To me, NARS have never been known for their mascara. Did they even do a mascara before this launch? If they did, I never tried it. NARS is the brand though that if I could only ever have one make up brand for the rest of my life I would chose. I could quite happily live with their Sheer Glow foundation, creamy concealer (not my favourite but it's not horrendous), eyeshadows and lipsticks. I also love their lip glosses and their blushers are some of the best in the business.
So a new mascara launch from NARS is bound to raise a few perfectly threaded eyebrows in the beauty world. And who better to try it out than a self confessed mascara loving whore than myself?? So when my best friend Dani sent me this from London I immediately put it to the test.
I've done lots of mascara reviews here on Expat Make Up Addict-I love the stuff. I need it like I need air. I've reviewed an Almost Perfect mascara, a Perfect mascara, Disappointing mascaras and 6 mascaras on rotation so I have definitely used every mascara-related descriptive word there is.
Let's start with packaging. Love/hate. Love the red lid-very Louboutin although I don't know why NARS have gone for that look as it's not their norm. The wand is supposedly red as well (well it is in the promo pictures), again-why? It's covered in black mascara. My 'hate' bit comes from the fact NARS have used their awful rubberised packaging for the tube-I was so sure they were moving away from this but no, and it attracts dust, dirt and fingerprints and is impossible to keep clean.
The wand is hard, stiff plastic with over 200 moulded and lengthening hooks and a tapered tip. It's quite a thick wand too (why does every mascara wand review sound I am reviewing a penis?) NARS claim the mascara 'simultaneously separates, lengthens, and amplifies. Its tapered tip finishes off the inner and outer reaches of your imagination, while enhancing lower lashes'. They also claim that the 'formula offers extreme buildability. Lightweight. Long-wearing.'
So lets break this down:
The brush feels extremely scratchy and harsh on my lashes-I don't like it at all and I find it difficult to get it very close to the roots of my lashes. I don't generally dislike plastic brushes but I do dislike this one-a lot. The 'hooks' on the brush are designed to cling to every lash-same as with the Benefit Rollerlash but I really prefer Rollerlash to this mascara-it gives an all round more intense look. The NARS mascara feels spiky and the wand is really too big to successfully get to the bottom lashes (and to be fair I am afraid of causing myself a serious mascara wand in eye injury.
Separates? Yes definitely-no clumpiness at all. I feel like the mascara makes my lashes look fanned out.
Lengthens? Yes, I can see definite length.
Amplifies? No. I can't build any volume with this mascara at all, even with several coats, which is really disappointing.
Buildable? Yes-and you get time to work with the mascara too-it's neither an overly wet nor overly dry formula but it doesn't make your lashes crispy when it dries. Also, NARS actively promote that you can recoat your lashes later in the day to go from office to bar without any clumpiness.
Lightweight? It does feel lightweight! I've never really thought about a mascara being heavy or lightweight but this one feels lightweight on the lashes.
Long wearing? No qualms here-no flaking or smudging and it stays black all day. It's a bit of a bugger to remove though at the end of the day. Although my lashes don't respond well to lash curlers, this mascara definitely does hold any curl I do manage to achieve.
Another plus point-the brush doesn't pull out too much product so there is no excess mascara round the tube. (I believe the tube opening has something called a 'sphincter guard' (mega lolz) to ensure that the mascara stays inside the tube)
In summary-I really do prefer volumising mascaras and this one sorely disappoints in that area. If you look for length and separation from your mascara then you will like this-as long as you don't dislike the wand as much as I do. I've read a few rave reviews of this mascara but for me, it's not to my taste.