ck one mascara by Calvin Klein – First Impression

ck one mascarack one mascara

The Ulta Rewards member birthday gift for 2014 was a full-sized tube of Calvin Klein’s ck one mascara. I ran through my last test subject, Guerlain Maxi-Lash pretty quickly and this one was next in line.

ck one mascara wand

Available exclusively at Ulta, ck one mascara features a wand that can be adjusted via a twist of the cap depending on what effect you wish for your lashes – definition or volume. Before actually opening it, I was under the impression that when the cap was twisted that an additional set of bristles would protrude from the wand; I was intrigued by what I perceived to be a cool meetup of engineering and beauty. When I opened it, it was the first thing I examined.

This is what the wand looks like out of the tube. The stuff, plastic bristles are medium length and are arranged straight down the “barrel” of the wand in tidy rows:

ck one mascara wand - close up - define

Instead of unfurling additional bristles, however, when you twist the cap of the ck one mascara, it retracts towards the cap in a spiral motion; the bristles arrange themselves in a spiral pattern (it reminds me of bareMinerals’ Lash Domination mascara). The bristles are scrunched closer together:

ck one mascara wand - close up - volume

I must admit I was a little disappointed that my perception was inaccurate, but this is through no fault of theirs; the ck one mascara did not advertise that this was the case, I just misinterpreted the little sticker that was on the cap.

Having used my ck one mascara about five times now, I find that the formula is agreeable – neither too wet nor dry, it coats my lashes well and doesn’t take eons to dry. I was skeptical about the twist working enough magic to make a difference between definition and volume.

Here are my lashes curled with no product on them:

ck one mascara - bare, curled lashes

Here is one coat of mascara on each eye – used the defintion configuration on my right eye (left, pictured) and the volumizing configuration on the left:

ck one mascara - one coat

Here’s my left eye, closer

ck one mascara - one coat, volume

Right eye, closer. I’m afraid I had trouble getting the focus on my lashes here…as it turns out, awkwardly-close selfies with a DSLR are surprisingly challenging to capture:

ck one mascara - one coat, define

Now that we’ve gotten past the creepy close-ups of my eyes, let’s get down to business. In a single coat I found it to both define and volumize my lashes. The volume came without clumping my lashes together, which is a problem I often have with such products. I imagine additional coats would have a more substantial effect.

The color I received, 800 True Black is purportedly their darkest black available, but it is not the blackest mascara I have tried. The overall effect I achieve with this particular ck one mascara is not dramatic and is very much so daytime or office-appropriate without looking, “too done.”

As removal goes, it doesn’t require elbow grease but it is not as easy to remove as I’d like; I have to, “scrub,” a little with a my holy grail Ponds wipe. It seems that oil-based removal would suit this particular mascara better although it is not waterproof. Fortunately, it does not flake throughout the day but I haven’t tested it against rain or tears (yet).

In all, ck one mascara is decent and I will finish the tube without complaint. Once I run out, I will probably salvage and clean the wand to use with other formulas down the road. At $18, I would probably not repurchase (if I am spending that much I would go with bareMinerals Flawless Definition) at this time, but if it ever went on sale and I was in the market I would reconsider though it would still not be my first choice over my drugstore picks.

Did you redeem your Ulta Rewards birthday gift this year? Have you tried the ck one mascara – what were your feelings on it?