Editor Tested: Are Lash Extensions the New Mascara?
The beauty market is beseiged with products that promise lush, full lashes—from serums to falsies. Eyelash extensions, done only in salons is a luxurious treatment that will have you waking up with Kardashian level lashes, without any of the effort. Beauty Intern Samantha Faragalli paid a visit to the LASH HOUSE beauty boutique in Livingston, NJ to test it out. Get all the details!
I was a bit apprehensive about eyelash extensions until I opened the doors to this chic spot (pictured above) with a makeup-free face and moisturized skin (as they recommended). Upon meeting the lovely Suzette Zuena, Master Artist and owner of this pampering haven, she immediately assured me that lash extensions are a safe process when properly done, while also highlighting all the worthy benefits. “Lash extensions are good to open your eyes and give you a much more finished look,” Zuena tells InStyle. “They add instant curl, depth and color.”
We kick-started this luxe experience by entering a private room (pictured above), fully equip with a cozy Tempur-Pedic bed to ensure ultimate relaxation. Before we began this avant-garde service, Zuena thoroughly explained the process to me to make sure I was ready before proceeding. “After cleaning the eye, we apply lint-free moisturizing gel patches under your eyes to keep your bottom lashes down,” she explained. “The Xtreme Lash synthetic lashes, which are said to have a silk, mink feel, are applied one by one 1 millimeter from the base of the lash,” she said. “We apply each one from eye to eye to keep it evenly balanced,” she explained as she told me that my right eye naturally has more lashes than my left.
The two hour experience was calming and luxurious to say the least. Zuena (pictured doing lashes above) delicately applied my lashes, one by one (which were custom sized to the shape of my eye), as I got to listen to my choice of tunes play softly throughout the comfortable room. I was afraid I would be fidgety and restless, but it was the total opposite. I was relaxed and enjoyed every moment. After she was done (which went way quicker than I had expected), I was astonished at the first look of my (now perfect) lashes (pictured below). Not only were they full and thick, but they looked so natural and gorgeous against my darker skin tone. The only thing I could think to ask was how I could make this duo last forever.
“I always say that as the lash artists we do 50 percent of the work and you do the other 50 percent,” she noted while stating that lash extensions should be cleaned every day. “People have this misconception that the less they touch them and put water on them the longer they will last.” Zuena notes how this isn’t true because, “the dirt and oil get trapped in the lashes and loosen the bond, so clean them to remove natural oils and make them last longer.”
Zuena’s tips on proper care:
During the first 24 hours:
1. Do not get lashes wet (shower before your appointment).
2. Don't apply any makeup to the lashes.
3. Avoid steam, heat and friction.
After the 24 hours:
1. Always clean with a lint-free application (pictured above) because any cotton application will wrap around the lash and pull them out (no Q-tips).
2. “Squidgy” the lashes by taking your finger and gently gliding over them.
3. Never brush wet lashes or else they will immediately take out the extension.
4. Brush dry extensions using a synthetic brush from the top of the lashes (pictured below) and gently work your way up to create a subtle curl.
5. Hold a blow dryer (set to cool) far away to gently fluff them.
6. If you choose to use mascara (which you really don’t need), try a lightweight formula (we love L’Oreal’s Voluminous Naturale Mascara, $8; lorealparisusa.com) and apply from mid-shaft to tip.
Needless to say, I tossed my mascara. I was excited to hear that eyelash extensions can last indefinitely with proper maintenance and touchups, so I definitely plan to keep up with my perfect new lashes (Zuena recommends every three weeks). There is something gratifying about saying #IWokeUpLikeThis, and to be honest, that’s a feeling I can get used to.