Saturday, May 20, 2006

Mascara Review: Neutrogena Weightless Volume Mascara

Graphic created by Katie at Scentzilla

I love Neutrogena products. I’m rarely disappointed in anything they make, from skin care to cosmetics to shampoo. When I signed up to do these reviews, I thought I might go back and visit old drugstore favorites like Almay One Coat. But when I went to buy a tube, I found not one but three formulations of One Coat: Thickening, Lengthening, and “Triple Effect,” which lengthens, thickens, and gets you that promotion you’vealways wanted. Kidding. It lengthens, thickens, and gives you “curvier” lashes. But which one of these was closest to the original formula? While I stood in the aisle at Target and tried to determine which would be closest (I had just about settled on “thickening”), I looked across the way and saw the Neutrogena stuff.

I use the Neutrogena Lash Tint on weekends when I don’t feel like putting on full makeup. So, ahem, most weekends. I like it well enough, and you can’t really have major expectations for a lash tint anyway. I put the Almay package I had in my hands back on its hook and went over to the Neutrogena display. Neutrogena offers two mascaras, Full Volume and Weightless Volume. I picked up the Weightless Volume because it’s wax free, which is supposed to keep it from clumping, and anti-clumping is what I need. I also made sure to buy black (Rich Black, incidentally).

Here’s what the package says:
“Breakthrough wax-free formula eliminates traditional mascara wax clumping, smudging and smearing.
-Lashes look healthy, natural, and feel weightless, not heavy, stiff or brittle.
-Patent-pending, long-wearing formula goes on cleanly, feels weightless and washes off easily.
-Lash building brush builds and separates lashes with no clumps or smudges.”

The full-bristled brush is about an inch long and tapered at the end. I admit, I bristled and the bristles. Usually this means automatic clumpage. I went through the usual routine: comb, curl, comb again, apply mascara, comb again if necessary. Thank goodness the package had these helpful instructions: “Apply to one eye and then the other.” I’ve been doing it wrong all these years, going back and forth between individual lashes on each eye. This cut my morning routine time by at least an hour.

Oh, the mascara. I applied the first coat. Nice lengthening and no clumping! I waited a minute or so and then applied the second coat. This went on as well almost as well as the first--just a little bit of “dotting,” not really clumping, which was easy to fix with a quick swipe of the lash comb. My lashes looked long and somewhat full. Overall, the effect was noticeable, but still quite natural.

But the best part: my wonky lashes did not migrate at all during the day. This mascara held the chaos at bay. My lashes also felt very soft and natural. I would have assumed that it was the wax in mascara that kept lashes from getting brittle, but apparently I am wrong. (Not unusual!)

And the next best part: no smudges, no flakes, no smears, after fifteen hours of wear.

It was very easy to remove, much easier than my Bobbi Brown. I usually use two cotton balls taking off one coat of the Bobbi Brown, but I only needed one for two coats of this. It came off in little dots--not as odd as Kiss Me’s little squiggles, but still different. Of course, I was using the Neutrogena remover, so maybe that had something to do with it.

And it’s only $6! Also, I just noticed this morning that is having 30% all Neutrogena products through tomorrow, along with free shipping on orders of $25 or more. Happy shopping!

Product Rating: 9

*photo from