In the most divided of times, I think something we can all agree on is that drugstore mascara is the way to go. There are just too many affordable choices that perform on par with high end products. Plus, it’s the one item in your makeup collection that you’re supposed to replace the most frequently for hygiene safety.
Even though my old favorites are still some of the best, I wanted to update my picks for best drugstore mascaras in 2023 with newer releases I love.
Keep reading to see my most recent picks for best drugstore mascaras that work well for short, straight lashes– plus before & after photos!
1. wet n wild Big Poppa Mascara ($6)
I’ve been wearing this mascara the most recently, as I feel like it delivers the perfect balance of lift, length and volume. The wet n wild Big Poppa Mascara has become my favorite particularly because it keeps my lashes curled all day, despite using the regular (non-waterproof) version. My lashes tend to naturally point downward in the outer corner, and this lifts and locks them in place.
2. ColourPop Level Up Lengthening Mascara ($9)
This is the mascara I grab when I want dramatic lashes without dealing with falsies. The ColourPop Level Up Lengthening Mascara features a cone-shaped brush that lets you pick up and coat even the shortest corner lashes for a thoroughly fanned-out, full effect. Working quickly is key with this formula, however, because layering on top of dried product may produce flakes.
3. L’Oreal Telescopic Lift Mascara ($12)
I couldn’t make this post without mentioning one of the most viral drugstore mascaras of the year: the L’Oreal Telescopic Lift. This adds a ton of length and volume, though I do feel it comes at the expense of my curl just a bit. The wand is one-sided and flat– the front has shorter, denser bristles to separate and coat the lashes in mascara, and the side bristles are longer to add volume. Watch the video at the top of the page to see the application technique. Despite losing a little lift, this mascara performs well all day with no flakes or smudging.
4. Flower Beauty Dream Warrior Mascara ($12)
Flower Beauty continues to hit it out of the park with their mascaras, their newest being the Dream Warrior Mascara. I would say it’s slightly less thickening than their Warrior Princess Mascara, which I mentioned in my last favorite mascaras post, but still gives you buildable volume. Wear a thin coat for a wispy look, or layer up for more volume and dreamy length. I love the tapered brush that lets you pick up your baby lashes.
5. e.l.f. Cosmetics Lash N Roll Mascara ($6)
This mascara grew on me the more I lean toward fresh faced, simple makeup looks. The e.l.f. Lash N Roll Mascara gives you really clean looking length and separation. I wouldn’t say it adds a ton of volume, which is why I use it more when I want to accentuate my lashes without making them a statement. I love that I can build up the length to the maximum without ever getting clumps, and it doesn’t weigh my lashes down.