In most cases, heading to a bar at 10 a.m. on a weekday is cause for concern. When the bar is located on the fifth floor of Saks Fifth Avenue and serves up mascara, eyeshadow, eyeliner and brow treatments, but absolutely no alcohol, there’s really nothing to worry about.
This is what I kept in mind when I stopped by the department store to visit Eyeko’s Bespoke Mascara Bar. I was meeting with Neil Scibelli, the makeup brand’s chief mascara editor, who promised to help me pick out a custom lash treatment.
He was armed with 10 brushes that varied in bristle size, length and shape, plus 11 formulas in black, brown and blue, as well as one made specifically for eyelash extensions. “The focus of the Bespoke Bar is really about meeting your lash needs,” Mr. Scibelli told Observer. “Clients tell us that their mascara is always running, it’s not curling or it’s flaking too much. We listen to those needs and create a new mascara based on custom formulas.”
My lash issue was specific: my current mascara was clumpy and I didn’t particularly like the huge cone shaped brush that was dispersing these clumps. However, most women come to Eyeko’s bar looking to simply amp up the drama. “We get a lot women who just want the biggest, boldest lashes,” Mr. Scibelli said as he coated my lashes. “But we also get cycling instructors or yoga teachers who get one brush with two formulas; one waterproof and the other not. And we get people who come in looking for two brushes.”
For my clumping problem Mr. Scibelli tried out two brushes and three formulas on my eyes. The first was a tiny, thin brush that would separate my lashes, while evenly coating them with mascara. It was nice, but nothing special. The second was a brush that looked like undulating sound waves, but resulted in a look that was far too dramatic for everyday wear.
Finally, we tried a brush shaped like a wedge, that gets wider towards the outside of the eye and molds the lashes into a cat eye shape. This one was the golden ticket; it wasn’t too dramatic, but still separated my lashes without clumping.
Eyeko’s Bespoke Bar opened this past October and is the only space in New York that offers this customizable experience, which costs $45 per session. It is discreetly tucked into a corner of Saks, not in the middle of the overwhelming beauty floor, where perfume is wielded like a weapon and makeup artists hound passerbys with new lip colors. While Eyeko does accept appointments, they also have time for walk-ins on a daily basis. They also store customer’s data, with their mascara preferences, so reordering the customized mascara is completed with ease.