Everything you need to know before you get these flirty accessories.
You’ve seen them, probably on a Kardashian—or three. They’re long, thick eyelashes that curl up to the sky like a Barbie dolls’. But how exactly do they get these long, lush lashes? Chances are that if they aren’t natural or glued-on false lash strips, they’re eyelash extensions—Hollywood’s biggest beauty secret. Interested yet? Of course, you are. Here are the eyelash extensions pros and cons you need to know to get those fabulous peepers.
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Eyelash Extensions FAQ
So what are eyelash extensions, exactly?
Eyelash extensions are a professional service that lengthens and thickens the look of your natural eyelashes. Instead of a traditional one-piece lash strip that covers the entire lash line, an esthetician individually glues on a single synthetic or natural eyelash hair to each (or every other) of your natural lashes to create a more dramatic look.
What will I look like?
Possibly like a movie star. From the sultry Kim Kardashian to the doe-eyed Zooey Deschanel, many fabulous celebrities wear eyelash extensions or fake eyelash strips to enhance their eyes. Eyelash salons usually offer extensions between 9 millimeter and 15 millimeter, so you can choose how natural or glamourous you’d like to look.
How long do eyelash extensions last?
Unlike mascara, which washes off at the end of the night, or fake eyelash strips, which are good for only a few of uses, eyelash extensions can last up to six weeks. Salons often recommend coming in every two to three weeks to get a touch-up that refills the extensions that have fallen out.
How much do eyelash extensions cost?
Eyelash extensions range roughly between $100 to $400. You can search discount sites such as Groupon or Gilt to find deals, but beware: No matter what the price, be sure to thoroughly check the reviews, look at before and after pictures, and ensure the lash technician has an esthetician’s license.
Can you put mascara on eyelash extensions?
Technically you can put on mascara; however, it’s not really recommended. Mascara will cake on the extensions and when you remove the mascara you’re likely to remove the extensions, as well. Besides, with your flirty new extensions you won’t need mascara anyway.
Do eyelash extensions damage your natural lashes?
There’s a big misconception that eyelash extensions damage your natural lashes, but the truth is they don’t. If applied correctly and cared for properly, eyelash extensions won’t ruin your natural lashes. Just be sure to follow the instructions laid out by your technician and don’t rub your eyes since this can cause lash loss.
What happens during the procedure? And does it hurt?
First, a lash technician tapes your eyelids closed, then applies the extensions one-by-one to each of your natural lashes (or every other lash, depending on the service) with surgical glue. During the treatment, you will be laying down for anywhere between an hour and a half to two hours, so feel free to take a well-deserved nap. And no, it doesn’t hurt.
Everything Else You Need to Know About Eyelash Extensions
Caring for eyelash extensions
These tricks of the trade will keep your eyes looking more Kardashian and less like a wounded spider:
- After the first application, don’t get your lashes wet for the first 24 to 48 hours (depending on the glue).
- Avoid steam, sweat, and hair dryers (which can weaken the glue) during the first 24 hours.
- Sleep on your back to avoid crushing or repositioning your eyelashes on your pillow (this is crucial in the first 24 hours).
- Avoid using oil-based makeup remover (which can also weaken the lash glue), liquid or gel eyeliner, and mascara (you won’t need this anyway).
- Use a dry spoolie brush or lash comb to brush your lashes once a day. This helps avoid tangled lashes.
- Finally, be careful not to rub your eyes and avoid touching or playing with the eyelash extensions.
How to take off eyelash extensions
Trying to remove eyelash extensions yourself can damage your natural lashes. It’s recommended that you go to a professional to get your eyelash extensions removed. This ensures that your extensions are taken off safely. You can also wait for the lashes to fall out during their natural cycle, which is roughly between 6 to 8 weeks.
Types of eyelash extensions
The three most popular types of eyelash extensions are mink, synthetic, and silk. While Beyoncé famously uses luxurious mink eyelash extensions, we highly recommend starting off with synthetic stands. Synthetic eyelashes are less expensive than the other types, less likely to create allergic reactions, and they’re cruelty-free! Mink eyelashes are the most natural-looking options, are lightweight, and thus a bit more expensive than other lashes. Silk eyelashes are thicker and have a uniform curl, which is ideal for achieving that va-va-voom look for a special occasion, like a wedding.
The Best Lash Salons in Your City
Ready to take the leap? We scoured the globe (OK, the internet) to find the highest-rated lash salons with a ton of good reviews. Check out these studios that have five stars (and nothing less!) on Yelp.
Atlanta – Lashful
Austin – Haute House Lash & Beauty Bar
Boston – Elite Lash Studio
Chicago – Linxia Beauty Works
Dallas – Lash.i.candy
Denver – Lashology
Honolulu – Salon Island Beauty
Las Vegas – Sassy Lashes
Los Angeles – Love Lash
NYC – Eye Design Studio
Orange County – Yalda Beauty Bar
Orlando – GT Lashes & Beauty
Portland – Wink Lash Parlour
Pittsburgh – Addicted Salon Spa & Tanning
San Diego – Garnet Lash Studios
San Francisco – Artisan Lashes
Seattle – Stylus
Tampa – Paola Beauty Boutique