The Insider’s Guide To Eyelash Extensions

Almost every gal wants to have long, full, fluttery eyelashes. Many of us struggle with finding the right mascara and find putting on strip lashes a pain. If you like the idea of instantly longer and thicker eyelashes, semi-permanent lash extensions—no longer reserved exclusively for A-listers or the red carpet—can make a dramatic difference in not only your look, but also your beauty routine.

Individual eyelash extensions are probably one of the greatest beauty trends ever and we’re here to tell you why.

Feels weightless and natural
Individual eyelash extensions should feel light. Our eyelash extensions feel weightless and natural when they’re on. Unlike strip lashes, individual eyelashes are carefully applied directly to your natural lashes so you shouldn’t feel a thing and this eliminates worrying about whether half your eyelashes are coming off and when you need to re-apply more glue.

Time saving… Your makeup routine is cut in half
Getting ready in the morning can be a long process, especially if your beauty routine involves a lot. If you wear make-up you probably finish your routine with a swoop of mascara, however, we’ve all experienced the rush of finally finishing our make-up but we’re late for work, school or an event and put our mascara on as quick as we can but end up getting blobs of it on our eyelids – not a good look.

Extensions take mascara smudges, clumps, and flakes totally out of the equation. No matter how rough your day or night was, you will always wake up looking gorgeous with absolutely no makeup. Many of our clients also report they see less wrinkles and fine line round their eyes as they aren’t constantly removing their stubborn eye makeup and pulling at the delicate skin around the eye area.

Having individual eyelash extensions alleviates the need to curl your lashes, apply mascara, and for some wearing eye makeup all together. Some clients report their morning routine is reduced a full 20 to 30 minutes as a result of their lash extensions and let’s face it, in the morning, every second counts!

With that said, taking off your makeup at night instantly becomes easier, too.

They’re customizable
Before application, you should talk to your specialist about how you’d like your eyelashes to look and the main concerns with your natural lashes—i.e. why you booked an appointment in the first place. Do you want length? Volume? Fullness? Is this for a special, once-in-a-lifetime event? Do you want to draw attention to the shape or color of your eyes? Once you’ve answered those questions, the specialist will help you choose the perfect set for your needs, and one that will enhance your eye shape. So no, you’re not going to be walking around with the same eyelashes as your co-worker.

Anti-aging

Many older women who have a bit of skin laxity on their upper eyelids experience a little lifting effect when they get extensions. The curvature and length of the lashes can also cover the lid a bit more, camouflaging the lax skin. Additionally, our natural lashes get thinner and shorter—and sometimes even gray—as we age, so making them look thicker, longer and darker can give a youthful look to the face. When done by a qualified expert, extensions can be a great option.

Another anti-aging upside to falsies? Because you no longer need to wear mascara or use a mechanical eyelash curler, you won’t be removing as much makeup or pulling at your lashes like you did before. Eyelid skin is the thinnest and most sensitive skin on our bodies, and harsh chemicals in many makeup removers can leave it red, dry or irritated. If you wear waterproof makeup, you’re most likely using even stronger makeup removers and more rubbing. Avoiding this irritation and unnecessary rubbing of this area will result in fewer fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes. And if you wear waterproof makeup, you’re most likely using even stronger makeup removers and more rubbing.

You don’t need to do anything!
Apart from the aftercare of your eyelash extensions you won’t have to do a thing. Goodbye mascara, curlers and strip lashes… hello new fluttery eyelashes!

However, there are some things to consider when choosing them.

First, If you’re already thinking… “I’ve tried individual lashes, they took off my real eyelashes and damaged them, they didn’t last long and irritated my eyes” then this simply means that they weren’t properly applied. If individual eyelashes aren’t bonded to your natural eyelashes properly they’re more likely to fall out quicker and using the wrong type, or too much glue can cause irritation to your eyes and damage your natural eyelashes.

it’s important to note that you are not expected to be a lash extension expert when you step into the salon for the first time. Our lash stylist will consult with you to discuss your preferences, assess your distinctive eye shape, your skin tone and the quality of your natural lashes. Lashes come in various lengths, curvatures and widths, which are carefully selected to create a custom look for each client. Our lash experts can assist you in crafting the perfect lashes to match your features.

There are also different materials used to make lash extensions—these are the three types:

Mink
Synthetic polyester fiber processed to be very flexible and light with a slight sheen. These are the lightest of all extensions and give a soft, feathery look.

Silk
Synthetic fiber processed in the same manner as mink, but darker in appearance and will create a more dramatic look.

Synthetic
Polyester fiber lashes that are the heaviest and boldest of the three, and will create the most dramatic look.

Ask about the kind of adhesive the salon uses too (each faux lash is glued to a natural lash). You only want American-made medical- or surgical-grade glue that is formaldehyde-free and FDA-approved. Exposure to formaldehyde in the eye area can cause swelling and puffiness. Sometimes even safe, formaldehyde-free glue can cause irritation, and in these cases, stylists can switch you to a hypoallergenic version, although some complain it doesn’t hold as well.

Another important factor to consider is the lash stylist you choose to apply them. Just like how you would take your time to choose a personal trainer, doctor or surgeon, you should do the same with your lash stylist. Safety should be your number-one concern. Finding someone who is certified to apply the lashes is a must. Depending on the state, the stylist also needs to be licensed, not just certified. Do your homework! I always suggest doing your research to find the right lash stylist in your city, and avoid going to any lash stylist that can see you at that exact moment, or who is offering a lower rate. I have seen way too many improper applications and damaged lashes over the course of my career. Even if you need to wait one month to see the right lash stylist, trust me it’s worth the wait!”

Here are some other best practices we recommend following when getting lash extensions:

It’s very important to avoid steam and wetting your lashes for the first 48 hours. You can of course wash your wash your face and take a shower, just make sure that no water touches your lashes. You also need to avoid rubbing your eyes and playing, picking or excessively touching your lashes.

Only use cleansers on and around the eyes that are specifically formulated to be safe for eyelash extensions. Other products may contain ingredients that can weaken the bond of your lash extensions and cause them to shed prematurely. If you are making an investment in extensions in the first place, you surely don’t want to see them go to waste.

Never use a mechanical eyelash curler. If your extensions are starting to fall, use a heated eyelash curler like the Acavado Heated Eyelash Curler ($30) to gently lift them.

Do not sleep face down. Try to sleep on your back or side, and use a silk or satin pillowcase, which is gentler on your lashes.

Wearing mascara will shorten the lifespan of your lashes, but if you must, use a water-soluble formula only.

Use an oil-free makeup remover and do not use any oil-based products or heavy creams around the eyes.

Lashes do need to be brushed every so often with a spoolie brush, but just don’t overdo it when you brush.

With proper care, lash extensions should last up to six weeks before they all shed, but most people get them filled every two or three weeks to keep them full. Lash extensions can fall off or shed in different ways. Typically, your natural lashes grow to maturity and the lash extensions shed with them during their normal shedding process. A common notion is that lash extensions ruin your natural lashes, but this is not the case, and this only happens as the result of improper application or the lash stylist not selecting the correct type of lash. To keep your natural lashes healthy while wearing falsies, apply a conditioning serum, such as GrandeLash-MD ($65), RevitaLash Advanced Eyelash Conditioner ($98) or NeuLash Lash Enhancing Serum ($105), each night.

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