Essence’s New $5 Mascara Will Replace Your Lash Curler

The best-selling mascara on Amazon just got an upgrade.

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Essence/ Unsplash

We're not surprised that Essence's Lash Princess is the best-selling mascara on Amazon. Ringing in at just $5, the cult-favorite product delivers false lashes in a tube and has racked up over 150k glowing reviews and gained a seriously loyal following. Now, the beloved lash range has added a new member to the family.

The brand-new Lash Princess Curl Mascara ($5) offers all the volume benefits of the original product, plus an upgraded formula for maximum curl. To learn more about the new launch, we reached out to celebrity makeup artist Robert Sesnek, who works with clients like Lucy Hale and Vanessa Hudgens, and is a devoted Lash Princess fan himself. Read on for his expert tips on how to get your longest, most lifted lashes yet, and for our honest review.

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Essence Lash Princess Curl Mascara

Best For: Eyelashes

Uses: A curling mascara for full, lifted lashes.

Price: $5

About the Brand: Founded in 2001, Essence Cosmetics is a brand dedicated to bringing affordable, fun, and high-quality beauty products to the table across the categories of eyes, lips, face, and nails.

The Formula

The newest addition to the Lash Princess range is available for the same affordable price as the original, but with a bonus: it can replace your lash curler altogether. “I’m always partial to using an eyelash curler, but with this formula, curling prior to using mascara isn’t necessary,” says Sesnek.

With a few swipes, the new mascara lifts, curls, and holds lashes in place for an eye-opening, high-drama look. Plus, the curling formula is also vegan, paraben-free, and formulated without microplastics.

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Essence Lash Princess Curl Mascara $5
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The formula isn't the only thing working to curl and lengthen lashes, as the mascara’s peanut-shaped fiber brush does a lot of the heavy lifting, too. “The brush cradles the lashes for the ultimate lift,” says Sesnek.

As for when to use each offering in the Lash Princess range, Sesnek says it comes down to a matter of preference. “I’m partial to the waterproof formula in the summer months, especially by the pool or beach,” he says, adding that the waterproof option is also great for anyone prone to fading or smudging.

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Essence Lash Princess False Lash Effect Waterproof Mascara $5
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While Sesnek thinks the original product and the waterproof version are both "amazing," you can't beat the curling benefits of the new formula. “If you’re looking for maximum curl and volume, then the Lash Princess Curl is definitely for you,” he says.

How to Use

You might think you have your mascara technique down pat, but Sesnek says a two-step approach can give you even more dramatic results. And while he insists that curling your lashes isn’t necessary with this mascara, using a traditional lash curler prior to application "can never hurt."

Apply mascara before your complexion makeup so you can easily remove and mascara that gets on your eyelids or under eyes.

Once you’re ready for mascara, Sesnek suggests first building length by applying a coat with the brush turned vertically. Then, turn the wand horizontally and brush your lashes up to add curl.

The Review

before and after selfie

Chinea Rodriguez/Design by Cristina Cianci

I rarely prefer curl or volume mascaras, because I usually just want to lengthen my lashes. I don’t even use an eyelash curler, since I was thoroughly convinced my lashes were as curled as they could get. The new Lash Princess Curl Mascara, however, proved me wrong.

Following Robert Sesnek’s pro tips, I brushed on the mascara vertically and then horizontally, wiggling the brush at the base of my lashes for volume. After a few swipes, my lashes had extra length, volume, and curl—without any clumps. Even some of my go-to mascaras haven’t made my lashes look this good. I think it just replaced the original Lash Princess as my favorite from the line.

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