Here’s How To Make Your Own Mascara

A few weeks ago, I regaled you with my own personal odyssey: my search for a mascara to which I’m not allergic. Throughout this test of my very moral fiber, my patience was tried, my will nearly broken — and ultimately, I still have not found a brand of lash coating that doesn’t make me look like someone farted in my eye while I was asleep.

But! I’m not deterred, and it turned out that writing my story was the best thing I could have done, because you, readers, you beautiful, gentle souls, you gave me some suggestions about what to try so as to not further anger my delicate soul-windows. The first suggestion I decided to take was one that came from reader Abbie (thanks Abbie!), who offered up a recipe for a DIY version.

Abbie wrote that on her own eyes, she uses a mixture of one activated charcoal tablet, some beeswax and some coconut oil. Since I’m lazy, I found a recipe that’s similar but that manages to use one less ingredient: it just calls for activated charcoal, and aloe vera.

So! To get started, here’s what you need:

1. An old tube of mascara that you don’t use anymore
2. Activated charcoal capsules
3. Aloe Vera gel
4. Some kind of cup to mix them in (I used a shot glass, because do I really need that anymore? Sadly, no.)
5. A spoon
6. Cold Cream (optional)

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    • edi

      To clean the wand more easily you could just soak it in rubbing alcohol and wipe it off.

    • jen

      “…someone farted in my eye while I was asleep.”

      That hit my funny bone super hard for some reason. Probably because I have the sense of humor of a 12-year-old boy.

      • Jessica Pauline Ogilvie

        I too am a 12-year-old boy when it comes to fart jokes. Obviously.

    • Nessy

      Do you think the itching could be because you used an old eyeshadow wand? I know that you cleaned it thoroughly with cold creme, but perhaps edi’s suggestion of rubbing alcohol would make a difference (killing residual bacteria and what not). You could also try using a cheap eyebrow comb dipped in the mixture and give it another go. It’s not quite the same, but it will coat the lashes.

      • Jessica Pauline Ogilvie

        I suspect that the itching was because of preservatives in the aloe vera gel. I’m going to try being less lazy and using Abbie’s recipe with a whopping three ingredients. Although cleaning with rubbing alcohol is still probably a good idea!

    • Niki

      The aloe vera gel sounds like its to blame. Generally any kind of essential oil is going to be irritating to the eyes, and aloe vera is full of those oils. For eyes, its best to stick with castor oil for the eye area – and it has the extra effect of increasing lash and brow growth!

      Not to mention, without some type of binding agent in your formula, the aloe gel is going to end up migrating from lash to eye. Regular mascaras are generally formulated with some kind of polymer, either synthetic or natural-based to help it stick to the lash.

    • Zooey

      Honestly just go to cvs or dwayne reed or whatever and get covergirl lash blast length, that’s the one in the yellow bottle. nothing else. ever. it’s perfect. I’m irritated by every other mascara under the sun, but this one somehow has the magical properties of not flaking off or itching or hurting or anything else. seriously, just get it.

    • Abbie

      I’ve never tried the aloe vera recipe, but now I’m intrigued. I’m also tempted to try this one from etsy (although I’m unsure about the whole grapefruit seed extract):

    • Your Mom

      Watch your mouth girl! Was it really necessary to curse THAT much while explaining a process that should be light hearted and fun? Seriously, I’m from NJ and curse a ton- but not on blogs or forums.

    • renee

      if i ever see your name, i will def not look at what you have to say. you curse to much and for what, seems like it’s junk anyways. stay off the web with a mouth like that.

      • Lin

        I got to part 2 and STOPPED, do you realize young girls are reading this to save money??? I wanted to send this to my niece….NOT!!!! Why would a woman need to talk like that while trying to “teach”??? I agree with Renee, you need to stay off the Web. Next time if your on, remember there are Christian womaen, and young girls reading your posts!!! (doubting that you care)

      • Amanda

        If parents are concerned about
        their kids being exposed to adult language and content, then they
        should be monitoring their children’s internet usage, no? One of the tabs of this site is called “Sex & Dating” – therefore it’s an adult-oriented site. You shouldn’t
        get them interested in makeup too young anyway or give them free reign
        of the internet. But yes, I agree all that swearing wasn’t totally
        necessary, especially since this site is part of a network that includes a site for girls.

    • Mrs K

      I cannot believe that language was allowed in a so called informational article. Grow up.

    • GoddessdotMariaatGmaildotCom

      Tee-hee! I actually enjoyed the casual, fun tone of the writing, including fart jokes and “curse” words. Ladies, to look more attractive: smile! It’s free, usually can be removed without cold cream, and is almost never runs out.

      Author, maybe you can do spot tests on your arm to see what products make your eyelids unhappy – you could actually be allergic to aloe, too. Good luck!

    • MoMo

      Whats with all the cursing? I dont think it was necessary and it got to the point of being annoying. why do you write like that?

    • vicki

      So you have a recipe and changed it. Never change ANY recipe until you have tried it’s original. It CAN make a difference! I also was offended by your language. Not SHOCKED – which seems to have been your goal – just offended. You wrote like a young person trying to give validity to their writing by using ‘grown up’ words. Put the potty mouth away when trying to teach. I won’t be sharing this with my granddaughter because of the language.

    • Ms. Pants

      The fuck? Did someone post this link on the Uppity Police website or something? What’s with all the pearl-clutching at the fuckword?

      Newsflash: if you’re offended by swear words, the internet is not for you.

      (Also–instead of cleaning old mascara wands, just do a pass-through in Sephora and grab a couple of the testers.)

      • Abbie

        Yeah, I mean for real….. Where did all these grandmothers fall out of the woodwork from. Blah blah blah cursing! Keep dropping the F bomb, Jessica, it wouldn’t be The Gloss without it!

    • Bo

      Just an FYI: If your intent is to write with credibility and authority on any subject, it would behoove you to nix the superlatives and expletives. You have the potential. Just adopt the language ;-)

    • Lisa

      I too would have recommended this link, except for the foul language. Sad that you feel it is necessary to get your point across. Especially since you don’t appear to be a teenage girl full of angst.

    • Emma

      really not that much swearing: 2 s, 1 f, 1 bs. you hear more walking down the street, grow a pair people!

      • Mrs K

        Emma, some of us are just not interested in growing a pair. And FYI….. your count is off.

    • girl

      This woman really is an ignorant sad commentary for what attempts to pass as ‘acceptable writing’. She can’t even take decent photographs much less write.

    • Jenni

      I too enjoyed the fart joke but you lost me with the rest of your awkward, superfluous swearing. And I am one that even enjoys a well-placed f-bomb, when appropiate, such as..

      “maybe if you clean that shithole of a bathroom and remove the allergens, your eye wouldn’t swell up like a fucking leper’s.”

      See…cogent and well-utilized.

    • C

      I swear like I sailor with Tourettes, and I was a bit put off by the choice of wording. In a make-up article? Ranting about ANYthing maybe, but not for make-up. The jokes and writing style are good, perhaps replacing the bombs with “cruddy” or “crapola” or “TOTAL BS!” wont offend, or even “*****” and leave it to the readers imagination. As far as the rest of it, yes I agree that the original recipe should be tried first, and also, as far as cleaning an old wand goes, well mineral oil works great for getting it off your face, maybe thats an option, although I agree with the alcohol for bacteria. Overall I liked the article.

    • Lassie

      Your filthy grunting mouth put me right off a fun article. And your pictures really stink!

    • Suzi

      I was hoping for a new idea that may work better than what I have.
      My question is: Do you kiss your mother with that mouth?

    • Rhiannon

      Thank you for this post! I just bought this all natural mascara called 100% Pure. I think I’ll try your recipe along with adding a few ingrediants of the 100% Pure, like Blackberries, honey and rice powder. I really like the 100% Pure, but I’d much rather make my own because it’s kind of pricy.

    • Mittle

      Although you should tone down the swearing (your audience is diverse), and maybe put a little more effort into your photos, the post was good. I am always looking for new beauty tips, and although I will probably never go through the effort of this, It is a good tip. For the rest of the comments about your swearing… this isn’t the 50′s, 60′s or hell even the 90s. The “F” word is equal to your “shit” or “crap” those words I got my ass beat for as a child, now we giggle at it. Not saying embrace it, but don’t chastise the girl.

    • Ash

      What in the goddamned hell? Fuck these people. Swear as much as you fucking want, sweetie pie! Love your style.

    • Dora

      I’m sorry. Loved the article, but like many others think that there was too much foul language. ( have I showed my age here?)
      Kids read this stuff and yes, they’ve heard this before, hopefully not at home, but let’s let them wait a little longer before they start swearing.
      I’ve always thought that people who swear, do so because they need some help with their vocabulary.
      OK, so I’m an old fart with old ideas :-) but civil language helps to breed civil people.

    • Lee

      So I get that everyone is offended by the language but does anyone have anything to say about the product/recipe she used?

      FYI, yeah, the world is filled with unpleasant things. Perhaps rather than bring more attention to it by endless “you have a potty mouth so you are worthless and you can’t write” comments, you should just not read her stuff. You know, like turning off the TV when you don’t like the content or not spending your money with a company you don’t like? I don’t know who is more uncivilized, the person who used some profanity or the word police…

    • Lee

      And you all are offended by the language, what about all the sex related articles/advertising that surrounds this post. “Five Good Reasons Not to Fake Your Orgasms”? “Don’t Make These Common Sex Mistakes”? You’re letting 12 year old girls on a site that is obviously saturated with sexual content.

      I guess it’s OK to encourage young women to not fake their orgasms and to let them know what sex mistakes to make as long as you don’t say fuck too often…

      Nice prioritizing…

    • Tamme

      Curious, how would you make the color blue?

    • Elaine

      I’m honestly more shocked by the fact that others are shocked by the usage of swear words on the internet. Seriously? Did you all time-travel from from a Puritan village? “Stay off the internet!” “A woman shouldn’t talk like this!” “Think about the kids!” Put down your pitchforks and get the hell over yourselves.

      And I really hate to break it to you, but if you really think that kids over the age of 7 are completely ignorant of curse words, think again. Unless you keep them home-schooled in a cardboard box, THEY KNOW.

      Keep up the funny articles Jessica; sailor mouth and all. (But maybe consider investing in a better camera. :)

    • WitchHazel

      I don’t think WNW is a shit brand, I just think they have some shit products (like their mascaras, of which I’ve tried every kind that have). On the other hand their eye shadows are comparable to higher end brands in terms of pigmentation and blendability. Anyway, good luck finding something that works for you.

    • Terry

      I WAS put off by the fowl language. I’m willing to try the recipe though. Maybe the advertisements are there because those other sites are programed to respond to this language. I know they have that capability, I’ve seen it elsewhere. Even if the recipe is great, the language was unnecessary.

    • Terry

      I WAS put off by the fowl language. I’m willing to try the recipe though. Maybe the advertisements are there because those other sites are programed to respond to this language. I know they have that capability, I’ve seen it elsewhere. Even if the recipe is great, the language was unnecessary.

    • Terry

      I WAS put off by the fowl language. I’m willing to try the recipe though. Maybe the advertisements are there because those other sites are programed to respond to this language. I know they have that capability, I’ve seen it elsewhere. Even if the recipe is great, the language was unnecessary.