This may be one of the most difficult questions you'll encounter today, but do your best to answer, OK?
If you could only wear one makeup product for the rest of your life, what would it be?
For many a celebrity, there's not a beauty-enhancing product more essential than mascara. It opens your eyes and brings depth to those irises—all with only a few swipes.
Even though the lash amplifier is a bit of a no-brainer, many of us don't get the full effect from that wand. To optimize the mascara magic, we turned to celebrity makeup artist Ashley Rebecca, who counts Jared Leto and Jemima Kirke as clients, for a few tips.
Coat with care: "You should always apply two to three coats of mascara maximum and end it there," Ashley advised. The first application should last—even when you need to touch up your makeup throughout the day. "If you curl your lashes and then apply mascara, there should be no need to apply more a few hours later," she added. "Instead, if your lashes are need a touch up, curl them a few hours after application to perk them right up."
Avoid the pump: Many think pumping the wand in and out of the mascara tube will garner more product on the bristles. At the same time, however, "pumping it allows more air to enter the tube and can dry out your mascara more quickly," the makeup guru cautioned. Instead, gently twist the wand from side to side while it's in the tube to pick up product without aerating the product.
Function over flair: As you may have noticed at your local that drug store, there's a spoolie size for all your lengthening, volumizing or curling needs. Smaller brushes help you get from root to end with a more even coverage, while curved wands help curl your lashes. "But the bristles affect the application more than anything," Ashley noted. "Whether they are crisscrossed, rubber, or a thin comb, it's the bristle type that makes a difference in each look you're trying to achieve."
Beyond the lashes: One of the surprising tricks the makeup pro shares with her celebrity clientele? Make your mascara multitask. "You can also use mascara as an eyeliner by simply applying it with an eyeliner brush to the lashline," Ashley suggested.
Beware of bacteria: Like most makeup products, your mascara won't always come into contact with the prettiest of organisms. Prevent the spread of bacteria by replacing it every three months or once the product starts to dry out.