Hair & Makeup

7 Mascara Hacks You Need To Try Now

From a smoky eye to the ultimate feline flick, the way you apply your mascara can completely transform your makeup. NEWBY HANDS discovers how to wield that wand like a professional


“I’m always asked how I get lashes looking so good,” says Vincent Ford, global makeup artist for Nars, “and it’s always thanks to the way I use mascara – I don’t use false lashes on clients or on models, as they make the eyes look a little heavy. So, with mascara, it’s all about the technique. I’ll sometimes layer up different textures but, really, it’s how you apply it that matters.”

“Instead of sweeping the wand up through the lashes, work it sideways, back and forth (like brushing your teeth), right in at the lash root and mid-length. Don’t take the wand up through the lash tips, as this is not about making the lashes long but making them intense. This gives density right at the base of the lash, where you want it – it also gives a lovely frame to the eyes, especially to blue or green eyes if you use a really dark, carbon-black mascara.”

“It’s that classic Lauren Bacall elongated eye and you just sweep the wand out, almost horizontally – sideways, not upwards – through the lashes. Use a volumizing mascara, as these tend to be wetter, so when they dry, they hold the lash in place better. Volumizing mascaras aren’t good for length, but they are great for intensity and creating shapes like this with the lashes.”

“Use your normal mascara and then finish with a coat or two of volumizing mascara – but only on the outer, upper lashes, as this gives that amazing thickness to the lashes, and an extra flick to the eyes.”

“You need to emphasize the center of the eye. Use a regular mascara on your top lashes and then, to open up the eyes, just in the very center of your lashes (above the iris), use a volumizing mascara – but apply it by holding the wand vertically, so it just coats, thickens and accents those middle lashes.”

“Use an everyday mascara first, through the length of your lashes, and then go in with a volumizing one – but use it just for the base of the lashes, as it almost gives that eyeliner effect when used at the roots.”

“Don’t use the same mascara on top and bottom lashes – it always looks prettier to have more feathery lashes on the bottom lid. Either use a mascara specifically for bottom lashes (the brushes are smaller), or use a liner brush (thin and flat-ended) or a small fan brush rather than the wand. It’s very easy, as you literally paint it on to the roots. You get great, intense coverage this way – especially if you have very fair, blonde or red lashes and you always get that gap of light hair right at the root.”

“It’s an old trick, but I always recommend castor oil on lashes and brows – you can buy it from any drugstore and it definitely works. Just apply it with a cotton bud and leave overnight. Lash serums will help lashes grow longer, but not necessarily thicker – and for most women, it’s those dense, intense lashes that look so good. And I do like an oil-based makeup remover, as it cleans and conditions the lashes.”

The model featured in this story is not associated with NET-A-PORTER and does not endorse it or the products shown