Battle of the Local Mascaras: Celeteque, Fashion 21, F&S, Ever Bilena, and Happy Skin
Who doesn't want long and lush lashes? It's an easy way to look more youthful and awake, not to mention they make your eyes look bigger even while wearing glasses. It's no surprise that lash serums, lash lifting procedures, and lash growing DIYs are getting a lot of attention. For a quicker albeit temporary solution though, there's always the option of using mascara!
Several foreign brand mascaras have already made their home in our kits, but how about local ones? Do they perform as well as they promise? Let's find out and shine the spotlight on mascaras from five local brands: Features & Shades, Ever Bilena Advance, Celeteque, Fashion 21, and Happy Skin.
I have typical Asian stick-straight lashes that aren't very long so ideally I'd want a mascara that can add length and hold a curl. Most of the formulas offered by brands focus on the volumizing aspect though, so I also took that into consideration when rating the mascaras. Please also note that I have dry skin, which contributed to the fact that all of these mascaras smudge minimally on me; they are still present and intact by the end of the day. Results may vary if you have oilier skin prone to sweating profusely.
Celeteque 24-Hour Volumizing Mascara (P680 at department stores)
Celeteque's mascara promises a waterproof formula that will provide both volume and length. The label lists these key ingredients: “Nylon 6 and Titanium Dioxide for lengthening, Acrylates Copolymer for holding up the curl, and Carnauba Wax for the added fullness.”
The directions for use was to apply from the base to the tips of the lashes, then to repeat the process to build volume. I found that while I can layer this mascara without flaking, it weighed down my curled lashes back to its stick-straight form. It did however add some volume to my lashes because of the darker tint. It's best to remove this using cleansing oil.
EB Advance HD Waterproof Mascara (P250 at department stores)
Thick, waterproof lashes are what you’re supposed to get from the EB's mascara. It also contains vitamin E to help care for your lashes and prevent breakage. I was also pleasantly surprised to find that it included two(!) free eye pencils inside the box!
The mascara did keep my lashes looking and feeling soft. However, it did not manage to maintain the curl so the curling formula that they currently have in the works will do better! In terms of volume, I found that this one made my lashes look fuller and with less “gaps.” This came off easily with micellar water.
Fashion 21 Double Up Mascara (P239 at department stores)
Lengthening and strengthening is the name of the game for the Fashion 21's mascara, which claims to make lashes 2 times longer without weighing them down. It also promises a long-wearing formula and uses a fine-bristled wand to avoid clumping.
I do feel that the mascara visually lengthened my lashes! The fine bristles helped in coating from root to tip. Do note that the formula is very wet and takes a while to dry, so try not to blink too much immediately after application or else it will smudge. I found that I cannot use this while wearing glasses though, because it was unable to maintain the curl and the lengthening effect kept making my lashes hit the lenses. For removal, I just used cleansing oil all over my face and off it went with the rest of my makeup.
Features & Shades Mascarade (about P500 at department stores)
This volumizing mascara claims to build up to bold lashes without being too heavy and clumping together.
This is another wet mascara that takes a while to dry, but what I liked about it is that it held up the curl of my lashes. I have pretty stubborn lashes as evidenced so far in this showdown, so when I discovered that this could keep some of that coveted upwards angle, I tried to use the mascara without curling the lashes first. And somehow, it managed to prop up some of my lash hairs! I was also able to layer this repeatedly, which helped make my lashes look fuller without clumping. Wiggling from root to tip helped in the application of this one. For removal, this came off with the rest of my makeup using cleansing oil.
Happy Skin At Long Lash Supercurl Waterproof Mascara (P999 at Happy Skin counters)
Part of the brand's most recent releases, this has the most unique wand I've ever seen. Yup, it's actually designed to be bristle-free, with a formula that claims to give long, curled lashes that are waterproof, smudge-proof, sweat-proof, and resistant to sebum and tears. Notable ingredients include Hydrolized Silk and Swertia Japonica Extract for extra lash care.
Finally, this was a mascara that kept my lashes curled up all day! While you do need to apply with a certain "technique" (basically just straight from root to tip – no wiggling!) to avoid creating spidery lashes, the unique wand actually allows me to apply it even without my contact lenses on. This is super important because I have an eye grade of 700+ so applying mascara without contacts on means I can't really see what I'm doing.
I have to note that I am unable to layer this one as it made my lashes clump together when I tried applying more than one layer. I guess my lashes are really thin and would benefit from some form of bristles to keep them apart. Another important thing to note is that this cannot be removed with micellar water, or as easily with cleansing oil. I had to use bi-phase eye makeup removers to effectively remove all traces.
Verdict: Thankfully, I did not experience any eye irritation with any of the mascaras and they also didn’t smudge even when worn the entire day. At the end of the day, I still have to choose one winner: the Features & Shades Mascarade! This the overall winner for me because it's able to both create a curl from normally straight-down lashes and build up a more voluminous look using a layered application. The price is also very reasonable and the formula is fairly easy to remove.
Best Curl: Happy Skin At Long Lash Supercurl Waterproof Mascara is a close second for the overall title but as the photo shows, it gave me the best (and longest) curling power. You'll need to spend a little extra but that hold is worth it.
Most Volumizing: EB Advance HD Waterproof Mascara made my lashes look so full, you could barely see any gaps between them! It might have loaded up my lashes with too much product though, and that may have caused its failure to hold a curl.
Most Lengthening: Fashion 21 Double Up Mascara is best for girls with naturally thick and curly lashes and don't wear glasses. The effect is really lovely but I was pretty surprised to feel my lashes brush against my eyeglass lenses.
So, there you have it! Which of these 5 mascaras would you probably choose for yourself? Have you tried any of these local brands? What's your favorite?