I/you can't take this photo too seriously...it's very MySpace, I know. ;)
You may have noticed that I've had eyelash extensions for the past six months or so. My sister first took the plunge a couple months earlier and I loved the way they looked, and got curious. Our friend Bre does them, and as soon as I saw how good Lauren's looked I had to try it too. I was a little nervous- I'd heard horror stories about lashes falling out, infections, you name it, so I was very, very apprehensive. Some questions I had: would my lashes all fall out? Would my lashes stop growing as fast? Did I need to wear make up along with them? Could I go swimming in pools, lakes, etc? Would these extensions affect my lashes long-term?
So here's the run down, at least from my perspective:
I initially went to my friend Bre at The Pretty House to have them put on. She's down in Mesa though, so when summer ended and I wasn't down in the Valley as much, I had to find someone up here. I was sad to leave Bre but I luckily ended up getting a recommendation from my friend Sarah- she owns a hot yoga studio and her lashes STILL always look amazing despite the wear they get- so I knew whoever did hers was great. She sent me to Sabrina at Lynn's Nails in Prescott Valley and yes, she is absolutely amazing. So Bre, like Sabrina, charges a higher price for your first set. You get that first set put on, then go back every 2-3 weeks for fills. Prices vary, but here in Prescott Sabrina charges $85 for your first time, then $35 for fills. I also tip 20% on top of that each time. This pricing is the norm for up here, but I have seen pricing a little higher in the Phoenix area, and a LOT higher around the country.
This is how it works (remember, this is my experience, so this may vary wherever you go!). I arrive at Sabrina's with no eye cream or makeup on. This isn't necessarily a must-do, but I wear pretty heavy eye cream every night and morning, and when I first went to Bre I didn't remove it. The lash glue didn't hold and we're certain it was from my eye cream getting onto my lashes without us realizing. From then I always went totally bare faced and I never had that issue again. So anyway, I arrive at Sabrina's and hop right on the table. She then puts a pad with tape on my lower eye/eyelashes so she can isolate my upper lashes as she applies. Then she goes to town for 30 minutes! Sabrina is fast, and it takes her an hour for a first-time set, and thirty minutes for fills. You basically just lay there on the table and she glues a lash to each of your individual lashes. It's super quick, PAINLESS (this is a huge one- some of my friends have had experiences where it hurt- it should never hurt!) and many times I'll just fall asleep. When you're done the tape/pad is removed and you're good to go! When Bre was doing them she advised me to not get them wet for 24 hours- so if you have to wash your face you'd have to carefully wash around your eye area- but with Sabrina it's okay if you do get them wet. I'm not sure why there's a difference, but I'm thinking maybe they're different kinds of glue.
Most of my big concerns were about my real lashes- how would they be affected? I heard from friends who had had good experiences with extensions that even though once they're removed your lashes feel so much thinner thanks to the big contrast to having them on, they're usually actually thicker and healthier because with extensions on you're not messing with every single day. If you're anything like me you'd probably curl your lashes then put on some mascara each morning...but with extensions you don't touch them at all. I actually never wear ANY eye makeup, because with lashes I feel like I'm already good to go.
It did take me a couple of weeks to get used to them, but now they feel like second nature. They're a fun way to feel a little fancy everyday, even when you're just wearing sweats. For me it's really helped cut back on wearing makeup, because I already feel "done" thanks to the lashes. I LOVE them, and plan on keeping them for a long time. I've read that it's good to take a break here and there, so I'll probably take them off in February, and get them put back on in April. Some women have asked me if I'm able to wash my face as normal, and the answer is yes! I just don't wash my eyelashes of course, and then gently pat them dry from underneath with a towel. Like I mentioned above it did take me a bit to get used to them but once I did they felt very natural. I don't mind the every other week maintenance either- it's a nice little 30 minute break to lay there and do absolutely nothing!
The lashes fall out as your natural lashes fall out since they're individually glued to each lash, with some months showing more shedding more due to your natural lash cycle, but for the most part it's unnoticeable. My best friend Sarah has a BAD experience her first time and many of her lashes fell out, so she used Careprost to beef them back up as they grow in (they're already so thick!), and will probably try again. The key is to get recs from someone you trust, who has lashes you already love! Do your research- every technician does them differently. Sabrina does hers (as shown in the photo above) very thick and long, almost like having a strip of fake lashes on. They're dramatic, which I love, but many of my friends prefer a much more natural look, so just be sure to specify with your lash technician what you're looking for. Photos help! If you were paying attention you'd probably notice that my first set looked different then the lashes I have now, since I got them from two different technicians. And in town we have a few girls who do them, and each person's lashes look different depending on who they see! It's so interesting to me!
Anyway, have you ever had eyelash extensions? Would you get them? Or do think this is really wacky? If you have any questions let me know, and if I can't answer them I'll ask Bre or Sabrina to chime in with their expertise. And if you want to see Sabrina or Bre, email me for their contact info- they work from their cell phones! xoxo