Despite our very best efforts when we try to amp up our lash volume using mascara alone, we always end up with something that can only be described as a mono-lash. 

Applying layer upon layer of the black lacquer may be a habit you've developed over the years to create a fuller effect and sure, it does work. Sometimes.

However, InStyle's Beauty Editor and mascara aficionado Malena Harbers has exclusively revealed her tried and tested lash secrets that'll help you get that doe-eyed dolly look without running your mascara dry. 

What do you need? A couple of items we guarantee are already lurking in your make-up bag... 

First things first, Malena recommends you find a mascara that works for you. Her ultimate go-to is Lancôme's Hypnôse Waterproof Mascara (which you'll find at John Lewis for £22.50) and we're more than happy to follow her expert suit.

Taking you through the application step-by-step in the video above, Malena starts by prepping her lashes with a curler to enhance their natural shape. Next, she applies a thin layer of mascara to her top lashes, making sure to catch every single one in the wands densely bristled brush. Then, we get to the good stuff... 

Instead of going straight on to the next liquid layer, Malena suggests dusting your now tacky-to-touch lashes with some loose powder. Yes, REALLY! Why, you ask? When you apply the next coat of mascara on-top, they instantly look so much thicker. We were sceptical at first but trust us; it works. 

Now, depending on how dramatic you want your lashed to look you can leave it there or, if you're anything like Malena, you can go on to apply not one, not two but THREE more coats. Yep, the statement stakes are high with this one... 

And there you have it — gorgeously full, dolly looking lashing that Olivia Palermo would be proud to flutter. Just in time for all that sultry Valentine's Day eye-contact, huh?

Check out the rest of our amazing beauty how-to videos and all the winners of InStyle's Best Beauty Buys 2015 right here