The Best Mascara for Sensitive Eyes: Splurge vs Steal

We are always on a mission for a mascara that can make it through the day without irritating our eyes! Here is our favorite mascara for sensitive eyes along with an affordable drugstore dupe.

Splurge: Smashbox Full Exposure ($20)

Smashbox Full Exposure Sensitive Eyes Mascara Review

The Brush:

Smashbox Full Exposure really does give you full exposure. The brush is BIG and provides full eyelash coverage. I love how the brush gives me volume, fullness and length all at the same time. The brush is easy to use and sweeps my lashes, leaving them without clumps or flakes. It makes it easy to layer too! I apply two coats daily on each eye and I’m left with lashes that are longer and fuller. You get the fake lash look without the issues that come with applying fake lashes!

The Formula:

My sensitive eyes have a hard time testing different mascaras so as soon as I find something that works, I stick to it. I am able to leave the mascara on all day without it irritating my eyes which is unheard of with the mascara products I’ve tried. It’s definitely hard to find a mascara that is non-irritating without sacrificing volume but this works wonders. For years, I’ve been using Smashbox Full Exposure because it’s the one mascara that doesn’t make my eyes itch while leaving them fuller and longer!

This mascara is amazing because I’ve even been asked if I was wearing fake lashes while wearing Full Exposure! A mascara that doesn’t irritate my eyes and provides me with full and long lashes is a win-win for me! If you want some big and beautiful lashes at the beach, the Full Exposure mascara also comes in a waterproof version.

Even though the mascara leaves you with thick lashes, I don’t have trouble wiping it off at the end of the night. I use Dr. Jart’s Micro Water on a cotton pad and swipe away. It does take a couple swipes but I don’t have to tug at my lashes to remove the mascara! If you want an excellent quality mascara for sensitive eyes, you can’t lose with Smashbox Full Exposure.

Our Rating:


Steal: Neutrogena Healthy Volume ($6)

Neutrogena Healthy Volume Sensitive Eyes Mascara Review

The Brush:

I’ve tried dozens of mascaras over the years from drugstore to designer and I always come back to Neutrogena Healthy Volume. This mascara has an oversized brush that takes some practice and getting used to. My first few uses I ended up with those dreaded black specks all over my eyelids while applying. But once I was accustomed to it, I’ve found that this mascara builds my lashes up to a whole new dimension. They’re instantly 4-5 times thicker and fuller. And even though the brush is large, it’s very impressive at preventing clumps, which to me is the most important characteristic of a quality mascara.

The Formula:

Like most Neutrogena products, the Healthy Volume formula is super gentle and non-irritating to even the most sensitive eyes. If your lids ever get itchy or irritated from certain formulas, this could be a great option for you. This impeccable formula also stays put all day without flaking or smearing, and then washes off easily with any makeup removing cleanser. There is a waterproof formula as well, but the non-waterproof formula stays on so well that I haven’t found a need to purchase it.

Neutrogena claims that the Healthy Volume formula plumps lashes from the inside out. However, I haven’t really noticed a difference in my lashes after I wash this off, even after using it for long periods of time. But honestly, I don’t need my mascara to transform my lashes- I just want it to do its job and stay put. I’d highly recommend this mascara to anyone looking for a voluminous, clump-free look at a drugstore price. Whether you need a mascara for sensitive eyes or not, Neutrogena Healthy Volume is a winner all around.

Our Rating:


  1. April
    June 13, 2017 / 10:27 pm

    In DIRE need of help with blackheads around lips and cheeks !!! Have TRIED. Everything on market WHAT do you ladies suggest ??? HELP PLEASE