We Tried The $11 Drugstore Mascara TikTok Is Obsessed With

Photographed by Lara Callahan.
Feta cheese isn’t the only thing going viral on TikTok lately: The hit-making social media platform also has makeup lovers scrambling to get their hands on Maybelline’s newest mascara, Lash Sensational Sky High.
The $11 tube started blowing up after the brand partnered with beauty content creators, including Alaskan TikToker Jess Eid, to post their test drives. After swiping on the formula, which comes in both waterproof and washable finishes, Eid's lashes suddenly extended well above her eyelid crease for a look best summarized by the TikToker's own words: “Whaaaat!?” There are now hundreds of other whoa-worthy videos, and the #skyhighmascara hashtag has been viewed 123 million times and counting.
Sky High has been just as buzzy IRL, too: Since its launch in November, the drugstore mascara has sold out online at Ulta Beauty four times. But does it live up to the hype? Fortunately, I managed to snag a tube to test it out myself.
The first thing I noticed was the mascara's skinny, bendy brush, which made it easy to get right to the roots of my lashes. That's a key feature, according to Grace Lee, Maybelline's lead makeup artist in Canada. “The tapered part of the brush actually gives you a lot of product and gets in right at the inner and outer corners of your eyes,” she says. “Those little lashes are really important to grab because that’s what makes your eyes look bigger.” Lee recommends holding the wand vertically to hit your roots and corners with the smaller end to start, then using the wide part of the brush to comb through to the ends.
When I followed Lee's advice, the mascara made my lashes look extra long and really did lift them straight up towards my brows, but what shocked me was how clean and uniform each individual lash looked. A big factor behind those results is the mascara’s fiber formula, which means it has teeny bits of rayon mixed in to help bulk up lashes. While you can find a variety of fiber mascaras at the drugstore, this one has bamboo extract to help nourish the hairs.
Also worth noting: Usually with a fiber mascara, I can see all the little bits hanging off my lashes. But the Sky High made each lash longer and thicker while still looking tidy from root to tip, even when I loaded up on coats. I was also happy to find that it was smudge-proof from morning to night.
That staying power helps lashes hold a curl, which is one of Lee’s favorite aspects. “I’m Asian with naturally very straight eyelashes and normally I would re-curl my lashes midday if I wanted them to stay upright looking, but I haven’t had the need to do that with this mascara,” she says.
As for where to snag Sky High when it's inevitably sold out yet again? Lee’s friends have all been texting her to ask, too. Her advice is to check larger grocery store chains in your area. If you strike out, she recommends the brand’s Falsies Lash Lift — but if you’re after who-needs-extensions-anymore results that won’t kill your credit card, Sky High is worth the hunt.
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