** Scroll to the end for a discount on your first set in San Francisco! **
I've been getting lash extensions for the past year, and every time I bring it up in conversation, I always get a ton of questions. So here's a little personalized FAQ based on my lash extension experience:
How do they work?
1-5 fake lashes are individually glued to each of your real lashes. 1D is 1 lash per lash, 2D is 2 lashes per lash, and so on.
Does the application hurt?
Nope! It takes some getting used to because your bottom lashes are taped down and you have to keep your eyes closed the entire session, which is actually easier than it sounds. So don't expect to be able to get any work done or even check your phone, but instead take the time to relax and reset, like a meditation! And the actual application doesn't hurt at all. You might feel a light pressure here and there, but most of the time you won't feel anything. I've actually fallen asleep during the longer sessions, which is totally normal.
Is it worth it?
Yes, yes, a thousand times yes! If you have to choose just one beauty service to do, I recommend lash extensions because they are life changing. You wake up looking flawless, like you already have makeup on, without any effort. Since starting to get lash extensions, half the time I don't even wear any eye makeup because my eyes already look great. It's a natural way to enhance beauty without changing what you look like - you just look more feminine. I love it for everyday, but also know people who get them when they go on long trips so that they don't have to worry about makeup while traveling.
How long does it take?
A full set session for 2D lashes tends to last about 90 minutes, whereas a fill is about an hour. If you want 3D or higher, expect to be there 3-5 hours for the initial set and about 2 hours for the fill, as each lash is glued on individually.
How long do they last?
The amount of time that lash extensions last is really dependent on a lot of factors - how well you take care of them, the health of your natural lashes, how often you touch them. It's generally recommended to get fills every 2 weeks so they don't grow out, but you can also just wear them until most fall off and get a new set. Mine have lasted up to 2.5-3 months before they all fell off.
Do they look bad as they grow out?
Not at all! They look cute all the way through. Even though as they fall out there are fewer and fewer longer lashes, if they're done well, they'll continue to look cute all the way through. Here are my lashes after a month, right before a fill:
Do they hurt your real lashes?
Not if they're done right! The fake lashes will definitely stunt the growth of your real lashes, but lashes are resilient and should go back to their normal length within a month of you taking off the extensions. While your lashes will appear shorter after a few months of having extensions, what you should look out for is gaps - that's a bad sign! Your lashes should not be falling out, so if they are, definitely go to a different technician.
Are they annoying?
I got used to mine super quickly! The only real difference is that I can't rub my eyes like I used to, but that's for the best anyway. Sometimes a few lashes stick together and if you don't brush them out regularly, it will get a bit painful, but the pain goes away as soon as you brush them out.
How do you care for them?
It's pretty easy and your technician will give you instructions, but here are some basics:
- no water, makeup, or sweating for the first 24 hours
- no oils - don't use any oil-based makeup remover
- no rubbing - don't rub your eyes; it's bad for your eyes anyway
- brush them a lot - your technician will give you a little brush to take home with you; brush when you wake up, after every shower, before you go to bed, when you put on makeup, etc.
Where should I get them in San Francisco?
I've gone to a few different lash extension technicians and studios in San Francisco, but hands down the absolute best is Sayana of Eyelastic. She has her own private studio in the Mission and she's kind, knowledgeable, patient, and excels at application. The extensions she's done on me have always looked super natural (even the 4/5D sets!), last a long time, and don't hurt my natural lashes. She's answered all my questions and doubts, and has tried different glues on me to make sure I get the best results.
I've had quite a few friends visit Sayana as well, and they all love her. Here are lash extensions she's done on my friend Rachel (left) and Christine (right).
** And, if you mention my name when booking your first session with Sayana, you get 30% off! **
So go out there, babes, and get after it. And send me pics! I want to see :)
Have any additional questions? Feel free to ask below!
Julia O Test is a lifestyle blogger and photographer based in San Francisco.