All too often, when a product looks too good to be true, it usually is. Revlon makes a pretty bold declaration with the name "Ultimate All-In-One Mascara." While we were intrigued by its claims to volumize, lengthen, define, and lift lashes, while also providing intense color, we were skeptical that it would actually live up to all five of them. With so many high-end mascaras, how could a drugstore mascara under $10 truly be the ultimate one? Well, we're happy to announce that Revlon surprised us by delivering with every claim, earning our recommendation. See the Editor's Note at the bottom of this review to see why his mascara's rating was recently downgraded from it's original spot on our top mascaras list.
Ultimate-All-In-One Mascara is housed in a sleek, flat, matte black tube with a red cap. When we first saw the "power mini brush," as Revlon calls it, we were alarmed at how tiny it is! The brush is slightly curved, almond-shaped and about half the size of traditional mascara brushes. Because of how short it is, the risk of accidentally smudging mascara around the eyes is virtually non-existent. The brush has a divot in the center, similar to many lip gloss applicators, which picks up the perfect amount of mascara for a single coat without getting the tube messy.
While this brush looks like it was made for lower lashes, it works well on both sets, depositing a deep pigment while separating lashes to create a lengthier, more defined look. We found that although it did not smudge or flake and lasted a standard workday, it also removed easily with makeup remover or micellar water.
Three of the five claims down (length, definition, and color), let's move on to lift. When used on upper lashes, if you start the brush at the lash line and pull up slightly during application, this mascara truly does lift lashes creating an almost fan-like curl. It's refreshing to see a mascara that actually holds true to this claim since so many others have failed. We found an eyelash curler was unnecessary when using this mascara, but that depends on just how curled you prefer your lashes to be.
Lastly, Ultimate-All-In-One Mascara also does a great job in the volumizing department. The formula applies very wet at first, but dries quickly. After just a single coat, it gives you the look of having used an eyelash primer without actually having used one. Nice!
Overall, Revlon's Ultimate-All-In-One Mascara outperforms many other mascaras by providing volume, length, definition, lift, and bold color. If you're lacking in the lash department, this affordable mascara may be exactly what you're looking for!
March 2016 Editor's Note: When initially testing this mascara, Beautypedia purchased two separate tubes at different times, from different retailers. Different staffers tried it over the span of several weeks and various environments (including a wind storm in single-digit degree weather). While our staffers did not experience noticeable flaking, our Community Reviews overwhelmingly state otherwise and as a result, we've officially downgraded this mascara from our top honors. We still highly recommend it but with a "buyer beware" caveat as you may experience severe flaking as many of our readers did.
Strengths: Superior foundations with sunscreen and each of them provide sufficient UVA protection (though one has a disappointing SPF 6); several outstanding concealers and powders; one of the best cream blushes around; great cream eyeshadow and liquid eyeliner; a beautiful selection of elegant lipsticks, lip gloss, and lipliner; some worthwhile specialty products.
Weaknesses: Average eye and brow pencils; inaccurate claims surrounding their Botafirm complex; mostly average to disappointing mascaras.
It may surprise some of you to know that Revlon has been around since 1932, when the company launched a unique nail polish that used pigments instead of dyes. Lipsticks followed years later, and then a full line of cosmetics, which is how we know Revlon today. Although the company has had its continual share of ups and downs over the years (largely due to out-of-control debt coupled with aggressive spending), the line has recently made numerous improvements, especially in the realms of foundations, powders, eyeshadows, and mascaras. If their goal was to close the competitive gap between themselves and L'Oreal, for the most part they have succeeded. Revlon definitely has the edge for foundations with reliable sunscreens. But despite Revlon's attempt to improve their mascara range, L'Oreal remains the clear winner (as well as L'Oreal-owned Maybelline
Revlon's vast selection of makeup is divided into three main brands: Age Defying for the forty-something and older woman concerned about wrinkles, ColorStay for the teen to mid-thirties woman concerned about keeping oily skin in check and making sure her makeup stays put, and PhotoReady for women of all ages. These brands present some outstanding options and include products for all skin types (although the range of skin tones is not as well-represented here as it is by L'Oreal).
An intriguing fact is that the longevity claims for ColorStay are quite accurate: this collection of products really does offer extraordinary staying power. Conversely, Revlon jumped on the works-like-Botox bandwagon with their Age Defying range, going so far as to name their antiwrinkle complex Botafirm. Is there any confusion about what that term is supposed to relate to? Despite the claims, Botafirm won't reduce expression lines or control the muscles that cause them, though the products themselves do have many impressive qualities.
Note:Revlon is categorized as one that tests on animals because their products are sold in China. Although Revlon may not conduct animal testing for their products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brand’s state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law”. Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Team.
Suffice it to say, Revlon has more commendable products than ever before, and although they rely heavily on celebrity spokespersons, their best products ably speak for themselves.
For more information about Revlon, call (800) 473-8566 or visit www.revlon.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
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