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NYX On the Rise Mascara
Credit: Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images

When it comes to drugstore mascara, much of the big-box branding has become so nondescript that it can be difficult to tell one product from another. Lots of mascaras advertise sky-high lashes, extra volume, or ultimate length; but how am I to know if I want to lengthen, volumize, or curl? Why can’t I have all three? Thus presents the conundrum of the modern drugstore shopper: Faced with rows of products peddling the same promises (More volume! More pigment! No clumps!), how are we really to tell one brand from another?

We firmly believe that you don’t have to pay top-dollar to get a top-notch mascara; even across the beauty pricing spectrum, it’s truly difficult for one mascara to set itself apart. Yet some mascaras still manage to attract cult followings. My mom has sworn by the signature Maybelline Great Lash pink-and-green tube since my teen years; my retired competitive-cheerleader sister uses Too Faced Better Than Sex Waterproof Mascara, another product with a dedicated following (if not for its cheeky name alone). Even in the oversaturated mascara market, we still manage to form attachments to certain brands and labels, and I’m just as guilty as the rest of them. I’ll vehemently defend NYX On the Rise Mascara as the best lash-lifting formula out there. Luckily, I have the field tests to prove it.

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Over the years, I’ve never settled on any one particular mascara as a favorite. I used the mascaras that my mom and sister picked out for me at Walgreens or Sephora and that was that. Only recently have I committed to really, truly finding a mascara that worked for me and my barely-there lashes. I tried 6 different mascaras over the course of 2 weeks, and at the end of the experiment, NYX On the Rise Mascara was my resounding favorite.

This new, best-selling wand—called not mascara but “liftscara”—seeks to mimic the effect of an eyelash lift. According to NYX, “in a clinical study, 95% of participants saw instant volume and 94% saw instant lift.” While I’m generally wary of data surrounding beauty products, this mascara—promising both lift and volume—sounded like exactly what I needed. My lashes are an average length, but they’re thin and project forward rather than up, so I’ve struggled to find a mascara that really does them justice.

NYX On the Rise delivers instant volume without excessive clumping or a caked-on look. The formula felt light and airy on my lashes, all while delivering the lift I never really knew I could achieve. With a dark pigment that lifts and adds volume, this mascara is a great choice to make a statement with your lashes. Plus, it goes for just $11. If you’re looking to make a big impact, take NYX’s On the Rise Mascara for a spin.