Lashes here! Lashes there! Lashes, Lashes everywhere!

All of us ladies love lashes that deserve applause on occasion.. Some prefer sexy and sleek, some desire that voluptuous kapow, some the near natural addition that leaves room for question… Are they?? Or aren’t they?? Now with lashes available in so many types, colours, styles, application techniques and all the here say that goes with each, how do you know what is what!?

Here’s a little rundown on each type; the pros and cons and who they are most suitable for, to help you decide on either your own or your clients next set of lash extensions! 

Synthetic eyelash extensions: These are made from a polished, acrylic material and are the firmest/sturdiest of all. In appearance, they are a little shinier or glossier than the mink or synthetic, and when applied thickly, more dramatic.  While they come in a wide variety of thicknesses and curls, and can be applied to look very natural, these are most popular with ladies wanting a more dramatic and made-up look. They hold their curl extremely well due to their firmness.  Some people don’t find them as ‘soft’ or ‘natural’ looking than silk or mink eyelash extensions, and while they last a long time, the thickest type don’t have quite as good staying power as the silk and definitely not the mink.  They are most suitable for those with healthy, dense lashes of their own, and are generally favoured by younger clients. However because they are heavier in weight than silk or mink eyelash extensions, for many people they are not a great option for long term wear that cause no thinning of natural lashes. On those with very thick natural lashes, they can look simply fantastic!

Silk eyelash extensions: These are the mid-weight type of lash extensions, and are finer and more flexible than the synthetic type. Because they are softer and more porous, they tend to hold on slightly longer than the synthetic ones.  They can be made to look very natural or very glamorous, but sometimes not quite as dense/thick as the synthetic lashes. They are lighter weight, which are often a better option for your lashes if your own lashes are weak or fine. They can definitely last longer than synthetic lashes.  Like synthetic lashes, silk come in a variety of curls and lengths and are a better option for a more natural look, as the curl is not generally as uniform or as ‘plasticky’ as synthetic lashes.  Glamour sets of silk lashes are one of the most popular options for brides, who are looking for lashes that are full and long yet still natural looking. 

Faux-mink lash extensions: Faux-mink lashes are man-made fibers, designed to imitate real mink fur. They are very fine, soft and silky, like real fur however they have been improved, in that if you wet them, they won’t lose their curl. When wet, real mink fur lashes become straight and wispy and you often need to use a curler to curl them back up. Faux-mink lashes are becoming very popular because they are so light and fine, they feel exactly like your own lashes. They are also shinier in texture than the silk lashes, giving the lashes a glossy look. They are (with proper care!) very long lasting and are great if your own lashes are fine and weak. Because they are so light, they don’t tend to drop or twist, even after many weeks of wear. It takes a longer time (around 1.5-2 hours) to apply a set of mink lashes because they are very fine fibers and we tend to apply more. One downside is that even with a lot of volume, they are still beautifully natural and fluffy looking, so those that want a really glamorous/made up “Kardashian” look are better off going for synthetic lashes which give even more volume. 

What if I get eyelash extensions but just don’t like them? They can be removed using a glue-dissolver if you decide that they are not for you. But we’re sure this won’t be the case!

Can everyone use eyelash extensions? Almost everybody can use eyelash extensions to increase the appeal and look of their eyes. The difference will be instant – your eyes will look sparkly and refreshed immediately! As the glue is applied directly to the eyelash, and does not touch the skin, there is very rarely any issue with allergic reactions.

Can I wear contact lenses/glasses with my eyelash extensions? Yes, of course. However you may find it more comfortable to remove contacts before your appointment, or bring your contacts case so you can remove them immediately prior.

How do I take care of my eyelash extensions so they last longer? There are a few simple steps you can take to make sure you get the most out of your eyelash extensions. Do not wet them for 24 hours after application/infills so that the adhesive cures properly Use only oil-free products, especially makeup remover Do not rub them or pull at them Do not use a mechanical eyelash curler If exposed to chlorine, rinse off gently with fresh water afterwards Gently brush them with your lash-wand It’s best not to use mascara on them if possible, if you still chose to do not use waterproof! Cleanse them properly 2-3 times per week Avoid steam rooms, saunas, and bikram yoga where possible.  

I have made a booking to have eyelash extensions put on. Is there anything I need to do beforehand? The main thing is to have clean eyes and eyelashes, free of makeup – especially mascara. Some mascaras contain oils that can prevent eyelash extensions bonding correctly. Be sure to use an oil-free makeup remover if removing makeup, and don’t use any oil or petroleum based products on or around the eye area for 48 hours prior (such as Vaseline or moisturizers). Do not have your eyelashes permed – it is very difficult for us to apply extensions on lashes which have been permed within the last 3 months, as often the extensions will not bond correctly.

Can I wear eye makeup with my eyelash extensions? Yes, you can. Eyeliner and eye shadow are fine – you just need to be a little gentle. We don’t recommend that you apply mascara to your eyelash extensions, as this can cause them to clump together and may contain oils that weaken the adhesive bond on your eyelash extensions, so they will not last as long. If you are intent on wearing mascara, try to use mascara specifically for extensions – your lashes may not be able to infilled if there is too much mascara coating the lashes.

What about removing eye makeup? You must use an OIL FREE makeup remover, as oil based removers will damage the adhesive and could make the eyelash extensions fall off prematurely.

Are eyelash extensions safe when pregnant? Generally speaking, eyelash extensions are a safe and non-invasive cosmetic procedure, low fume adhesive which is manufactured specifically for cosmetic use near the eye is used, and the adhesive does not actually ever touch your skin – as the extensions are glued to the eyelash hairs. Allergic reactions to the adhesive are very rare and when they do present, are easily treated. In saying this, we do not recommend that pregnant women who have never had eyelash extensions before test out the procedure during their pregnancy. The reasons are two-fold – firstly, the lash extension procedure requires you to lay flat on your back for over one hour; a position that is not recommended for women in the advanced stages of pregnancy. Also it requires that you lie quite still – which can be hard if you’re heavily pregnant! Secondly, if you were unlucky enough to have an allergic reaction, your doctor may not be able to give you the required treatment due to your pregnancy, prolonging the reaction. However – if you have been doing your lashes and become pregnant, there’s no problem continuing with the extensions – just let your Lash Specialist know so that they can make sure you are comfortable at all times!

How long do eyelash extensions last? As long as six weeks – as the eyelash extension generally lasts until the natural lash falls out in its natural cycle. However it is advisable to have some infills applied approximately every 2.5 – 3.5 weeks (depending on how well you take care of them) to make sure your eyelashes always look fabulous, as by this stage some would have fallen out as new lashes have grown through. How long your eyelash extensions last also depends on how you care for them (i.e. by removing makeup correctly, not applying heaps of mascara, and not tugging/pulling at your eyelash extensions). Some clients who take extra good care of their lashes get 4+ weeks before they need infills!

Why do I need infills if they last up to six weeks? The eyelash extensions fall out with your natural lash cycle – which is 6-8 weeks, so very gradually – just a few here and there as new baby lashes come through. After about 3 weeks you will start seeing little gaps where the old ones have fallen, and new ones are coming through – so at this point it’s a good time to get infills, so your lashes always look nice and full.

How much do eyelash extensions cost? Prices vary widely but a standard full set of eyelashes, consisting of around 60-65 lashes per eye costs roughly $125, or for a glamour set $150 for around 80-85 lashes per eye applied. It really all depends on the look you are hoping to achieve. Infills generally cost between $50 and $90, depending on how many lashes you have lost. Pricing can also depend on location, training/experience, products used and how busy the salon is.

But I have a friend who said her lashes were damaged by lash extensions? Inexperienced technicians or those who rush (beware beauty salons who do not specialize!) are apt to apply lashes that are too heavy/clumped together which can definitely result in damaged lashes. A certified Lash Specialist should chose lashes that are the right weight and thickness, and apply them carefully, one by one, so that your natural lashes remain as healthy as ever! If you are still concerned, and are a little lash-obsessed I recommend using a growth serum that will not harm your lashes.

Is it true that eyelash extensions can damage my natural lashes? To be completely honest it is not a simple yes or no answer. It depends on the application, the lashes used and how one follows the aftercare advice given by the stylist. Eyelash extensions will not damage your natural lashes if applied correctly. There are two important facts that you should be aware of before you decide which lashes are best for you. Long, thicker extensions are not always the best – The extensions used should be slightly longer and thicker than your natural eyelashes. Most of those who have experienced damaged lashes have had the wrong type of lashes applied by an uneducated stylist. Excess weight and length can cause stress on the natural lashes and result in the natural lashes breaking or prematurely shedding. One extension should bond to one natural eyelash only – An experienced stylist would fully isolate a natural lash and adhere only one extension to that natural eyelash (Classic lash extensions). This method allows your natural lashes to grow and shed freely and not be restricted by being stuck to other lashes. Allergic reaction to product and damage to eyelashes are caused by incorrect application and can result in itching, pinching and massive clumping. To relieve any discomfort, the client would likely pick or pull out the offending extensions resulting in damaged natural lashes or even worse bald eyes.

Is it true if I touch my lashes, that they will fall out quicker? It is ok to gently brush them if required, but not to pull on them or play with them as you may pull out your natural eyelashes. If your lashes were applied correctly and looked after well, they should keep until the end of the natural lash cycle. You should wash your lashes every evening to keep your eyes clean and healthy.  

The Pros

  1. What better way to save time and money on mascara than getting the eyelashes you always wanted every few weeks at the salon? This is a great answer when you are busy and do not have time to sit in front of the mirror every morning attaching fake lashes and/or mascara. Not too mention getting it all back off at night! In some cases the fake lashes can be damaging to your natural lashes and putting them on and off is always risky.
  2. Eyelash extensions are semi-permanent which cuts out the risk of having to remove false eyelashes every day and having to reapply them every day. The on and off of the false eyelashes is far more detrimental to your lashes than the one time application of the eyelash extensions with minimal upkeep. It is the healthier way to get the look you want!
  3. The pro clearly is the look you will achieve with this simple process. If your lashes are healthy than this process is a great choice. It is a safe option for that busy woman that does not want to have to worry about applying stuff to her lashes every day.
  4. The options are plentiful and affordable for most people. The materials are safe to use on your eyes and cannot cause blindness (which is a rumor). Eyelash extensions are a great way to get that full flirty look without having to rely on mascara or false eyelashes to get it.
  5. These types of extensions can be used to lengthen your natural lashes or thicken your natural lashes. You can choose the look that you want from dramatic to subtle. Eyelash extensions are an excellent opportunity to get a look that you love with little hassle. There is a time element involved but isn’t there always when you are trying to improve your looks?
  6. Eyelash extensions are affordable options and an easy way to do something nice for yourself to improve your appearance.

The Cons

  1. The cons are plentiful when it comes to eyelash extensions but almost all lay in the ability of the person that is doing the application. The biggest con is when these eyelash extensions are not applied correctly and cause damage to your natural eyelashes like have them fall out prematurely.
  2. The problem lies in the aptitude of the technician. It is imperative when eyelash extensions are used that they are applied to each individual eyelash and that they are not applied in clumps! The ability of the technician plays a huge role. To avoid the most common con or negative aspect of using eyelash extensions.
  3. When eyelash extensions are not applied the right way you can be in for a world of problems with your own natural lashes. A botched job can cause you irritation and cause your natural lashes to break. Call around before you make the choice to have eyelash extensions done to be sure that you find the best technician that you can.
  4. The time it takes to get the initial extensions done is about 2 hours which can be a bit much to be sitting with your head back and eyes closed. This can be considered a con as well. A lot of busy women do not have the time to dedicate to sitting in a salon chair for that amount of time although the touch ups are much quicker and you can get them done in about half the time.
  5. You can also have a reaction to the glue that is used. If you notice any discomfort during the process be sure that you speak up because there should be no discomfort at all. If you notice any burning speak up and let the technician know that you are experiencing a burning situation, the glue may have to be changed out.
  6. It is very rare to have a reaction to the glue that is used to attach the eyelashes but if you have sensitive skin you may experience some discomfort and you should speak up because you can have a reaction to the glue which will be uncomfortable.
  7. To get the really great lashes one of the cons is cost. Mink lashes are by far the best but they by far cost far more than most people are willing to spend. Saving money by using synthetic lashes can actually back fire. Synthetic lashes do not last as long and are not as durable as mink or other natural lashes. Insuring that you get the best quality lashes can cost quite a bit out of pocket so you do want to be sure that you are prepared to pay for the initial application and then further for the upkeep.

Other than those potential issues there are no other cons that you need to be aware of. Again the most important part of being sure to avoid the potential issues is to use a credible source for the application. The majority of the complaints and problems stem from using an inexperienced technician that misapplies the lashes. Ask friends and family members for their recommendations to be sure that you get the right tech to apply the lashes and you should be worry free. It is imperative that each extension that is used is matched to only one eyelash at a time or the risk of losing your eyelashes is highly probable. All the celebrities opt for eyelash extensions instead of having to deal with mascara and false eyelashes. It is an easy solution for anyone that wants to get the latest full lash look!

What questions should you ask when searching for a reputable salon or professional? Because of the sensitive nature of the lashes and the surrounding area, finding someone who is certified to apply the lashes is definitely a must. Professionals use professional products and have been properly trained to apply the lashes without damaging your natural lashes or more importantly, your eyes. Just like you would with a hairstylist, research who you want to go to and how long they have been working as a technician. Look at before-and-after photos, read reviews and always make sure they are licensed and lash-certified.

So, there you have it! Lash overload for Lash fans big and small… Tips, How To’s, How Not To’s and hopefully some helpful information to weigh in on your Mirage Spa Education JB Lash Certification which you can find here! http://www.nailtechstore.com/proddetail.php?prod=EyeLashExtensionCourse&cat=7 or see our contact info below for further details!

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** This article contains excerpts taken from Lash Myths Busted, Top 13 Pros and Cons of eyelash extensions, Sydney Eyelash Extensions, Lash Extension tips you need to know before heading to the salon.

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