Wednesday, September 10th, 2008

Lancome’s Oscillation Mascara ($34.00) was available for one-day for early purchase back in July. My curiousity was piqued enough for me to shell out the big bucks and pick one up from my local Lancome Boutique. I’ve been using it on and off since then, trying to decide whether I love it or just like it. Some days, I love it, and other days, it’s not a bad mascara, but it doesn’t give me the volume I want.

Here are the requirements in my holy grail mascara:

  • Thickens lashes without clumping
  • Lengthens lashes to false lashes’ length or BEYOND!
  • Blackest of black color
  • Doesn’t flake or smudge during the day
  • Easy to use on both upper and lower lashes

How does Lancome’s Oscillation measure up?

Thickens lashes without clumping

This is where Oscillation doesn’t bring it home. For me, this is probably why I’m not head over heels in love with the mascara. It just doesn’t thicken all that much — at the same time, it doesn’t clump very much either, so at least it’s not clumpy thickening or just plain ol’ clumpy. I mean, clumpy lashes is a definite no-no for me.

Lengthens lashes to false lashes’ length or BEYOND!

Yes, Oscillation does a pretty good job of lengthening lashes to sky high lengths. I get some of the longest length from this mascara of the mascaras I’ve tried (and trust me, I’ve tried far too many!). I give Lancome an A for length.

Blackest of black color

It could be blacker. I have only found MAC’s Plushlash mascara to give me a super rich black. So while it isn’t the blackest of black, it is still black. It isn’t a faded black, which I hate, and it is definitely black enough that I’ll keep using it.

Doesn’t flake or smudge during the day

I was worried that this mascara would flake on me, because a lot of higher end mascaras do flake on me for some reason (I’m looking at YOU, DiorShow!). Thankfully, Oscillation hung onto my lashes throughout the day, leaving me carefree and happy to not have to worry about black flecks all over my face.

Easy to use on both upper and lower lashes

YES! The mascara wand for Oscillation is narrow and skinny, albeit a bit long. This makes it easier to grab the lower lashes! Many mascaras have been coming out with huge, hulking mascara wands that may work great on upper lashes, but I’ve always found they make coating the lower lashes an utter pain in the butt.


OK, so the whole draw of the mascara is that it vibrates, right? Yes, the vibration does allow you to better coat your lashes, and I think a lot of the lengthening power of the mascara comes from the oscillation mechanism. What I really liked about Lancome’s Oscillation is that there is a button on the wand handle that you press to start the vibration/oscillation. This means that you can keep it off whenever you desire. Estee Lauder’s TurboLash just goes and goes and goes, and it is a huge annoyance for me. I like that I can turn it on when I feel I’ve correctly positioned the wand, and I can turn it off if I just want an additional coat. The mascara does work better with the vibration than without it, though. It’s a very light sensation that you feel when the mascara goes to work–it’s not painful or anything, it’s sort of a “funny feeling” at first, but you get used to it pretty quickly.

Is it worth $34?

For me, no, I don’t think so. $34 is pretty steep for any mascara, and for that price, I’d want a dreamy, holy grail, the end-all-of-all-mascaras kind of mascara. This just isn’t it, mostly because my lashes don’t get super thick and voluminous with this mascara. I need volume and thickness, but not everybody does. Sometimes finding a mascara that doesn’t deliver on thickness but still gives length can be hard to find, so I’m sure this will get some die-hard fans!

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22 thoughts on “Lancome’s Oscillation Mascara Gives Lots of Length

  1. Heather

    Thanks for the review! Have you tried the new Chanel Exceptionnel Mascara? I love it!

  2. IvyTrini


    I also bought this mascara and I have to agree with you. While its a good mascara, I don’t think that it is that revolutionary especially for $34. It provides good length but not really thickening at all. I don’t even think that the oscillations really provide any additional benefit. I had to try it, but I don’t think I will buy it again….unless it came in a really cool colour. I think that the L’Oreal Telescopic mascara in Blackest Black works just as well.
    If you are looking for a really black mascara, I am currently trying the Lancome Courbe Virtuose in Black Karat and I am really liking it!

  3. Virginia

    About the lenghtening-but-not-thickening-mascara: I’ve found Lancome Virtuose mascara does just that! I’ve bought it because I experience a lot of clumping with thickening mascaras, and it really lenghtens and seperates lashes beautifully without any clumping and thickening. I love volume though and thought I could still get it with some extra coats, which didn’t work. I use Virtuose now only on my lower lashes, and Lash Queen by Helena Rubinstein on the upper ones. I haven’t tried many mascaras yet, but Lash Queen is really the best so far from my experience. Have you tried it? I thought about switching to a Mac mascara, but I’m not sure how they’d compare!

  4. SnickerDoodle

    Omg thank you! DiorShow is the bane of my existence..I want to like it, the color is siiiick, so black and awesome! But it’s like glue and then when it finally dries, i get it flaking all over the place all day. GRRRR.

  5. pquanda

    Have you tried Chanel inimitable or exceptionnel?

    I think you’d like these!!

    • I’ve tried Inimitable, but not Exceptionnel. I LOVE Plushlash, so I don’t know if I’ll be shelling out big bucks for Exceptionnel at this point, since I did it for Lancome already, lol.

  6. minxy

    DIorshow is my holygrail and it always will be, it gives length to my lashes and never clumps, its even better if used after prep and prime lash by mac!!!

  7. bec

    One thing I find very ironic is the fact that a mascara that costs $34 is considered to be very expensive to Americans. To Australians, it’s very reasonable (if we were to order it from an American-based store online)! This is because all cosmetics and skincare products cost double here, for example, NARS Orgasm costs AUD$60 here (USD$50), YSL Faux Cils costs AUD$70 (USD$55) and MAC eyeshadows cost around AUD$32 each (USD$25) and yet, in the US, NARS Orgasm costs USD$22, YSL Faux Cils costs USD$27.50 and MAC shadows cost you USD$15.

    So…with all that said, guess how much this mascara costs here. AUD$90!! To put things into perspective, that’s USD$70-75. I really do wish I lived in the US..

    Anyway, thank you for the review Christine! It’s very informative =)

    • Tanya from Oz

      i completely agree with you! I absolutely HATE australian prices. I do not understand why they are pretty much double the american prices (seriously, CAN shipping costs etc. really be THAT expensive?!!??).

      It is ridiculous. I have come to the point where I do bi-annual hauls from the us mac website using the shopaholiques postal service. Its really good and I usually get double the products for the same amount of money!

      • bec

        That’s what I do too! I only wish I had discovered online beauty stores sooner.. I would have saved a huge amount of money!

        It’s absolutely ridiculous, it’s reached the point where I no longer purchase makeup in Australia unless it’s a product from a drugstore/Australian brand.

    • I’m always flabbergasted by the price differences :(

  8. Jenna

    Hey Christine, I’m pretty sure your country doesn’t have it, but if you ever have the chance, I assure you Fasio’s mascara is a worthy buy. It thickens without clumping and retains the curl, and there was once I forgot that I was wearing it and went INTO THE SEA with it. And when I remembered, I panicked, and ran all the way to the toilet. BUT… there it was! Still curled and beautiful. The only downside is that if you don’t have the right remover, it can be stubborn enough for you to die removing it.

  9. Laura B

    I’m late to this discussion, but you MUST try Guerlain Le de 2 Guerlain mascara. It is amazing and gives me all of the things in your holy grail list (very similar to my own!). It has one awesome rubber brush and a tiny traditional brush for getting all the stray lashes. I’m always surprised by how much of a difference using the mini brush makes. And it curls so well I’ve don’t need to use my curler anymore. Anyhoo, get some now (If you can handle the $50 price tag. For lashes this beautiful you can!)

  10. nicole

    Hey Christine,

    I just got mine in the mail today as part of a buzz campaign. I am excited to try it and then review it.