I’ve never been a super girly girl. Not much into makeup, my idea of a fun hairstyle is a high ponytail and, while I love wearing dresses, I prefer to pair them with a cute, comfy sneakers whenever possible.
I guess that’s why Dude Mom life suits me so nicely.
That said, as I’ve gotten older and certain elements of my anatomy have started to disappointment with their performance and sustainability, I’ve found that a gel mani-pedi or a fresh foil on the hair can make a huge difference in how I’m feeling about me. This explains how I found myself the proud owner of fuller, fancier lashes thanks to eyelash extensions.
I first heard about eyelash extensions from a pair of mom friends who were at a blogger event with me. I complimented one on her beautiful lashes and she, not being one to fake the funk, immediately launched into the story of their origin: they were eyelash extensions, she said, and apparently, they were also everything.
I listened intently as the two women batted their lashes and gushed incessantly about how fabulous they are. I asked a bazillion questions and left with plenty to Google in my hotel room that night.
I’ll be the first to admit that, prior to this conversation, I’d never even heard of eyelash extensions. I thought my only pathway to fuller lashes was through the falsies that I’d tried and failed miserably at applying. I’d pretty much accepted my life would be one lived with the paltry excuses for eyelashes I’d been born with.
But, armed with this exciting solution, I spent an hour combing Google for info on eyelash extensions that night while talking to my mom about how much I wanted to try them.
Fast forward a few months to my 40th birthday and my mommy, loving queen that she is, gifted me with a lash extension treatment at a spa in my town.
They came out as beautifully as I’d hoped and, as long as they fit into my budget, I intend to be an eyelash extensions wearing goddess mom until I’m too old to drive myself to the salon for refills.
Thinking about getting eyelash extensions yourself? Here are some things to know before you go.
Eyelash Extensions: Your Top 15 Questions Answered
Are they expensive?
Um, yeah? I mean, obviously, it depends on what you call expensive, but the way my bank account is set up, they aren’t cheap.
My first set install was $99, but that price can vary widely depending on where you go and what you are having done in terms of extension material. Don’t be surprised if some salons quote you up to $300 for an install.
Do they hurt?
Not at all, but good question. Anytime people start messing around my eyes, I’m afraid it will hurt or burn or something. If it does, huge red flag and let your lash lady know immediately. Because it’s a relatively chill process and, depending on how calming the place you have them installed is, you might actually fall asleep. I know I did.
How long do they take to install.
Ages. Not like, fresh weave long, but well over an hour.
That long?! What is the process like anyway?
It’s an intricate procedure -they literally attach each hair to your eye one by one. So, you go in and take a few moments to go over what you want and what to expect from your technician. Then, you lie down, close your eyes, and they put this tape beneath your eyes to protect the area. From then on, I can’t tell you 100% what’s happening because you can’t open your eyes again until they tell you to. And, like I said, I fell asleep anyway an didn’t wake up until my own snoring aroused me, followed by the whirring of the fan they blow on your face at the end to help dry the adhesive. About an hour and a half after you lay down, they remove the tape, sit you up, and hand you a mirror so you can swoon over your gorgeous eyelashes.
Could I go blind?
Unlikely. You may have an allergic reaction to the adhesive, but as long as you’re not having them done at a storage unit, turned day spa, your vision will likely survive even that. I will admit that I was shocked at the lengthy waiver with a laundry list of potential side effects and tragedies that could occur from the experience, but I was happy to not fall victim to any of them. At most there was a tiny bit of burning from the adhesive when I first opened my eyes, but it cleared up in seconds and my vision was not adversely impacted at all.
Will they be Kim K thick?
I guess they could be. Totally up to you. And your eyelashes. Personally, I didn’t want a Kim K. glamazon look. I wanted them to look natural, but fuller than what I could grow on my own. But, even if that is what I wanted, my eyelashes couldn’t support all of that. What style you get, the thickness, and length are up to what you prefer and what your lashes will healthily support. You don’t want to pack on a bunch of lashes if your own aren’t able to survive it because you could damage your lashes.
Whoaaaaa, I could lose my lashes?
Sure. But, if you skip the low budget nightmare spa (see above example) and go to a knowldegable, trained technition, and you take their advice when they tell you you can’t do Kim K. lashes because your baby lashes won’t stand it, your lashes will likley survive. You should also NEVER remove them yourself.
So they fall out on their own?
Yes, over time. As your natural lashes regenerate, the eyelash extensions will fall out too. But it could take awhile and, if you await natural removal, you could spend a few weeks looking like you spent some time playing with fire. The best thing to do, should you decide not to wear them any longer, is to go have them professionall removed. Trying to tweezer them off yourself is a surefire way to earn the nickname Baldy Eyes.
How long do they last?
For some people it’s less time and for others it’s more, but the average person can keep eyelash extensions in and looking fly for 3-4 weeks. As mentioned, the lashes fall out as your natural lashes do so, as they thin, you’ll need to get a refill if you want to keep them.
How long do refills take?
Nearly as long as a fresh set, but not quite.
And are refills expensive too?
Here you go with that question again! Yes or no. Depends. They aren’t a ton cheaper than the original set, but they do tend to coast less.
Can I wear mascara?
Noooooo. But, honestly, you don’t need to. They look like they have mascara on them at all times. If you do decide you can’t live without mascara, know that you will be needing a refill way sooner than someone who skips it.
Can they get wet?
Yep. After like the first day or so, you can get them wet if you want. In fact, you should get them wet to clean them so you don’t get build up and junk in them. You will also need to brush them daily to remove caught debris and untangle them -like long hair, long eyelashes seem to do tangle a bit.
Are there things to avoid?
Spending time in super humid places, like a sauna, or Florida (just kidding, Florida, you can have eyelash extensions too) because it could loosen the glue more quickly. You should also avoid letting the water pelt you in the face during your shower. As awesome of a wake up call it is to have hot water abuse your face that way, it’s not great for the longevity of your lashes. You should also avoid sleeping on your face. I don’t know anyone who does this, but I specifically recall the handout my first tech gave me saying, in bold letters like it’s some sort of human epidemic: DO NOT SLEEP ON YOUR FACE. Even if you’re not wearing eyelash extensions I advise you to skip this practice, but if you are, definitely stop doing this. You also want to avoid mascara, heavy eyeliner that will be tough to remove, and all oil based makeup as it will cause the glue to deteriorate more quickly.
Do you love them?
As noted earlier, they are everything. They make me feel all gorgeous and glam the moment I get up in the morning. I can’t even think of how basic I’m going to look when I stop wearing them.
If you’re looking for an awesome technician in the Frederick, Maryland area, check out Lash Bar by Meg and tell her I sent you!