Monday, 5 November 2012

Review: Maybelline the Colossal VolumeExpress Mascara Cat Eyes Version

Happy monday everyone! Damn, I must say, keeping up a blog is a much harder feat than I'd anticipated. I have so many post ideas and pictures taken but I'm just so lazy when it comes to the write-up - New respect to full-time bloggers. This morning I woke up super early to conduct an interview for school and holy moley was it frigid! I went there - I busted out that Canada Goose that's been patiently hibernating all summer, gotta love Montreal! Although bundling up has officially begun (thank heavens for scarves and mittens), momma has recently spilled that I might be heading to Dominican Republic for my birthday and ringing in the new year! Somehow the snow is all that more bearable now...

What I'd give right now to be back by the pool with a tequila sunrise and a girly magazine <3

Today, I bring a very delayed review of the Maybelline Colossal VolumeExpress Mascara - Cat Eye Edition. I purchased this mascara on sale about a month ago, so I've really had a great chance of testing her out.
Now for a bit of a personal anecdote, mascara (specifically Maybelline mascaras) and myself go waaay back. Before I ever even knew what eyeliner or eyeshadow were, I used to steal my mother's Maybelline Great Lash mascara in that wonderful green and pink tube - and I loved it. My eyes are undoubtedly one of my better features, and they're usually where I focus my everyday and dramatic makeup looks. Surprisingly enough, mascara was the only makeup item I ever used to wear until about three years ago. Since then, I've managed to experiment with a whole slew of different mascaras, including the infamous DiorShow (disappointment), Benefit's BadGal (overrated), and plenty of drugstore options: L'Oreal, Rimmel, Physicians Formula, name it. Yet somehow, I always go back to Maybelline's affordable and more importantly, high-quality, tubes.

My favourite all-time Maybelline mascara is without-a-doubt the original Colossal VolumeExpress, but I've also tried The Falsies, Great Lash Blackest Black, and more recently MegaPlush. Naturally, I didn't waste any time before grabbing the Cat Eye version, and eagerly anticipated the 3-month expiration of the non-impressive MegaPlush.

Beyond the leopard-print packaging, there are some other aesthetic differences between Colossal Cat Eye and its original counterpart. Namely, the brushes. Both mascaras feature plastic brushes with several bristles of various sizes, but the Cat-Eye has much smaller bristles on the whole, and the curved wand that is aimed at achieving the wonderful "cat-eye" effect.

Close-up of the wand

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with curved wands, but I have to admit that it works here. I often find them to be quite a cop-out, assuming there to be a "one size fits all" eye shape that the brush naturally adheres to. I have a rather meticulous mascara-applying routine, where I'll manipulate the wand in all directions to really reach every single lash. Realistically, the curved wand doesn't offer me any additional benefits, but I have really appreciated the smaller bristles as I'm able to avoid making as much of a mess on my eyelids. I'd say the mascara is actually the closest in form to Maybelline's The Falsies, due to the volumizing properties and the curved wand - though I prefer the Colossal formulation anyday. Below are some before and after photos - please excuse that I had not had my eyebrows done in quite a while and the bags below my eyes (I'm in university, it happens).


First off, the positives: As you can see, the mascara has added a lot of volume, and quite a lot of length for a "volumizing" mascara. These photos were taken after one thick layer, but more can be added to achieve even thicker lashes. The effect really is quite wonderful, and I've gotten many a compliment on the "false-lash" effect this mascara gives. When compared to the original Collosal VolumeExpress, the Cat Eye edition is easier to manipulate, yet doesn't give as much volume as the huge bristles on the original. The formulations, however, are almost identical. Owning both is not essential, but if you're a fan of Maybelline's wet formulation and like the original mascara, you might want to try out Cat Eye and see if you prefer the new wand.

The cons: As with other Maybelline mascaras, Colossal VolumeExpress Cat Eye does clump, a lot. This is the trade-off you have to make with many volumizing mascaras, and one I'm more than willing to make. However, if you prefer a natural everyday mascara look, you may want to save this one for more-dramatic nights out. Also, as with the original formulation, I experience hell-a fall-out by the end of the day under my lower lashline (though the volume does withstand a full day's wear). I can't speak much on its ability to hold a curl, since my eyelashes happen to be curved with or without mascara. The overall staying power is tolerable, though I'll often add an extra layer by nighttime if I'm going out to freshen it up.

The picture below was taken a couple of weeks ago when I noticed that one of my lashes had managed to go completely horizontal - resulting in a full 360 degree lash effect. The picture also provides a good example of the mascara's lasting power as it was taken about eight hours after it had originally been applied.

Fortunately I'd gotten my eyebrows done by this point...
All in all, I'd say Maybelline has another successful mascara in their repertoire. No matter what other brand I try, I always have to go back to Maybelline's mascaras when I'm seeking some serious volumizing action. The Colossal VolumeExpress Cat Eye mascara is a nice lovechild of other cult-favorites, the original Colossal VolumeExpress and The Falsies. If you're willing to forego some occasional clumpage and a little evening lower-lashline fall-out in exchange for some major volume and lengthening, this may be the mascara for you.

Maybelline's The Colossal Volume Express Cat Eye mascara should be found at any local drugstore or discount retailers. Prices may vary (I believe I payed around $6.99 CAD) but I would wait for a sale before purchasing since Maybelline mascaras are often marked down.

Hope everyone is doing well and surviving the cold, or recovering from Sandy (barely hit Montreal but I my thoughts go out to all that suffered). Remember to smile and enjoy everyday, and if you're in need of a temporary happy place:

Punta Cana, December 2011

All the best,

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