March 9, 2016

BEAUTY: Ulta Birthday Gift 2016

Just like our old pal Sephora, beauty hotspot Ulta loves to dish out annual birthday freebies. Honestly, I'm usually much less excited about Ulta's birthday offerings than I am about Sephora's, which is exactly the inverse of how I feel about each store in general. It's a confusing time. This year, though, Ulta is kinda going all in and giving us a deluxe sample-sized tube of Benefit Roller Lash.

Isn't she lovely?

If this was, like, a year ago, I probably would've freaked out over this gift because I was very much in love with Benefit mascaras, and very much averse to shelling out the $20+ they wanted for them. In that time, I haven't lost love for Benefit, but rather gained the knowledge that my kinda-long-but-very-straight lashes need, nay deserve, a waterproof formula, which is able to keep a curl all day and use my lash length for something more useful than poking me in the eye over and over again.

The thing is, though, Benefit actually claims that Roller Lash works without a lash curler, and can, in fact, curl your lashes all on its own, lifting them up and holding for 12 hours. This is all due to the "Hook 'n' Roll" brush, which features "tiny custom-designed hooks to catch, lift and curl even short and straight lashes," according to Benefit. Try not to think of tiny hooks going into your eyes, okay?

They also say that it contains conditioning ingredients (B5 and serine), is easy to remove and has the ability to "super-curl," which sounds to me like the lead character in a beauty-themed hero movie, and I'd like one ticket, please.

To see how it compared to my usual lash curling routine, I applied 2 coats of Roller Lash,
without curling my eyelashes either before or after:
Top Row: bare lashes  //  Bottom Row: 2 coats of Benefit Roller Lash mascara

Up close, you can see that this is a somewhat clumpy formula, which I actually don't mind. It definitely gave my lashes more curl than they have with a regular mascara sans lash curler. I pretty much always curl my lashes first, so to see any root lifting from just the wand alone is pretty remarkable to me.

The mascara is very black and seems a bit lengthening perhaps, but in a negligible amount. The big draw here is the curling effect, which I agree is impressive, but ultimately I'd just rather use an eyelash curler (I love my Japonesque Power Curl) and a cheaper mascara. I get better results from my current favorite drugstore formula, and the difference in price could legitimately buy me a fancy Italian dinner. Yes to linguine, no to expensive mascaras.

Okay, just don't call me 'birthday curl' again.

I'll definitely use this tube up, but I won't purchase the full size. If you can visit an Ulta, make sure to ask about Ultamate Rewards and how you can get a free birthday gift when your big day rolls around!

Have you tried Roller Lash? What's your favorite high end or drugstore mascara? Please entertain me with tales of your best birthday freebies.


  1. Dude, I need more of your mascara knowledge! I feel my average length lashes do not curl at all, even with my curler, so most times the shorter lashes are close to poking my eye and and the longer top lashes rest upon my lower lashes, transferring mascara to my lower lashline in patches through out the day. Would using waterproof prevents this?

    1. I think waterproof mascara would definitely improve/prevent the transfer issue! That said, not all waterproof formulas are created equal. Some waterproof mascaras I've tried leave flakes and smudges under my eyes. I think formulas work differently for different people, but I've been using and loving L'oreal Voluminous False Fiber Lashes in the waterproof formula. No smudging, no flaking, no running. Second, a good eyelash curler should be curling your lashes! I love my Japonesque one (linked in the post) and have had the same one for years because it lasts (just need to change the pads - which the brand mails you for free when requested!). I've never found a drugstore one that I like as much, but see what works for you because, again, they're not all created equal, plus everyone's eye shape and lashes are different.

      My routine is: curl lashes as close to the base as possible (making sure every lash is in the curler), hold for like 10-15 seconds, apply several coats of mascara, let dry FULLY, and lightly curl again carefully for like 3 seconds just to spruce them up. With the right curler and mascara they stay standing at attention all day!

    2. Thanks, lady! I do appreciate it!

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