Lancome High Definicils Mascara: What a Difference a Brush Makes

Published in: Makeup, Makeup Tools, Product Reviews




High Definicils, Lancome’s new release of their legendary glossy black Definicils mascara, features an improved soft rubber brush that makes Definicils much easier to apply.

Shortly after Lancome introduced the original Definicils mascara in 1991, it became the “it” mascara of the 90s. I remember being in college and seeing Definicils ads in beauty mags, but I could never afford it back then. Later, when I finished school and got my first real job after graduation, one of my first little splurges was on a tube of Definicils mascara.

Unfortunately, that was my first, and, um, last tube.

I liked the rich black color, the shine, and how well it thickened and lengthened my lashes, but I could never quite figure out the brush. The Definicils formula is and was surprisingly thick, and the dense brush Lancome included with the product back in the 90s always gave me clumpy lashes.

Flash forward about a decade. The new brush that ships with High Definicils mascara makes a world of difference. Lancome hasn’t changed the famously black Definicils mascara formula, but the old dense, bristly brush has been replaced by what the company calls a “high precison” brush (aka, soft rubber brush with stubby rubber bristles). It makes Definicils worth another try.

After applying a layer with the high precision brush I didn’t see any clumping at all, just an even application of product onto my lashes. Unlike the old school brush, the newer one delivers great lash separation and consistent coverage for long, thick, natural-looking lashes.

High Definicils in action…

Nekkid lashes!

One layer of High Definicils…

Two layers of High Definicils…


Lancome High Definicils Mascara in Black

Price: $23.50
Use: To lengthen and separate lashes
Makeup and Beauty Blog Rating: B

While the new brush doesn’t save the whales or feed the planet, I have to say it’s a pretty nifty piece of makeup technology. It makes Definicils a far more useful product than it had been. Notice the length and separation the new brush delivers (versus straight-up thickness).

So how was your evening? Do anything fun last night? After dance class I caught up on some brainless TV with the new episode of Real World XX: Hollywood. I think I felt my brain turning into mush.

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



Like this post? Tell your friends!

So far, 28 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Dao says:

    Oh I remember those! My aunties always had some of the Deficils samples in her stash, they’re pretty awesome and clumpy as well. The new brush looks like those of CG Lash Exact/ Volume Exact which came out with the idea first. If you go to the drugstore, most mascaras have the plastic brush versions now. Let me break it down, based on my soggy memory:

    CG: Lash Exact, Volume Exact, LashBlast (orange tube with chubby brush)
    L’Oreal: Voluminous, Telescopic (try the carbon black version, it’s pretty awesome!)
    Maybelline: Define-A-Lash (in the green tube I think)
    Max Factor: Volume Coutoure (it’s been out for years now, probably the first few that came out with the plastic brush)
    Rimmel London: I think it’s called Magnif’eyes or something, it’s hard to miss though
    Revlon: don’t know, don’t care since their mascaras dry out my lashes anyways.

    In my own experience, CG is pretty decent and probably is the cheapest of the bunch. Usually I need the waterproof version because of my oily lids but for CG, the regular version stands. Voluminous is very awesome and I want to try their carbon black version, somebody told me it makes your lashes look like fake.

  2. Karen says:

    Hi Dao,

    Wow what a great list! Thanks for sharing that. πŸ™‚ I’ve tried the LashBlast too, and the Lancome brush works way better for me. It could be user error (ha! wouldn’t be the first time for me!) but I just can’t get the CG lashblast to work right. The brush feels like it isn’t coating my lashes at all.

    I will have to try Telescopic one of these days. I’ve heard it great!

    How are things around your way? Having a good Thursday?

  3. Megan says:

    I definitely had a tube of definicils back in the day. Not sure it’s my favorite though. I think it’s not dramatic enough. I’ve tried lashblast, define a lash and telescopic carbon black with the plastic brushes…plus the new avon one. Supershock or something like that. Honestly they are all okay… but it takes multiple coats to get my lashes to my liking. MY personal favorite honestly is the Avon Supershock or whatever it is – WHICH I admit was a huge surprise to me too…Avon? Really :-). Also, I think all of them tend to give crispy lashes…not that I’m superopposed to that… but you know it’s not Elizabeth Arden πŸ™‚

  4. Eru says:

    That two coats really improved your lashes!The brush kinda reminds me of the one that Inimitable has, those kind of brushes are the best! πŸ˜€ . Right now I´m using High Impact by clinique but I think it uncurls my lashes quite a bit. I´ll use it anyway, but for me, Inimitable is the one!
    Eru :3

  5. Bridget says:

    I have to admit, my favorite ever mascara is Maybelline Full ‘N Soft mascara. Nothing else gives me quite the volume as that blessed tube. I like the look of real dense lashes. The Tarte one, “lights, camera, lashes!” is pretty good too. I’ve been using that one for a few weeks now.

    I didn’t really like the Lash Blast mascara. The end is so thick and I can’t get the little lashes without leaving a nice smudge of black on the inside of my eye. They should do something about that!

    Don’t get me started on the “real” world. I miss the old ones! πŸ™‚

  6. Glosslizard says:

    I remember liking Definicils well enough, but, like Megan, I don’t think it’s really dramatic enough! I’d probably be happy enough with it for some everyday looks, but I’m still loving Max Factor’s Lash Perfection for that, and you can’t really beat the price!

    Maybe I’ll try it out someday just for kicks! πŸ™‚

  7. Dao says:

    Yeah, I’ll get telescopic the next time I shop for mascara too. That line also has carbon black. It’s funny that Voluminous also has carbon black version but it flew off the shelf at WM so fast that I’ve never got myself one. I saw a tutorial online that a girl put Voluminous carbon black on and her lashes just looked wonderfully beautiful.

    I’ve done the oil cleansing method that Mrs. Lynne kindly described in her blog and a side effect is my lashes are much much longer now. My holla to Mrs. Lynne. If anyone has short and stubby lashes like myself, try rubbing some castor oil on your lashes before going to sleep. You’ll see a big difference after 10 days.

    I’m very obsessed with my lashes since I discovered the mascara πŸ˜€ If applying false lashes is not such a pain you would have seen me with them every single day. And not the natural looking pair either, the drag queen type of lashes to compensate on my lack of real lashes hehe. But now I’m feeling quite good with what I have, they actually grow out nicely and make my eyes look like doll’s eyes πŸ™‚

  8. Megan says:

    BTW K… I found out a few days ago that there’s a blue mercury opening like a 15 minute drive from me in Bethesda. Which is good because i’m lazy to go to georgetown…I’ve been meaning to :-). So they are opening next week! Very Exciting!

  9. Jamie says:

    I like this mascara a lot actually. Not quite as good as Diorshow, but it does deliver on the thickness and blackness I’m going for! And I think it makes your lashes look great!

    Jamies last blog post..Frederic Fekkai Completes Me

  10. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    I agree, the Definicils look is more for natural days. I need more thickening, dangit!

    I haven’t used Avon in years (back in the day I always had a bottle of Skin So Soft in my bathroom). I think that the line is moving towards a hipper feel, and it’s great to hear that there are a few gems (I’ve been wanting to try the Glazewear, as fellow commenter Dao raves about ’em). Now I’ll have to look for this mascara… I know how obsessed you are with lashes (I am too!). πŸ™‚

  11. Karen says:

    Hi Eru,

    Can you believe I have still yet to get on the Inimitable train!?!? I know it has its devotees, so one of these days I’ll get around to really playing with it. I used it once at the Chanel counter and just found it “eh.”

    I need a formula that holds the curl, too. A few that I really like for that: Elizabeth Arden Ceramine, Shu Uemura Volumizing and Tarte!

    One of these days I just might give up and wear false lashes everyday. I used to work with a gal who did that… she even wore them to have surgery when she was in the hospital. Now that is lash devotion.

  12. Karen says:

    Hi Dao,

    Voluminous Carbon Black is the only L’Oreal mascara I’ve liked. It really is pretty fabulous for the price. Great thickening, lengthening and overall a fantastic performer. I haven’t reached for it in a few weeks so I will have to bust that out for this weekend.

    I am really cautious when it comes to the stuff I put near my eyes, so I think I might skip the castor oil. But hey, if it works for you that’s cool!

    Doesn’t mascara open up a whole new world? I swear lash curlers and mascaras make 100% difference in ones eyes… I know they make me look more awake, for sure.

    I like the draggy lashes too, hee! Bigger is better when it comes to lashes. If you ever get the chance, seriously, try the Shu Uemura mascara. It’s the best for short lashed ladies!

  13. Karen says:

    Hi Bridget,

    I am totally biased against Maybelline… I never understood the fuss over Great Lash and that sort of colors how I feel about their mascaras. I like dense lashes, too, and am a HUGE fan of Lights, Camera, Lashes. I’ve turned on many a friend to that purple tube!

    I had similar issues with the Lash Blast brush. I think the “stubs” on it might be too small (or maybe I’m just too clumsy, who knows?).

    Regarding the “Real World,” I have a theory that the producers now purposely pick unstable people!

  14. Karen says:

    Hi Glosslizard,

    I agree – Max Factor makes some good drugstore mascara. It’s been about a year since I’ve used any of the mascara but I do recall liking it.

    You know what I really want? Mascara that never smudges, is easy to use and gives me the look of false lashes! Ahhh, a girl can dream!

  15. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    OHHH! I love that store. They are very selective in what they carry and have a lot of interesting high end brands, especially in the fragrance section.

    I am surprised that it’s not opening down the street from you! J/K!

  16. Karen says:

    Hi Jamie,

    Ah yes, DiorShow! Do you like the original or Blackout?

  17. Megan says:

    K… LOL seriously it’s the area. We’re so close to DC, there are all sorts of Government agencies, biotech companies, other corporations, etc. So you know that means there’s money…and that means that there are stores :-). I have to admit though I love the convenience.

  18. Amora says:

    Your lashes look great! I’ve tried Deficils before though and it just flattened out my tiny, stick straight lashes. It seems to hold your curl well though. I’m a big fan of Lash Blast, but I wouldn’t say it’s my Holy Grail. I’ve tried everything from Imju Fiberwig to Diorshow to Two-Faced Lash Injection and honestly, my cheap little orange tube of Lash Blast has been the best.

    Maybe I just need eyelash extensions. Have you ever done eyelash perming? I’m thinking about doing it…

  19. Lilan says:

    Hi Karen,

    I wasn’t too keen on trying this mascara, but I think I will now with the pictures you posted. I’ve tried Cover Girl’s Lash Blast, but am only so-so about it b/c the wand is so darn fat. This one looks my size and with the results, I might go check it out πŸ™‚

    Thanks for the review! (this is why I love your site πŸ˜‰ )

  20. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    I’m guessing that it’s both handy and tempting to be around them! Dang, you don’t know what I’d do to have some useful stores around me. My neck of the woods is kinda froo-froo, so there’s lots of stores kinda “down the street” from me too, but none of them are of use to me! At my nearby mall they got rid of all the stores normal people can shop at (Express, Victoria’s Secret, Ann Taylor) and now replaced them with True Religion and Juicy Couture. At least all my makeup counters are available and within immediate striking distance, ha!

  21. Karen says:

    Hi Amora,

    Have you tried Shu Uemura Precise Volume mascara before? It does a great job of lengthening and holding the curl!

    I’ve never really thought of doing eyelash perming. I am so paranoid about what I put near my eyes and the thought of putting chemicals that permanently change the shape of the lashes kinda freaks me out. I’d rather just deal with mascara and fake lashes.

  22. Karen says:


    I’ve seen your lashes on your site and think this would be good for you! It gives a nice, natural “oomph”.

    How are you today? Right now I’m at work and I’m STARVING! I am dreaming, yes dreaming, of some mac and cheese!

  23. Lilan says:

    Yes, unfortunately my lashes are soooo sad πŸ™

    Okay, the one thing I can’t get my lashes to do is STAY curled after I apply mascara. They always seem to droop. I wonder if it’s because I’m applying too much? Or too close to the root of my lashes?

    Please help.

    I will make you some mac and cheese, girl! LOL

    Lilans last blog post..A Girls Gotta Spa! Fundraiser Event

  24. Karen says:

    I would so take you up on that if I could! I’d also like to request some of your famous breakfast muffins (seriously, your boy is so lucky that you’re a good cook) and perhaps a side of potato salad. My body is craving CARBS! ARGH! All I have next to me is a nasty protein bar and a can of Hawaiian Sun Passion Orange juice. I’ve been trying to eat the bar and pretend it’s something delicious but honestly it’s just too nutritious for me right now.

    Regarding lash curl: You use the Shu curler, right? (me too!). Do you move the curler up the shaft of your lash as you depress gently on the curler’s handles? That helps to give some extra curl.

    I’ve noticed different formulas have various curl staying powers. For keeping the curl I really like Shu Uemura Precise Volume, Elizabeth Arden Ceramide and Tarte Lights, Camera, Lashes. The MAC ones do a decent job, too: Pluslash, Zoomlash. (Zoomlash is hard to work with though…very thick!)

  25. Glosslizard says:

    I feel secure knowing that, as soon as you find that perfect mascara, you’ll let us all know about it! πŸ™‚

  26. Nikki says:

    VAVAVAVOOM! lashes!!!! love it…!!!!

    Nikkis last blog post..Tag: I HEART Beauty Secrets

  27. Echidnagirl says:

    I’ve tried them both and I actually prefer the OLD brush on Definicils instead of the new High Definicils one. I ended up trying the new High version for a week then giving it away to a friend in despair – it just wasn’t depositing enough on my lashes.

  28. Lilan says:

    Hey Karen,

    Happy Friday – thank goodness!

    I used your tip on lash curling by moving the curler up – and it seems to work better! It’s a good thing too b/c I had been using EA Ceramide and thinking, what is the big deal? It just makes my lashes droop! I just have to practice a bit more πŸ™‚

    AND, I think I owe you a big ‘ol casserole dish of mac n cheese! Or muffins. At any rate, I know it’s better than a protein bar right now. I can’t wait until lunch either because we’re going to BJ’s for a co-worker’s last day today – I’m going to have a mini deep dish pizza – YUM! πŸ˜€

    Lilans last blog post..I Think Amy Poehler is Hilarious!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge