STYLE

Tried And Tested: Mascara

03/08/2011 17:12 | Updated 22 May 2015

mascaraNars Lengthening Mascara, Rimmel 1,2,3 Looks and MaxFactor Aqualash

Whether it's adding length to stubby lashes, thickening the lashes to create a fuller look, or keeping you free from panda eyes, it can be difficult to find a mascara that does exactly what you want.

So, we took it upon ourselves to find out which mascara does what the best. With so many products to choose from, it took some serious testing to find our three winners. To make things a little easier, we separated the mascaras into three groups: Best Splurge, Best High Street Brand and Best Waterproof. We then looked for volumising, lengthening and thickening qualities in each product, as well as testing the application, removal and durability of the mascara throughout the day. Those little black flakes under the eyes were a big no-no!

Begin your quest for lovely lashes below. Take a look at our gallery to see how each mascara performed, but first discover the winners in each category:

Price: £16

If you want thicker lashes with added volume, this is the one for you. After just one coat, it immediately made the lashes appear fuller. Our tester found it to be clump-free, easy to apply and remove. A brilliant all-round performer that is hassle-free.

Best High Street Brand: Rimmel 1, 2, 3 Looks

Price: £7.99

This adjustable volume mascara lets you choose how much volume you would like to add, depending on whether you twist to level 1, 2 or 3. If you're looking for adding length to your lashes, this is brilliant, even on level 1! Our tester was pleasantly surprised at the difference this mascara made to her lashes. It's great to be able to choose how you want to wear your mascara, too.

Best Waterproof: MaxFactor AquaLash

Price: £6.99

This MaxFactor mascara won for being one of the few 100% waterproof products. Our tester remained completely smudge-free when she wore this mascara to go swimming - without goggles! This is smooth to apply, long-lasting and great for shorter lashes as it added length after a few coats. This is a perfect mascara for taking on holiday - and it's good value too.

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Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Estee Lauder

Price: £18.50

Rating: 4/5

As the name suggests, this was great for lengthening. Highly recommended for stubby lashes.

Available from esteelauder.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: MaxFactorr

Price: £10.99

Rating: 4/5

Easy to remove and a great lengthener, although our tester noticed that the wide tipped brush made it difficult to apply to lashes in the corners of the eye.

Available from boots.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Estee Lauder Sumptuous Waterproof

Price: £18

Rating: 4/5

Easy to remove, added volume, length and thickness to the lashes and withstood the shower. Our tester needed to apply an extra coat in the evening, as it had flaked a little throughout the day, but this is a good all-rounder.

Available from esteelauder.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Mac Cosmetics Opulash

Price: £12.50

Rating: 4/5

The dense brush made this easy to apply, but our tester noticed it needed a few coats to get the real boosting effect. However, if you want a long lasting mascara, this is the one for you. A great no smudge formula that can be easily removed with just water. Great for volumising the lashes too.

Available from maccosmetics.co.uk

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: L'Oreal Paris Extra-Volume Plus Collagen

Price: £9.99

Rating: 4/5

This is a great mascara if you don't want to wake up with panda eyes in the morning! Our tester found it easy to remove with just soap and water. The lashes appeared thicker and fuller - a few coats were needed to make a big difference, but this is great if you like to reapply.

Available from boots.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Barry M Extreme Black Waterproof

Price: £5.95

Rating: 2/5

Our tester found this wasn't that waterproof at all. Although it lengthened the lashes, it became flakey throughout the day and was a little too easy to remove with soap and water. Not recommended for a holiday by the pool!

Available from barrym.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Bobbi Brown No Smudge

Price: £17.50

Rating: 3/5

Although the lashes appeared thicker once a few coats were applied, they lacked volume and length. It did live up to it's 'smudge free' name however, and was easy to remove.

Available from bobbibrown.co.uk

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: Maybelline Stiletto Voluptuous

Price: £5.99

Rating: 4/5

After a few coats were applied, it added definition and length to the lashes by separating them out. It lasted throughout the day and was easy to remove. Our tester recommends this for lengthening the lashes.

Available from maybelline.co.uk

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: L'Oreal Paris Waterproof Extra-Volume Plus Collagen

Price: £9.99

Rating: 4/5

A good value waterproof mascara that adds volume to the lashes. Our tester found it easy to remove too. It had a dramatic effect after only a couple of coats.

Available from boots.com

Tried and Tested: Mascara

Brand: YSL Radical Noir

Price: £21.50

Rating: 4/5

The shiny, very black formula created the illusion of more lashes. The only downside to this is that our tester found it very tough to remove. Recommended for shiny, thicker lashes.

Available from houseoffraser.co.uk

Tried and Tested: Mascara

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