By Fiona McKim
Isn’t it nice when a brilliant, universally-raved about beauty product also happens to be a total bargain?
It certainly puts a smile on my face to recommend a superior piece of makeup without caveating my hot tip with “it’s not exactly cheap, but…” apologist waffle.
L’Oreal Paris Paradise Mascara, which rings in at a very agreeable £11.99, is one such product. In the interest of honesty I should say this isn’t a new launch, it actually arrived in the UK a year or so ago, to a fair bit of fanfare. At that point it was already a huge seller in the states – and I mean one sold every 60 seconds huge – so of course us beauty editors couldn’t wait to get our hands on the stuff, and let me tell you it did not disappoint.
The pigment is that sort of sooty carbon hue that somehow makes lashes look bulked up as well as inky black. The fluffy, finely spaced bristles deposit just the right amount of formula then drag it up every individual lash, leaving them falsie-level long and fluttery, but without those annoying clumps so typical of mascara this va-va-voom. Best of all, in my opinion, the formula seems nigh-on entirely budge-proof.
It’s a rare mascara that I can apply at 8am and isn’t dancing all over my lids by lunch, but this passed the smudge test and then some. I’ll add that I have oily skin, hooded lids and long lashes that constantly wiggle against my upper lids – surviving that is no mean feat.
So, why am I telling you about this now? Because, sometimes, given the ever-increasing speed of products launching to market and shiny new insta-brands, it’s important to shine a light on something brilliant that’s been knocking around for long enough that you might just have forgotten. Well, it’s still selling one a minute, so has hardly been lost in the mists of time, but regardless, what I’m saying is whether you’ve tried it and loved it or it’s slipped under your radar, I highly recommend a visit to Paradise.
Oh, and did I mention it costs less than a decent bottle of fizz from Waitrose? There’s barely an excuse not to.
As woman&home's Senior Beauty Editor, Fiona Mckim has tried more products than she’s had hot dinners and nothing makes her happier than raving about a brilliant beauty find on womanandhome.com or her instagram grid (@fionamckim if you like hair dye experiments and cute shih-tzus)
Fiona joined woman&home as Assistant Beauty Editor in 2013, working under legend Jo GB, who taught her everything she needed to know about the industry (clue: learn about ingredients and employ extreme cynicism).
In a previous life, Fiona studied journalism back home in bonnie Scotland and honed her skills as a magazine features writer, with a brief and terrifying stint on the showbiz gossip pages of a tabloid newspaper in between. She's a skincare fanatic who can’t resist adding an extra step to her routine if it’s all the rage in Japan, loves fragrance, has fun with makeup and never turns down the chance to test a new hair tool. Basically, she loves it all.
When not slathering herself in self tan or squinting at a tiny ingredients list on a moisturiser, you’ll probably find Fiona enjoying something to do with food - cooking it, eating it, cajoling her friends into trekking across London to try a hyped pop-up in a dirty car park.
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