When Selena Gomez launched her first-ever cosmetic line, Rare Beauty, she solidified her status as a beauty mogul for a damn good reason: The products are excellent. Off the bat, we were impressed with Gomez's Rare for more than just its sleek, luxurious packaging, but—most importantly—the products are easy to use and they work. Among our favorite was a peach-toned palette that got us dressed up for summer dates and a liquid blush that is a bottled glow. A personal favorite of mine? The Positive Light Liquid Luminizer that is *chef's kiss* on bare or made-up skin.
One year later, Rare Beauty is still in regular rotation in our makeup bags but, this time, with a new addition to its catalog. The brand is launching its first-ever mascara, and we got to put the new formula to the test. The new Perfect Strokes Universal Volumizing Mascara has been over one year in the making and was designed to suit a wide range of lash types. Gomez and Rare Beauty's head of product development, Joyce Kim, worked together to nail a formula that helps you achieve your personal lash goals, whether it's length, lift, or volume on fine, straight, thick, and curly hairs.
According to Gomez, finding the right mascara is as "personal" as finding your favorite foundation. "Mascara has been a big journey for us," Gomez says to Kim in a clip unveiling the new launch. "Yeah, we want a mascara that performs but—at the end of the day—what's the problem we want to solve?" Kim says. "For us, we've identified that is different lash types." No two lashes are the same, it's why the Rare Beauty team worked extensively to test the formula on a wide range of people—including all of their staffers and Gomez's personal friends.
The result was a jet-black liquid that isn't too dry or slippery. It's also water-resistant and made with nourishing ingredients like castor oil, so your hairs stay soft and conditioned. In the campaign imagery for Perfect Strokes, Gomez ditched her lash extensions and bared her natural fringe topped with a few coats of the new product. As you can see above, her hairs are wispy, defined, and full of rich volume, which is impressive, especially when we're used to seeing the star with faux lashes.
The Byrdie team got our hands on a few tubes of the new mascara before it launches at Sephora on 8/31 (but you can join the waitlist now to get yours.) Ahead, find our honest thoughts.
Jasmine Phillips, social media editor
"I was pleasantly surprised by this mascara from the first swipe. My lashes were long, defined, and had zero clumping with the first application. The buildable formula made it easy to apply a second coat although I didn't even need it."
Karli Bendlin, senior editor
"I’m a firm believer that Rare Beauty changed the blush game forever with the launch of their Soft Pinch Liquid Blush, so I had high hopes that the brand’s first mascara would be just as revolutionary. After swiping on a few layers of the product, I'm happy to report that Selena Gomez has done it again. The thick brush reaches and coats every individual lash, while the mascara itself delivers unreal length—my lashes literally touched the lenses of my blue-light-blocking glasses when I put them back on."
Jesa Marie Calaor, beauty editor
"Mascara isn’t a part of my regular beauty repertoire. That’s because they typically don’t perform the way I’d like them to on my eyelashes (which are thin, wispy, and point downward) without weighing them down. Rare Beauty's formula is an anomaly. It lifts and lengthens without clumps or added weight. The hourglass-shaped spoolie sweeps cleanly through, separating each hair. The catch: For a more dramatic look, you have to take your time. I fanned my lashes and waited a few seconds for them to dry down before adding another coat and building up the formula. IMO, it’s a small price to pay for the end result. "
Olivia Hancock, associate editor
"My lashes are fairly thick, but they don't like to hold a curl. Because of this, my dream mascara is one that can really make my lashes pop (think: ultra-voluminous, lengthy, and defined). For me, this mascara didn't give my lashes the amount of curl I usually look for. However, it did noticeably lift and lengthen them. The ultra-black pigment also helped them appear bolder and more defined."
Erika Harwood, senior style editor
"I'm very loyal to my mascara. I've tried dozens, but have only used a select few consistently. Rare Beauty's could possibly join those ranks. It feels light and effortless going on, but the thick brush still packs a punch. It lengthens and separates my lashes the way any good everyday mascara should. Ultimately, I probably trust Selena Gomez with my life at this point."
Aimee Simeon, senior beauty editor
"My lashes are super fine, so when I look for mascara, I look for formulas that make my hairs black, visible, and wispy. This one did just that. I loved that the brush isn't too big or too skinny—just the perfect size to get in at the roots to raise my hairs. I admittedly rushed on two coats here before dashing out of the door and was impressed with how good my lashes looked—full and fluttery just how I like it."
The Bottom Line:
If you're comparing the consumer likeness of mascara to foundation, then you know it's hard to make a switch when you like what you like. Still, if you have yet to find that go-to spoolie that your lashes love (or, heck, if you're just a product junkie who is always down to try something new), we can confidently say Rare's first mascara is the latest launch on the block worth a shot.