Monday, April 2, 2012

Armani Eyes to Kill Mascara Review and Pictures

I tend to hate mascara. It's a pain in the ass to apply, it clumps, it flakes, it smudges, it loosens the curl of my lashes, it irritates. I have naturally long, dark, abundant lashes, and I'd failed to find a mascara that gave me what I wanted (curl, definition) without what I didn't (clumps, flakes, heaviness). Until now.
The SA who did my mini-makeover at Armani used this on me, and I was pretty impressed. Impressed enough to buy it, in fact, along with the lipstick that I'd originally gone there for. I fully expected to be let down by it and pawn it off on L, who uses and loves mascara, only to find myself falling ever more in love with it.
The brush supposedly has two sets of bristles, with shorter, denser ones on one side, intended to help thicken and lift the base of the lashes, and longer, thinner ones on the other side to help provide length and definition to lashes. Now, I can't actually see when I'm applying my mascara (or actually even in the picture above?), so I usually have to just make my best guess as to which side is which, but so far it's worked out alright. By which I mean, Eyes to Kill curls my lashes, thanks to the lifting at the base, and defines, lengthens, separates, and darkens them as well. It lasts all day, including surviving tears (I wore it to see The Hunger Games, and walked out with my mascara perfectly intact, in spite of having sobbed through Rue's death) and air travel (15 hours from application, including 7 hours of flying and the moisture that results from yawning to pop my ears). No clumping, no flaking, no loss of curl. MADNESS!
1 coat, no curling

I've found that it looks best when I use the shorter bristles at the base of my lashes and then do one coat with the longer bristles up my lashes.
1 heavy coat, curled with my (crappy) Revlon curler; you can see my lashes group together more
than with a single (light) coat, where they're more individual. This does have
impressive length, though!
If I do more than that (heavier first coat, or an additional coat), I find it makes my lashes less lush and defined and more prone to clumping together, and since I prefer a "natural" lash look, one coat is ideal.

The only downside is the jaw-dropping price: $30 for 0.23 oz. Ouch. I plan on using this as long as it still performs––I don't care about the 3 month rule, if it still works after that, I am sure as heck not throwing it out, potential eye infections be damned! On the upside, pretty much any other mascara I buy from now on will seem cheap by comparison, can probably look forward to more mascara reviews. Once I use up this one, of course. Also, it's only available in one color, Steel Black, which is a deep, dark black, so if you prefer brown-black, you'll have to look elsewhere.

$30 for 0.23 oz, available from Nordstrom, Saks, and Armani

Quality: 10
Effectiveness: 5
Ease of Use: 4.5 (mascaras are just never easy, but at least this one is a simple straight brush)
Senses: 5
Pigmentation: 5
Duration: 5
Consistency: 5
Price: 1
Value: 4 (it's about average-sized for high end mascara, and since I only need one coat for perfect results, it should [knock on wood so hard] last awhile)
Packaging: +0.5 (the brushed black metal case is weighty and elegant, and it makes a satisfying snap when you close the lid)
Grade: A-

Have you tried Eyes to Kill? What's your favorite mascara? What's the most you've ever spent?
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