Benefit Roller Lash mascara review: does it live up to its curling claims?
Our beauty editor's honest Benefit Roller Lash mascara review reveals if the cult curling formula delivers the goods
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The clue's in the name with this retro-styled buy. It promises fun, flirty curl and certainly delivers, with the ability to be built up infinitely with ne'er a clump. But all that lift comes at a price for oily skins or hooded lids - if transfer is your mascara bugbear, you're unlikely to be smudge-free with this.
Beautiful lift and curl
Unique 'hook' wand
Never, ever clumps
Soft flexible feel
Easy to remove
Prone to smudging
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No Benefit Roller Lash mascara review should begin without an acknowledgment that Benefit occupies a highly privileged position in the mascara market.
This brand is known for mascaras, probably above all else, and whenever a new lash formula is introduced into its canon, people pay attention. Naturally, there are huge, er, benefits to being known as the creator of some of the best mascaras on the market but that does mean every single product launch has a lot to live up to.
RRP: $28 / £24.50
Key Features: Conditioning provitamin B5, mini available
From the unabashed 'drag lash' volume of Benefit They're Real to the blackest-black length and lift of Benefit Badgal Bang this brand serves up cult formulas like Netflix does squirm-inducing true crime shows. So how does Roller Lash, a curl-focused formula, measure up? Our beauty editor's Benefit Roller Lash mascara review puts it to the test.
Our in-depth Benefit Roller Lash mascara review
Imagine how shocked and disappointed we'd all be if Benefit released a mascara – or any product – in plain, generic packaging. No chance of that. Roller Lash looks just as we'd hope a mascara from this brand would. A cutesy tube with a pop of pink, a vintage hair roller effect on the lid, and swirly retro lettering. The vibe is very beauty school dropout and who among us can resist a Grease callback? Not me.
Looks aside, that textured lid has a rubbery feel that makes it highly grippable and helps with the application process. Plus, the tube is lightweight and easy to cart around with you, which is always a bonus.
FORMULA AND INGREDIENTS
If I've said it once I've said it one hundred times – mascara formulas really can't differ all that much because of the amount of testing involved in bringing any new ingredient up close and personal with our eyes. Thank god for that.
So, ingredient-wise this has the usual mixture of waxes, polymers, and pigment, plus a few added extras that it's always nice to see such as conditioning provitamin B5. Texture-wise this sits on the 'wetter' end of the spectrum, as many of the best lengthening mascaras do (thicker, dryer formulas are suited to the best volumizing mascaras as they allow you to build up bulk.)
APPLYING AND FIRST IMPRESSIONS
At first glance, Roller Lash looks like it has a fairly typical curved and comb-like wand, similar to a real favorite of mine, Maybelline Lash Sensational. But on closer inspection, I could see the mascara's USP: the 'Hook ‘n' Roll brush' that, as it sounds, has tiny little hooks that grab individual lashes (gently!) and curl them upwards as you apply.
I'm no great follower of specific protocols when it comes to how to apply mascara, but this was undoubtedly the part of my Benefit Roller Lash mascara review that impressed me the most. This is an absolute beauty to apply. It slid onto my lashes with the satisfying 'slip' of throwing on a silk robe after an oil-infused bubble bath. I layered it up again and again without any clumping whatsoever, which is really unusual. And, as promised, it pulled my lashes up to the sky with a lovely natural curve, I could certainly see this being one of the best mascaras for short lashes.
How does it wear?
I found that Roller Lash doesn't wear quite as well as it applies – but we're talking a strong 7 versus a 10 so there's still plenty to like here. Those things are, in no particular order: Excellent lasting power on the curl and lift, true-to-tone pigment that didn't go grey and chalky, it was easy to get off with a couple of swipes of my best micellar water, and – most pleasingly – my lashes felt soft and comfy no matter how much I applied. Roller Lash doesn't dry out, go stiff or flake off, which is all great stuff.
Where this mascara fell down for me was smudging. Probably due to that supremely flexible formula, I experienced some transfer on my upper lids and had to wipe away a little from my lower lashes a couple of times throughout the day too. I report this with the usual caveat that I have hooded eyelids and oily skin which is basically mascara kryptonite. Most mascaras fail my smudge test, but that doesn't mean this would fail yours if transfer isn't usually an issue. It's just that totally foolproof makeup for hooded eyes is so tricky to achieve.
Benefit Roller Lash mascara review: w&h verdict
So what's the verdict of this Benefit Roller Lash mascara review – another killer formula from the brand to beat? In many ways, yes. If you like a relatively natural makeup look and want one of the best mascaras for straight lashes that offers curl and definition as well as easy application and removal, this would be a great option. Plus, the branding is very cute and that's important too.
Who won't this suit? Anyone who wants huge amounts of bulk and volume because you simply won't achieve it with Roller Lash – it's not the point of this mascara. Also, if you are a fellow smudge-sufferer and just want something you can apply and forget about with zero mirror-checking I would probably steer you away from this and toward the best tubing mascaras instead.
As woman&home's Beauty Channel Editor, Fiona Mckim has tried more products than she’s had hot dinners and nothing makes her happier than raving about brilliant finds on womanandhome.com or her instagram grid (@fionamckim if you like hair experiments and cute shih-tzus). Fiona joined woman&home as Assistant Beauty Editor in 2013 under industry legend Jo GB, who taught her everything she needed to know (learn about ingredients and employ extreme cynicism). She has since covered every corner of the industry, from interviewing dermatologists and celebrities to reporting backstage at Fashion Week and judging the w&h Beauty Awards.
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