Eyelash extensions are like fake tan - they *instantly* make you feel like a million bucks. You wake up every morning looking like you’re born with the most amazing set of full, dark, perfectly curled lashes. You can walk out of the house without a slick of makeup on. You basically look completely flawless and selfie-ready 24/7.
The downside? Eyelash extensions can be super high maintenance (in case you didn’t know, there’s a good bit of upkeep involved), and making them last the distance isn’t exactly easy, especially if you don’t know how to look after them correctly. Because seriously, there’s nothing worse than washing your face and seeing your precious extensions just chillin’ in the sink. It’s literally heartbreaking.
So, how long do lash extensions last? And what is one lash-hungry gal supposed to do to make them stick around for as long as possible? Whether you’re a full-blown lash extension addict or a complete novice who has contemplated getting them for *months*, we’ve got you covered.
We spoke with professional brow artist and lash queen Amy Jean from Amy Jean Brow Agency, to find our everything you need to know about eyelash extensions, including what’s actually involved in the treatment and how to make eyelash extensions last longer.
What are eyelash extensions?
So, how do eyelash extensions work? Well, lash extensions are basically synthetic fibres that are attached to your natural lashes using medical grade adhesive. They come in a variety of different sizes and curl options (check out the different types of eyelash extensions here), and can make your eyes appear bigger and brighter in an instant. “Women love the convenience of having full and defined lashes without the need for mascara,” says Amy Jean. “Lash extensions give us the appearance of being more ‘awake’ and with the added benefit of being waterproof, they are perfect for the active woman on the go."
What’s involved in an eyelash extension treatment?
First off, Amy Jean says to make sure you turn up to your appointment makeup-free, ensuring there are no remnants of mascara on your lashes. “A lash extension technician will discuss your desired effect, for instance, whether you’d like extra full and dramatic lash extensions or subtle and natural lash extensions. Classic lash extensions are more subtle and add discrete definition, whereas Russian 3D Volume Extensions have more fullness and drama,” she explains.
Unlike gluing a strip of falsies onto your lash line, semi-permanent eyelash extensions are applied by a technician, who hand-glues them on top of your natural lashes, one by one. “The treatment is very relaxing. Your eyes are closed and it generally takes anywhere between 60 to 90 minutes. Some clients like to bring their headphones and listen to music or podcasts.”
How long do eyelash extensions last?
“With proper care, lash extensions will last two to three weeks before an infill is recommended to replace lashes that have shed,” says Amy Jean. Basically, it doesn’t actually matter what kind of lashes you have, it all comes down to how you look after them.
How to maintain eyelash extensions
Amy Jean says, “The longevity of the lash extensions will depend on the speed of your lash cycle and how diligent you are about home care and hygiene. Brush your lashes twice daily, morning and night, to ensure they don’t tangle or turn on themselves.”
Psst, to brush your lashes, use a clean spoolie. We like Manicare Disposable Mascara Wands, Mixed Pack.
If you’re anything like us you have a whole heap of questions about getting your lashes wet – like, how to clean your lashes, how to shower with them, how to wash your face (can you swim with them?!). Well, you’ll be please to know that the old ‘you can’t get your lashes wet’ rule is a total myth! Phew. Amy Jean says, “Allow warm water and oil-free eye makeup remover to rinse through them whilst in the shower. If you don’t do this, the body produces natural oils in the lash bed that will clog the lash follicle and potentially cause inflammation. It is a myth to not get them wet.”
What makes lashes last a shorter period of time?
Wondering if you can you wear eyelash extensions with mascara? Because SAME. Apparently, you can, but you just have to make sure it’s not a waterproof mascara. “Over-applying mascara that is hard to remove, such as waterproof mascara, will inevitably lead to them being rubbed and the bonding glue will loosen,” says Amy Jean.
If you’re looking for a good option, go for a lightweight, oil-free formula and avoid mascara with glycol and carbonate, as these ingredients mess with the glue on your extensions. We recommend trying a lash extension-compatible mascara like Amy Jean Lash Elevate. “I’ve personally developed this formula so it washes off easily with water and the bristles help to separate the extensions rather than clumping together,” says Amy Jean.
How much does it usually cost to get lash extensions?
“Reputable salons will charge anywhere from $120 to $280. Be mindful if they are extremely cheap. It’s likely to be less expensive if D-grade formulas and extensions are being used,” says Amy Jean. “Our prices are: Amy Jean Classic Lash Extensions from $160 (refill $80), Amy Jean Russian 3D Volume Lash Extensions from $260 (refills $160).”
If eyelash extensions aren’t your thing, check out some of the best mascaras with lash-enhancing rave reviews, and our top tips for mastering false lashes.
Have you ever had eyelash extensions before? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comment section below.
Main image credit: @kyliejenner
Erin Docherty is a Beauty Writer for BEAUTYcrew, Beauty Editor for Women's Health magazine and a Grooming Writer for Men's Health magazine. She has a keen interest in cosmeceutical skin care and is currently working on minimising her 9-step skin care routine – because ain’t nobody got time for that. When she’s not writing about the latest beauty news, or applying copious amounts of serum, you can find her spending all her money in Sephora.