False lash effect mascara review: MAC vs. Maybelline

As a total mascara addict, it’s no surprise I hoard the occasional three, four or five mascaras at a time. At the moment, I have been testing one formula from MAC called False Lashes and another from Maybelline called Volum’ Express the Falsies.

As mentioned in the London Haul, I received the MAC False Lashes mascara in my gift bag at the British Fashion Awards. I was so excited to have this as I did not expect to receive anything, much less a high end makeup product. As far as high-end mascaras go, I have been totally satisfied with drugstore versions, occasionally splurging on Benefit’s They’re Real.

I knew nothing of the MAC False Lashes, but the applicator was longer than I was used to and the bristles were quite firm and appeared as though they would do a good job of dispersing the product evenly. With the first application, I noticed I had to work hard to lift and separate the lashes. After seeing that the first coat didn’t do much for me, I went in for the second, which was a big mistake as the lashes started to clump together. I left them to dry and then went in to separate them by hand. Within about twenty minutes, my eyes began stinging and the more I blinked, the more they burned. I thought I might have accidentally gotten excess concealer or eyeliner inside my eye and brushed it off as just having a bad eye day. I also noticed my lashes had fallen and were straight, blaming it on all the watering my eyes were doing. After a few more days where I switched up my eye makeup but kept the mascara, it was evident that the mascara burned my eyes and made my lashes fall straight and as somebody who never curls her lashes, I need a mascara that will not only lift and curl, but also hold all day. I am unimpressed with the product as a whole, especially for the $21.00 price tag. I tried the mascara out for the majority of two months and it was either let my eyes burn or salvage them, so I decided to throw it out, which I don’t do unless a product breaks me out/burns.

For the drug store version by a similar name, I went for Maybelline’s Volum’ Express the Falsies. This is my second time trying this mascara. Tanya Burr of YouTube and beauty blogger fame absolutely loves this mascara and always uses it in her tutorials so as a fan who really trusts her recommendations, I went out and bought this mascara towards the end of the summer last year. I was really unimpressed by the product and wondered how/why Tanya could be so obsessed with it? However, it did the job when it came to volumizing and the actual formula wasn’t bad, I was just expecting my lashes to look like actual falsies. So I used it all up and decided never to buy it again until last month when I went to visit C and we got lost in the makeup aisle of Kroger when we found two-for-one deals on Maybelline mascaras. I had just turned C on to my fave Volum’ Express the Mega Plush, so she and I wanted to purchase another tube and she also wanted to try out the Falsies and since we were getting two for the price of one, I thought I would give it another go. I am SO glad I did as I have really grown to love this mascara. The applicator is curved, which I find does such a great job on lifting and curling my lashes, and the wand is flexible. I’m not sure what the flexibility actually does, but I suppose it does something useful. From the first application with this tube, I have seen the results I’ve been waiting for! My lashes are lifted and separated and still super voluminous. I have no idea what went wrong with my previous tube, but this one has been perfect every time.

So in the battle between high-end and High Street, I’m calling Maybelline’s drugstore version of the Falsies a much better option not just because it’s one-third the cost of the MAC False Lashes, but because it doesn’t burn and it really does what the name says it should.


– S