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Best Korean Mascaras – Enhance Your Look

10 Best Korean Mascaras

Looking someone in the eyes while talking to them is a sign of professionalism and confidence.

Whether you’re out with friends or meeting clients for business, having the best lashes can give you a boost of self-esteem.

Mascaras have been around for hundreds of years, and they’re still widely used today because of the dramatic effect they bring to your look. 

Koreans love using them to emphasize their eyes and eyelids.

If you want to add that extra oomph to your beauty routine, here are some choices for you to find the best Korean mascara for your lashes

Best for Volume
Holika Holika Magic Pole Mascara​
Our Pick
Etude House Curl Fix Mascara​
Best Waterproof Formula
Innisfree Skinny Microcara Mascara
Table of Contents

10 Best Korean Mascaras

Etude House Lash Perm Curl Fix Mascara

Our Pick

This Etude House product is the best mascara for straight lashes in this list because it can curl lashes like no other.

Using a curler may be better, but you can get away with skipping that step when using this.

It’s immediately evident this product is special just by looking at the wand alone.

One side has short bristles while the other has longer ones. Use the shorter bristles to coat the base and slowly transition to the longer ones as you approach the tips.

The only issue I have with this is that because it’s a waterproof mascara and the formulation is designed to last, it’s tough to remove.


  • Lasts the whole day
  • Can curl the lashes and make them stay curled throughout the day
  • Waterproof


  • Hard to remove

Holika Holika Magic Pole Mascara

Best Volumizing

Not all people like to put on too much makeup on the eyes because they might have sensitive eyes.

The Holika Holika Magic Pole Mascara solves that problem by providing a safe formula that won’t irritate your eyes.

The product dries out quickly after application, so you don’t have to wait that long to continue with your makeup routine. You won’t get an icky feeling from your lashes either.


  • Good for those with sensitive eyes
  • Dries out fast after application


  • The wand has a ball-like end which is uncomfortable to use

Innisfree Skinny Waterproof Microcara Mascara

Best Waterproof Mascara

Just like its name suggests, this Korean mascara has a skinny wand that coats both upper and lower lashes effectively. At a slim 1.5 mm, the applicator provides a long curl even for those with short and fine lashes.

It doesn’t give such a dramatic change to the eyes, but it’s enough to enhance the eyes. Thus, it’s perfect for casual, everyday use. If you’re into the no-makeup makeup look, then this is a good pick.


  • Good for everyday use
  • Waterproof


  • Can smudge and clump if not used properly

Clio Salon De Cara Roll Volume Mascara

Inspired by hair brushes, this Korean mascara is specifically designed to add volume to the lashes.

This is one of the best mascara for Asian lashes because it gives weight to fine lashes. You’ll instantly sport a solid look from here on out.

Because the product is waterproof, you can safely swim with this too. As long as you don’t rub your eyes that much, it will stay on the whole day.


  • The wand has silicone bristles that distribute the product well
  • Adds greatly to lash volume
  • Waterproof


  • Does not lengthen lashes well

Peripera Ink Black Mascara

Length is always a struggle for Asian lashes. 

That’s why Korean brands make it a point to manufacture mascaras that maintain length and add a bit of volume to the lashes.

This Korean mascara from Peripera is good for those with short lashes because it adds adequate volume and length.

During the first coat, it’ll fill up the fineness of the lash hairs. After a few more coats, you’ll notice your lashes having more volume than before.

If, however, you want a darker mascara with much more volume, this may not be the product for you. 

Though it makes lashes look fairly thicker, it’s not as pigmented as other longwear mascaras.


  • Does not smudge or clump easily
  • Waterproof


  • Needs more coats to build volume
  • Not as pigmented as other mascaras

Etude House Dr. Mascara Fixer

Dr. Mascara Fixer tubing mascara actually gives you two variants: lengthening and volumizing.

We would have loved to have both effects in one tube, but the formulations are designed to address a specific concern only.

This K-beauty product comes in a squeezable tube. 

It might not look like your typical mascara, but that’s because it’s specially-made to just prime the lashes.

However, even if you don’t apply any mascara, your lashes would still look enhanced. It’ll give you a fresh, natural eye look.


  • Gives great volume and length to lashes
  • Affordable
  • Primes the lashes for longwear mascara


  • Fibers in the wand come off easily

Missha The Style 3D Mascara

If you look at the wand from the tip, you’ll appreciate the kind of engineering and thought that Missha places into this product.

It comes with a triangle-shaped brush that helps distribute the mascara evenly while softening the lashes.

What you’ll love about the Missha The Style 3D Mascara is it does not clump up easily, making the lashes look natural. 

Also, it gives volume and curl without looking like you’ve put much effort in.


  • Does not smudge easily
  • Packed with vegetable wax that coats the lashes
  • Affordable
  • Looks natural


  • The wand is too slim for some

The Face Shop Freshian Big Mascara

Some people want drama, while others just want a little perk-me-up to hide the fact that they’re stressed. 

If you’re the latter, this Face Shop K-beauty mascara is one of your best choices.

With a lightweight formulation you can choose to build up, you have the option to look as effortless as you can or add more coats for a more dramatic effect.

This is a great product for when you’re unsure about the kind of makeup look you want for the day. 

You can just adjust and layer on some more accordingly in case you change your mind.


  • Provides a natural look
  • Affordable


  • The formula is light so you need more coats to achieve full volume
  • Does not dry quickly

We want the lashes to look black, but not unnaturally so.

This Korean mascara provides just the right amount of pigment to make your lashes stand out without looking like you exerted much effort.

You can use this even during hot months because it doesn’t smudge or flake. It’s a great choice for Korean mascara newbies as well.

Just make sure you get an eye makeup remover that can completely clean it off.


  • Gives a naturally powerful look
  • Smudge-proof


  • You have to apply more than one coat to notice a difference

3CE Pink I'm Good Mascara

If you’re the kind of person who works all day, you need a mascara that can keep up with you.

This bright neon pink product works as hard as you do. Because it has a triple-coated polymer, it is smudge-proof and waterproof.

The curved wand helps in curling the lashes and will stay on all day, which is an advantage if you are out and about all the time.

However, it’s hard to remove, so you better consider this especially if you haven’t found a good makeup remover yet.


  • Waterproof
  • Smudge-proof
  • Lasts all day


  • Hard to remove

The Evolution of Mascara


The Egyptians used kohl to darken their eyes and protect them from dust and microorganisms.

Eye makeup has been part of the Egyptian culture and religion, and this trend has been passed on throughout the centuries.

During the Victorian era, ladies even spent more time attending to their looks than anything else. 

Makeup was a huge deal, and more products began to be invented.

Finally, it was in 1913 when French chemist Eugene Rimmel developed what we know today as non-toxic mascara. He used petroleum jelly in his formulation.

The mass-produced mascara we use today was first marketed by Thomas Williams when he made one for his sister Mabel. 

They eventually created the company you now know as Maybelline.

Mascaras are significant cosmetic products not only because of their origin but also because they’re the first-ever waterproof makeup product.

Types of Mascara

Mascaras are used for different reasons, depending on the characteristics of the wearer’s lashes and the effect he or she wants to achieve.

To add more length to the lash, mascaras will usually have a long and thin applicator. 

Definition mascaras have straight applicators and are used to achieve a natural-looking effect.

Volumizing power is what most users really want from a mascara though. Volumizing mascaras make the lashes look thick and heavy, creating a stunning, dramatic effect.

How to Apply a Mascara Properly

How to Apply

Mascaras, however nicely packaged they are, can still pose danger though.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the most common makeup-related injury is an accident caused by a mascara wand. 

There was also an issue in the United States before where women went blind, so authorities are closely regulating these everyday products for public safety.

Knowing that, it’s important to know how to apply the product properly.

If it’s your first time, make sure you are as careful as possible. Don’t rush the application because one small accident can cause so much damage.

First, curl the lashes with a lash curler. (Note: The lash curler is also a potential hazard for your lashes so make sure you know how to properly use one.)

Then, apply the product from the base of the lashes.

As you go up, move the wand right and left. Make sure you apply the product both to the upper and lower lashes. 

Use the tip of the wand for the outer corner of the eyes. You can apply a few more coats depending on the effect you want.

Mascara Don'ts

Don’t hoard.

When buying a mascara, remember they have the shortest life span of all the beauty products.

They’re good only for about three to five months after opening. 

So it’s not good to have multiple open at the same time unless you can use them up quickly.

Don’t sleep with eye makeup on.

It may be common sense not to leave your makeup on when sleeping, but it’s especially important when it comes to your lashes. 

Having mascara on can make the lashes brittle so make sure you swipe it off with a makeup remover!

Don’t share your mascara.

Our eyes are very sensitive and are vulnerable to infections. The wands are full of bacteria and microorganisms that can be passed on to others.


How to Choose the Best Korean Mascara for Your Needs

The best mascaras contain most, if not all, of the following qualities: waterproof, volumizing, lengthening, and long-lasting.

There’s a reason why Korean mascaras are preferred highly over others. They are gentler, more volumizing, and can curl lashes a lot better. 

This is because Korean mascaras are designed with the Korean woman in mind.

Koreans have shorter and straighter lashes. They also grow a lot longer than people in the West. 

This is why most Korean mascaras are volumizing, waterproof, and long-lasting.

  • If you want that extra curl power for your daily grind, Korean mascaras are your best choice.
  • If you use mascaras on a daily basis, make sure to get a formulation that is gentle enough but also powerful to give you the effect you want.
  • Some of these have strong formulas so make sure to get a makeup remover that will surely clean everything off!



The best Korean mascara can add a little more edge to your look.

With our eyes playing such a big role in our daily interactions, it’s one of the first things people notice and form an impression on.

For an everyday mascara, the Etude House Lash Perm Curl Fix Mascara is my top choice because it’s powerful enough to bring drama to the eyes, but not in an overwhelming way.

If you’re looking for more volume, however, go for the Holika Holika Magic Pole Mascara because everything in that product—from formula to brush-has been designed to achieve that effect.


August 19, 2021 – Updated article formatting and content

July 15, 2021 – Reviewed and updated article links

Paola Diaz
Paola Diaz

Hi, I'm Paola! A skin care enthusiast and nature lover. Creating content that promotes proper skin treatment and keeping a healthy glow is my way of sharing with the world how healthy skin can go a long way. I’m a firm believer of natural beauty that radiates inside all of us. All we need is the right kind of nourishment that inspires our wellness from inside out. So it’s really not about physical beauty alone – it’s the beautiful life we can create for ourselves when we connect with our own nature and see there is beauty that shines from every one of us.