Everything You Need to Know About Eyelash Extensions and How I Care for Mine

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I wear eyelash extensions and I have been wearing them for the most part of two years. I absolutely love them and it's one of the little luxury beauty services that I just can't go without.

Notice I said luxury?  Eyelash extensions are definitely an investment.

There is a lot to consider before making the investment into lash extensions. Not only are eyelash extensions costly, they require a bit of commitment and after-care. Most people that get them done, and get them done the right way consider the investment worth it.

 How to Care for Eyelash Extensions so You Get Your Money's Worth
 Woman Getting Eyelash Extensions

What Exactly are Eyelash Extensions?

In case you didn't know what they are, eyelash extensions are a way to permanently extend lashes for a long eyelash look. They are quite different than false eyelashes. You see, individual hairs (the extensions) are actually bonded to your own lash, individually, and they don't come off (ideally) until they grow out or fall off with your own natural lash. 

Before Getting Eyelash Extensions

Lash extensions need to be done by a trained lash professional; do your research. Do not go to that corner lash extension shop where a full set of lashes are $35. Nope! You are not going to get a quality lash job. This is a very delicate job; pointy tweezers and glue are involved and the specialist is going to be getting very close to your eyes. It needs to be done carefully and by an expert who is trained.

You need your lashes to be in their best condition before having your initial set of lashes applied. I highly suggest using a lash conditioning product or serum for at least 30 days prior to your initial lash appointment. Many professionals will not apply eyelash extensions to small, short, weak or thin eyelashes. Some great lash products to try: AMPLIFeye Lash & Brow FortifierRevitaLash Advanced Eyelash Conditioner, or GRANDELash MD Lash Enhancing Serum.

I have used all of the above, and I continue to use an eyelash conditioner while my extensions are on. It is true, lashes do become weak while wearing extensions, so a conditioning serum helps to keep them longer and stronger. 

At the Eyelash Extension Appointment

It is best to arrive at your appointment with no makeup on, especially eye makeup. It is really important not to use any oil-based skin care or eye makeup (including removal) products prior to the appointment. Be prepared to be there one to two hours or more (your specialist will let you know when making the appointment). 

You and your specialist will select the proper length and style of lash for you based on your not only the lash look you are going for, but the current condition of your lash health.

Your eyes will be closed the entire time and it is actually quite relaxing. As I said, lash extensions are individually bonded to each individual lash. It does not hurt. The lashes are not heavy whatsoever, and to me, they feel like nothing at all. To me, they look extremely natural, just longer and thicker than my natural lash.

How I Care for My Lash Extensions

After your lashes are applied, it is very important not to get them wet for the first 24 hours. This goes for the initial lash application and for any refill. This is critical to let the bond set. After the initial 24 hours, you will be surprised at how easy it is to maintain eyelash extensions with a few exceptions.

You will treat your lash extensions as you would your own natural lashes except for the following:

NEVER use oil-based products on or near the lashes as this could break the bond. This means you cannot use any oil-based eye makeup removers.

You can use micellar waters, makeup removing towelettes like Simple Eye Makeup Remover Pads or specially formulated products like Xtreme Eye Makeup Remover or RevitaLash Micellar Water Lash Wash, which is what I currently use.

You can use a tissue or face cloth, but make sure to NEVER use a cotton pad; the cotton will get stuck in between the lashes and just cause a big mess. 

I like to use the RevitaLash Micellar Water Lash Wash on its own. It comes in a spray bottle and I simply spray one or two pumps directly over my closed eye and I massage it in with my fingertip to remove all traces of makeup. It really is the easiest product to use to not only remove makeup but gently cleanse the lashes, which is an important step to maintaining healthy lash extensions.

Read also: Top Ten Eye Creams

And in case you were wondering, if you really want an all-out dramatic look, you can wear mascara over your extensions— but if you have selected the right extensions, you shouldn’t have to.

There is one mascara made to wear specifically with extensions, Xtreme Lashes Volume Mascara and it both applies and removes easily.

I do wear mascara on my bottom lashes still. A few good lower lash mascara include L’Oreal Voluminous Butterfly Mascara and Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara

I get my lashes refilled or touched up every two to three weeks. My lashes grow faster in the summer so I have to go every two weeks. In the wintertime, I go every three weeks when they shed slower. You will figure out your own natural lash growth cycle and when they fall out and adjust accordingly and when you will need to have your lash specialist fill in the lash hairs. 

I do not recommend going any longer than three weeks between a lash refill or you will not have many lashes left. Not only will your lashes look scarce, but it will cost you more in the long run.

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Teri Cosenzi

I'm Teri, your resident beauty expert. While I'm not playing with beauty products, painting my nails or shopping for makeup with my daughter who loves trying products with me, you will probably find me sneaking off to Florida with my husband of over 25 years or cheering on one of my three sons. I like baking, re-decorating, drinking tea, fussing with my flowers and facials.