Best Waterproof Mascara: Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara Review


Today, I’ve got a mascara that immediately shot to high rotation in my routine – Kiss Me by Isehan Heroine Make Volume & Curl. If you are looking for the BEST waterproof mascara, this one from Japanese brand Isehan is one to try. 

This is probably one of the most well-known Japanese mascaras outside of Japan, and for good reason. This was actually my second choice compared to the Long & Curl from the same line, but I like this one better for lash separation AND lengthening, as you’ll see from the before and after photos!

The Search for The Best Waterproof Mascara

I was looking for something new after being let down by Maybelline Lash Sensational, which left me looking super clumpy. I purchased this from The Cosmetic Store for NZ $28.90, which is an okay price considering most drugstore mascaras are NZ $20 – $30. I also found this online at YesStyle so there are a lot of options out there for grabbing this mascara!

The reason I wanted to try this is because I heard it was super-smudgeproof; since I have oily skin and prefer to minimally touch up my makeup, this sounded like the perfect mascara for me. Here’s what I thought of it!

Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara Review

I have specifically bought the waterproof version for ultimate, long-lasting wear. There are similar versions that are non-waterproof, but a waterproof formula is essential for my lashes to hold a curl since they’re naturally quite straight. I’ve also been using a lash serum to help grow my lashes, and it’s made such an amazing difference once makeup is on!

The first thing that I noticed (and LOVE) about the Heroine Make Volume & Curl is that the wand isn’t loaded with too much product when you pull it out of the tube. This is an issue that I was having with Western mascaras. For my lashes, if the product I put on is too wet, my lashes do 2 things: lose their curl and clump up. 

This Japanese mascara has the PERFECT texture and consistency from the get-go. It doesn’t ever seem to get ‘too dry’ either (I’ve gone through LOTS of tubes of this stuff by now)!

The bristles are in a traditional conical shape, however they actually shorten on two sides of the brush. I think you’re supposed to turn while applying, but I don’t really ever do that. I always use the side with longer bristles as it’s perfect for coating every single lash – no matter how short or long. 

What I also love about this mascara is that it’s basically impossible to clump (unless you let a layer fully dry and try to apply on top of that, which I never do). I prefer my lashes to look long, defined, and fluttery which this mascara helps me achieve.


It also seriously lasts – when I first bought this mascara, I was working full retail shifts. Whenever I’d finish up for the day, I never had panda eyes! I had my makeup routine locked down, and a big part of it was using Heroine Make mascara. It never smudged!

Best waterproof mascara. Heroine Make Volume & Curl Waterproof Mascara before and after

How to Remove Waterproof Mascara

The only drawback is the waterproof formula can be hard to get off – a micellar water certainly won’t cut it! However, it’s a small price to pay considering it’s really the best waterproof mascara I’ve ever tried.

It does tickle me that there are SO many search queries for ‘how to get waterproof mascara off’. The truth is, it’s simple with the right products! Here are a few that you can try. 

Mascara Removers

Isehan does sell a specific mascara remover; it comes in a little tube that you apply to just your lashes at the end of the day, and with gentle massage, it breaks down the mascara, so you can easily go over with micellar water and be sure that all traces of makeup are gone. 

Biphase Makeup Remover

This kind of makeup remover needs to be shaken before use – it is usually formulated with silicones or oils to help break down long-lasting eyeliner and mascara. Simply shake and saturate a cotton round before swiping on your eyes. 

My tip is to gently press it to your closed eye for about ten seconds before beginning to swipe; this helps to dissolve the mascara faster and minimises tugging on such a delicate area. 

Oil & Balm Cleansers

This is my favourite method for taking off waterproof mascara – seriously, even the Heroine Make mascaras are no match for a good oil cleanser! Use your balm or oil cleanser as normal, being sure to take the time to massage on your closed eyes and lashes to break down any mascara. My favourite is the Hada Labo Oil Cleanser – see my full review here: Hada Labo Cleansing Oil Review

If you ask me, this is the gentlest. Plus, I can’t help but think that your lashes get a small amount of conditioning from the oil cleanser!

Final Notes: Heroine Make Volume & Curl Mascara 

This is my holy grail mascara! It’s waterproof, holds a curl, and doesn’t smudge or flake on me. It’s easy to buy online from YesStyle or Stylevana (and more). Some might find that it’s hard to remove, however with the three techniques I mentioned above, there’s no reason to struggle taking it off at the end of the day. It’s something I’ll have in my makeup bag for years, unless they change the formula!

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