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F is for Flashy Lashes: Lancôme Paris Ôscillation Mascara

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Lancôme Ôscillation

Well this is a different kind of vibrating wand for women. And although it might not be in particularly good taste, you can use it in public.

So says the chippie who does her makeup in trains, planes and automobiles. And streetcars (my sister has photographic proof).

Designed to curl, lengthen and volumize even the teeniest of lashes, the much-hyped Lancôme Paris Ôscillation mascara ($39 CAN/$34 US) lives up to the buzz.

The formula is smooth, gel-like, and the specially designed wiper-bit in the mouth of the tube ensures the flexible polymer brush is evenly loaded as you withdraw it. But all the work is in the wand. Powered by a tiny, battery-operated generator in the handle, the brush hits about 7,000 vibrations per minute. "I observed makeup artists making a zig-zag movement from the base of the lashes up when applying mascara," says Jean-Louis Guéret (right), the man behind the design of all Lancôme's mascara brushes. "I want this to give every woman the same expert results, whatever her level of skill."


If, like me, you're used to 30-plus quick wand strokes per eye as a single coat, using this mascara takes some adjustment. The trick is to hold the wand at the base of your lashes and slowwwly move it straight up to the tips, and reapply at the tips for more length. Guéret had to tell me to slow down, actually. He's got his own application down -- he gave our group of journalists a demo. Click twice on the image for a blowup and check out his lashes. The curl, length, drama -- all Ôscillation.

I'm still adjusting to Ôscillation. I'm usually in such a rush, making up on-the-go, that I automatically grab for something that requires no thought, no application consideration. When bold lashes are my goal, however, this one delivers. I just have to remember I'm not the one who has to Oscillate Wildly.

Lancôme Paris is available at drug, department and Sephora stores in Canada and the US, and at and

Mascara image courtesy of Lancôme Paris.