Thursday, 13 May 2010

Review: Rimmel 1-2-3 Looks Mascara

A couple of weeks ago, I begged you for mascara recommendations.  There were some fantastic suggestions, ranging from budget to luxe, mainstream to obscure, and I chose to start off by buying Rimmel's latest offering, 1-2-3 Looks Mascara, mostly because I happened to be passing a Boots on my lunchbreak.

This mascara is intended to give you several (go on, guess how many!) looks from the one tube.  It manages this by having a dial on the packaging, which you can turn to get different levels of volume.  This works by moving the well in which the mascara sits away from the brush, so that at the lowest setting (one), the brush gets a light coating of mascara, and at the highest (three), it's well loaded up.

The brush itself is a fairly normal sized and slightly stubby affair.  It has flexible plastic bristles, and isn't quite as long as most other brushes I've encountered - you won't be able to coat the lashes across the whole eye without moving it around quite a bit.  It is, however, a nice brush - easy to wield, difficult to poke yourself in the eye with, and thanks to the plastic bristles, it gives good definition if you apply carefully.

Now, I personally don't really understand why you wouldn't use it on maximum all the time, but in the interests of scientific testing, I bravely tried it on all three settings.  I pretty much gave up on the lowest setting, as it basically just coloured my puny lashes and didn't do much for volume; I can imagine if you have naturally thick lashes, the first setting would be a good daytime option.  The picture to the right shows the second setting, which makes my lashes long, full, and fluttery looking, also in a very daytime appropriate way.

On setting three, my lashes certainly have more volume at the root and midlengths.  The effect is more dramatic and less fluttery, and I found that I had to work much harder to achieve the definition and separation that I found easy with setting two.  This is probably because the brush is significantly more loaded with mascara on setting three, so you have to put in more effort to get a non-clumpy result.

The mascara formula is rather nice; it dries on the lashes relatively quickly, and once dry is fairly soft - no hard, brittle feeling here.  The wear is also rather nice; a good eight hours went by with only minor flaking, although I did find that the majority of the flaking seemed to end up on my waterline rather than on my cheeks. 

For the grand price of £5.99 (it's on offer at Boots right now with £2 off the £7.99 RRP), this is a very serviceable budget buy.  The three in one concept isn't as gimmicky as I thought it would be and I was pleased to find that it actually works. I will continue to use it until the tube runs dry; I can't see myself repurchasing (too many other mascara fish to fry) but I am enjoying using it.

If you'd like to try this one for yourself, you can find it for £5.99 at Boots.


  1. Wow, this actually looks really good. When I saw the ad I totally wrote it off as being a gimmick.

  2. It looks really good on you! But i'm like you, i don't see anytime i wouldn't just want to use level 3!

  3. its my mission in life to find THE perfect mascara...have just tried the new Topshop one...will defo try this one out too xx

  4. I really thought it would turn out to be a no-good, mostly gimmicky mascara too, but I've really been impressed!

    Thanks for your comments girls :)


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