Brown Mascara vs Black Mascara

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If there is one type of makeup that you’ll see in almost every kit, it is mascara. Mascara can help instantly lift your eye and make them look better.

Like most makeup products in the market today, mascara comes in different varieties. One option is the color of the mascara.

Which team do you support in the battle of brown mascara vs black mascara? When should you wear brown, when should you wear black? Does it matter?

To figure that out, let’s take a closer look at the two mascaras. We’ll go over which one to choose depending on a few deciding factors. Regardless, you can use either one. The decision is mostly about preference and the look you want to achieve!


Brown Mascara 101

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When you go and shop for mascara, the most common color available is black. However, there are brands that offer brown mascara .

Brown mascara has a reputation for being a sub-par product compared to black mascara. But it still may be a good choice, however not all people could pull it off.

Most women prefer a dark black color for their mascara. Yet some still lean toward brown mascara. There are various shades of brown mascara available across brands. It can be a challenge to find the right shade of brown that goes well with your skin tone.

Generally, mascara that is of a darker hue is mostly chosen to make a dramatic look. But, brown mascara can look great on those who have fair skin, and those that naturally have lighter hair colors.

Brown mascara can complement your lashes if you find the right shade that works well with your makeup style. Although the brown color could be used for a more natural look, it can still give you that extra oomph.

Brown mascara can complement your lashes if you find the right shade that works well with your makeup style. Although the brown color could be used for a more natural look, it can still give you that extra oomph.

As we’ve mentioned, there are multiple different shades of brown out there. A brownish-red one is perfect for those who prefer warm-toned colors.

Some may use their brown mascara not just on their lashes but also on their eyebrows when the color is similar to it. It helps give your eyebrows extra length or volume when needed. Plus it can help hold everything in place as well.

You can experiment on how you use your brown mascara and many people have made it work for them.

When choosing a brown mascara, generally try to avoid colors that match your skin color. That could make your eyelashes blend with the mascara color, which could make it less visible.

So avoid those shades if that isn’t your goal.

Black Mascara 101

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Black mascaras are more common than brown ones. Black is by far the most popular, and the “default” choice for mascara colors. It goes with everything.

When you are trying to make your eyelashes look more obvious, people often gravitate to the darkest color. That gives the lashes high contrast to your skin, which brings attention to the eyes.

Black mascara is selected when you want a dramatic look for your eyelashes. Plus, the black mascara could look great with any eye makeup that you have.

It could be used to both lengthen or add volume to your eyelashes to make them look more prominent. Additionally, it adds that dark color to your lashes so they can be easily seen.

Due to the darkness of the color of the black mascara, dramatic eyelashes could be easily achieved as compared to light-colored eyelashes.

However, sometimes for those with lighter skin tone, lighter eye colors, or lighter eyelashes color, it can sometimes look too dramatic, particularly if you’re aiming for a more natural look.

The versatility of the black mascara is a reason why so many brands only produce black mascaras. Additionally, black also fits most people of various skin tones.

Brown Mascara vs Black Mascara: How To Choose

Makeup gurus and makeup enthusiasts have both brown and black mascara in their arsenal. They use them interchangeably according to what their makeup calls for.

For someone who is still torn between the two, here is a guide on how to choose between brown and black mascara. This will be based on a variety of factors such as your eye color, makeup style, lash color, eyebrow color, and skin tone.

Eye Color

If you are having trouble deciding whether to go for the brown or the black mascara, the simplest thing you can do is to start with the color of your eyes.

Your eye color can help you select the flattering color that you could use for your eyelashes. But, this doesn’t mean that you should stick to a specific mascara color just because your eye is of a specific color.

Anyone can wear either black or brown mascara and pull it off. It’s just that some looks could be achieved by either of the mascara for certain eye colors.

Anyone can wear either black or brown mascara and pull it off

In general, those with darker eye colors like black or dark brown would look flattering with black mascara. You typically want to get the darkest shade possible. This can help add extra depth to your eye makeup.

Brown mascaras are usually more flattering for those with lighter eye colors like green and blue. When you use brown mascara with those eye colors, it tends to look more natural (this can be good or bad, depending on your goal).

Those with hazel eye colors look great with brown mascara as they have a lighter color than those with black and dark brown eyes. However, black mascara can also look natural and not too harsh or too dramatic on them.

Makeup Style

You should also consider when selecting the mascara is the makeup style that you have, as well as the final look that you want to achieve. However, either mascara can still be used alone and can still make you look stunning.

Black mascara is versatile. It can look great with any eye makeup, yet it is geared more toward providing a dramatic or bold look.

Using black mascara is one of the sure-fire ways to enhance the deeper eye color. It helps easily define every lash you have.

For a more natural look, you can’t go wrong with brown mascara. The color isn’t as dark, it’s not as extreme. It is pigmented enough to emphasize your eyelashes without looking too harsh or dramatic.

Brown mascara works great for natural makeup or those where you used warmer tones. The brown mascara tends to provide a more subtle look than the classic black one.

Your Natural Eyebrow And Lash Color

Some people have lighter natural colors for their eyebrows and eyelashes. If you are naturally blonde and have lighter-colored eyebrows and eyelashes, you know the struggle of those lashes not being so visible.

One way to help your natural lashes show without being over the top is to use brown mascara. It can help you to get that natural-looking lashes by adding color, volume, and length to your lightly-colored lashes.

Of course, you can still use black mascara with your light-colored eyelashes. Don’t forget about filling in or doing your eyebrows. This is because if they are naturally too light, you could end up having raccoon eyes.

Even those with dark-colored eyelashes could still use brown mascara. The mascara can still add color, volume, and dimension to your lashes.

Split the Difference

Some people with darker eyelashes may opt to use brown eyelashes only on their lower eyelashes. It helps add more volume to it giving you a natural look.

Skin Tone and Mascara

Another common factor that can help you choose the mascara you use is your skin tone. But once again, remember that these are general guidelines and you can still use whatever you want.

Either the black or the brown mascara could look great in all skin tones. However, those with lighter skin tones could benefit more from using brown mascara. That’s because even with a lighter pigment, it could provide enough contrast against their skin.

Brown mascara usually looks natural when used by those who have fair skin.

Those who have medium to dark skin tones will usually look best with black mascara. The deep black color can help define the eyelashes against the darker skin tone.

Brown mascara could still be used by those with darker skin complexion. It can give a highlighted effect on the eyelashes.


Either black or brown mascara will look great on anyone. But typically those with darker skin tones and darker eye colors will want to lean toward black for contrast. Those with lighter eye and skin tones will want brown if they want a natural look, and black if they want a dramatic look.

No matter what color the mascara that you use is, you have to make sure that you check on the formula or brand. You are applying this makeup near your eyes so you have to make sure it doesn’t irritate or infect your eyes.

Also, remember that you should replace your mascara after three to six months. The formula is liquid and could harbor bacteria. Learn how to keep your mascara going as long as possible.

Although the formula comes with ingredients to help prevent that, it should still not be used beyond six months. You shouldn’t risk your eye health simply because of mascara.

Written by Kayla Young

Kayla is the founder of LuxeLuminous. She has worked professionally in the tanning industry for years. She has been interested in esthetics since childhood, and has tried every hair, skin, and makeup product ever produced (more or less).