For girls who are in a serious relationship with their mascara and who would never dream of leaving the house without a quick eyelash boost, eyelash extensions might be your dream come true. But before diving in, there are a couple things you should know before getting your first set of eyelash extensions.

Know what shape and lash type to ask for.

Before you head off to your first appointment, get familiar with the choices that are available, as well as what to request based on your eye shape.

For example, with eyes that are close-set, opt for lashes that are longer toward the outer corners of your eyes and shorter toward the inner corner. Hooded eyes do well with longer lashes at the center to add dimension and depth.

Certain salons have a variety of options for lash type, ranging from real human hair, silk, faux mink, and real mink. Popular choices are mink lashes, both the real and faux, as they are more comfortable than silk and more durable than human hair (surprisingly!).

Go to a highly recommended place.

Snag referrals from girlfriends who have had their eyelashes done. I’ve heard horror stories of unhygienic conditions, which led to infections, and you really don’t want to go anywhere that doesn’t have the highest of cleanliness standards. This is where it makes sense to—at least for your first experience—pay for top quality. You can look for the deals later.

Prepare for your first appointment.

Up to a week before your appointment for your first set of eyelash extensions, you will want to skip applying mascara. And definitely no mascara or eyelash curling on the day of. This is because you want to be sure that the adhesives used on your eyelashes will stick as they are meant to.

Additionally, because you’re supposed to avoid getting your lashes wet for up to 24 hours after getting your lashes done, you will want to shower and do your skincare routine beforehand, so that you’ll be sweet smelling until your 24-hour dry-spell is up.

Also, keep in mind that a full set of lashes can take up to 2 hours and a half to apply. Make sure to schedule enough time so you don’t need to rush to your next appointment.

Be prepared for upkeep.

Now that you look fabulous and you have cut time off of your morning makeup routine, what’s left to think about? Eyelash extensions last from 2 weeks to a full month. And you can likely extend their life a little longer if you are careful and you take care of them. Beauty tips for extending lash life include avoiding very hot environments, such as spas and saunas. And while eyelash extensions are waterproof, if you are playing in the water all day, your lashes won’t last as long. Big no-nos also include using mascara on your eyelash extensions. Oil-based beauty products are also not good for extensions, as they can weaken the adhesive. And never, ever try to get them removed yourself. This will not end well for you.

Upkeep involves brushing them daily with a dry mascara wand and going in for infills as soon as they begin to look patchy. This way you are maintaining the fullness without having to start from scratch each time.

Some people experience irritation around the eye area, but this should clear up within a few days. And it’s normal to lose some eyelashes every couple of days because the extensions are attached to your natural eyelashes. So what you are witnessing is a natural shedding rate, although more noticeable now than before.

Also, getting an eyelash in your eye—if it was annoying before—with extensions the irritation to your eyes is definitely amplified. But all the girls I’ve talked with have claimed that it’s more than worth it. 

—Eun-Ha Park



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