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Made Up: Introducing the Ultimate Hen Do Mascara

Introducing Made Up, our Beauty & Wellness Editor's new column, where she discovers double-ended mascaras are back, and shares her skincare picks for the month ahead

Melanie Macleod, beauty & wellness editor, new column, with makeup products and a photo of her

Melanie Macleod, beauty & wellness editor, new column, with makeup products and a photo of her

I don't think I've batted an eyelid at a double ended mascara since 2002, when I used to coat my year eight eyes in those mascaras that had a white lash extender on one end, and a black lacquer on the other.

But all that has changed with the launch of L'Oreal Paris’ Pro XXL Lift Mascara, £12.99 from Boots. 

In recent years, the low-key lash look has reigned, with mascaras such as Glossier's Lash Slick, £16, ruling the roost when it comes to laid back, yet still defined lashes, but thanks to L'Oreal's latest drop, maxed out lashes are back – and if you've got an ultra-glam hen do on the horizon, this is the mascara you need in your makeup bag.

READ MORE: The Best Waterproof Mascaras for Your Wedding & Honeymoon

It’s a double-ended brush, but not as you know it. The same mascara formula is in each end, but it’s the brush itself that’s different, with one being a crescent moon shape to hug your lashes, and the other a telescope shape to lengthen.

Woman holding the L'Oreal Pro Lift mascara

The two different brushes come together to deliver an impressive lift to my lashes, only seen before after an in-salon lash lift - and I’m not alone in my love of the mascara; 79% of people who tried it said they’d choose it over a professional salon lash lift. High praise indeed. 

Brush one volumises the lashes, while brush two is responsible for lifting and curling for ultra-defined eyes, without an hour spent in a salon chair having a long lash lift. 

READ MORE: Our Favourite False Lashes 

Truth be told, when the double-ended wand first dropped onto my desk, I was sceptical over whether I could be bothered with the faff of what is essentially applying two mascaras every day. To be totally transparent, using two wands does add time to my getting ready routine, but only about 30 seconds - and the results are more than worth it. 

This mascara comes into its own particularly on nights out - hence why I’m calling it, this is the only mascara you need for your hen do. It gives defined lift, has an impressively black pigment and lasts all night long.  

It delivers all the impact and drama of false lashes, with the look of a lash lift, and I can’t recommend it enough. 

READ MORE: The Best Eyelash Serums for Longer Lashes

Three Products I Finished This Month...

1. Keys Soulcare Golden Cleanser, £20

Alicia Keys brand cleansing balm

I wasn’t excited about Alicia Keys’ wellness brand, Soulcare, when it first dropped. Perhaps because she called candles ‘air care’ and that felt a bit too woo-woo for me (and I love woo-woo) but then I tried the Golden Cleanser and fell in love with it. 

It creates a soft lather, makes my face feel fresh and has the most soothing scent that really makes washing your face feel like de-stressing a ritual to look forward to at the end of the day, not a chore. 

I was using it in tandem with Keys Soulcare’s Nourishing Cleansing Balm, which I used to remove my makeup, before following with the cleanser. A dream team, to say the least.

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Replaced with: Youth To The People Superfood Cleanser, from £12

2. Summer Fridays Dream Oasis Deep Hydration Serum, £42 

Summer Fridays dream oasis deep hydration serum bottle

If you’re looking to achieve ultra-fresh, dewy skin ahead of your wedding, this is the serum to slot into your pre-wedding skincare routine. It has a bouncy, gel texture, it sinks in like a dream and drenches even the most parched complexions. 

My favourite thing about this serum is that you apply it to damp skin - I get impatient waiting to apply my skincare after the shower, so I was always thrilled to be able to pat this on when my skin was still wet.

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Replaced with: Ren Clean Skincare Bio Retinoid Youth Serum, £62

3. Kiehl's Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily Micro-Dose Serum, £36

 Kiehl's Retinol Skin-Renewing Daily Micro-Dose Serum pump bottle and open jar

The only other retinol I’ve ever finished is Sunday Riley’s Luna Sleeping Night Oil, but I think this new offering from Kiehl’s trumps that one in terms of usability. As well as retinol, to soften the appearance of lines, it has ceramides and peptides too, acting as a cushion to make sure it isn’t too harsh. 

The formula itself somehow feels plump and pillowy when I pump it from the bottle, leaving my skin feeling soft too, rather than dry like many retinols do.

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Replaced with: Ren Clean Skincare Bio Retinoid Youth Cream, £52    

This Month I'm Excited For...

Prada Paradoxe Eau De Parfum, £83 

Prada perfume in a triangular bottle with flowers and amber

I always think one of the most exciting parts of planning a wedding is choosing your wedding perfume, and if you’re yet to choose one for your winter wedding, I’d like to point you in the direction of this heady, sensual scent from Prada.

The bottle is designed to look like the brand’s iconic triangular logo, and it’s a sexy, seductive floral, with one scent enough to last all day and have everyone asking what you’re wearing.

If you like YSL’s Libre Intense, you’ll love this! 

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After more beauty recommendations? Don't miss this edit of the best wedding lipsticks.