Product Type: Max Factor makeup
Newest Review: ... It was priced at about £10, and as there was also an offer on Max Factor (I think it was 3 for 2 and I wanted some foundation and blus... more
Fabulous. And Fairy Free!
Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara
Member Name: missrarr
Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara
Advantages: It's just fantastic. Does the best job a mascara can do in my book, and relatively affordable.
Disadvantages: None. Unless you sneeze.
Anyway, my tube of Bourjois's latest offering was coming to its end and, whilst the fact that I was nearing the bottom of the tube was a compliment in itself, I was still convinced there could be better out there. A bit like dating the guy who obviously has a massive crush on you because it's that much easier than getting out there and seeing if you can charm someone better out of their tree, maybe. So, ever the beauty obsessive on a budget and with my new Mr Rarr to flutter my lashes at, I started looking out for product offers that might bring a new mascara into my life by fate.
Max Factor products, which this time last year I had never tried at all, are sidling up to me by stealth, whispering sweet nothings in my ear and, to my eyes at least, holding their side of the bargain by actually making me look better. So far, I have tried three foundations, two lip products and a powder and I have been pleased with all, exceptionally so in some cases. I was also intrigued by their new duo eyeshadow product but, at pushing a tenner, none of their products are things I would thoughtlessly indulge in unless I needed something.
Enter stage left, Boots. I popped in to get some photos printed and thought I'd have a little look. My Bourjois mascara tube was yielding less and less by the day and the pressure to find a new love was on. My stars were clearly in alignment because there was Max, making a bold offer; if I buy one of his selected mascaras, generous, clever Max would just hand over the duo eyeshadow for nothing. Back to the tills with me...clutching the shadow and a curvaceously-shaped tube of False Lash Effect Mascara.
***THE IMPORTANT STUFF***
Right, this claims on the packaging to be a "full lashes, natural look" mascara. The packaging is simple, rounded and widest in the middle and tapering at both ends - you can stand it up but its tends to wobble over. There is pale gold writing which is minimal and the casing itself is black. They do another version which comes in purple but I was happy to try the original product (I believe the other was waterproof).
This is currently £8.99 in Boots. As with all things beauty, it's worth stocking up if a 3-for-2 offer or similar is on when you have the money in your pocket, but this is still on a good standing with most of your more expensive high street brands.
Supposedly this is Max Factor's biggest ever brush, with 50% more bristles. The idea behind this is that you can target every single lash, even the ones that hide at the back behind the sofa. "Unleash your lash potential", we are encouraged. Basically, in case you couldn't have worked this one out for yourself, it's meant to be the closest thing to false lashes you can get in a tube. So, is it any good?
I was so keen to get this on that as soon as I got in I whipped off my old mascara and tried this on. I was expecting an actual brush - I don't know why, I suppose I'm an old traditionalist at heart! - but instead we have another modern plastic version. I guess my fond memories of brush mascaras are a thing of beauty history now.
So this "brush"; it is at the end of a fairly short, quite wide and sturdy wand, which is good because it feels secure and not that, if you really push your lashes against the bristles, it'll pop back and leave you with that wonderful Liam Gallagher look. The lid of this product is actually very clever; as it tapers up, the top is slanted on one side, looking like someone has taken a diagonal slice off. Could be just coincidence and entirely designed for aesthetics but I find this helps balance the wand very steadily against your hand or thumb.
The brush itself looks like some very small sea creature; for the most part it is quite wide with dozens of tiny, quite sturdy plastic bristles, none of which are very long. Only towards the very end does it taper slightly, still quite wide but manoeuvrable and also coated in tiny bristles. The only place this wand gets product-heavy is on this part of the brush so I always wipe away the excess on the neck of the bottle (yes, I know you're probably not meant to do that) and I have yet to see that damage the brush after a month of use.
I chose the product in black and the product certainly looked it on the brush and does so on my lashes. So, would I look like a cheap Cheryl Cole or would this be a step closer to the Holy Grail?
I always allow a new mascara a couple of throws of the dice. You need to learn how much the product clings to the brushes, how much it might clog your lashes together, and how best to utilise the brush shape to get the best of the product. So whilst I never had a problem with this, I gave it a few tries and I have grown to love this completely.
What's so great? Well, the wand. Sturdy, steady and reliable. The brush may look like it should live in a shell talking to goth mermaids but the sheer volume of bristles is very effective. The colour is strong, the product lasts and it has never irritated my eyes or skin.
***SO, FALSE LASHES?***
Right, let's get one thing clear here. Girls, we all know this; false lashes do not give you the "false lash effect". The "false lash effect" is achieved by having tiny fairies herded from the foothills of Mount Olympus, where nymphs are ordered by the Gods to train them in the art of sticking on individual fake lashes that are hewn from the finest hair of the finest unicorn that was actually stolen from Middle Earth during a particularly bloody war that nobody remembered to write about (not many people know that last bit). These fairies know from birth that their only purpose in life is to make Cheryl Cole look pretty and only the best, most attentive fairies get brought over here to do just that after Fairy College.
Alright, that might have gone a bit far. But my point is that, if you think this product is going to make you look like Her Cheryliness, don't buy it. Don't buy high street false lashes either, because they won't do the trick. If you have to look like that, go and haemorrhage about £500 per blink and get a professional to do it, and then wonder why you keep walking into things.
Back in the day when false lashes were just that and didn't initiate hurricanes on the other side of the world, I think they would have looked pretty much like this product makes my lashes look. Okay, you need to put in some work - no tool will do its job used incorrectly, but it makes my lashes thicker, longer, more defined in colour, and it doesn't smudge, run or irritate. It's brilliant and I doubt I will go looking for another product for some time.
Now, because I'm feeling charitable, here's Miss Rarr's guide to getting the most from this product:
1 - Build it up gradually. Start at the base and slowly draw the brush along your lashes - start with one corner and do the whole lot in three strokes. Wipe off the excess from the narrow tip and you WILL be able to get those shy ones in the inner corner. Now, give it a minute. Then do it again. This product leaves enough elasticity when half-dry to allow you to build layers without causing clumping but DO do it gradually - if you whack a whole load of any mascara on, you're going to get clumps. Here, you have a very effective brush that is capable of separating your lashes - help it do its job.
2 - Decide on the look you want, then invest a little patience. Seriously, you could keep going with this for layers and layers and layers! But if you do put in the time and keep all lashes separate, you will have extension, volume and a notable improvement in your lashes that still looks passable as natural - so you could just put two or three layers on, or you could keep going for real impact. It really is up to you how far you want to take it.
3 - DON'T SNEEZE. I did. About thirty seconds after putting this on. Start again...
So there you have it. A product that does what it claims (so long as you don't expect anything unreasonable!), lasts, is reliable, seems to be lasting well as a product, comes in good, sturdy packaging, has strong, lasting colour and helps make the world that little bit more of a fluttery place. For the price and in comparison to its rivals, this is a top-class mascara from me and another brilliant product from Max Factor that helps me feel that bit more confident and happy in my skin.
I may discover, when I am wildly rich and almost able to get my own herd of eyelash fairies, that there are stronger products in a higher price range than this, but for now I think I might have found what I'm looking for (let's all hope that one day Bono does too, then he can shut up).
Thanks for reading everyone!
Summary: May have finally found 'the one'!