The Best Drugstore Mascaras — For Every Need

Mascara is one of the major workhorses in our makeup routine — and there is truly a tube out there for everyone. Whether you're a fan of major volume or are looking for a formula that will leave you completely clump-free, a gal can be pretty particular about what she coats her lashes with. But what if you're looking to save some cash in the mascara department? Are there formulas that won't totally break your bank?
Luckily, the answer is a resounding "hell, yes." Ahead, we've rounded up the top mascaras — for just about every need. Click through and find your soulmate in a tube. Your lashes will thank you.
Advertisement
You've never seen beauty quite like this before. Check out our Beauty Innovator Awards for the smartest, funkiest, most fresh to death products of the year.
1 of 30
Lengthening
Revlon’s new lengthening mascara has a fiber formula that helps to extend each lash as you glide through them with the brush, yet that exact formula also makes it easy to build on said lashes. The plush blush also helps with volume for super flirty, long lashes.

Revlon Super Length Mascara, $8.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
2 of 30
No 7's brush has three different sides — to make sure every single lash gets some loving.
3 of 30
This brand-new dual mascara kit from Physicians Formula is the easiest way to apply false lashes, ever. The set comes with a black lengthening mascara, as well as an “extensions” wand, which is a spoolie for applying false-lash fibers. All you have to do is apply a swipe of black mascara, apply a swipe of your extensions fibers, and then seal it all in with the black mascara. That’s it — and you'll have lashes that look like falsies. Plus, you'll have saved all that time it takes to glue on a strip.

Fun fact: This formula won over one of our editors in a big way.

Physicians Formula Eye Booster Instant Doll Lash Extension Kit, $14.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
4 of 30
L'Oréal's Voluminous Carbon Black mascara is an editor and consumer favorite for a reason: It seriously plumps lashes. The fat brush has hundreds of tiny bristles that grab every hair and coat it with a volumizing formula that layers easily without veering into clumpy or crunchy territories.

What's more, this also just so happens to be one of the mascaras you find most often in celebrity makeup artists' kits.

L'Oréal Voluminous Carbon Black Mascara, $7.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
Advertisement
5 of 30
Demi Lovato’s first makeup line in collaboration with New York Color is certainly a good one – but one of our favorite products is the Lovatics mascara, due to it’s lengthening skills. With a dual-fiber brush and a formula that has both beeswax and carnauba wax to help with volume and length, this mascara is a steal.

Lovatics by Demi Mascara, $4.47, available at Walmart.
6 of 30
Avon's Mega Effects mascara has a unique brush that helps separate each and every lash. The bristles coat and stretch your lashes, making this a clear winner in the lengthening department.
7 of 30
This formula promises to do give your lashes the same treatment that a stop-them-in-your-tracks pair of Loubs does to your legs.

Maybelline Lash Stiletto Ultimate Length Mascara, $8.99, available at Ulta.
8 of 30
The name says it all. Almay's Get Up & Grow not only lengthens, but its conditioning formula helps strengthen your lashes over time. Not too shabby.
9 of 30
Think you can't get much for a dollar? E.L.F.'s mascara will give you long lashes for just a buck.
Advertisement
10 of 30
Waterproof
Maybelline's The Rocket mascara is a classic for a reason. Its densely packed plastic bristles make it super-easy to coat every single lash with a layer of its volumizing formula. Add a little waterproof action into the mix, and your mascara won't be going anywhere — whether you're sweating it up at the gym or trudging through a rainstorm.

Maybelline Volum'Express The Rocket Waterproof Mascara, $7.49, available at Ulta Beauty.
11 of 30
CoverGirl's original Lashblast Volume mascara is one of our favorites. But when we need our makeup to last all day (sans raccoon eyes), we always reach for the waterproof version.

COVERGIRL Lashblast Volume Mascara, $8.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
12 of 30
Want to wear mascara to the gym? This one won't run down your face after a 45-minute sweat session.
13 of 30
Clump-Stopping
There's a reason this tube is a favorite among quite a few of our beauty editors. Coat after coat, you'll never see a single clump.
14 of 30
The secret of L'Oréal Voluminous Butterfly is the butterfly-wing-shaped wand. It combs through each lash for a perfectly even application.
15 of 30
All hail Iman and her brand's Volumize Mascara. The bristles lift, separate, and never leave lashes stuck together.
16 of 30
Volumizing
Any mascara with the name Doll Eye has got to give your lashes a serious volume boost, right? And that's just what Nyx's formula does — at a very pretty price.
17 of 30
The thin, cone-shaped brush on this volumizing mascara makes it easy to coat every single lash. Yes, we mean every lash, from the hard-to-reach inner corners to the teeny bottom lashes.

Essence Forbidden Volume Mascara, $4.49, available at Ulta Beauty.
18 of 30
Those of you who dig clumpy lashes will love Maybelline's Colossal Spider Effect mascara. The unique plastic-bristle brush combs through lashes and deposits hefty amounts of product, which immediately beefs up limp hairs.

Maybelline The Colossal Spider Effect Mascara, $6.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
19 of 30
This lash duo from Honest Beauty helps to create both length and volume at the same time. First, the primer, protects and nourishes the lashes while also intensifying the color. Then, the mascara is able to be applied extra-smooth to appropriately lift and amplify each and every lash.

Honest Beauty Truly Lush Mascara + Lash Primer, $22, available at Honest Beauty.
20 of 30
Circa Beauty’s Absolute Lash Icon Mascara lives up to it’s name – the oversized, bulbous brush helps to mold each lash for extra volume. Plus, the formula has avocado oil in it, enriching the lashes so they won’t clump as you aspire to maximum lash height.

Circa Beauty Absolute Lash Icon Mascara, $12, available at Walgreens.
21 of 30
Consider this mascara a Wonderbra for your lashes. It lifts, separates, and makes every individual lash look bigger.
22 of 30
Sure, the thick brush will give you mega-volume. But Organic Wear's gentle formula is especially clutch if you've got sensitive eyes.
23 of 30
For those of us who adore wet mascaras that are almost too goopy on the wand, this is stuff of magic. Whether you have long or short lashes, this not only volumizes them, but also makes them look darker.

Maybelline Volum' Express The Falsies Mascara, $6.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
24 of 30
Thickening
Haven't tried Great Lash yet? You're missing out. There's a reason this lash-bulking formula is a favorite among pros.

Pro tip: To harness the tried-and-true formula with an added bonus, try the Lots of Lashes version — it has a fatter brush!
25 of 30
CoverGirl's newest launch is designed with every lash type in mind — but we love it best when going for thickness, thanks to the unique brush shape. The round tip allows the user to get incredibly close to the root of lashes, allowing for more more density.

CoverGirl So Lashy blast Pro Waterproof Mascara, $8.99, available at Target.
26 of 30
Neutrogena's Healthy Volume is made with a touch of olive oil to moisturize your lashes. The result? A thick, gorgeous set all through winter.
27 of 30
This fluffy brush creates fluttering lashes that won't sag or fall throughout the day. Plus, the formula can be layered for serious drama.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara, $8.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
28 of 30
Conditioning
This mascara does such a stellar job of separating and defining lashes, that we would be happy if that were its only trick. But it also contains conditioners geared to help lashes grow, too.

Kiko Milano 30 Days Extension Daily Treatment Mascara, $12, available at Kiko Milano.
29 of 30
Like this post? There's more. Get tons of beauty tips, tutorials, and news on the Refinery29 Beauty Facebook page. Like us on Facebook — we'll see you there!
30 of 30