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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Maryland chapter.

Mascara fixes everything. Every time my eyeliner looks a little wonky on one side or I’m not confident in the blending of my eyeshadow, I’m comforted by the fact that once I put mascara on, no one will notice. 

Here are a few of the tips and tricks I have gathered over the years for stepping up your mascara application without using fake lashes.


Before starting to apply my mascara, the first thing I do is make sure all my lashes are separated. To do this, I use a clean finger and spoolie to brush through them. When I wake up in the morning, usually my top lashes will be tangled with my bottom lashes, so solving this before using any product is a must.

One way to spice up your lashes is to start curling them in two or three different spots, depending on how long your eyelashes are. Curling my lashes always makes me nervous because I’m convinced one of these days they’re going to all fall off. This is why I start at the tip, then curl them in the middle and once close to the base. Not too close to the base though! I usually leave a safe, generous amount of space in between. Again, we don’t want to risk leaving this experience with no lashes left. 


My favorite tip for applying mascara is to start at the end of my lashes and then work my way closer to the base. I find that this makes it easier to build the product on the ends without making the base too clumpy in the process. I also shift the brush side-to-side as I swipe.

After the first coat on one side, I’ll dip the brush back in the bottle and twist it to get more product on the brush instead of using an up-and-down motion. This helps your mascara last longer because it’s getting less air in the bottle while still getting the desired effect of building up product on the brush.

After the second eye, I’ll use a clean finger to go back to the first side and make sure it’s still a little bit sticky. Then, I’ll do a light second coat mostly just on the ends of my lashes, which I find helps get that long lash look without clumping. 

After Application

Before the product completely dries, I’ll use a clean finger to push the lashes up as a last minute effort to get them to look more curled. It’s best to do this before it’s completely dry, but not too early that it will smudge on your lid or cause more clumps. Lastly, I complete the look by using my spoolie or tweezers (carefully!!) to separate any major clumps before the product is completely dry and locked in.

My favorite mascaras!

These are some of my favorite drugstore and high end mascaras that I think are definitely worth a try if you’re looking for a recommendation! They are in no particular order, I have loved them all and find them very similar. I try to replace my mascaras at least every three or four months, so depending on how my bank account is looking I’ll either treat myself to one of the higher end products or head to the drugstore. Shoutout to Her Conference for giving me a free Magnificent Mascara from Valentino because I fell in love! 

  1. Better Than Sex – Too Faced
  2. Lash Sensational – Maybelline
  3. Magnificent Mascara – Valentino
  4. Lash Paradise – L’Oreal
Madelyn Willoughby is a senior majoring in journalism and minoring in business at the University of Maryland. She is a Campus Correspondent for Her Campus Maryland.