The 15 best volumising mascaras of 2024 for gravity-defying, clump-free lashes

Our beauty team has tested dozens of formulas to compile this guide to the best volumising mascaras

Collage of three of the best volumising mascaras featured in this guide from Too Faced, Chanel and Maybelline
(Image credit: Too Faced/Chanel/Maybelline/Future)

Want to achieve thicker and perfectly feathered lashes that mimic the effect of falsies? The best volumising mascaras will provide exactly that – without the need for lash glue (or nerves of steel).

Many of the best mascaras focus on volume and claim to deliver a similar level of drama to rival that of the best false eyelashes. However, as Dominic Skinner, Global Senior Artist for M·A·C Cosmetics, notes: "Volumising mascaras represent the holy trinity of mascara needs – thickening, lengthening, and curling lashes. It’s this combination that gives the general appearance of 'volume', whereas other mascaras may only focus on one or two of these attributes."

Thus, in the pursuit of finding the perfect mascara that meets all three of these criteria, we've tested dozens of products from the top brands, to bring you a comprehensive list of the best lash-boosting formulas. Whether you're already a fan of our team's overall favourite – Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara – and want a sign to repurchase, or you're just searching for a new affordable drugstore mascara, here's all the intel you need to buy with confidence... 

The 15 best volumising mascaras, tested by our beauty team

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How we tested the best volumising mascaras

A selection of best volumising mascaras tested including Maybelline, Milk Makeup, Bobbi Brown, MAC, Rare Beauty, and Sculpted by Aimee

A selection of best volumising mascaras we tested

(Image credit: Lucy Abbersteen)

To deduce which formulas are the very best volumising mascaras, we trialled several dozen formulas and mascara brush types from various brands across all price points, drawing on our years of beauty testing experience. To put them through their paces, our testers wore these formulas on numerous occasions. To get top marks, the mascara had to tick several of our beauty boxes. The following factors were all taken into consideration by woman&home's beauty testers. 

  • Packaging
  • Consistency and wet/dryness of formula
  • Inclusion of lash-loving ingredients (like fatty acids and vitamin E)
  • Brush shape, size and material
  • Ease of application
  • Whether it clumped, flaked or smudged
  • How the results looked immediately after applying
  • How well it lasted 
  • Colours available
  • Price

How to choose the best volumising mascara for you

To help you make the right decision, there are a couple of factors to take into account when choosing the best volumising mascara for you. Some of the industry's leading makeup experts have broken these down below. 

  • Your natural lashes: “Think about your natural lashes and what you would like to add to them,” says Aimee Connolly, makeup artist and founder of Sculpted by Aimee. “If you have naturally straight lashes, look for a mascara that adds volume and curl. If you have a hooded eye shape, consider a waterproof formula so that it won't easily transfer onto your eyelids. And if you have thin lashes, opt for a lightweight formula that isn't too wet to avoid weighing them down.” 
  • The wand itself: “What you want to look [at] is the wand,” says Skinner. “A comb is going to create a fine, separated lash. A densely compact brush will help add length. However, for volume, a rubber style brush will drop a generous amount of mascara to the lash base as it spreads it through the length of your lash while keeping everything separated.” This results in a dramatic, chunky look that perfectly complements full glam faces and moodier spring makeup looks alike. 

How to apply the best volumising mascaras

“When applying mascara, think about how you add volume to your hair – it’s all about the root,” says Skinner. “So, start by building up the product in the root of your lashes before drawing the mascara through to the tips, in an upward motion. A little side-to-side, zig-zag wiggle will give a "back comb" effect to help support the fuller lash look you want."

“Don’t forget your bottom lashes,” Connolly adds. “if you add a lot of volume to your top lashes, it's a good idea to balance the eyes by applying a light layer to the bottom lashes, too.” 

Emma Stoddart

Emma Stoddart is a freelance beauty journalist and self-confessed skincare aficionado with over five years’ industry experience. Emma has worked for some of the UK’s top women’s titles including Net-A-Porter, Stylist and Grazia. Her experience spans online and print as well as producing editorial shoots with some of the industry’s biggest artists, including Val Garland. Asides from working with them behind the scenes, she’s also had the chance to interview the likes of Patrick Ta, Pat McGrath, and Sam McKnight for all their insider tips and tricks.

With contributions from