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3 perfect mascaras for extra-long lashes

Zooey Deschanel's long lashes set off her big blue eyes.
Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

A great mascara can transform your look. Just a touch opens and enhances your eyes, and another layer makes them the focal point of your face.

Every brand boasts some twist on the classic formula—whether it’s adding curve or providing nutrients for your lashes—but the key to any good mascara seems to be its thickening and lengthening effects. Whatever else your mascara does, its primary job should be to give you long, alluring lashes.

So here’s a list of the best products to help you create bright, striking eyes:

1. L'Oreal Voluminous Mascara, $7.29

Although the marketing for this product focuses on volume, L'Oreal's Voluminous is a great all-around mascara. Apply a few coats for dark, thick, and long lashes.

2. Bobbi Brown Smokey Eye Mascara, $28

If you’re ever in Montclair, NJ, stop by Bobbi Brown’s studio and check out her collection of mascaras (along with other cosmetic wonders). The best of these is the Smokey Eye Mascara which is perfect for adding extra length and pigment to your lashes. It's more expensive than drug store brands, but the quality is high and your lashes will stay soft all throughout the day.

3. Almay One Coat Triple Effect Mascara, $8.29

While one coat of this triple effect mascara is not likely to get the job done, two coats with the dual sided brush will give you gorgeously long, full lashes. For the first coat, use the side with the longer bristles to lengthen and separate. Then apply a second coat with the shorter bristles on the other side to thicken and add volume. Almay's Triple Effect is great because it effectively opens your eyes and lengthens your lashes without creating an overly made-up look.

No matter which mascara you chose, keep in mind that two to three coats is ideal: any less and you won't be able to build up length and volume. But too many and you're risking heavy lashes that stick together each time you blink.

Get it right, and you'll be amazed at how incredible your eyes look!

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