Lashes are an important part of any makeup look. They frame the eyes, make you look youthful, and add so much drama to the face. While it’s always fun to pile mascara on your own eyelashes, sometimes you just want something more.
That’s where false eyelashes come in. They allow you to go longer, lusher, fuller, and way more dramatic than you would normally with your own lashes. There is a set for every mood and every lash type, from wispy individual hairs here and there to extra AF rainbow or glitter lashes. They’re just that little bit of oomph to take your makeup look up a notch.
Chances are though you’ve heard about false eyelashes and lash extensions, you still have questions about these frilly beauty aids. That’s why we put together this handy guide that includes everything you want to know about false lashes.
Types of False Eyelashes
One of the best things about false eyelashes is that they’re customizable to your style, eye shape, and more. You can get individual lashes to fill in your lash line, clusters, or go for full strips (even magnetic ones to make application easier). You can opt for lashes made out of everything from real mink to human hair, to synthetic fibers. As for style, you can go supernatural or super extra.
The Best Lashes For Your Eye Shape
Not all lashes are created equal, and not all versions are going to look the same on everyone. It’s good to know which false lashes will really make your eyes look their best. For example, to make your eyes look bigger, longer lashes are usually placed in the middle section of the eye to open it up.
Some of the Top Rated, Best-Selling False Lashes
If you’re not the experimental type when it comes to eyelashes (or even if you are), you may want to know which are among the best in the lash game. Ardell is a name that you’ll see a lot; their Demi Wispies are a popular choice. Other brands that are among the best include Lily Lash, House of Lashes, Velour Lashes, Huda Beauty, Tarte (their Tarteist Pro Cruelty-Free Lashes), and KISS Lashes (Looks So Natural and Lash Couture brands).
Trim Your False Lashes Before Applying
An amateur mistake to avoid when applying false lashes is plopping down the entire strip, straight from the package, as is. Everyone’s eyes are different, so you’ll have to trim your lashes to fit yours. Start trimming from the outside corner, never from the inside, until you reach your desired length. Also be sure to trim the little ends that would stick into the eye, or irritate sensitive eyes.
Be Sure to Curl Your Own Lashes
Another tip is to curl your own lashes. That way, they will be curved, just like the false lashes you’ll be applying. This will help ensure that the two sets of lashes — yours and the store-bought ones — will blend more seamlessly, in an easier way.
Add Mascara to Your Lashes First
Lashes are all about adding to what you already have. In order to add some color and dimension to your lashes, and make your natural lashes blend better with the falsies, apply mascara first. Swipe a coat or two (but not too much) to your real lashes before you get started with your lash application. Added bonus? The mascara will help the lashes stick to yours better.
Let Your Mascara Dry Before Applying Falsies
Once you apply mascara to your natural lashes, allow them to dry before you start attaching the false lashes. This will reduce smudging and any kind of damage or wear to the falsies that you don’t want.
Know What Type of Eyelash Glue You’re Using
If you have sensitive eyes, or known allergens (and even if you don’t), be sure to take a look at the ingredients of your lash glue. The ingredient that may be causing an issue is cyanoacrylate, which is present in all eyelash adhesives. It may cause a thermal burn, swelling, and itching, but incidences of this happening are low. Make sure to not use too much of the glue, keep a small space (1mm) between the glue and the skin/eyelid, and use a nanomister, which will harden the adhesive faster. Also look out for latex, if you are allergic or sensitive to that. There are vegan, latex-free, hypo-allergenic, and cyanoacrylate-free/low in cyanoacrylate glues you can use.
Do an Allergy Patch Test with Your Lash Glue
Since you may have a reaction to a lash glue ingredient you may not know you’re sensitive to, it’s good to do an allergy patch test before using glue on your lashes. There are two ways to do this. First, apply the glue to the last three lashes and wait 24 hours to see if you get any reaction. Second, apply a drop to the back of your ear and wait 24 hours. Not only can you do this with the eyelash adhesive you use at home, but you can also ask for this patch test when you go to get lash extensions.
Use Tweezers or a Lash Applicator to Handle Your Lashes
While you can always use your fingers to handle your lashes, a safer bet is to use tweezers or a lash applicator. If you do use your fingers, make sure not to pull lashes out of the container from the sides (this could ruin the shape of the lashes). Instead, pull down so they gently slide out of the container.
Blot Your Eyelids with Blotting Paper
Oil can weaken the adhesive of your false eyelashes, so make sure not to get it too close to them. A good idea is to prep your eyes with an oil-absorbing blotting paper before applying falsies to your eyes.
Don’t Use Too Much Glue
Don’t make the amateur mistake of adding a ton of glue to your false lashes. All you need is an even line that covers the row.
Let the Glue Dry to a Sticky Consistency
Once you have your glue on your false lashes, allow it to dry a bit into a sticky, tacky consistency. Some people will shake the lashes like a Polaroid picture to speed up the process. Another thing you should be doing is rolling the band back and forth, up and down to relax the band.
Apply Your Lashes Right Above the Lash Line
Make sure to apply your false eyelashes right above the lash line. The closest to your eyelid skin should be 1mm. This will keep the glue away from the sensitive lash line area and is the same distance observed when you get lash extensions done.
Apply Lashes Straight Down, and to the Inner Corner of the Eye First
Don’t apply your falsies head-on, or they will bump into your own lashes. Instead, tilt your head back and/or look down, and apply them straight down over your eyelashes. This also allows your new eyelashes to stand upright and look fanned. Be sure to start at the inner corner of your eye, and work your way to the outer corner.
Pinch Together False and Real Lashes
Once you have applied your false eyelashes, you will want to add a bit of mascara to blend the lashes together. This will also help bind the new lashes to your existing ones. To really get them unified, pinch your two rows of eyelashes together with your fingers, a lash applicator, or tweezers (be careful though!).
What About Magnetic Lashes?
Sometimes, we want maximum beauty, with minimal effort. We live for those products that make looking beautiful a breeze. Magnetic eyelashes maybe that quick solution. You get to skip the sometimes messy glue because magnets keep the false lashes attached to your own.
Don’t Go Cheap with Lash Extensions
As fun as DIY false lashes maybe, you may want to opt for eyelash extensions, as many do these days. But, as with many other things, especially in the realm of beauty, you get what you paid for. Make sure you are dealing with a trained lash stylist, who really knows the ins and outs of the procedure. Also, make sure they are using quality products that are safe. It’s not worth putting your health in jeopardy, and/or getting a disastrous, unprofessional result, just to save some money. You can generally expect to pay at least $150 for extensions (and up to $400 or $500; fills are generally cheaper).
Types of Lash Extensions
As with lashes you can apply at home, lash extensions come in different styles and lengths. You can have a classic look, get partial lashes added, choose from options dubbed “cute” or “sexy,” get voluminous lashes, and more. And these eyelashes can be made from anything from faux mink, to actual mink, to “silk,” to synthetic, to human hair. You can even choose the amount of curl you want.
Don’t Wear Makeup When Going to Get Extensions
You are going to want your pretty face to be an empty canvas when getting eyelash extensions. At least your eyes, where you won’t want anything clogging up your existing lashes or making the process longer than usual.
The Entire Process Takes About Two Hours
We have seen the entire eyelash procedure described as taking less than an hour, up to two hours. Check with places you’re interested in going to first to see what their process time is, look at reviews, and make sure they’re not cutting corners.
Tape and Eye Pads Will Be Used
It’s also always good to check out online photos, YouTube videos, and Instagram posts on whatever beauty procedure you are getting. That way you know what to expect can see how it is supposed to be done (especially so you can speak out if things fall short), and fully prepare yourself. For example, you are going to have eye pads placed under your lower lash line and may have medical-grade tape applied to your upper lashes.
Avoid Water and Humidity Right After Getting Extensions
In order to keep your lash extensions looking fabulous for as long as possible, you are going to want to avoid water and humidity for at least 24 hours. This means not splashing water in your eyes while washing your face!
Be Sure to Brush Your Lash Extensions
In order to keep your lashes clean and looking great, it is recommended that you brush them. Simply use a clean mascara wand, or a small makeup/eyeshadow brush to tend to the eyelashes for about 15 seconds.
And Clean Them!
Not only are you supposed to brush your lashes daily, but you should also be washing them. You can do this with an oil-free makeup remover, oil-free facial cleanser/cleansing water, water with a Q-tip, etc. Remember to not rub or pull on your lashes, or put oil-based products on them.
Lash Extension Lashes Will Naturally Fall Out With Your Own Lashes
An important thing to keep in mind is that just like your own natural lashes would without extensions, you will shed a normal amount of your extended lashes daily. It’s normal for this to happen.
You’ll Usually Need a Fill-in Every 2-3 Weeks (But Can Make Them Last Longer)
Generally, you will need a fill on your lash extensions every two to three weeks. But there are people who have claimed to have been able to rock their false lashes for a month or longer. Ways to keep them looking great to include using a lash topcoat, avoiding oil-based products on the eyes, not using waterproof mascara, and sleeping on a satin or silk pillow.
False Eyelash Trends
Sure, classic black eyelashes are pretty, but the sky seems to be the limit when it comes to how to customize your lash extensions. Look up the latest eyelash trends for inspiration before you go to your lash appointment; you may find a cool new style or hue you’ll want to try out. Trends within the last couple of years include rainbow eyelashes, curly lashes, adding lower lashes, and over-the-top embellishments like feathers.
3-D and Fiber Mascara Will Also Do the Trick
If you don’t feel like opting for false lashes or are taking a break from them, then why not try a 3-D fiber mascara? With this type of mascara, you prime your lashes with a gel, and then apply the fibers, which will take your eyelashes to new, false-looking lengths.