I Tested the Most Popular Mascara at CVS and My Lashes Have Never Looked Better

I regularly joke that when I die, I want my ashes to be scattered in the aisles of a CVS. Growing up in the suburbs (hey there, Rhode Island!), it's the place where I first truly discovered the world of beauty. I would spend hours scanning the shelves for the best skin care and makeup that $10 could buy, and even now one of my Sunday afternoon guilty pleasures is strolling through the aisles and seeing if there are any new products worth dealing with a miles-long receipt for.

So, when I got an email this morning revealing the most popular beauty items at CVS from 2018, it felt like Christmas came a few days early. I recognized most of the items on the list. The top skin-care seller, Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser ($10), and top body-care seller, Aveeno Moisturizing Lotion ($2), have both been heavily featured in my routine for years. But the top makeup item, L'Oreal Paris Voluminous Lash Paradise Washable Mascara ($10), was totally new to me. So obviously—especially given the recent resurgence of drugstore mascara—I had to try it out stat.

And let me just say: It was love at first swipe. One coat of the stuff thickened, lengthened, and lifted my lashes all at once, making it abundantly clear why so many CVS shoppers are such fans of the stuff. I happened to test it on a day when I had worn no other makeup, but the mascara was powerful enough that it somehow made me look glammed up with nothing else on to support it. I felt like I was wearing fake lashes (which are far, far too advanced for me to attempt on my own), and one of my coworkers actually issued an audible "Whoa!" when my new lashes and I walked back to my desk. The one thing that kept me from labeling L'Oreal's Lash Paradise as "perfect" is the fact that it did result in a few clumps that needed combing out. In fairness, though, I've tried approximately a zillion mascaras in my life, and have yet to find one that's 100 percent clump-free.  Don't believe me? Peep the before and after for proof:

best drugstore mascara 2018
Photo: Zoe Weiner

Clearly, CVS shoppers are onto something. Moving forward, I would like to be more specific with my request: Scatter my ashes in the makeup aisle, specifically near the L'Oreal Paris mascara.

A $10 mascara isn't the only thing I fell in love with on the drugstore aisle this year—I also swapped my entire skin-care routine for drugstore products. And no matter what type of mascara you're using *this* is how often you should be tossing it to avoid infection.

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