Lash Domination Volumizing Mascara

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Makeup > Mascaras (regular) > Regular Mascara
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We're not sure if "lash domination" sounds good or painful, but we still like this mascara, regardless of its silly name and gimmicky claims. If you can't rub your belly and pat your head at the same time, you probably can't apply this mascara while "wiggling the wand and while winking" as Bare Minerals suggests. Turning the wand 360 degrees while slowly closing one's eye is too much work.

Although the spiral pattern of bristles on the brush looks cool, this mascara would still lengthen lashes and build noticeable volume using other types of bristle alignments—and perhaps do a better job, because the spiral pattern causes uneven distribution of mascara, which can lead to unwanted clumping that takes extra time to comb through.

The results are good overall, but this mascara is more work than it needs to be. And, for almost $20, this should practically apply itself!

  • Lengthens lashes.
  • Builds noticeable volume.
  • Gimmicky wand; this mascara would perform the same (or even better) without the spiral bristles.
  • Distributes mascara unevenly; clumps.

Makeup is what this San Francisco-based cosmetics line is primarily about, and they use the pure and natural marketing angle to entice consumers. The self-proclaimed "healthiest, purest makeup in the world" was founded in 1976 by Diane Ranger, who left the company in the early '90s, and is now run by Leslie Blodgett, who appears regularly on QVC and the company's own infomercials to support and demonstrate her products. Blodgett is largely credited with turning the line she began into a $150 million business—no small feat. The products are sold in most Sephora boutiques and Ulta stores, though the full selection of skin-care products is most often found at the Bare Escentuals freestanding stores scattered throughout the United States.

Supporting the company's portrayal as a leader in purity are the corresponding claims that the bareMinerals makeup does not contain fragrance, oil, binders, preservatives, emulsifiers, or any other harmful chemicals. Although this line does have its advantages for someone with sensitive skin, as it turns out, bismuth oxychloride, a major ingredient in the powder formulations, can cause skin irritation, while the other minerals can be drying (Source: Regarding bismuth oxychloride, it is interesting to note that bismuth (a metallic element) seldom occurs in nature. Instead, it is a by-product of copper and lead refining, or is manufactured synthetically. Chemically, it's similar to arsenic, a fact you won't see in any advertising for bareMinerals. However, just as cosmetic-grade mineral oil is not identical to the petroleum from which it originated, neither is bismuth oxychloride identical to bismuth. The bismuth oxychloride used in cosmetics is non-toxic, but this background offers a good example of how skewed a company's definition of "natural" can be.

Aside from the health and purity claims, loose powders are as messy as it gets in terms of your vanity (countertop, not ego) and your makeup bag. The powder just gets all over the place, and the very basic packaging does not do much to minimize the mess. Additionally, while there are softer neutral shades, and some fairly exotic shades as well, most are mildly to extremely shiny and make any amount of crepey skin look more so. The face powder does provide some amount of opaque coverage, but the shine and the thickness can be a bit much. The loose powder eyeshadows and blushes apply in a somewhat lighter way, though they still provide significant coverage. Many women ask me about mineral makeup and whether or not it really is better for skin. The answer to that question is "No."

Although most mineral makeup is innocuous, the texture, appearance, and application have difficulties that make it not comparable to today's best liquid or pressed-powder foundations. We agree with bareMinerals' stance that foundation shouldn't look or feel like a mask, nor should there be a line of demarcation where the application stops. However, their foundations are not the only ones able to achieve this, and there is no inherent benefit to this type of foundation over numerous other options.

There isn't much to say about the skin-care products, but what's worth paying attention to is noted in the At-a-Glance section.

For more information about Bare Escentuals, call 1.888.795.4747 or visit

Member Comments

Summary of Member Comments

  1. How would you rate the results? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
  2. Was this product a good value? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
  3. Would you recommend this product? (4 = Best)

    2 / 4 Average
Page of 1
  1. Glinda
    Reviewed on Friday, January 02, 2015
    • Value
      3 / 4
    • Results
      4 / 4
    • Recommend
      4 / 4
    Great Product
    • This mascara works beautifully for me. I have long lashes but they're skinny and I need a mascara that adds volume. Very few mascaras do that even though tons of them advertise they do. I did not pay any attention to the instructions on how to apply this - I just applied it like I would any mascara. I don't have any problems with it lumping, flaking or smearing. I don't, however, apply mascara to my lower lashes - only use a liner.

  2. Annette D.
    Reviewed on Friday, September 19, 2014
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • Value
      4 / 4
    • Results
      1 / 4
    Didn't like
    • I bought this mascara @ ulta for 21 days of beauty for $9.00 so it was a good deal. Normally it wouldn't be a good deal. But it was so messy under my eyes. So, I returned it the day after I finally tried it. I did like the packaging though.

  3. Anonymous
    Reviewed on Tuesday, March 18, 2014
    • Value
      1 / 4
    • Recommend
      1 / 4
    • Results
      1 / 4
    • This went on well enough - I did not experience the clumping, but within an hour I noticed it smeared under my eyes. I rec'd as a free sample - thank goodness.

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About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books on skin care and makeup. She is known worldwide as the Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula's Choice. Paula's expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international television including:

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The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products for your skin, using research-based criteria to review beauty products from an honest, balanced perspective. Each member of the team was personally trained by Paula herself.

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