I wish I could take credit for coming up with the term “mascara lesbian.” It’s truly one of my deepest regrets in life.
Alas, I was coined a mascara lesbian by a fabulous, funny, makeup-loving gay man about six years ago. We were all sitting at a pretentious speak-easy style bar, sucking back $20 cocktails even though we were all majorly in debt (what is your 20s except the wild juxtaposition of being broke and living large at the same time? Of feeling massively insecure and overly-confident at the same time? What is your 20s except being the exact embodiment of a wild juxtaposition?).
“I’m definitely a lipstick lesbian,” My friend Annette proclaimed. I looked at her for a thoughtful moment. With her maroon-colored Tom Ford lipstick, she was most definitely a lipstick lesbian.
And while I’ve been known to rock a maroon lippy in my day, I knew I wasn’t a lipstick lesbian. I knew I was a lesbian affiliated with some sort of makeup, but lipstick didn’t feel right. It never had. I lacked an innate passion for the product.
“I want to be a lipstick lesbian, but it just feels off to me,” I confessed with the deep and tortured spirit of an artist not knowing what to name her latest masterpiece.
“Oh, girl. You’re a mascara lesbian!” Justin (the makeup-loving gay man) purred, flirtatiously.
“OH. MY. GOD,” I shouted.
“What?” Justin looked scared as if my “OH. MY. GOD.” reaction was because there was a massive spider on his shoulder or something.
“THAT’S PERFECT,” I said, dropping into my lower register. I always drop into my lower register when I’m moved by something. It feels more guttural — more visceral. (I know; I hate me too).
“Oh, good. You scared me! I thought there was a bug on me or something,” he said as a soft wave of relief washed across his pore-less skin.
From that moment on I ~always~ referred to myself as a mascara lesbian.
I’m obsessed with lashes, like no human being you’ve ever encountered. Throughout my life, I’ve been openly insecure about a bevy of my physical and intellectual imperfections, but I’ve always been outrageously cocky about my lashes. And having eyelash confidence is as powerful as having nipple confidence. You move through the world like Venus flytraps are framing the windows to your soul.
So let me help you get the lashes of your dreams. Allow me to be the bluntest bitch on the block: I am a zero bullshit mascara and eyelash connoisseur. We are very rare and we are mostly (gay) men.
I’ve tried everything under the sun in hopes to let my lashes live up to the potential I know they’re capable of. I invest in my eyelashes emotionally, physically, and financially. Here is the one and only mascara lesbian guide to LASHES, LEZZIES!
1. RULE NUMBER ONE: JUST SAY NO TO LASH EXTENSIONS
If you think I’m going to tell you to get eyelash extensions, you’ve got another thing coming. I’ve been down the dark road of lash extensions and it always ends in spoiled self-esteem, wasted time, wasted money, and most jarringly: a bald lash-line. I know this is controversial, but I’ll shout this from the rooftops: Eyelash extensions ruin your natural lashes. And eventually, you’ll go and see your lash girl at the lash salon in Gramercy or wherever, and she won’t be able to adhere lashes onto your precious lids because you have no eyelashes of your own to stick the falsies onto. It’s happened to me. It’s happened to my mother. It’s happened to my best friend Dayna. And when you’re used to long, thick fluttery fake lashes and are then forced to take a “break” from them, you’ll feel really bizarre moving through the world with no lashes at all. That is a sensation I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. (Okay, maybe #45).
Also, eyelash extensions are so damn time-consuming! You have to sit in a stale room twice a month for hours with your eyes glued shut! We’ve got a war to fight, honey. We don’t have time to waste, okay? Step one is to never entertain the idea of lash extensions ever again. If you love the aesthetic of fake lashes, get strip lashes from the drug store and use them for special occasions.
Although with my help, your natural lashes will look so fierce you won’t ever lust after a faux lash again!
2. Eyelash Serums WORK! They really do! I swear to The Indigo Girls!
Those eyelash growth serums you think are too good to be true? Some of them are, but a lot of them *actually* work wonders. In fact, they work a little too well. My eyelashes sometimes go past my eyebrows and can border on creepy long (but if I’m real, that’s the kind of creepy I strive to be. Purr). My favorite serum is “Li Lash” because it’s never once irritated my eyes. I also like Latisse (which is super easy to get a prescription for), NueLash, and Revita Lash. I can promise you, those all are legit brands and truly have a reputation for working on *most* people.
3. Better Than Sex Mascara Might Be Better Than Sex, Herself.
My holy grail mascara for the last decade has been “Better Than Sex Mascara” by the brand Two-Faced. It’s got a nice fat brush and is extremely dramatic. In fact, I would say it was my favorite lash product of all time, but I recently discovered something even more intense than “Better Than Sex.”
4. KAT VON D GO BIG OR GO HOME IS PERFECT FOR GLAM HOMOS!
I have friends who detest this mascara, but if you want to live the mascara lesbian life, you need a mind of your own. Thinking for yourself is a big part of being a real mascara lesbian. I think this (Kat Von D “Go Big Or Go Home”) is the best mascara currently on the market. It is wildly, wildly intense, so I wouldn’t recommend it to beginners, but seasoned mascara lesbians who have bear a steady hand in which to apply their eye makeup will love this product. It’s wet. It’s thick. It’s dramatic. It makes a statement like me — even better, like you. Meow!
5. Want brittle, stressed out lashes? Use waterproof mascara!
Cry a lot? A fan of swimming? Me too! But I would rather weep mascara tears and poison the local pool with my runny eye-makeup than wear waterproof mascara. Waterproof mascara is how the other half lives, not us.
So, kittens, whatever you do, you must promise me to never wear waterproof mascara. While I get the temptation to use waterproof mascara, I do not recommend it at all. Ever. Removing it takes such a toll on your precious lashes! You will have to tug on those bad boys in order to properly remove your eye makeup at the end of the night. Not only is tugging around the delicate skin of the eyes a definite fuck no, but tugging at your lashes will make them feel stressed out, unwanted, and eventually, they’ll feel so bad about themselves due to your incessant abuse that they’ll grow brittle and fragile.
A brittle fragile lash does not a mascara lesbian make. Write that in lipstick across your bathroom mirror (because mascara lesbians aren’t sensitive about wasting lipstick. Just mascara and maybe eyeliner).
6. LAYER that shit!
If you want really thick, Bambi-like eyelashes, you cannot expect to achieve that goal in one delicate sweep. I don’t care what the mascara ads tell you; they are lying to you. (All beauty ads lie to you, you know that.) You have to layer your mascara in order to look like a heavy-eyed mascara dyke. This is why I like wet formulas like Better Than Sex and Go Big Or Go Home — you can just keep layering and layering and layering the product on your lashes without it looking flaky or clumpy. In fact, I usually layer both products on my lashes. They work great in tandem.
You do, however, need to do about six strokes, take a fifteen-minute break so the formula dries, and then add another six to ten strokes. And always reapply in the evening. If this is too much work for you, I have news: you are not a mascara lesbian. And that’s okay. I’ll help you figure out what kind of lesbian you are, if you’re feeling lost in the sea of opressive labels. After all, what else is a digital lesbian big sister for?!
7. CURL, if your lashes identify as heterosexual.
Got straight lashes? Curl them queer. It’s like reverse conversion therapy, but for your eyes! By the time you’re done, they will be so gay and curly and alive that they’ll definitely get hit on by your eyebrows (which are total dykes. I mean come on. Is anything more dyke-y than an eyebrow?)
8. Use an oil pre-cleanser instead of “eye makeup remover.”
Like I mentioned earlier, you don’t want to be tugging on your lashes. You also don’t want to put toxic chemicals on them. Skip the eye makeup remover and wash your face in oil. Gently rub the eye area with that gorgeously greasy cleanser. Rinse off with cold water (that will de-puff your eyes as an added benefit). You might have some mascara residue resting beneath your eyes, but a little residue never killed anyone, did it? Toxic chemicals? They slaughter beautiful lashes every minute of every day.
(Click here for my favorite oil-based pre-cleanser).
9. Never wear brown mascara.
Brown mascara is for the weak. You need the darkest, glossiest, deepest, shade of black. Or, if you want to be really kinky, you have my permission to dabble with a midnight blue or a violet purple.