Saturday, 28 December 2013

Constance Carroll CCUK Natural Lash Mascara – Clear 11 (review)

Clear mascaras sell for a number of reasons: some people don't want a made-up look, which you can sometimes get from regular mascara. Others like to give their poor eyelashes a break from the hardening, coating, colouring effects of mascara – and the sometimes difficult make-up removal process that follows – and choose clear gel mascara as a gentler alternative. Some customers are men, who want a more polished look without looking like they've got any make-up on. Other people might suffer from allergies to dye or other ingredients.
Constance Carroll CCUK Natural Lash Mascara

CCUK (the CC stands for Constance Carroll, a company that's been trading for thirty years) has a wide range of well-priced cosmetics, amongst them this Natural Lash Mascara. CCUK claim it's ideal for “defined natural lashes” and has a “rich, clear formula to protect and condition”. Firstly, let's deal with the issue of price: it's good value for money, retailing at under four pounds! Being a resolutely budget purchase, I didn't raise my expectations very high, but I should have been more hopeful because this works really well! The wand is a typical design, and works effectively, reaching most small lashes. Using it carefully meant I didn't get any lumps or gloopy bits, although a couple of coats work best and at controlling and enhancing your natural lashes.

Being a gel, you might expect it to stay sticky and wet on your lashes all day, but it actually dried quite quickly. OK, it's not a match for the best regular mascaras, but honestly, it's not bad. It works better after you've curled your eye lashes, giving you a more 'polished' look without looking like you've got any make-up on. It's effective and perfect for a casual day-to-day, no-fuss routine. Obviously, if you want a genuinely glamorous look you'll need to use coloured mascara.

Focusing on ingredients alone this doesn't score brilliantly, as it contains no natural extracts (unless you count water!) but does include propylene glycol and parabens. However, Constance Carroll is owned by Vivalis who never test on animals, and they don't let companies who work for them test on animals either. This is reassuring, as I hate the idea of animals being used as our test subjects.

On the bright side, it's protein-enriched for lash strengthening and panthenol is included for nourishment. I certainly didn't suffer from any dryness or flakiness while using it, in fact my lashes remained lovely and soft. I didn't react to it at all, and I'm a contact lens wearer, which means my eyes can be sensitive with them in. But I didn't have any problems!

While I commend the lack of animal testing, the ingredients included aren't exactly comforting. But I haven't yet found a genuine natural clear mascara that I really like. (If you know of one, get in touch – I'd love to try it!) CCUK's entrant still impresses, though, with the good feeling enhanced by the excellent value. While the effect is subtle, that suits me to a T, and I'll be using this instead of The Body Shop's far more expensive version for the foreseeable future.  Best of all... you can use this to tame eyebrows as well as lashes.  It's multi-purpose!

Parent company Vivalis never tests on animals
Made with many undesirable ingredients
Multi-purpose: for lashes and brows!
Results might be too subtle for some
Excellent value for money

Widely available, other mascaras available in range


Brand: Constance Carroll

Size: 8 ml
Price: £3.99 (£49.88/100 ml)

Manufactured: China

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Acrylates/Steareth-20 Methacrylate Copolymer, Gylcerin, Alcohol Denat., PVP, Triethanolamine, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Panthenol, Hydrolyzed Keratin, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, PG-Propyl Silanetriol, Disodium EDTA

Alternative: n/a

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