Keep Your Lashes Lifted All Day With These Simple Tips

Have you ever seen mascara-commercial eyelashes in real life? Yeah, us neither. Beauty ads always have a way of making things look impeccable, yet the results can be hard to replicate by yourself in your bathroom. In the case of lashes, the standard is usually curled and lifted — even if many people's eyelashes naturally fall flat.

Of course, this is a safe space, where all types of lashes (and other physical features) are embraced and accepted. With that said, there's nothing wrong with wanting a defined, sky-high curl. Perfecting your curl can even eliminate other time-consuming makeup steps, in case you prefer a less-is-more approach to your beauty routine. "When you curl the lashes, it elongates, lifts, and makes the eyes appear more open," Charlie Riddle, makeup artist and Stila's global beauty director, shared with Byrdie. "If you don't wear a lot of makeup and want an instant eye-opening effect, curling your lashes is the best way to do it."

So, what's the secret to elevating your eyelashes? In most cases, an eyelash curler is the quickest way to give pin-straight hairs a boost. Then, follow a few simple tips to give your curl staying power.

Keep lashes curled while you sleep

Most of us probably don't take the "I woke up like this" mantra too literally, which is why you likely never thought to curl your lashes before bed. However, maintaining a curl while you sleep could actually be the key to keeping lashes lifted all day. "Most people curl their lashes in the morning before the day, but the most lash repair and growth happens while we sleep," Omayma Ramzy, a celebrity makeup artist and founder of Omayma Skin, explained to Real Simple. "Think of this like training your lashes to grow curled. I use an eyelash serum as part of my nighttime routine, and then curl my lashes before going to bed. I had a serious lash glow-up after I started doing this regularly."

If you're worried about overusing your curler or experience hair loss each time you crimp your lashes, TikTok has another idea: the eye mask hack. Creator Ally Backus explained in a viral video that she trains her lashes to stay lifted by wearing an eye mask to bed. All she does is slip a snug-fitting mask on while her eyes are open. Then, she closes her eyes, allowing the lashes to continue pointing up behind the mask. "Sleep like that every night, and you will wake up with your lashes literally sitting up like this all day, every day," the TikToker claimed.

Get creative with beauty staples

If a curler and mascara alone haven't given you the elevated lashes of your dreams, don't lose hope! You might just have to get a little creative with some beauty products you have stashed in your medicine cabinet or makeup bag. One tip, courtesy of beauty box brand Ipsy, is to apply an eyeshadow primer (not a mascara primer) to the lashes after using a curler and before swiping on mascara. According to Ipsy, the primer helps lashes keep their curl all day.

Another tip, shared by Reddit user @semiscribbled, employs setting spray, though not in the way you might expect. The Redditor suggests using setting spray before curling the lashes, saying, "It acts like a glue to hold them, but it doesn't feel like anything on your lashes. Just make sure you curl them right after you spray, you don't want [them] to spend too much time drying before you curl." Follow up with optional mascara if you wish.

If you don't have primer or setting spray lying around, you might still be in luck. Jacqueline Kilikita, Refinery29's deputy beauty director, posted a video to TikTok explaining how to get a faux lash lift using Vaseline. Simply rub some Vaseline on your curler, then press the curler onto your lashes for 10 to 15 seconds while brushing through with a spoolie. It's unclear if the effects last all day, but Kilikita did confirm that her eyelashes remained lifted for hours.

Try a heated eyelash curler

If your traditional lash curler just doesn't seem to cut it, consider adding a little heat into the mix. Heated eyelash curlers are just what they sound like — a device that uses heat to curl the lashes. "Think of it as a curling iron for your lashes instead of your hair," celebrity makeup artist Christin Zito Cook explained to InStyle. "Unlike traditional lash curlers, which crimp your hair and can damage and pull your eyelashes, a heated lash curler can add more intense volume and lift, as well as keeping your lashes safe."

Using a hot wand near your eyes can sound a little intimidating, but it might be worth it if you want to keep your lashes reaching for the sky all day. As makeup artist Beck Wainner told Real Simple, "Heated eyelash curlers are ideal for creating a more defined lift and prolonging a curl, especially [for] people who can't seem to hold one."

Before committing to a heated curler, you can DIY the concept by blasting your regular curler with a blow dryer. Just make sure to test the temperature of the curler with your hand first before placing it near your eyelids.

Use the three-point method

If your lashes droop early in your day, your curling technique could be to blame. The trick is to clamp down on multiple (L'Oréal Paris suggests three) points along the length of your eyelashes. In other words, apply your curler to the base of your lashes first, move to the middle, and finish off by curling the lash tips.

Makeup artist Andrew Colvin also recommended this method to Self, explaining that the best way to do it is to pump the curler four to eight times in each spot. "This gives a 'curve' and less of a 'crimp' that pumping the lashes [a number of times] in the same spot would result in," he revealed.

At first, you may notice an exaggerated, over-curled look, but the experts at L'Oréal Paris assert that the hairs will relax throughout the day, especially if you choose to wear mascara. The end result is a gentle curve that lasts longer than the lift you'd usually get with a one-and-done curling technique.

Choose the right mascara

For lashes that sag in no time, a mascara formulated for lifting power might help (just look for words like "curl" on the packaging). However, if you want your lashes to bounce until the sun goes down, there's another feature you should opt for in your mascara: waterproofness.

Nope, waterproof mascara isn't only good for surviving cry sessions or rainy days. After you've used your curler to shape your eyelashes, waterproof mascara helps lock in the curve. "Think about it like strong holding spray for your lashes, while regular mascara is like a soft holding spray," professional makeup artist Jonet Williamson explained to Omayma Ramzy echoed this, telling Real Simple that waterproof versions contain less moisture than their counterparts, sealing everything in and preventing drooping.

Your best bet when browsing the makeup aisle, then, is to look for a tube that boasts both waterproof and curling properties. Steer clear of heavy formulas designed for big, volumized lashes — the weight could ruin your lift (more on this in a second).

Keep it light

The more waterproof, lash-boosting mascara you use, the better your curl will be, right? Not quite. Too much product could cause your eyelashes to sink before you've even reached lunchtime. L'Oréal Paris recommends using no more than one or two coats if you want to maintain your curl.

Merrady Wickes, makeup artist and head of content and education at clean beauty boutique The Detox Market, shared another tip with Well+Good: Keep your first coat light and free of heavy clumps. "I think of the base coat like scaffolding—get the mascara nice and close to the roots, and get all of the lashes separated how you want," Wickes revealed. "If you apply too much on the tips or allow the first coat to clump, you'll just have droopy, sad lashes."

Finally, no matter how tempting it might be, resist the urge to touch up your lashes later in the day by curling and reapplying mascara. "Once your lashes are coated [with mascara], curling them can easily break them," celebrity makeup artist Mélanie Inglessis told Self. "Plus, the curl will look funky because the mascara causes a really sharp, unnatural bend."

Get a lash lift

When your eyelash curler just isn't enough to keep your lashes lifted, a professional treatment might be the solution you've been looking for. A lash lift is a salon procedure that — just as the name suggests — elevates the hairs, giving them a long-lasting curl. "Basically, it's like a perm," Dr. Nicole Bajic, an ophthalmology specialist, explained to Cleveland Clinic. "But instead of it being applied to your hair, the solution is applied to your lashes to give them a curled effect."

Dr. Bajic warned of possible side effects, such as allergic reactions, damage to the lash hairs, and infection. She also pointed out that lash lifts are still a relatively new treatment, which means the long-term effects have yet to be seen. "There's a lot we still don't know, and we're only going to figure out later on if it's a bad idea or not, especially when it comes to applying chemicals right around our eyes," Dr. Bajic added.

Still, the procedure can be an attractive option if you want perkier lashes without daily upkeep. In general, according to Healthline, lash lifts last for four to six weeks, and you'll likely spend only about one hour in the salon chair. If you decide to try the treatment, choose a professional that specializes in lashes, and be sure to discuss any risks or concerns beforehand.