Review & Comparison: Shu Uemura vs Shiseido Eyelash Curlers
Update (2018): This post is living proof that the two most popular lash curlers won’t work for everyone, so I’ve got a fresh new batch rounded up complete with measurements – you can check it out here!
Eyelash curlers. Sigh. Both my brother and my husband have remarked that they look like tiny torture devices; they’re sort of right, but not in the way they meant. Actually using them is fine, it’s just the process of finding the right one that’s sort of long and painful. I’m currently on a quest to find a curler that’s convenient enough to use to keep it from just sitting in a drawer all the time; maybe the things I discover will help someone else? First up we have two popular lash curlers from Shiseido and Shu Uemura.
The Shiseido and Shu Uemura curlers are the standard design – hinged clamps with guard bars at either end of the clamp itself. Both curlers are approximately the same size, overall. The hinge on the Shu is a little deeper and the finger loops are a bit rounder. I don’t have trouble fitting my fingers into the loops on either one of them.
The bottom bar of the Shu curler has a tiny bit more downward curvature than the Shiseido, but otherwise they look very similar. On the Shiseido curler, the top bar doesn’t meet up all the way across the pad until you clamp it down. I’m not sure if that’s by design or not, but I have to think it means there’s more pressure on the center of the curler than the outer edges. The Shu clamp lines up evenly all the way across.
The Shiseido curler is a tiny bit shorter across the width, and less curved front-to-back.
The pads are very similar – approximately the same size and made from the same material. The Shiseido pad has a bit of an angle to it while the Shu pad is cut straight up and down. Both seem very durable and the top bar of the curlers doesn’t cut into them. Both curlers come with one pad in the curler and one extra. Shiseido sells replacement pads separately, but Shu Uemura does not – they recommend replacing the entire curler. It’s worth noting that the Shiseido pads will fit in the Shu curler with no problems.
I was curious to see the exact size and shape differences between the two, so I rested the tops on piece of paper and traced around the inside of the top bar. The Shu Uemura is a tiny bit wider but quite a bit deeper than the Shiseido.
So, there are some variations in size, shape and function, but the real test of an eyelash curler is how well it matches up with your eye shape. Which one was perfect for me? Well, neither. The width of my eye is a whopping 27mm, so both of these curlers are too large.
Length-wise, the Shiseido curler should be a better fit, but it’s too shallow for the curvature of my eye. I have trouble getting the curler close to the base of my lashes on the outer corner, so it grabs them about halfway out and makes a sharp, unnatural-looking bend. I also have a tendency to accidentally pinch the center of my eyelid if I try too hard to get it close to the base of my outer lashes.
Even though it’s a little larger, the Shu curler is a better fit for how my eye curves. The only problem is due to the length, I have to hold it at an angle to get it close to the base of my outer lashes, and then it misses the inner lashes entirely. I can hit the inner part of my eye with a second pass, but the whole thing is just a little awkward to maneuver. It is a lot easier to avoid pinching myself though, and the curl looks more natural.
In Short: Both curlers feel solid and well-made, but neither one is perfect for my eye shape. Of the two, the Shu Uemura is a better fit for me, but the quest continues.