All Aflutter

Considering lash extensions? We give you the run-down on this immensely popular beauty treatment, from pricing to risks.

Semi-permanent makeup is one of the latest trends to emerge on the beauty scene; such treatments extinguish the need for reapplication and constant touch-ups. Plus, advancements in digital technology, ink shading and blading techniques are proving to yield extremely natural-looking results, prompting more people to jump on the bandwagon. One of the most popular forms of semi-permanent makeup is eyelash extensions—we investigate why this treatment has become so appealing and what it really involves.  

1. Price 

There are some major differences between lash extensions and temporary strip lashes, the most obvious being the price. Lash extensions can cost anywhere between £40 and £150, which is far pricier than temporary options. Prices may vary depending on the establishment, quality of the materials and experience of the beautician.

2. Not a DIY situation 

Lash extensions can only be fitted by a professional, which means they cannot—and should not—be applied at home. Your beautician will be trained to use powerful adhesives and navigate the delicate eye area. The treatment can take up to two hours to complete.   

3. Longevity 

Eyelash extensions are particularly appealing to clients who want a fluttering pair of eyes for an extended period of time, most frequently for weddings and holidays. Their primary appeal is that they last six to eight weeks; gradually falling out over time. Their longevity will depend on how well they are maintained. 

4. Maintenance 

Your new lashes need to be treated with extra care. For the first 24 hours after their application, you must keep clear of excessive heat, steam or damp in order to allow the glue to set. Thereafter, you should avoid rubbing your eyes or applying oil-based makeup removers and mascara to your lashes—all pose a risk to the stability of the extensions. The lashes should never be picked at or pulled; this could lead to damage or loss of your natural lashes. Water, in general, can make the lashes clump together, so it should be avoided if possible. 

5. Decisions, decisions 

This treatment isn’t a one-size-fits-all scenario: you can select a bespoke set of lashes based on your eye shape and your desired effect. You’ll have the opportunity to decide on length, which ranges from natural-looking to long and glamorous. Some salons also provide a choice of material: silk, cashmere, synthetic and faux-mink (man-made fibres that imitate mink fur) are the main options. You can also choose how full you’d like your lashes to be—this will also depend on whether you are inclined towards a subtle or more dramatic appearance. Always conduct thorough research and consider your options carefully before having your lashes fitted. 

6. Quicker daily routine 

Most clients report that lash extensions allow them to shave a considerable amount of time from their morning makeup routine. Having longer, fuller lashes means that there is no need for mascara. Some people even feel that liquid eyeliner isn’t always necessary either. 

7. Risks 

While the benefits of extensions are plentiful, there are certain drawbacks to consider. For people with sensitive eyes, irritation and redness are common. On the rare occasion, severe reactions caused by the adhesive may require that the lashes be removed altogether. 

Another notable risk is that of uncertified beauticians. Uncertified beauticians may ignore health and safety procedures or fail to apply the lashes adequately, which can result in infection or a messy-looking outcome. It is currently uncertain as to whether eyelash extensions can damage the structural integrity of natural lashes after prolonged use. 

8. Post-lash extension blues 

After being accustomed to long and luscious lashes for weeks, people may find their removal disappointing or even shocking. Natural lashes tend to look stunted in comparison, leaving many people with the ‘post-lash extension blues’.

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