Note: I received this product as a free sample at an event open to the general public.
When Sephora had a free mini of the new Make Up For Ever Smoky Extravagant Mascara on their website, I was pretty excited about it. Unfortunately it went out of stock before I was ready to make an order. I went back and forth on whether I should just buy it untested (there’s no way I’m putting the store testers anywhere near my eyes) when I got a second chance. Last weekend my local Sephora store had an event to debut their new Color IQ system, and a MUFE rep was handing out single-use samples of their hot new “4D” mascara. I squirreled mine away to use later, since I already had mascara on – YSL Babydoll, thanks for asking. Anyway, that’s why I’m calling this a mini review or first impressions, because a) it wasn’t the full size tube, and we all know the neck of the tube vs brush size does make a difference, and b) sometimes it takes a little bit of fiddling with a product to form a full opinion. Don’t consider this the be-all, end-all review, just one girl’s thoughts.
I had seen the tester in store, but never put it anywhere near my face, so I was unprepared for how big it really is. I have a smaller-than-average head (my hairstylist agrees) and small facial features to match. I won’t beat around the bush – using this brush to put mascara on my itty bitty eyes was like using a hairbrush. The brush itself seems really long, so if I tried to use the fat end, I was in danger of jabbing the tip into the bridge of my nose; the tip had tons of product glopped up on it. It’s probably one of those shapes that takes some getting used to, but my gut reaction is “not a fan.” The bristles are a bit flexible, but the brush head itself is not.
I normally like a slightly drier mascara because I end up smearing wetter formulas everywhere no matter how hard I try not to. This one was a little too dry though, and had almost a pasty texture; sort of like when you mix up flour with a bit of water, but black. I’m not sure if it was the formula, the brush or a combination of the two, but it really wanted to clump up on me, and my lashes turned out a bit spidery. I was able to comb them out well enough but I consider lash combs a last resort. It is very black and slightly glossy, and covered the top side of my lashes well without me having to specifically try. It did add volume and length, but not a significant amount of curl.
I was pleased with the wear. I had it on for about 14 hours and didn’t have any smearing, flaking or irritation. It doesn’t claim to be waterproof, but I did put eyedrops in during the day (allergies) and it didn’t run. A couple gentle swipes with my makeup remover wipe (Yes to Cucumbers) didn’t take it off, but the mineral oil that I generally use for eye makeup removed it easily.
In Short: If the brush and formula line up with your personal preferences, it’s worth a try. I for one will not be purchasing it.
MUFE Smoky Extravagant Mascara is available at sephora.com and Sephora stores.