Want a smudge-proof formula for long days or major volume for a big night? We did the work to find the six top-performing mascaras (out of 27 tested) so you can achieve your lash goals.

By Anneke Knot
Updated April 23, 2019
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
Credit: ultra.com

Everyone’s beauty routine varies in length and in effort. Some love to layer it on while others get through the makeup application process as fast as possible. No matter where you may fall on the glam spectrum, mascara remains a makeup staple, whether you're a full-fledged beauty guru or a fan of the five-minute face. But which mascara brand is best? Crowded drugstore aisles and never-ending reviews make finding the best mascara next to impossible, which is exactly why our beauty team put in the leg work—or should we say, lash work—to determine once and for all which mascara reigns above the rest. After testing a whopping 27 different formulas (trust us, that is a lot of mascara), 5 standouts won us over. No matter what your mascara needs are, these lash lifters are guaranteed to deliver.

Credit: sephora.com


This cult favorite got a mini makeover. Housed in a flexible tube (squeeze the sides to remove excess mascara—you’ll never have to wipe the brush along the lid again), the formula contains lighter waxes and polymers to give more volume. Cotton nectar strengthens, so lashes look healthy even after you take off your makeup.

To buy: $29.50; sephora.com.

Credit: target.com


An organic formula that really delivers: Plant fibers thicken and lengthen while castor seed oil nourishes.

To buy: $23; target.com.

Credit: target.com


Use one brush for length and the other for volume—or layer for ooh-la-la lashes. The hypoallergenic formula is easy on sensitive eyes.

To buy: $10; target.com.

Credit: sephora.com


The bristles grab lash roots for lift, the peptides strengthen, and the soft formula can be reapplied without flaking.

To buy: $28; sephora.com.

Credit: ulta.com


It won’t melt away during errands but still comes off easily at night. Twenty-four hours of sweat-resistant volume, right here.

To buy: $10; ulta.com.

Credit: walmart.com


The wavy brush packs 200-plus bristles to catch every hair for optimal flutter, and the formula won’t wash away during a tear-jerking movie or wedding.

To buy: $9; walmart.com.