After trying out the incredible Milk Makeup Sunshine Oil and “Meet The Fam” Set, I became a true product junkie and interested in their KUSH High Volume Mascara. For most of us, once we find a mascara that works and prevents smudging and covers all of the typical bases, we typically remain loyal followers for years and fairly worthy consumers from the manufacturer’s standpoint.
However, after dabbling with the KUSH Fiber Brow Gel even as a rookie to the entire category with successful results, and reading reviews whilst noticing the growing cult-following the mascara was gaining, I decided to try it out- as admittedly it was less costly than my go-to daily mascara, and seemed like a hydrating formulation.
While I’ve previously tried almost all of the other most popular products in the category (including Chanel, DiorShow, Chantecaille, Marc Jacobs, Benefit, drugstore brands, the list goes on), I was drawn in by the somewhat odd factor of differentiation in this case. As a vegan and gluten-free beauty and cosmetics line, Milk Makeup replaces different animal product ingredients with often off-the-cusp formulations that still prove to offer benefits (both from a consumer use and manufacturer marketing standpoint).
Similar to the KUSH Fiber Brow Gel, the high-volume mascara replaces traditional beeswax with cannabis oil, along with thickening heart shaped fibers for a clump-free finish that is jet black and smudge-proof. It’s also designed to not clump up on the eyes, and to provide nourishing and gentle hydration to the lashes, preventing any loss or potential damage.
Designed to promote a more voluminous aesthetic, this product can be used by anyone, especially those seeking a mascara formulation designed to thicken, lift, heighten, and lengthen lashes without creating any damage, or even those who are fans of vegan and/or gluten-free formulations and looking to make cosmetic shifts.
But ultimately, myself included, you do not have to be a vegan to enjoy the use and corresponding benefits with this dope product.
This review will cover some main product features, some positives and negatives to bear in mind prior to purchase, a look at the key ingredient contained in the formulation (cannabis oil), and a final verdict, to help you make a more informed purchasing decision prior to any official point of sale.
Review Milk Makeup KUSH Mascara
Milk Makeup’s KUSH High Volume Mascara is infused with cannabis oil and the brush consists of heart-shaped fibers, designed to thicken and lengthen while soothing and conditioning the lashes.
Despite some online controversy related to the use of this product in particular, which is unusual for Milk Makeup in general, my personal (non-sponsored) opinion of the product was extremely positive, even considering I have tried multiple products in the category at various price points and with different results upon use and following application.
Following application, I noticed visible results including fuller and longer looking lashes, with a natural finishing aesthetic. I would definitely compare the product, in terms of results and visible benefits following use, to others in the category sold at higher price points. Additionally, the product never created any clumping, dryness, smudging, and was a long-hold that proved to last throughout the entire day. In terms of overall longevity, the product definitely offered value due to the shelf-life it provided (several months) in comparison to retail. While it is not cheap by any means, it definitely stands the test of time and does not have to be repurchased frequently even with daily topical use.
From the manufacturer, “KUSH High Volume Mascara’s unique heart-shaped fibers lock onto lashes for long-lasting volume, length, and curl. Unlike gangly, cylindrical fibers that can appear spidery, these hollow, heart-shaped fibers lay on your lashes in each direction, creating the look of length and width. Conditioning cannabis oil fuses to lashes for thickness without fallout, while also working to fill the hollow, heart-shaped fibers with formula for a double dose of volume. Hemp-derived cannabis oil continues to hydrate for healthier-looking lashes, even after you’ve removed your mascara.”
Additionally, I noticed I was able to reach inner and outer corners as well as bottom lashes, and the product glided on smoothly and evenly sans any irritation following application. Typically 1-2 applications will produce a feathery, fuller, lengthened, and natural finishing aesthetic. For a more dramatic look, users can use up to 4 coats per application, however with any mascara it is important to note this increases the risk of potential clump.
How To Use:
From the manufacturer, the ideal way to use this mascara is as follows:
-Wiggle the Puff Puff Brush from root to tip, using the brush head to reach and define inner and bottom lashes
-Add more coats for intense volume that stays clump-free
Milk Makeup KUSH Mascara Ingredients
As a vegan and cruelty-free company, Milk Makeup strives to formulate all of its products using supplements for any animal ingredient, and in this case, they have used Cannabis Oil rather than beeswax, known for its hydrating and conditioning properties (making it a suitable multi-use product as a conditioner and mascara for the lashes).
Milk Makeup KUSH Mascara Cannabis Oil
From the manufacturer, “Why formulate with cannabis? Ever since its inception, Milk Makeup has wanted to create a product that showcases the amazing properties of cannabis oil. When they started talking about coming out with a fully vegan volumizing mascara with fibers, they knew they couldn’t use beeswax, a common binding component in mascara formulas. Enter: cannabis oil.
Hemp-derived cannabis oil fuses the heart-shaped fibers to your lashes without fallout. It whips the formula into a creamy texture that allows for smoother application on lashes and an easier, tug-free removal. It also provides an additional conditioning benefit. KUSH Mascara is the vegan way to get major volume and healthier-looking lashes in one hit.”
While this may be attributed in large part to clever marketing, I do have to say that with daily continual use my lashes definitely felt hydrated and conditioned, with no clumping issues, lash loss, and with a natural finishing aesthetic. This may be difficult to discern as lash “dryness” has never been of personal issue prior or currently, however the formulation is definitely suitable if you are experience parse or dry lashes, and the formulation safely hydrates without the use of any animal product (of note for the cruelty-free and vegan community).
*Do denote, in reference to cannabis oil used in the product formulation, it is oil extracted from the cannabis flower and not containing any THC or any other active or mind-altering substances*
Milk Makeup KUSH Mascara Positives and Negatives
While my personal experience in using and trying out the product was a very positive one, in reading through other reviews on different sites, while most of the feedback is positive, there do seem to be some product issues and concerns for some consumers who found this was not an ideal formulation for them.
With that in mind, here are some objective main pros and cons to bear in mind prior to purchase based on personal usage in conjunction with the opinions of others who have tested out the KUSH High Volume Mascara.
- Vegan company: no products are ever tested on any animals, used in any product formulations, or during any manufacturing processes (cruelty-free company including the exclusion of beeswax)
- All products (including the mascara) are free of talc, mineral oil, gluten, parabens, sulfates, and multiple harsh chemical additives than can irritating to the sensitive eye area
- The thickening heart-shaped fibers on the application brush help to promote volume and lengthen the lashes, while providing height and lift
- Excellent product for those who may be new to the brand or are searching for a new go-to mascara, particularly if you’re trying to make the vegan shift (though as a non-vegan, I equally loved the use of this product)
- You can easily wiggle the tapered brush to hit inner/outer and bottom lashes without smudging
- I did not notice any product smudge throughout the day or experience any clumping issues (even if applying two coats for a more dramatic look)
- The finishing aesthetic is natural yet still akin to wearing semi-false lashes, and definitely helps with lengthening
- The product did not create any irritation, even with sensitive skin in general and particularly around the eye area
- Product feels weightless upon application and never seems heavy (highly breathable)
- Product has a long-wear that does not come off throughout the day and seems to offer hours of coverage without any difference in aesthetic
- Product longevity: even with continual daily use, the product lasted several months (while it is recommended to switch mascara products every 3 months, this is generally a rule you can stretch a bit, and this should be good for 6 months even with daily application)
- Luxurious packaging design and a product aesthetic that is visually pleasant, yet compact/portable
- The product hydrates and conditions the lashes upon every application (suitable multi-use benefits)
- Product did not create any flakiness and was easy to remove using a gentle cleansing product
- In terms of quantifying product success, the metrics collected over a product study suggest 95% saw high volume, 95% saw longer lashes, 90% saw thicker lashes and 90% saw lifted lashes (it’s important to bear in mind these studies can be sponsored and/or limited in participants)
- I definitely noticed an increase in both length and volume, and only needed 1-2 applications (with a preference for a more feathered
- For over $20, this is generally considered a fairly high cost for the product category, particularly if you’re used to using drugstore brands with success, however I felt in comparison to benefits and longevity, the cost proved worthy of the investment (this is a highly individual choice only an individual consumer can elect)
- Some reviewers and consumers felt the product was clumpy, flaky, and one even mentioned lash loss (perhaps due to a product allergy, but this was unspecified), so results will always vary, and it’s always important to follow the application directions and be as cautious as possible when applying any product on or around the eye area (however, you may review the money-back guarantee to ensure that if you experience any dissatisfaction you will receive a full refund for the purchase price of the item)
- Especially for the brand, this product has received particularly poor reviews (despite a positive personal experience and lack of sponsorship or free product), so it’s important to remember while exercising as much objectivity as possible, you may have a different opinion following use or application
- Those who experience oily lids/skin seem to find that the product sticks to the skin and is difficult to use without smudging and various issues
If you happen to have any sensitivities or concerns around the eye area in particular or have any general concerns, the return policy in this case may be a highly important factor for you.
The manufacturer, Milk Makeup, has a strong return and exchange policy that honors full refunds upon dissatisfaction or allergy, and this policy favors the consumer, both new and returning.
If you are dissatisfied with the use of the mascara, or if it does not work for your lashes to provide suitable benefits, or you experience any product allergy or reaction to the formulation, you may elect to return it at any time.
In this case, you will receive a full refund equal to the entire purchase price of the item. If the item was received as a gift (without receipt), the policy applies for an even exchange, and this policy is applicable to online purchase, as individual store policy may vary depending on location and distributer.
If you feel the policy if not taken into consideration, you may contact customer service, and you can remain ensured you will receive a full refund.
I was happy to discover that the formulation was gentle enough to use even with very sensitive skin in general and around the delicate eye area, but due to price barriers or sensitivity concerns this policy may help assuage fears, as individual allergies are highly variable.
While I felt compared to the longevity and benefits this was a worthy splurge even considering the product category, this is a highly individual choice, and only one you as a consumer can decide on.
Milk Makeup KUSH Mascara: Worth It?
While in general it seems the jury is still out (based on other commentary) concerning Milk Makeup’s KUSH High Volume Mascara, I found the product offered great benefits with use, as well as great value in comparison to both said benefits in conjunction with overall longevity.
If you’re seeking a hydrating formulation that provides lengthening, volumizing, and lifting benefits (particularly if you are a fan of vegan and/or gluten-free cosmetics formulations), I would highly recommend giving this product a try. It is definitely on par with other products in the category I have tried previously for equal or greater prices, and multi-use benefits including hydration, in this case, create a strong factor of differentiation that users can appreciate.
This makes a suitable gifting option (along with the incredible “Meet The Fam” Set from the brand), is a great product for those seeking new mascaras and current fans, and also makes a great introductory item for those new to the brand in search of clean formulations and mascara products that actually exceed and deliver on all claims of initial benefits.
While reviews are mixed and always open to individual interpretation, this is a product I would highly recommend, even if you are trepidatious about trying out new mascara products (as you may find a new formulation that exceeds your expectations and may even come at a lower cost.
Overall, highly recommended and 5/5 stars!