients
- low cost
- hardly noticeable
- not waterproof
- tacky packaging
Here’s how the 100% Natural Origin Mascara looks on:
And here’s the Curl + Care:
Pretty, but hardly setting the world on fire with the gorgeousness of my eyelashes, and I may or may not continue to use them until they run out. If I don’t decide to use them, they’ll be perfect in my girls’ makeup box (where all my rejects go) because they’ll provide the fun of applying mascara without turning my daughters into sideshow freaks.
And like I said- if you are only looking for the slightest boost to your natural lashes, this will do quite nicely. It feels great, there aren’t any scary ingredients to worry about, and the price point is fantastic.
What do you think? Do you have a favorite mascara I should try? Ideally I’m only looking at products ranked 3 or lower on the Skin Deep website, but I’m always willing to make an exception for something really remarkable (or waterproof – I have dry eyes and I need to apply eye drops constantly, so waterproof is a big plus!). Let me know in the comments!!
please note: this is NOT a sponsored post. The products mentioned were purchased by me, for full price, and all opinions are my own