YSL Faux Cils Volume Effect Mascara – Beauty #TBT

YSL Faux Cils Volume Effect Mascara – Beauty #TBT

A few months ago I was given a voucher for my local shopping centre to treat myself to some pieces I’d been lusting after for a Girls Night theme. There was one particular product that popped into my mind that was an old favourite, one when I came up with the idea of Beauty #TBT to talk about discontinued and revisit old favourites was first on the list I made. The first thing I had to try for this series was the YSL Faux Cils Volume Effect Mascara.

The YSL Faux Cils mascara was named the best mascara on the TV show Gok Wan’s How to Look Good Naked (which only aired for 2 years, I’m surprised 2006-2008). It was a program my sister, Mum and I used to watch pre-Desperate Housewives and I remember the episode was on somewhere around to Christmas as both my Sister and I got a tube of it for Christmas that year. This was really the opening to my discovery of, oh there’s more expensive makeup than Urban Decay (which at the time was high end of drugstore). And I promptly grew a little collection of YSL makeup (I have a YSL eyeshadow palette with Beauty #TBT written all over it).

I’d think that for about two years this was the only mascara that I used, but then somewhere around the first six months of University, £20 mascara had to be something that I had to let go. When my budget freed up a bit after uni, I discovered Lancome mascaras and since then have hopped about a lot to other brands but I’ve never revisited this old gem since my teen years, so it’s around 10 years since I last tried this out.

This mascara now stands with a price tag of £25.50 in Boots, but Christmas is always a fantastic time of year to stock up on your favourite mascaras as you can often snag a nice little set for the same price as your faves (Lancome do great sets), and in this case the set I selected was £23.50 – so even cheaper than if I’d bought the mascara by itself.

There was something very reminiscent about holding this tube in my hand for the first time in years. The packaging isn’t chrome effect plastic, it is a metal casing so usually feels cool in the hand when you pick it up. It looks sleek and is in the iconic Lancome gold colourway – there’s a few different iterations of this mascara, but I’ve only ever had or tried the classic ‘Volume Effect’ one which features a plain gold logo debossed into the metal.

I had to crack open a new mascara after admitting that all the ones I had open were either past their best, or shit – someone on my last mascara review commented on the post and said life is too short for bad mascara, and they were right, so that encouraged me to throw the crap half used ones in the bin, and this was the one that I was overly excited to crack open next.

The wand on thiis mascara on the surface is nothing special. It’s hair bristles which are pretty short in length, it’s straight up and down in shape with no funky curve or hourglass shape. It has a slight rounded tapered end but on the surface it’s pretty.. unextrordinary.

With a name like Volume effect you might expect that this isn’t maybe an all rounder, but it is. It’s pigment is deep and black, it lengthens, curls, separates and volumises. It’s good from the very first use – which you’ll see below, but as the weeks roll on it gets better in the volume department. I find this lasts really well throughout the day an it doesn’t flake, smudge or budge. Overall so far, it’s pretty much as good as I remember.


First Use

Three Weeks Use

The one thing that’s worth noting about this is that it’s not got the longest shelf life. This reaches it’s peak where it becomes ultra volumising and pretty intense, but a week later it’s becomes very claggy and the bristles start sticking together before they eventually become flat to the wand and the mascara quite literally becomes impossible to use. In terms of how it’s effect changes on the eye it doesn’t separate as much. For a mascara that comes in at £25.50, you’d hope that it lasted a bit longer – somewhere around the two month mark is when it tends to go, if there was ever a mascara that changed as much in formula once opened, it would be this one, but luckily it’s good from the first open.

So far I’d say I’m liking the YSL Faux Cils Volume Effect Mascara, I’m glad it’s one I’ve revisited, but I’m not sure that it’s going to be my forever holy grail. Other favourites are the Too Faced Better than Sex and Tarte Tarteist mascaras which come in at around the £17 mark, so a good £7 cheaper. But I am a little curious about some of the other YSL mascaras, I know that the Baby Doll has it’s fair share of fans as does the newer released ‘The Shock’ mascara one which is slightly cheaper – probably due to it’s plastic tube.

Have you tried this mascara before, or any other YSL mascaras?

If you’d like to read more in my Beauty #TBT series you can do here, I think 2018 I need to do more of them, I’ve got a long list of ideas I just haven’t gotten around to it this year! If you’d like to give this a try for yourself, you can find it here on Boots’ website.

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Helpless Whilst Drying

Email: helplesswhilstdrying@gmail.com



  1. December 14, 2017 / 7:50 am

    I’ve never tried a YSL mascara before – it looks stunning, super black and fluttery but it’s annoying that it dries up quick fast! Definitely agree with the Tarte mascaras – they’re fab! X

  2. December 14, 2017 / 10:43 am

    I am a big fun of YSL mascara. Actually I am surprised to hear that it dries up quickly… I am repurchasing it all the time probably for the last 5 years, and it lasts for about 6-8 months. I’ve tried Chanel, Dior mascaras (don’t remember the precise names) and was very disappointed. Great alternatives to YSL mascaras that I found out are Tom Ford and Estee Lauder mascaras.

    • December 14, 2017 / 10:44 am

      Ahh I try to toss mascaras after three months anyways for hygenine but normally find this goes sticky around the two month mark, maybe it’s something exclusive to this formula, I’ve never tried any others from YSL yet!

      • December 14, 2017 / 10:48 am

        Probably it is the right thing to change mascaras every 3 months, but after these 3 months use I still find that my mascara is in a great condition 😉

  3. December 14, 2017 / 11:06 am

    Gorgeous, sleek packaging! Your eye swatches are beautiful, so good that it performs well first use. Life is too short for bad mascara!

  4. lipstickdenimandcoffee
    December 14, 2017 / 3:06 pm

    I love this look!

  5. December 14, 2017 / 6:38 pm

    ohh wow i am going to try and buy myself one of these.

  6. December 20, 2017 / 11:24 pm

    Oh I keep seeing good reviews on this, but never heard it actually doesn’t have that long of a shelf life… too bad, I’ve always wanted to try it out though, and one day I will!

    Love, Charline | Charline Has a Blog  

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