Monday, 1 July 2013
I must own I had never really been an avid mascara user in the past; possibly because the temptation to pull out what sparse eyelashes I have was too great a force to resist, but more likely because I would inevitably create an enormous mess when it came to cleaning it off in the evening. Panda eyes will never be attractive and the reflection of my ink-stained face could be so terrifying I had to keep my eyes tightly shut throughout the whole painful process. No, mascara was reserved for the occasions where I simply could not do without it, and even then I admit I would try to get away with false eye lashes alone. Now that I come to think of it, my earliest mascara also belonged to the Maybelline family, I remember it being it was a charm to wear; I adored it so much I repurchased it twice.
So when I came to reassess my everyday makeup collection and realised I that I was losing out on the 'oomph' factor that my eye makeup could potentially have by omitting mascara, I resolved to filling that gap. As you would expect, I took to the internet for research. I scoured beauty blogs and YouTube reviews in order to make an informed decision as to the brand and product to buy. I knew wanted something suitable for everyday use, something that gave my eyelashes a full and lengthened look and  something relatively inexpensive as I am a student and I expect to use it often. I cannot be too sure whether my choice to finally settled on yet another Maybelline  product over all other brands was due to the overwhelmingly positive reviews that it was showered in or as a result of some deep-set internal bias.

Whatever it was, the decision was made and as I was too busy (or too lazy) to venture out into our delightful British climate, I ordered it off the Feel Unique website at £6.07 in the colour '100% black', which is a great price considering both Boots and Superdrug sell it for £7.19. I was pleased that it arrived promptly along with a few other goodies, well boxed and packaged and nestled within a million of those green bean-like polystyrene things - they make an unbelievable amount of mess, and having knocked my box over more than once, I highly recommend that you get rid of them ASAP.

Source: own product image Price: £6.07 (Feel Unique) £7.19 (Boots/Superdrug)
The facts:
As you can see in the photo, the mascara comes in bright yellow plastic packaging, it feels firm to hold and hard wearing, unlikely to fall apart with one forceful thug. The wand head is rather dense, with your average short plastic bristles packed in to a spiral. It contains 10.7ml of product with a thick but not clumpy or dry consistency. So far so good.
My verdict:
Well I must say, this product certainly delivers its due, it is as it says on the tin. I noticed it effect after a single coat of mascara. My eyelashes were instantly fuller and thick and longer. It also dries quickly so you can be rest assured the  risk of transferring product all over your meticulously blended eye shadow is small. The dense wand head can pack in a lot of product, enough to do an entire eye without having to re-dip the wand back into the tube. However due to this it does tend to makes it rather difficult to apply it to the fine bottom lashes, too much product on my bottom lashes gives them a crazy clumpy look, rather like the legs of some unpleasant insect sprouting out of your waterline - nice.
The product also appears to be more volumizing than lengthening, and by that I mean that two or more coats of mascara will not lengthen you lashes any further but the build up of product on them can risk your eyelashes looking mad and clumpy.
The product does give a decent amount of curl to your lashes which can be achieved by rolling the wand head along the length of you eyelashes as you apply mascara and gently press them backwards towards, but not touching, your eyelids. You can use eyelash curler to make it more dramatic, or if like me, you have one eye with curlier eyelashes than the other, an eyelash curler is the best way to make them even.

I have noticed that after a few hours of application, that the mascara does not dry to become stiff over the eyelashes. While this gives my eyelashes a spread out natural look and retains the eyelashes' movement and flexibility it also mean that they will lose their curl faster than if they were stiffened.

The product also flakes off and I get bits of fall out on the top of my cheeks that I need to keep wiping away. That might explain why there appears to be less product on my eyelashes than what I am sure I applied in the morning.
Those first few shortcomings I mentioned are most certainly not exclusive to the Colossal Volume Express Mascara and can be easily overcome (post on this coming soon) hence I do not feel that they affected my general good opinion of this mascara in any significant way. The last two cannot really be amended other than by reapplying.
Having said that, this mascara does have one humungous, undeniable failing that has left me sorely disappointed with it. It is a matter that I am astonished to have never come upon any of the reviews that I had watched and read.

I know that this mascara is not waterproof. I tend not to go for waterproof mascara because I hate fighting with it in order to get it off. But all previous non-waterproof mascaras that I had owed, including the Maybelline one have been sufficiently resilient to little splashes of water, the little drizzles of rain or dampness from the eyes. This mascara however, appears to lose its integrity entirely and melts away on touching water, which in my opinion is very scary. If I lightly splash my face with water, something I tend to do, I get droplets with mascara dissolved in them staining my face and my sink. And as you very well know, my annual hay-fever started a few weeks ago accompanied by the occasional watery-eye. I made the mistake of wearing this mascara on one of those eye-watering days while out in town and trust me, the sight in the mirror was pitiful; I was just relieved that I had not bumped into anyone I knew on my way home. I cannot even walk in the rain with this mascara on, and the unpredictability of our British weather makes me a little nervous when I do apply it on a reasonably dry day.
It is with deep regret that I now must give my verdict: no matter how good this mascara looks when applied, this one significant weakness of its' has defeated me, it is not at all dependable and I cannot feel confident when wearing it and for that reason, I will not be repurchasing it again, which is a real shame because in every other way it was great. In future I may however opt for the waterproof version of this.

I suppose that this now means that I am still on the lookout for a good, reliable, everyday mascara that I can swear by.
 

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