It leaves your eyelashes well defined, lenghtened and thickened, but not ludicrously volumised. It wears beautifully for more than 12 hours, and does not smudge, not one tiny bit, even in very wet weather. The applicator is not the best, it leaves a few clumps that need to be smoothed out immediately. Also, the mascara does not nourish or condition, and feels a bit dry.
A major advantage is that it contains fairly mild ingredients relative to other brands, so it did not irritate my oversensitive eyes. However, the oil-based cleanser I used to remove it may have been partly to blame for the blepharitis I ended up with. So people with sensitive eyes should perhaps avoid waterproof mascaras, including unfortunately this one, and oil-based cleansers.
I have corneal dystrophy and chronic dry eye. I have to use eye drops constantly. Like every hour. This is the only mascara that will withstand it. Every other waterproof mascara I've used (and I've tried 'em ALL) eventually disappeared, smudged, or got into my eyes and burned.
I gave it 4 lippies because I do wish it made my lashes thicker. I love the length it gives and it colors my pale lashes nicely. Given its staying power and the overall good job it does, I'm sticking with this.
This didn't do anything for my lashes that a middling drugstore mascara couldn't accomplish. Maybe some fair definition, but it wilted my just-curled lashes and made my eyes burn (I do, however, have sensitive eyes). It's also expensive and the worst offense? It smudged. What more can I say, really?
My HG mascara for every day! So natural looking, I've never had this from another mascara. Separates every lash & coats from root to tip with a thin layer of product. Doesn't give you a 'wow' look of massive lashes that some people want, but if you're looking for just a natural wide-eyed look then this is the one. Lasts all day & doesn't clump. Love the short wand & stubby brush, makes application really easy. Will repurchase time & time again.
I must be one of the very few people that this mascara didn't work perfectly on. I have a real problem with raccoon eyes - no matter what I try, I get them. This mascara seemed to last a little longer than any of the other ones I've tried, but still ended up smudging (even without me putting any on my lower lashes).
Beyond smudge, it was nothing spectacular. My lashes didn't really want to stay curled when I used this, and it didn't really plump them at all. If it hadn't smudged on me, I would've been totally alright with that. Too bad.
Although I love this mascara for doing its job, I cannot give it a 4 or 5 because it fails to be a miracle worker for my lashes. I guess I'd give it a 5 if I was simply looking for a mascara that does not smudge but I am looking for the perfect mascara: does not smudge, thickens, lengthens and volumized my lashes (am I asking for too much?).
Asian women in genera tend to have shorter lashes which cause most mascaras to leave a raccoon eye at the end of the day. It's even worse for me because I can have oily skin (especially in the summer). This mascara definitely stays put and does not smudge.
The downside is that because I have short lashes, I love my mascaras that are volumizing (I love YSL's faux cils mascara for this reason but it definitely smudges after a few hours). This mascara will definitely not get you that effect. However, if you already have long, full lashes, this will probably work well for you.
Does what it says on the tin - it is mascara, it's black, and it doesn't smudge.
I have seasonal allergies so I need a mascara that won't smudge when my eyes water. Also, I like a more natural look. This succeeds on both accounts. I'm sure if I wanted huge eyelashes I could build up more layers, but this is an excellent natural enhancer, good for work. And it doesn't smudge, as promised.
Pricey but worth it.
I have tried every waterproof mascara, expensive and cheap, for my wedding. I finally found this one and it made my lashes so long and thick, it almost looked like I was wearing fake eyelashes! This mascara stayed on without flaking, all day and night, until I removed it the morning after. It took about 3 months before I needed to replace it. Worth the money!
Bobbi Brown's No Smudge mascara is impressive for those who like the natural looks that some mascaras offer. The No Smudge mascara really does not smudge but that was not what I worried about. This mascara barely clumps and I'm not sure if it's the ingredients or something but you really can't tell that it's mascara that's enhancing your eyes! Oh, and this mascara makes your lashes look good in pictures. That definitely feeds the vain ego. The trick with mascaras is that if you think there's clumping, it's because the way you handle the product causes the clumps (unless at first usage, it's already clumpy). Make sure you don't pump the mascara in a up-and-down motion and close the opening of the mascara with one finger from the opposite hand after pulling off the wand. This prevents oxidation. Anywho, Bobbi Brown's No Smudge Mascara is my HG mascara so far.
UPDATE (2012-02-17): BOYCOTTING RE. CURRENT ANIMAL TESTING FOR CHINESE MARKET
Splendid everyday mascara, but ensure purchase from a source who gets in regular supplies; my first experience was an old tube, clumping unforgiveably soon (10 days!!!) after opening. And drying out, and being drying on the lashes. I've rewritten my old review (2010-11-08) after using a new tube bought from a different source; entirely better experience. Though there's still an issue with drying out too fast: perfect for a good 2-3 weeks, downhill from there, unusable at 6. Hence 1 lippie off; alternatives/faves at end of review.
For however long it lasts: a beautiful mascara. Think Clinique Naturally Glossy--my favourite and benchmark for other mascaras--but more volumising, and not only smudge-proof but waterproof. Cruelty-free, vegetarian (I *think* indeed vegan) ingredients, and--FYI if this is an issue for you, not one of mine but I know some folks look for this sort of thing--using a non-paraben preservative.
As waterproof mascaras go, this is also one of the least drying: lashes feel as soft and fluttery as they do with the best two waterproofs I'd found previously, Maybelline Full & Soft and Beauty Without Cruelty, but with less under-eye smudging, better hold, and more volume. I performed my usual tests*: for I live in fear of mascara smudging and running--I'm a redhead with pale lashes, and when this has happened in the past, it's been quite mortifying :(
The "no smudge" aspect is particularly impressive. I have quite dry skin, especially around the eyes, so tend not to smudge from sebum much. But in colder drier weather, I'm using heavier moisturiser than usual under my eyes, including a top-coat of shea butter, and I've had no smudging issues. Other w/ps have, however, been smudging very slightly under the lower lashes by the end of the day.
Short tube and wand--love or loathe, the short handle's great for the short-sighted "blind" application, taking advantage of our great close-up vision. The formula is quite thin and a little dry, in common with many another waterproof mascara. Brush: my favourite kind--very like those of Clinique Naturally Glossy, Origins Fringe Benefits, BWC--short, densely bristled, not too fat. Great for definition and separation, provides some volume.
Applies fast, excellent hold, feels light on the lashes, no flaking, and it is very tenacious indeed. Remove with oil (using a cotton-wool pad or similar). I've had no drying-out and/or falling-out of lashes. But I've seldom experienced either. Only if using something inappropriately wimpy to remove mascara, rubbing too vigorously, or using an overly-drying formula (not met one of them in years).
Application: (1) Just one coat leaves lashes are lovely and feathery, perfectly acceptable for everyday purposes and for those favouring a "less unnatural" look. Though my "one coat" involves coating upper and lower sides of top lashes, down to the roots, which means more than just one layer anyway. Waiting for that to dry then adding a second coat didn't make much difference, other than lashes started to clump and be dry to the touch. If building up, do it without waiting for the lashes to dry between coats: that works fine.
(2) Comb through immediately, as this mascara sets fast (but not as a fast as a tubing one); there will be the odd teeny ball-clump at ends of lashes, easily removed with a fine-toothed metal lash-comb. This is a very non-clumpy mascara, though, and the great brush makes it easy to work with.
(3) As with any decent waterproof mascara, remove any excess from surrounding skin immediately, otherwise it will take forever and a lot of rubbing once it's dried. I always end up with smudgy bits around the eyes, it seems inevitable when getting mascara down to the roots (pale lashes here, avoiding that roots-showing effect).
Cost: It is quite expensive--in the region of CAN 26.00--and dries out quite fast. Hence major peeve if you get a dodgy tube and it dries out in under two weeks...a drugstore mascara is second-rate if it only lasts that long; unforgivable from a pricier one. Not sure if it's worth the hefty price tag.
Alternatives: My main recent favourite mascaras, for reference, have been Clinique Naturally Glossy with Clarins Double' Fix Mascara on top, Maybelline Full & Soft Waterproof, and BWC waterproof (I've also reviewed many another long-term love, ex, brief lust-smiting, and lamented departed). Also Clinique & Bobbi Brown's tubing mascaras.
If you're on more of a budget, try out the F&S and BWC w/p first; though outside the US, F&S is either only available online (with high risk of getting older stock that hasn't travelled well), and BWC is available almost exclusively online. Other viable w/p options with good MUA reviews (but not cruelty-free): Lancôme, L'Oréal Voluminous, some Cover Girl.
INGREDIENTS: isodecane - water - trisiloxane - dimethicone silylate - ptfe - sorbitan olivate - sorbitan tristearate - polyisobutene - kaolin - silica silylate - trihydroxystearin - diisopropyl adipate - carnauba wax - quaternium-90 bentonite - microcrystalline wax - hectorite - cholesterol - caprylyl glycol - propylene carbonate - methicone - hexylene glycol - magnesium salicylate - phenoxyethanol - [ /- mica - iron oxides (ci 77491, 92, 99) - titanium dioxide (ci 77891) - manganese violet (ci 77742) - chromium oxide greens (ci 77288) - chromium hydroxide green (ci 77289) - carmine (ci 75470) - ferric ferrocyanide (ci 77510) - bismuth oxychoride (ci 77163) - ultramarines (ci 77007)]
* Tests: (1) 2 mascaras side-by-side, experiment repeated for each of the 3 mascara combinations. (2) Staying-power: mascara applied a.m., left on all day + overnight: lashes should not be left bent and crumpled the next morning--sign of over-dry mascaras. (3) Further tested waterproofness morning after in shower, making sure not to rub or touch eyes: masca continued >>