I have a love-hate relationship with mascara. As someone with stick-straight lashes, I find it wildly challenging to keep them from drooping dismally by mid-day. For that reason, I’m constantly testing the latest formulas in search of a solution to my flat-lash woes. The latest product to land in my makeup bag is the Thrive Causemetics Liquid Lash Extensions Mascara — a formula so popular, it sells a whopping five tubes per minute. Not to mention, it’s award-winning, earning our red seal of approval as a 2020 Allure Best of Beauty winner.
Finding a mascara that makes me feel as confident as I did when I had lash extensions is my dream, so you can bet that this mascara — and the fact that it says “liquid lash extensions” in its name — piqued my interest. I tested it for one week to find out if it was worth the hype. Ahead, I break down everything you need to know, including what makes it special, what’s in it, and, most importantly, if you need it in your beauty routine.
In This Story:
Thrive Causemetics Mascara: An Overview
The Thrive Causemetics mascara has been around for half a decade — since May 2017, to be exact — and its popularity has remained steady. What makes it stand out from the literal hundreds of other mascaras on the market is, first, its tubing mascara formula, which contains polymers that wrap around each individual lash to make them longer. Next is its ability to create the look of lash extensions for a fraction of the price. You may be surprised to see its short and dense bristles. I, too, thought, “How could these possibly lengthen my lashes?” Spoiler alert: It works.
Ingredients and Formulation
Reviewed by Cosmetic Chemist Krupa Koestline
According to cosmetic chemist Krupa Koestline, the mascara’s ingredient list doesn’t contain anything shoppers should be wary of. She even goes as far as calling the formulation’s preservation system “very cool.” Why? Because it uses pulsatilla koreana extract and usnea barbata extract, natural preservatives that are scientifically proven to keep the mascara safe from bacteria and mold that can potentially cause eye infections, she says.
Like me, she also appreciates its tubing and volumizing formulation. “Traditional mascaras are a mixture of pigment and thickeners — like waxes, oils, and emollients — and a non-tubing polymer,” she explains. But in this formulation, “castor oil, shea butter, and carnauba wax help plump and give a volumizing effect to the lashes while conditioning them, so the lashes don’t get dry and brittle.”
The key ingredients in the Thrive Causemetics mascara are glycerin (a humectant), sodium hyaluronate (a form of hyaluronic acid and a humectant), shea butter (an emollient), castor seed oil (an anti-bacterial with humectant properties), and panthenol (a strengthening B vitamin). This formula meets the Allure Clean Standard.
How I Tested It
As a full time work-from-homer, I keep my makeup routine really simple. On most days, I apply just a little bit of tinted moisturizer, undereye concealer, and cream blush, and put the most energy into my lashes. Prior to testing the Thrive Causemetics mascara, I used the Glossier Lash Slick, a tubing mascara that defines and lengthens my lashes subtly, but effectively. Similar to Thrive’s formula, the brand prides itself on creating “baby lash extensions.” I clearly have a type.