Nov 122012

The other day, I was thinking that I hadn’t seen a truly great mascara from Chanel since 1998.  One release in Europe last year–Sublime de Chanel–had promise on the first try.  However, even Sublime did not seem to be as dramatic as the former Chanels, or the current Armani Eyes to Kill, or Guerlain Le  2 Mascara.

Le Volume de Chanel mascara, just now being released in the U.S., has a winner that is very similar in effect to Guerlain Le 2.

The name “Le Volume de Chanel” suggests that the mascara will add volume to lashes. Put aside your visions of caterpillar-lashes, as this mascara gives a surprising amount of length, curl and definition. Le Volume gives your lashes an oooomph factor times one hundred, yet still manages to ensure that one looks appropriate.

According to the sales associate at the Chanel San Francisco boutique, the wand is called a “snowflake” design and it ensures clump-free application.

I found that the wand was very intuitive and effortless to use. Sometimes mascaras can be too dry, but Le Volume applied easily and quickly. There were a few tiny clumps, easily pushed away with the wand or nearby lash comb. Some of my lashes did stick together, but it wasn’t nearly in the same category as Benefit They’re Real.

I’ll try to do a review with Liz over the next few weeks–we’re on opposites coasts at the moment but still doing our very best to bring you everything we can under the circumstances.

Bottom line–love. I’ve only worn it for one entire day, as this is a preliminary report. No flaking, no smudging, no fading. Good curl, great lasting power. Great definition. Definitely has the high oooomph factor of the former great Chanel mascaras.

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  16 Responses to “Chanel Le Volume Mascara Review: First Thoughts”

  1. I have this mascara and I live in Canada. I never found it to clump and one application does it job. I was surprised how well it separated my lashes and looked lush. This is one worth repurchasing.
    I’m also a fan of Guerlain Le 2 Mascara, but I always found it difficult to remove at the end of the day.

  2. Wearing this for the second day. It is quite wet, which is good – less clumping. I have to be careful to check to make sure there is no transfer to upper lids – which only happens right after application. Other than that, I’m very pleased so far!

  3. A new baby has meant no trips to the counter! Does this come in other colours? I haven’t seen anything other than « noir » on-line. How I miss the old Extracils! Thank you for the post.

    • Congratulations on your little one! No, I checked and this is the only color right now. I loved Extracils too- this has a similar lengthening effect but better curling properties.

  4. Thank you for the congratulations! And for the information. Extrême cils in Blue Moon from fall 2003 is still my dream mascara. I wish that, at very least, they would re-issue the colour. If not, then Extracils’s Violine. Both beautiful shades. Why Chanel has grown averse to real colour in their mascara is beyond — and sad to — me.

  5. Hi Amy!
    I would love to know the names of the erstwhile Chanel greats! 🙂 I used to be a die hard fan of the Exceptionel de Chanel mascara but unfortunately 2 tubes down I realized the formula was getting drier and drier, eventually leading to an unusable tube in a month! With that I turned my attention to the drugstore mascaras which justify my 3 month rule with mascara. Found plenty of duds but I have a few that I highly recommend, take this with a pinch of salt because you know how subjective mascara recommendations can be:
    1. L’oreal Voluminous Full Definition ( not the regular Voluminous (grey tube with gold cap) but a gold tube with gold cap) This is not talked about nearly enough and is *much* better than the regular Voluminous, less messy and doesn’t need to “dry out” before being flattering
    2. Revlon Grow Luscious mascara: a new find, works really, really well! Bit of a drier formula than L’oreal’s, haven’t had it too long so can’t vouch for its life span but the effect is well worth it, especially if you can pick it up at under $5 (from Target)
    3. Prestige My Biggest Lashes is very similar to the Revlon in terms of formula, brush shape etc
    That being said, I couldn’t resist getting the Chanel Le Volume and will open it as soon as my current tube runs out!

  6. Thanks for the post 🙂 waiting for the complete review :Dxx

  7. Hi Amy-
    I have been using this for a couple days now and absolutely love it! It definitely adds volume and keeps my lashes curled all day. This is a keeper!

    On another note I was so bummed Chanel didn’t produce the Rouge Noir liquid liner and decided to repromote Grenat instead. That is just not dark enough for me. 🙁

    • I was looking forward to the Rouge Noir liner too! It was my most anticipated item from the collection. A few let-downs from Chanel this year, including two black eyeshadows that never materialized (Nirvana being one), all the ones I was most looking forward to! I like Grenat, but was looking forward to another reddish eyeliner.

      Anyway, the shape of the brush doesn’t seem to be too different from the Inimitable mascara. Would you say they are comparable? Also, I want to know how easy this is to remove. I’ve found the Chanel mascaras I’ve tried to be very difficult to remove (on me). It takes a ong time for my micellar waters to melt them off. Seem to have better luck with Dior or L’Oreal mascaras.

      • Leila, this Le Volume is more dramatic than Inimitable. It really gives length, volume and curl much better than Inimitable. I use an oil cleanser to remove–I suspect that it may be harder to remove than Inimitable–but I didn’t do a direct comparison. I stopped using Inimitable a long time ago.

      • Hi Leila,

        This actually removes surprisingly easily for such an intense volumizing mascara. I use a good biphase type remover first: Chanel (my HG), Lancôme, and for the budget minded, Neutrogena. Moisten a pad and let it sit on the eye for 30 seconds then gently wipe. The mascara comes right off without tugging the sensitive eye area. Any remaining residue is easily dispatched by my Tatcha cleansing oil. Your cleansing water would probably do the same for final clean up.

        By the way, the brush is significantly different from Inimitable’s and the mascara itself seems wetter going on as Bisbee mentioned.

  8. Hi Leila
    I use Clarins Instant eye makeup remover for sensitive eyes. It is not too oily and doesn’t irritate my eyes. It removes everything! As Eileen said, moisten the pad and hold on the eyes for 30 seconds.
    The brush on the mascara is definitely different and it applies beautifully.
    I was so looking forward to Nirvana too!

  9. How would you say this compares to Guerlain’s Noir G, if you’ve tried that? When I ordered for Mascara Madness at my local Nordstrom’s I ordered Noir G and they gave me Le 2 instead, so I exchanged it, and now I’m wondering if I made the right choice 🙂

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