Eyelash Extensions: Why I Hate Them (And My Friend Doesn't)

Posted 05/17/12 at 05:05PM by Audrey Fine

Let's play a quick round of "Password."

CLUE: Anchovies. Obamacare. Tim Burton movies ...

If you said "things that are divisive" you move on to the next round. Well done.

Here's another thing that's divisive: eyelash extensions. My friend Sharon and I recently had them applied and while I was pretty much miserable from moment one of the process, Sharon just loves hers and has become a diehard fan.

How can two people have such different feelings about the same thing? Let's break this down for you and see.

SHARON:

Why I Got Them: I'm Korean, which means I'm severely lacking in the eyelash department (read: I have none). My lashes are sparse, short, and absolutely refuse to curl. So eyelash extensions promised me the lashes of my dreams without looking like falsies.

How the Procedure Went: I love getting beauty treatments, not just for the beautiful results, but for the two hours of unadulterated laziness. While I get my hair colored, a facial, or my eyelashes done, the hour to two of just lying down and getting pampered is a nice break from an otherwise hectic schedule. The esthetician, Esther -- she was awesome -- from Glad Lash and I whiled away the time talking about the history of eyelash extensions (and her many, many years experience with them), and dished the latest dirt on Kim Kardashian's faux relationship with Kanye.

How It Looked Afterwards: Um, can I say stunning?! My co-workers were distracted in meetings, saying my mile-long lashes were fluttering at them across the conference room; mid-sentence I'd get interrupted on lunch dates by friends (including guys!) who were compelled to comment on how pretty my eyes looked; and my flirty lashes made my eyes look done without putting on any eye makeup. Amazing.

How They Felt: Like regular lashes, meaning you don't feel them. Unlike falsies that sit heavily on your lids, these lashes are glued onto each eyelash so you're mostly unaware of them in your day-to-day.

How Long They Lasted: Not long enough! I noticed my left eyelashes were falling out faster than my right -- most likely due to my propensity to sleep on my left side. I had to get a filler after two weeks so the lashes would look even again.

In Summation: Along with the convenience of not having to apply mascara or curl my lashes every day came the inconvenience of having constantly curled lashes. They would get in the way when applying eyeliner, and if any makeup did get on the lashes, they would clump and stick together. That said, I still love them. Having long, curled lashes 24/7 is worth the minor discomfort. I'd have these in forever if I could afford them.

AUDREY:

Why I Got Them: My natural eyelashes have become virtually non-existent. They're there but are light colored, more sparse, and shorter than they used to be.

How the Procedure Went: I am not good at sitting still and I have zero patience for being non-productive. Those two foibles do not bode well for lying on a table for almost two hours with your eyes closed while someone glues little bits of fake hair to your eyelashes.

How It Looked Afterwards: Maybe my expectations were unrealistic but I was hoping to have noticeably long, dark eyelashes. Not ones that you could spot from across the room, necessarily, but lashes that made a difference. I was disappointed that you could barely tell I'd had anything done.

How They Felt: I never got used to the feeling of having a night's worth of "sleep" stuck in my eyelashes. I found them extremely uncomfortable and almost painful. Had to stop myself from trying to pick them out for fear of ripping out my own lashes.

How Long They Lasted: Too long! The woman who did them said they'd come out within three weeks but I'm on week four and despite using every oil and makeup remover trick in the book, some are still holding strong. (If I loved them, they'd no doubt have fallen out by now.)

In Summation: I finally couldn't take the feeling of them any more and cut them down, cutting my own real lashes along with them. Upshot of this whole experience? Eyelash extensions are most certainly not for me. I wish I'd never tried them.

Have you ever had eyelash extensions? What was your experience? We'd love to hear all about it!
And the survey says...
1-6 of 7 Comments

  • Posted by karinne on 03/24/14 at 02:22pm

    When eyelash extensions are applied correctly by a certified professional who has been trained by a reputable company the procedure is very relaxing (there should be no pain). All responsible stylists should carry an adhesive remover...so should you want to take them off for whatever reason they can be easily and safely removed. No consumer should have to go home and soak cotton balls in olive oil and try and remove themselves your lash stylist should be able to do this for you. If they can't you should find another lash stylist. Crust is not normal! I wonder if your lash stylist educated you on maintaining proper hygiene of the eye area and how to clean and take care of eyelash extensions after the procedure. If no aftercare instructions were reviewed with you and no aftercare products were given to you I would find another lash stylist.

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  • Posted by karinne on 03/24/14 at 02:22pm

    When eyelash extensions are applied correctly by a certified professional who has been trained by a reputable company the procedure is very relaxing (there should be no pain). All responsible stylists should carry an adhesive remover...so should you want to take them off for whatever reason they can be easily and safely removed. No consumer should have to go home and soak cotton balls in olive oil and try and remove themselves your lash stylist should be able to do this for you. If they can't you should find another lash stylist. Crust is not normal! I wonder if your lash stylist educated you on maintaining proper hygiene of the eye area and how to clean and take care of eyelash extensions after the procedure. If no aftercare instructions were reviewed with you and no aftercare products were given to you I would find another lash stylist.

    Report Abuse

  • Posted by adriann_hart on 03/19/13 at 05:11pm

    Did you ladies have them applied by the same esthetician at the same place?

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  • Posted by adriann_hart on 03/19/13 at 05:09pm

    have them on now with an olive oil soaked cotton ball on each eye BEGGING for them to come off. I, too had clumps of crust and didn't think that was normal. The hurt and I pick and I just freaking loathe them. NEVER AGAIN

    Report Abuse

  • Posted by LipglossandSpandex on 06/18/12 at 08:23pm

    I've never tried them, but I think I'll have to pass... having them fall off at various rates would look really bizarre. I've been using Revitalash and it makes my ACTUAL lashes really long. And I don't have to spend two hours getting them applied!

    Report Abuse

  • Posted by Nicole2814 on 05/31/12 at 06:48pm

    thanks

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