Popular drugstore mascaras that do the job just as well those you'd pay more for in a department store.
Which drugstore mascaras separate and lift themselves from the rest?
We tested an array of popular brands and found them to be, in many cases, just as good as more expensive department store options. The big difference? Less fancy packaging. The brushes, however, tend to be just as good.
Here are six of the best options. All are widely available at drugstores.
Maybelline Great Lash Big Washable Mascara ($4.49). The hot pink tube with the watermelon-green top is a cult classic for a reason. It works the way mascara is supposed to: It doesn’t clump, smear or itch. It goes on a little thin and creates a natural look. If you need something reliable, this is a solid safe bet.
Rimmel London Wonder’lash Lift Me Up ($8). This has a large hourglass brush with bristles that are neither too soft nor too sharp. It provided great coverage and a dramatic look. The mascara held up during the day with no crumbling or flaking. It didn’t irritate or smudge.
Maybelline Lash Sensational ($7). This performs like a much more expensive brand with a formula that wears well, looks thick and lush in just a few swipes and includes a curved brush with stiff, sharp bristles for easy application. It was great for volumizing and separating lashes.
Almay One Coat Multi-Benefit ($7). A full, bushy brush combs through and separates lashes, giving a near-perfect distribution of formula for a no-makeup look in one coat. It was also easy to layer for a little more drama.
Boots No. 7 Maximum Volume ($9). Soft, spiraled bristles apply the product well and produce a dramatic look. The formula is wet but not too wet, and easily coats the lashes.
L’Oreal Voluminous Million Lashes ($9). This brush has lots of sharp bristles to catch the lashes and create lots of volume and drama. It’s easy to apply, layers well and doesn’t flake.
Debra Bass contributed to this story.