Most conventional mascaras on the market at riddled with toxic ingredients... because they work. Which means, sadly, that most non-toxic options don't perform well. We tested many conventional and non-toxic mascaras alike and were delighted to find one with the best of both worlds: performance and safety. Here's the scoop.
INGREDIENTS TO AVOID
From Beautycounter, "Other cosmetic brands commonly use ingredients in their mascara formulation that have been linked to adverse health effects, including cancer. Propylparaben, butylparaben, and butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) are preservatives commonly used in mascaras that can mimic estrogen and there is strong evidence that they can, in fact, disrupt hormone function.
The U.S. National Toxicology Program has also classified BHA as a potential carcinogen. Another common preservative, quaternium-15, may release formaldehyde, a known carcinogen, into the formula. Polyethylene glycols (PEGs), such as the emulsifier PEG-30 glyceryl stearate, can be contaminated with the known carcinogen 1,4-dioxane."
Long story short: do your homework and read your labels! (Here's how.) Or, buy your beauty products from a brand you know steers clear of toxic ingredients.
Beautycounter's Lengthening Mascara has taken over three years, a lot of ingenuity, and - we're sure - a lot of trial and error - to bring to market. It goes on smooth, lengthening with every swipe. We love the long wand and short brush combination - although it's a bit different than we're used to - because it allows you to get into the corners and separate each lash with ease. It's also "buildable," meaning you can apply layer after layer to achieve a more intense look. Brilliant. It also conditions lashes while you wear it with organic oils and shea butter. Ours feel softer, stronger and longer after just one week's use. Most importantly, it stays put. (This is a fatal flaw for many non-toxic options.) This one won't flake or smudge.
We also tried... Kjaer Weiss' Mascara came in a very close second, but ultimately wasn't quite as lengthening or dramatic.
Remove wand from mascara bottle, and clean off excess product from the brush. To apply, comb from the base of your lashes through to the tips. Build length with additional coats.
To remove, apply organic coconut oil (Beautycounter's Nourishing Balm and Baby Oil work, as well) to a cotton ball and gently wipe away mascara until gone. Ensure that the oil is thoroughly removed from your eye area before applying mascara again or you'll run the risk of the oil pulling the mascara off your lashes and onto your skin. Not a good look. (Conventional oil-based makeup removers are not particularly effective or recommended.)
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