I tried lash extensions, applied by a professional! Okay, I’m not a frou-frou type of chica. Paint clothes, red lipstick, I’m ready to ROCK! But in the landscape of my business, video is everything. And I found myself shying away from the camera because I didn’t have time to load up my face with makeup, and because I have watery eyes my liner would run, my mascara smeared. I settled for only showing my hands.
That is no way to live!
But you know what? I always talk about breaking out of routine, so I took my own advice and made a vow this year to put more energy into my style. Makeup shouldn’t be the foundation of self-validation, but when you are on camera, especially with videos that will be up for years, shouldn’t we want our looks to be on point? Especially when it comes to working with clients.
I’d always been intrigued by lash extensions when I interviewed Jennifer Lopez way back when for The Wedding Planner movie junket. Her lashes looked like they were made of mink fur. Full, soft and silky. Not a smidge of mascara. I asked one of her assistants about those lashes and she told me how they were hand glued one-by-one.
“Dang, celebrity life,” I thought as I made my way to the cheese platter on media food service table.
Well, these days, lash extensions are readily available for everyone. They aren’t cheap, but doable if you work them into your budget. I paid $179 for a full set and fills are between $50-75. I couldn’t afford to add a new expense my ledger, so I trimmed other things from my budget! I canceled channels on my cable bill and nixed some other costs to make up for the monthly fee. Not to mention – I no longer have to buy mascara!
Here’s my lash extensions 101 tips (Check back because I’ll add more as I think of them):
DIY or pay a pro: I’ve heard there are at-home methods, but I’m barely capable of applying liner, so there is no way I would try this myself. But if you are a whiz with makeup, check out YouTube tutorials. I’ve heard that places like Sally’s carry supplies. All of what you read below is based on my experience with a professional.
Research for places in your area. Don’t just go with “Lucy’s friend!” Seriously, amigas. These are your peepers, don’t skimp! I looked on Yelp and reviewed dozens of places. I read reviews, visited each website and even company Instagram pages to see before and after pictures. I also narrowed down the list to those that offered education on the topic.
Know your pricing. Don’t go for super cheap. Overall, all the legit places seem to be charging at least $100 to start, may even have first-time specials, so ask. Fills seem to start at about $50 (two weeks) and up to $70 (three weeks).
Accept the responsibility. Not only will you have to commit to a fill each month, but there is a little bit of a routine for care. I actually like this, because I never spent too much time washing my face. Ever since I had lash extensions applied, I’ve been completing a thorough face cleansing each night! It’s my little luxury time of the day. (Well, next to my 3 p.m. disco nap!)
What to avoid: If you get facials, tell your technician you have lashes so she won’t point the steam in your face. The steam will break down the adhesive. Also, stay away from any oil-based makeup or liner. Don’t rub your eyes! I used to have red, puffy eyes all the time because of our Chihuahuas. Now I don’t let them up on my bed or near my face. Don’t worry, I still give them a lot of love! As far as mascara, I don’t use it. I do have some baby lashes that the tech didn’t want to glue a lash to, so sometimes I’ll apply a tiny bit of mascara to those. Do not get them wet for the first 24 hours. Oh! Sleep on your side, not face down!
The visit: For a full set, my visit lasted about two hours tops (I took a break between eyes). You’ll lie down on a bed and they will put pads under your eyes and at each corner. The tech will wear and mask and gloves and use a magnifying glass to apply the one lash per real lash. The lash extensions are not made of real hair.
Your choices: I was given the choice of “classic,” “full,” or “hybrid.” Here’s an article that explains the difference. I went with the third, it was also midrange in price. These are a mixture of full and a little bit long. I have skimpy lashes and thought classic wouldn’t show up as much, and the volume lashes are really thick, so I went with hybrid. I think I might try volume soon!
Washing and care: The first week, I had a lot of trouble washing them. I didn’t have any tools. I tried to use my fingers to rub the shampoo, but by the end of 10 days, I made a mess! Finally, DUH! I watched a lot of YouTube! I bought the cleanser, and I also used Johnson’s No More Tears Baby Shampoo.
HOW TO: Wet the cloth and squeeze water over your eyes. Squirt a little bit of foaming eye cleaner on the cloth, rub it then gently clean around your lids and your lash line. Underneath too. Rinse the cloth and squeeze water over your eyelids to rinse away the cleaner. Use a wand to brush through your lashes. Use the little dryer to dry the lashes, then brush through them again. There you go!
Clumps: Truth talk. I’m on the computer a lot, writing, editing photos, etc. My eyes water and even get goopy. If this happens, I’ll take a break and go wash my lashes! I gotta say, I’ve done less web surfing thanks to my lashes because I don’t want my eyes to water! Always carry a wand in a sealed container in your purse so you can brush them out as you are out and about.
Removal: Whatever you do, don’t take them off yourself. You can’t do that without plucking out your own precious lashes! Go back to where you had them applied and have them professionally removed. I guess you could try and just wear them until they fall off, but your beautiful ojos will look weird with a long lash here and there. Invest in doing it the correct way!
Falling out: Did you know your lashes fall out every 100 days? Here is an awesome article that shares the facts about eyelash growth. When you see your lashes fall, it is most likely from the life cycle of the hair follicle, rather than the extension.
Down sides: My eyes water a lot, and I’m always dabbing the outer corners, so those lashes always seem to come off first. I have dry eyes, so I’m now using drops for that and it seems to be helping. Pay attention to booking your appointments in advance. If you have a big event and wait until the last minute, you might be in a jam! SWEAT: If you exercise or clean out the garage and work up a sweat, it will go in your eyes and burn! Keep a soft cloth to dab the excess liquid from your eyes.
Well, I think that covers everything! I really love them. I feel like I needed to do something to add some pop to my life. I’m too wimpy for a tattoo and I already did the crazy red hair dye thing. These lashes are perfect. The only downside is I don’t think I ever want to go without them!
If you live in Phoenix, here is the site for Eyeconic Lash!
And if you have lash extensions and want to mention any tips, leave them in the comments!