The Truth About Eyelash Extensions

My love affair with lash extensions went south really fast. The relationship started out great – total love at first sight. Three weeks later I’m ready to break up and they just won’t go away!

First, I’ll tell you about the good times: lashafterhoriz Lashes After

Immediately following application, they were BEAUTIFUL. I felt like I didn’t need any eye makeup because they were so wonderfully voluminous and they just brightened up my whole look.

…And then I realized what goes into maintaining them.

My advice to anyone who wants eyelash extensions would be to study up on what you’re in for! Here are a few things I wish I knew before getting these suckers glued to my lashline:

Application takes a really long time

I do (temporary) individual lash applications all the time, so I assumed the length of time would be pretty close to the time it takes me to apply falsies with my trusty old DUO. Similar process, just different adhesive, right? Wrong! Lash extensions are a much more intricate procedure. It took close to three hours. Not a huge deal, but something you definitely want to know for planning out your day – or liquid intake! Try going to the bathroom with your eyes full of glue.

You can’t get your lashes wet for 24 hours

For 24 hours you can’t get them wet at all. No crying, no pools, no excessive sweating. To make things easier on yourself, hit the gym in the morning, shower right before your lash session, and skip that showing of Titanic when you get home. You never realize how often it’s on until you’re not allowed to cry for 24 hours. (P.S. If you didn’t just get eyelash extensions, you can cry with Jack and Rose twice next week – 4:30 July 28th and 9:45 p.m. July 29th on AMC. You’re welcome!)

Washing your face will not be the same

Even after that first 24 hour period, you will have to revamp your cleansing routine. It is suggested that you wash around your lashes (not touching them directly). I get it, but there is something so satisfying about splashing water and rubbing facial cleanser all over your face. I miss that!

You might have to change your makeup (and the way you apply it)

Oil based makeup (aka the kind I wear) is a no-no when it comes to lash extensions. The oils can loosen the glue and make the lashes fall out quicker than they should. Pre-lash extensions, I used to cover my entire face in foundation and powder without care because I always go over my lashes with mascara. That’s me. Some girls can throw on a speck of cream blush and be on their way. Those girls will LOVE eyelash extensions. I am not one of those girls. Womp womp.

You need to think twice before booking that spa appointment

I somehow turned myself into a professional spa-goer, so I realize this may not be an issue for everyone. But even if your at-home relaxation routine consists of throwing a warm towel on your face, this may be something you want to consider. Facials are not ideal while you have extensions as the steam can loosen them up and cause them to fall out. Same goes for saunas. Even massages can be a little tricky depending on the massage table (if you go to a place that makes you faceplant into an awkward headrest that might also jack up your lashes).

Most likely, you’ll lose real lashes

Let’s get real, no matter how careful you are, it’s highly likely that you’ll lose a few of your own in the end. Batches of fake lashes are glued to your real ones, so if they snag and come off the hard way, some of yours might go with them. Especially when they start to come loose, these suckers are easily snagged on bath towels, mascara wands, and other things you never thought would come in contact with them.

They will not come off all at once

eyelash Of course after you spend the first couple weeks preserving them, they will ultimately start to start falling off… but not evenly. This can leave you with like six long lashes randomly placed in a sea of short natural lashes. I present to you, straggler mode (see pic at left). Not cute. At this point, you can either get them filled, or you can do what I’m doing which is trying every which way to get them off. So far, steaming and olive oil has been my best bet. (For the record, I’m sitting here blogging with olive oil dripping down my face.)

So, there you have it. Like most beautification treatments, there are pros and cons. I see lash extensions the same way I see high maintenance services like dying your hair platinum blonde. Don’t get me wrong – I think it’s beautiful, but I also don’t think you should expect to just throw some bleach on your hair once and be on your way. It takes time, money, and effort to maintain beauty treatments like these.

It was fun while it lasted, but unfortunately the cons outweighed the pros on this one. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go wipe the oil off, order my favorite strip lashes, and hit the bottle of Latisse.

20 Comments

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20 Responses to The Truth About Eyelash Extensions

  1. my lashes are finally growing back… I feel ya sister! Good luck, I had to go back to the salon to get them removed, it was not pretty. 0_0

  2. Shared on my 2 pages and my 2 fb accts..thanks for this!

  3. Mysty

    Highly recommendable post! Thanks for the nitty gritty! Sounds like something I sure wouldn’t be interested in! Guess I’ll stick to my stubby little lashes and use good ol falsies now and then :)

  4. jtomkat

    OMG–your eyelashes look like Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree! Thanks for the warning!

    • Gen!

      That is too funny the Charlie Brown comment:
      My experience with lashes was negative also I lost most of my own lashes and some of them even looked like they were cut…

  5. That really sucks. I’ve heard good and bad things about them and almost all the stories didn’t end good. Thanks for that information :)

  6. I am going through the same problem!! Need to find a good alternative in until my lashes grow back

  7. Had a similar horrifying experience with extensions, needed all the help from Latisse AND Idol Lash to grow them back to normal.

  8. Thank you!!! Everyone begs me to do them, and I am like NO!!!! I tell them everything you just posted and still they want them. I am like fine go get that mess done and see me in two months when you need them off.

  9. Kylie

    I also had eyelash extensions and mine ended up just like yours ( a little worse actually). We tried removing them with the glue and were very careful not to pull them. I only have a 3 or 4 real eyelashes now. I have never tried false eyelashes but I’m going to have to. How long did it take yours to fully recooperate?

  10. Kylie

    With the glue remover sorry:)

  11. Tina E

    OMG! I thought I was the only freak running around like this!!! I had them put on in the clusters of 3 on my eyelids and in between my own long beautiful lashes. My best friend took the class assured me that they were easy to take care of and hers always looked so great. Had to have them. No she she did not tell me about the 2 hours it took and that I would lose lashes just anytime and anywhere. leaving big gaps. My boyfriend always telling me how beautiful they were assuming they were mine. Now that I’ve had a fill and still not happy bc they are so heavy. I had them taken off not knowing again that you lose your REAL lashes! I have 2 to 3 on each lid. And her wanting to just put another set over them,I just left with sunglasses on crying. Still at a lose of what to do. ALL I had to do was get a fill. WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. i really enjoyed reading this post – thanks for all the info! i shared it on my blog – i hope you don’t mind:

    http://www.theradiantbeauty.com/#!Eyelash-Extensions—yay-or-nay/c1wsf/29433749-1973-4AA0-9569-6E8ACCABFD35

  13. chrystal

    OMG! The same thing happened to me! I kept them up as instructed. I kept up my fills and got plenty of compliments, but not realizing that I was losing my natural lashes also when the individuals were coming out. My eyes were also very itchy after a week or so . I got into a very stressful situation and it included many tears and eye rubbing (at that point I couldn’t help it). Now I’m out of the stressful situation and went back to get a fill again. Not realizing that most of my own were gone! Well, of course the tech was more than happy to accept my money and not say a word about my lack of real lashes. Well the lashes started falling out after a day or so and a close exam showed me that I did not have real lashes to put the individual lashes on. So at this time I have peach fuzz for lashes and after reading about strip lashes, it said I should not wear strip lashes in order to allow my natural lashes to grow. So now I’m looking like a new baby chick about the eyes and just saw another article stating it will take about 4-6 weeks for my natural lashes to grow out. So my lesson learned is to be thankful for the beauty God already gave me and hopefully my own lashes will return, I am not a spring chick anymore and my hair grows very slow so I am hoping the peach fuzz is not permanent and my summer of the glamor look is gone hopefully the fall and winter will include bringing back my natural beauty.

  14. Samantha

    Thank you for taking the time to be real…I have been getting lash extensions for about a year and half!!!…..I have blonde lashes so I thought this would be a real nice treat to not have to put mascara on every day. At first, they were amazing!! Continued to have them filled on a regular basis, every 4-6 weeks at 75.00 a fill!! I know crazy! Even with all the research I did now where did I read that they would harm my natural lashes…THIS IS NOT TRUE!!!!!! I really began to get tired of the time and money to maintain them about 1 year into it. I had also noticed that my natural lashes were broken and stubby!!! So, I decided to have them removed. After a very painful visit I left with barley any natural lashes left. My eyes were irritated and sore. I looked terrible. I decided to get Latisse to help with the growth process. It has helped quite a bit. They are still not back to normal but I am hopeful!! :)

  15. ygp

    Thank you for taking the time to be real…I have been getting lash extensions for about a year and half!!!…..I have blonde lashes so I thought this would be a real nice treat to not have to put mascara on every day. At first, they were amazing!! Continued to have them filled on a regular basis, every 4-6 weeks at 75.00 a fill!! I know crazy! Even with all the research I did now where did I read that they would harm my natural lashes…THIS IS NOT TRUE!!!!!! I really began to get tired of the time and money to maintain them about 1 year into it. I had also noticed that my natural lashes were broken and stubby!!! So, I decided to have them removed. After a very painful visit I left with barley any natural lashes left. My eyes were irritated and sore. I looked terrible. I decided to get Latisse to help with the growth process. It has helped quite a bit. They are still not back to normal but I am hopeful!! :) .

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