Eyelash Extensions: They may be pretty, but are they for you?

What are eyelash extensions?

Eyelash extensions are an exciting way to extend the length and thickness of your eyelashes. They are single (or sometimes fanned) strands of synthetic eyelashes that are curved to replicate a natural eyelash. They are applied to each natural eyelash one by one for a natural, beautiful and luscious look. They can come in a variety of curls, such as B curl, C curl, D curl or J curl.

How long do they last?

If properly cared for, eyelash extensions can last up to 6 weeks before a touch-up (or fill) is needed. The extension will shed with the natural growth cycle of your lashes.

Why get eyelash extensions?

1.       They can improve the length and thickness of your lashes without the application of false lashes on a daily basis.

2.       They’re perfect for a big event or a vacation since you’ll still be able to bat your lashes all seductively without mascara going down your face.

3.       You’ll look glam 24/7

What can I expect during the application?  

Before your extensions can go on, your lash tech may use a cleansing solution over your eyes to remove any excess makeup and oils. Afterwards, two eyepads are applied under your eyes to keep away your bottom lashes. This is applied very close to the waterline of your eye and can cause your eyes to water. After the eyepad is applied, the client must keep their eyes fully closed for the entire procedure which can take up to 2 hours. Once the procedure is over, some lash techs may allow the glue to dry completely before removing the eye pads. Once the eyepads are off, you’re free to go as you please.

BUT WAIT.

Taking care of your eyelash extensions:

Proper maintenance is required to keep your lashes voluminous and healthy.

For the first 24 hours, you cannot wet your lashes whatsoever. No showering, saunas, crying or what have you until 24 hours pass. If the glue comes in contact with water, it can spread onto other lashes causing them to stick together, or they can fall off completely. Trust me I’ve seen it all and you MUST follow this rule.

Your lashes also need to be combed daily. Those of us that are crazy sleepers know that when you wake up in the A.M. it takes serious effort to open your eyes as you’ve been tossing, turning, kicking and rubbing your face into the pillow at night. Your lashes may clump all together to one side, or some may be sticking sideways. This is where the trusty mascara wand comes in. Using a clean mascara wand, gently brush your lashes first from the top, then from the bottom. Daily brushing will keep your oily hands off your lashes and therefore, make them last longer.

You cannot use oil-based products while wearing eyelash extensions. This means changing your eye makeup remover to an oil-free formula and skipping on the face oil. The oils will break down your lash glue and eventually you’ll be left with nothing but a few strands. Always opt for water-based products and that includes face concealers and foundations!

Can I use mascara with my lash extensions?

Mascara can be used but most of the time it’s not even necessary. Your lash extensions may be full and long enough on their own that you most likely won’t need a mascara whatsoever. Keep in mind that the mascara you should be using is oil-free and safe to use with eyelash extensions. When applying the mascara, only apply it to the tips of your lashes and not to the base of your lash. Most waterproof mascaras can only be removed with an oil-based eye makeup remover and you already know oil is a No-No.

Will eyelash extensions make my natural eyelashes fall out?

This is a question I get asked all the time. The answer to this is no, the actual application of the eyelash on your own will not cause yours to fall out. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.

It’s simple physics, if you apply something that’s denser and heavier on something that cannot support it, chances are gravity will bring it down with it. This applies to your lashes.

If you have small, thin lashes naturally, gluing on a heavy eyelash (or fan set) on your lash will cause pressure and heaviness to your natural lash. This may cause your natural lash to break off. I have gotten a handful of clients that have gotten the long, voluminous look applied elsewhere and come to me once half their lashes are gone, begging for help. This shouldn’t happen! Not only should your lash tech understand and inform you about your options but they should also ask you to do some research on the subject before your application.

I have sensitive eyes. Will eyelash extensions make that worse?

It’s safe to say everyone has different reactions to different products and what may irritate your eyes, may not irritate someone else’s. Let you lash tech know ahead of time that you suffer from any of the following:

Dry Eyes: Your lash tech may opt for a C curl which may sit better on the lashes to allow them to close completely, helping to block air coming into your eyes. A J curl on a sensitive eye, may be too high of an angle upward, which gives you the feel of your lashes being pulled up and causing them to dry out.

Sensitive Eyes: You may want to opt for a classic look instead of a volume, full look. The classic look will feel more natural on your lashes which may, in turn, keep you from feeling the urge to rub your eyes. They may also suggest Mink lashes which are a lighter, whispier overall look and are made thinner for those with thin eyelashes.

Allergies: If you have any latex or plastic allergies you must let your lash tech know immediately. Some glues may contain latex as the prime ingredient which will make your eyes puffy, red and extremely itchy and irritated. Some glues can also contain surprising ingredients which can contraindicate your use with them. Your lash tech should have a glue that is made for sensitive eyes. This formula may not hold the lash on as long, however, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

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