Q: I've tried every kind of mascara, and nothing stays on my lashes; within an hour after applying it, I look like a raccoon. What am I doing wrong?

A: If bleeding lipstick is the droopy hem of makeup problems, running mascara is the frayed, unraveling sleeve. No matter how sophisticated, glamorous, and pulled together you are otherwise, raccoon eyes will make you look either just plain sloppy or deeply psychotic. Your problem might be that you're applying too much eye cream, or that it's too close to your lashes, or that you're not allowing enough time between the application of eye cream and mascara, says Pati Dubroff, Dior celebrity makeup artist. Be sure to apply eye cream only under your eyes and on the ocular ridge just below your eyebrows, says Ross Burton, national artistic director for Lancôme. He suggests coating lashes from the base upward, because if you apply mascara just on the tips of lashes, it weighs them down and the product can slip onto the skin. You can also try a light dusting of loose powder on your eyelids, even getting a bit on your lashes to hold the mascara, says Dubroff.

Bottom line: Ease up on the eye cream, apply from root to tip, and try a water-resistant mascara.


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