This Celeb-Approved Mascara Just Ousted the One I've Been Using for a Decade

Its dual-sided brush beats out every other design on the market.

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ilia mascara
Photo: Ilia

When I find a beauty product that I love, I mate with it for life. Don't get me wrong — I have a wandering eye for new launches and viral products — but I'm a loyalist at heart. I've used the same type of curling iron since high school and have sworn by my eyebrow gel for more than five years. My beauty staples rarely change (and I go through a small identity crisis when they do). So imagine my shock when I realized my go-to mascara of a decade had been replaced by Ilia's Limitless Lash Mascara (Buy It, $28,

My first introduction to the mascara came from Camila Mendes. The Riverdale actress swore by the lengthening formula to get the perfect no-makeup look. I figured it wasn't for me based on my preference for drama and volume — then a sample arrived on my doorstep. (BTW the actress also loves this anti-frizz hair treatment.)

It was love at first swipe. The deep black formula glided over my lashes to evenly coat them from root to tip. Once applied, it was fast-drying and lightweight, so I didn't have to wait around post-application before moving to the next step in my makeup routine. But it didn't just look good, it was also good for my lashes. The beeswax-based formula has both shea butter and keratin, which condition lashes and help them grow — no special serums necessary.

Ilia Mascara Review Before After
Braelyn Wood

More importantly, the patented double-ended brush gave me the freedom to pick how I wanted to style my lashes. The longer bristles lengthened and separated my eyelashes for a natural elongation that mimicked lash extension, while the shorter end added curl and volume for a dramatic look that replicated falsies. It felt like scoring two mascaras for the price of one.

Although my oily skin makes most mascaras give me racoon eyes, especially when wearing a mask or sweating, this mascara didn't. It held like cement until I applied a little warm water, and then it slid off without the help of makeup remover. It was like magic. (

At first, I resisted admitting how good the formula really was. I repurchased my old mascara when it ran out, but I didn't reach for it. The tube stayed untouched for weeks and I was forced to admit that I'd found a new favorite in Ilia — and I wasn't alone.

Not only does the mascara have more than 2,000 perfect reviews, but it's also a favorite of Shape's digital deputy editor, Alyssa Sparacino. She says the lengthening brush is great for de-clumping her lashes, which is something other mascaras make worse. E-commerce writer Maya Gandara also swears by Ilia's formula despite owning numerous tubes of mascara.

The only real con is the price. While I've gladly coughed up way too much money for mascara — it's my desert island beauty item — I know it's pretty pricey for some. However, I've been using the same tube since January and haven't had the mascara dry out or crumble yet. (P.S. Experts recommend replacing mascara every three months).

My new mascara soulmate has given me the best lashes of my life, but it's also forced me to reevaluate myself. Unlike penguins, I will replace my mate when something better comes along. But I'm still expecting to rave about this mascara for at least a decade.


Buy It: Ilia Limitless Lash Mascara, $28,

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