“Magic does exist,” says Zoe Roe, applying Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara in a TikTok video liked by 2.3 million people. In the video, her eyelashes fly up and away from her eye, like the hem of Marilyn Monroe’s dress, fluttering above the subway grate. They take up serious real estate on her face—she refers to them, laughingly, as “Tarantu-lashes.”
Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara is a makeup product with almost too much hype. The icy pink tubes with raised silver writing, which look both like a futuristic skyscraper and a stiletto heel, have sold out of drugstores, gone viral on every social media platform, and inspires zealous testimonies from new converts.
“I honestly don’t know if my lashes have ever gotten this long,” says Kaitlin Sonday, in her YouTube video, which puts Lash Sensational to the test on her “non existent” lashes. “You guys never hear me get this excited over a mascara,” says YouTuber Kate Carter in her video, sounding near tears. “I have absolutely nothing negative to say,” adds YouTuber Emily Fox. After Lash Sensational debuted, #BeautyTwitter lit up with recommendations of Lash Sensational as a dupe for well known luxury mascaras.
I am all too familiar with the beauty industry’s little tricks. Mascara is literally a black sludge we apply on a stick, and yet I count it among the reasons I enjoy life. To me, mascara rises above all other makeup—it promises to make your eyes instantly more dramatic, and then it actually follows through.
Brands, of course, know this and play to our dependency, endlessly dealing out new varieties in appealing packaging with increasingly extreme names, like WASPY bankers’ sons: Length Defining Eye Open BARBIE EYES III or Sexy Baby Exxxtreme Kitty-Cat. Is there a limit to how long, thick, dark, voluminous, curled, and EXXXTREME our eyelashes can be? We don’t know, and they don’t know, and so they keep making variations, and we can’t help but try them.
And yet, I’m here to tell you that Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara is indeed excellent. The first time I tried it, I stepped back from the mirror blinking in surprise, then looked around to see if anyone else was seeing this (I was alone in the bathroom). The product builds on itself in the way you always hope mascara will—the more you put it on, the more it stretches away from your face. It stays on extremely well, almost like a waterproof formula, and then removes gently with warm water and face wash at the end of the day. Add to the fact that it’s a drugstore mascara that only costs $12, and it’s no wonder everyone is losing their minds over it.
“Everyone in the states seems to be going doolally over their mascara,” says UK TikToker Vickaboo, in a video liked by over 100,000 people. “Deze mascara werd in Amerika echt kapot gehyped!” writes The Dutch Beauty Blogger, on Instagram. (This mascara was really hyped in America!) A cursory search shows hawkers re-selling the silvery pastel tubes in Malaysia, Russia, and Turkey.
Mascara’s stock has only gone up during the pandemic—now that half of our faces are concealed by masks at most times, we require so much more of our eye makeup. I want my mascara to be as dramatic as a breakup in a mall food court. I want my eyelashes to be long enough to get caught in the wind and take me parasailing. With Maybelline Lash Sensational Sky High Mascara, I actually have to stop at a certain point and say, “Is this actually too much?”
That’s a mascara worth the doolally.
Looking for more incredible product recommendations? Check out all 265 winners from the 2021 Glamour Beauty Awards.
Jenny Singer is a staff writer at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @jenny.leah.singer.