6 Tricks For Getting The Best Lashes Ever

Every woman's makeup routine is a little bit different. But when it comes to the essentials, there are a few key items that we won't go without. And the best example of that is probably already in your cosmetics bag: mascara. Even when women go with a "no-makeup" makeup look, mascara always manages to sneak in for a guest appearance. Most women won't even leave the house without it, since it's as important to our A.M. routines as brushing our teeth—and for good reason. One or two coats of a good mascara can take you from looking half-asleep to completely, totally, 100% awake. If that's not a magic mascara trick, we don't know what is.

Here’s the bad news, though: Not all mascaras are made equal. And between trying to choose a good formula, taking care of your lashes, avoiding giant clumps, and making sure you’re not giving yourself an eye infection, getting gorgeous lashes can be an ordeal. (Did reading that sentence make you feel overwhelmed? You're not alone.) But we have good news, too: The payoff is totally worth it. That’s why, in collaboration with Walmart and Covergirl's So Lashy mascara, we’re doing the homework for you. Here’s your ultimate guide to good lash care—so that you can get your finest fringe ever.

1. Budget Time For A Second Step

"After applying your mascara—and before it dries—gently pull a small lash comb from the roots of your lashes towards the ends," says celebrity makeup artist Ermahn Ospina. "This will give them more definition and help you clear out any clumps." Covergirl So Lashy! blastPRO actually has a comb built into the brush. Its innovative, three-part applicator works to lengthen, define, and thicken lashes—all at the same time.

2. Go Waterproof With Care

It might seem easier to wear waterproof mascara on a daily basis (you know, just in case). But the formula actually does a number on your lashes. “Don't use waterproof mascara unless you know you’ll be crying,” says celebrity makeup artist Matin. “It can be very drying to lashes and will make them brittle and short.” For special occasions during which tears are a hazard, like your sister’s wedding, consider it fair game. Otherwise, go for a regular formula.

3. Coat Lashes Before Curling

For stick-straight lashes, it's worth stocking two mascaras. "Use the lightest coat of a very natural mascara—one that has a drier texture—before curling," says celebrity makeup artist Julie Harris. This has a similar effect to layering on primer before foundation, and will help the curler grip and shape the lashes. Afterwards, go ahead and layer on a formula that'll pump up your lashes, like Covergirl So Lashy! blastPRO. Its volumizing formula and densely-packed brush bristles transform even the shortest lashes. And since it's specifically designed to enhance all lashes types –– it'll give you that bold, dramatic look without the clumpy mess.

4. Treat Your Lashes Like Your Hair

You’d never skip conditioner in the shower, would you? Same goes for your lashes. "Pat lash conditioner or a high-quality oil, like argan oil, at the ends of your lashes at night,” says Matin. A little bit will do the trick, nourishing them over time so they can grow longer and stronger than ever.

5. Take It Off On The Reg

“Remove all traces of mascara at night,” advises Matin. If you’re serial offender when it comes to sleeping in your eye makeup, watch out: it could cause eye irritation. Since the eye area is super delicate anyway, it pays to take an extra 30 seconds to wash off your eye makeup (which, yes, requires its own routine). Saturate two cotton pads with oil-free eye makeup remover and press them against your closed eyes for 20 seconds. Then, gently sweep it away.

6. Keep It Personal

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times: Toss your tube after three months, and don’t let your friends borrow it. Between it being a liquid (a.k.a. the ideal home for germs) and its constant proximity to your eyes, “it's a perfect place for bacterial growth,” explains Matin. Ain’t nobody got time for an eye infection.

This post is sponsored by Covergirl So Lashy at Walmart.

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