If you find yourself envious of women with long and lush lashes, you might be wondering how you too can get such exceptional eyelashes – after all, even the best mascara can only do so much. The answer is lash extensions, which have rocked the beauty industry and become more mainstream in recent years. It’s no surprise, since they take “I woke up like this” to new heights. Who wouldn’t want to roll out of bed with a full set of fringe? But before you open a new browser and book an appointment, there are some important things you should know about this trendy beauty treatment. Here are the pros and cons of getting lash extensions, according to the experts who apply them.
Lash extensions are pricey
Seriously, they might break your beauty budget. According to Tammy Fisher, master brow artist and founder of Browtiste, a good set of lashes will cost anywhere from $100 to $350. “False lashes are expensive for many reasons, but the first one is probably the time it takes to apply them,” she says. “Like all beauty services, if it's in your budget, spend the extra money to get yourself a good set of lashes. Not only will they look more natural, but they will last twice as long.”
Not just anyone can apply them
Unlike the fake lashes you buy at your local drugstore, extensions require the hands of a certified technician who has received proper training. “Just as you wouldn’t trust just any hairstylist to make you platinum blonde, you shouldn’t trust just any lash artist,” says Courtney Buhler, founder and lead lash artist of SugarlashPRO. However, because lash extensions are becoming so popular, she says there is an influx of people offering it as an add-on service. “This service requires intense precision and a discerning eye both for safety and styling, so do your research, look at portfolios, and find someone with amazing reviews,” she advises.
They require upkeep
Similar to a manicure, you can expect to refill your lash extensions every three weeks. “Natural lashes shed every 45 to 60 days, and the extension falls out with them,” says Buhler. “Luckily, we only shed natural lashes when a baby lash is about to grow in behind it, so every three weeks your lash artist will make sure every lash that can support it has a fresh extension on it!”
They are not one size fits all
“Lash extensions are truly unique to each client,” says Buhler. “We have different application techniques, with many different thicknesses, curls, and lengths.” She explains that a good lash artist will carefully examine each eye to determine which styling technique will best complement the customer’s face. “It’s all about framing the eyes and working with the brow bone to accentuate the natural shape of the eye,” she adds.
They are addictive
Trust me. Once you have had lash extensions, it’s hard to go without them. “Nothing transforms the face and a woman’s overall confidence than nicely framed eyes,” says Buhler. “The best part is you can have lush lashes no matter what you’re doing — rolling out of bed, hitting the gym, running into an ex at the grocery store... if lashes are on point, the rest doesn’t matter.”
You should avoid getting them wet after application
Within the first 24 to 36 hours, you'll want to steer clear of steam, water, sweat, and makeup remover. “This means you should avoid washing your hair and taking hot showers, as well as being outdoors if it's very humid outside,” says Fisher. “After this, they are technically waterproof, however you'll still want to avoid swimming or sitting in a sauna — otherwise they won't last quite as long.”
They are not for everyone
If you happen to be a rough sleeper who tosses and turns or have a habit of picking or rolling your eyelashes, extensions might not be for you. “Treating lash extensions roughly can cause the natural lash to be plucked, and that can lead to eventual thinning, which we never want,” says Buhler. A great alternative that doesn’t require much post-care is a lash lift. “This quick and easy service leaves lashes sky-high and voluminous yet gorgeously natural-looking for up to eight weeks,” adds Buhler.