• 10 Life-Changing Mascara Tips

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How to Apply Mascara

It’s always a good time to share our favorite mascara hacks—all the little tips, tricks, and lightbulb moments that will not only make applying easier, but help you optimize whatever wand is in your makeup bag.

1. Step Back

Once you’ve coated the front side of your lashes per usual, look down and carefully coat the backside of your lashes with mascara for an instant thickening effect. Flick your wrist as you reach the ends to add more curl and follow up with another coat to the front of your lashes for even more lift and volume.

2. Baby Your Lashes

Use a small shadow brush like W3LL PEOPLE Basic Eye Contour Brush to dust your lashes with baby powder or a translucent powder in between coat of mascara—it will help your mascara cling to your lashes, making them look even thicker in the process.

3. Be Flexible

A tip we repeatedly hear from makeup artists? Bend your mascara wands. The thought of snapping your favorite brush may sound scary, but gently bend the tip so the brush is horizontal—the new shape will make it easier to maneuver the wand around hard-to-reach-places like the inner and outer corner of your eyes.

4. Get Toasty

If your favorite mascara is starting to get clumpy, a little bit of heat can thin the formula. Make sure the cap is tightly secured and let the tube sit in a glass of hot water while you apply your liner to smooth it out. But if your wand is over three months old, you’re better off replacing it to keep things clean.

5. Lay It on the Line

Wiggle your wand close to your lid to create the illusion of eyeliner and make your lashes look even fuller. You can also dip an angled eye liner brush like into your mascara tube and use it to line your eyes when you’re in a pinch or want to add more definition.

6. De-Clump with a Toothbrush

If your mascara went on a little (or a lot) clumpier than you originally planned, use a toothbrush to comb through lashes and fight spider eyes without completely starting over.

7. Twirl, Don’t Pump

Pumping your mascara wand may seem like a daily ritual, but the bad habit actually forces air into the product, making it much easier for bacteria to spread. Instead, pull the wand upward and gently twirl it to evenly distribute the product.

8. Keep Your Guard Up

Avoid smudges on your lids with a handy pick like beautyblender® liner.designer. You can also improvise grabbing a credit card or spoon and gently placing it over your eyelid when you apply your mascara to avoid going back in fixing flubs with remover or cover up. A spoon can also help you curl your lashes: With the spoon facing outward, place the bottom edge along your lashline. Use your index finger to gently press your lashes against the edge while rotating and pulling the spoon upwards (the curling motion!) so the edge eventually hits the tips of your lashes.

9. Whip Up a Cocktail

Don’t be afraid to mix and match formulas—sometimes it takes more than one wand to get the look you want. Try layering specialized mascaras (we love using Benefit’s Roller Lash to curl and separate and stila HUGE™ Extreme Lash Mascara to thicken and volumize for night’s out), or mix and match different formulas, like applying a waterproof mascara like Bobbi Brown No Smudge Mascara over a lengthening mascara, to not only make it last longer (and the waterproof product easier to remove), but to keep it from rubbing off on your lids.

10. Make Moves

To customize your lash look, try switching up the direction you hold your wand: Hold it horizontally for thicker lashes, vertically to coat each lash for a more natural finish, and wiggle it from lash line to ends to help hold curl.

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