Mascara is my fave makeup item – like it used to be a can’t live without it, take on a desert island favorite.

There are fantastic store bought mascaras that are void of cruel practices and harmful chemicals while providing oomph to lashes. Unfortunately, mascara packaging that can be recycled is non-existent in Australia. And even if I did have the option to use recyclable mascara the constant use of resources to make each packaged container and all the mascara wands did not sit right with me especially when I can reuse the same wand and container.

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I toiled, mixed, melted and swirled a variety of homemade mascara recipes. I had found an OK recipe but was not 100 percent happy with it. I wanted something easy – something I was used too. With the various tutorials out there for homemade mascara, I have discovered that sometimes a recipe requires tweaking to allow the end result to suit the individual.

I persevered and finally, FINALLY made an easy homemade mascara that is perfect for my lashes and maybe even yours too.

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Plastic Free and Zero Waste Mascara Recipe

Adapted from here.

plastic free zero waste mascara


  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated soap
  • 1/2 teaspoon activated charcoal
  • 3 drops almond oil (can substitute for coconut or any oil you like)
  • 1/8 teaspoon purified water


Method: Place your finely grated soap into a heatproof dish and warm on the stove. I put my heatproof dish into a pot on the stove. As the soap warms up add the water then add the activated charcoal and oil. Mix together with a wooden skewer and pour into your designated container. Let set. Wash your heatproof dish and skewer for next time.

To use: Wet your mascara wand with a drop of water from the tap or use purified water. Rub across your mascara and apply to your lashes as you would normal mascara. The mascara dries quickly and there is no flaking.

For more volume, I let one layer dry then add another layer of mascara.  To remove simply use a wet washcloth.

I have been using this mascara for over a year and I can report no sore eyes or inflammation. I make a fresh batch every two weeks and keep everything clean.

I make my own activated charcoal. If you don’t want to make your own, you can buy activated charcoal from various chemists too.  It can be messy, so make sure to lay down a towel when using.

None of the ingredients used have an EWG rating beyond 0 – pretty awesome right?

Have you tried to make your own mascara? How did it turn out? Let us know in the comments below.

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