Lengthy lashes can take your beauty look to the next level — not to mention they make your eyes look bigger and brighter (a must for wedding photos). So it's no surprise that lash extensions are one of the most popular pre-wedding beauty treatments. Lash extensions are somewhere up there with gel manis and spray tans (and faux glows for that matter). Life before them was good, but life after is infinitely more gorgeous. Looking to get lash extensions before your big day? There are a few things you need to know. We talked to lash extension guru Sabah Feroz, of NYC's blinkbrowbar, to get the 411 on all things fringe, so you're fully prepared for your first appointment.
Do Your Research. Anything having to do with your eyes requires the utmost attention. You want to look for a trained lash professional at a reputable salon. Improper application can cause your natural lashes to weaken or break as well as other eye problems.
Know Your Options (and How Long They Will Last). Cluster lashes (applied in groups of three) will last for up to two weeks. And the application process is quicker than other types of extensions. Semi-permanent, also known as individual lashes, are the closest you will get to achieving a natural and long-lasting effect. These can last up to six to eight weeks, if cared for properly.
Take Care of Your Natural Lashes. Ok, so this one is a must pre and post-treatment. Feroz recommends conditioning your lashes with bbrowbar Luscious Lash Oil to strengthen your natural lashes. This should be applied every night for the two weeks leading up to your treatment as well as after your falsies have all grown out, to ensure that your natural lashes don't become weak or damaged. ("Luscious Lash" eyelash oil, $28, blinkbrowbar available at Net-a-Porter)
Start Fresh. Make sure your specialist thoroughly removes any mascara before he/she begins your treatment. The oils found in mascaras can causes the individual lashes to detach more easily.
Consider a Tint. If your lashes are fair, an eyelash tint (before extensions) is a great option. The tint will ensure that your natural lashes match the shade of the extensions — and will leave you with a fuller look.
Decide on Half vs. Full Set. If you're looking for a glamorous, false lash effect, Feroz recommends a full set. However, if you're looking for a more toned down and natural finish, then a half set is all you need. "A client who wears a full face of makeup every day will want a full set, with a longer length and thickness. Whereas a client who prefers a no makeup look will simply need a half set, with a length that matches their natural lashes." Your lash artist will look at your natural lashes and choose the right lash length, thickness and curl to achieve the desired results.
Do a Trial. Just like you do hair and makeup trials, don't forget to do the same with your lash extensions. Feroz encourages brides to come in one to two months before their wedding date. Your trial appointment gives you a chance to do a patch test (this tests the glue on your skin to make sure you won't have a reaction) as well as give your new fringe a spin before the big day to ensure you are comfortable.
Don't Get 'Em Wet for 24 Hours. If you're in the middle of your pre-wedding fitness routine this is an important one! You can't get your lashes wet (and that includes sweat) for 24 hours, so that the glue can fully dry and the extensions can settle.
Skip Oil-Based Makeup Remover. You'll want to keep oil-based formulas (cleansers and makeup removers) away from your extensions, as it can break-up the lash glue and cause your falsies to fall out prematurely.
No Mascara. Great news, you can toss your mascara! Well sort of. You can still use mascara on your lower lashes. And towards the end of the two weeks, if you notice your lashes are looking a little less lush, it's ok to apply a light coat of mascara to even things out — just make sure it's a regular, non-waterproof formula.
Grooming Is Required. Lash extensions do require maintenance (albeit minimal). Feroz recommends using an eyelash comb or tamer to brush your lashes each morning. This will fix any unruly fringe and keep them looking groomed and neat.
Don't Try to Remove Them Yourself. Just as a trained professional applied your lashes, they also need to remove them. Don't pick, pluck or mess around your extensions at home. This can lead to damage of your natural lashes. If you have any issues at all or want to make adjustment, simply go back to the salon and your tech will be happy to help.