What You Should Know Before Getting a Lash Lift

July 08, 2022
By: Makeup.com | Makeup.com by L'Oréal

The journey to getting longer, more voluminous-looking lashes is one that requires commitment. Between curling them with a lash curler, prepping them with mascara primer, applying multiple coats of mascaras, and if you’re really looking for extra oomph, applying falsies, it can be a lot of work. 

That’s where lash lifts come in. This low-maintenance lash service offers semi-permanent, curled and lifted lashes that can last for up to eight weeks. Before committing to a lash lift, though, it’s important to do your research. That’s why we tapped Andrea Starr, lash extension expert and founder of Starr Beauty, to break down everything you need to know about lash lifts before booking your appointment.

What Is a Lash Lift?

Lash lifts (also called lash perms) replace the need for an eyelash curler altogether by shaping and curling your lashes to offer semi-permanent hold. According to Starr, this procedure works best for “someone who uses a lash curler daily and/or has straight natural lashes.” It’s ideal for someone whose lashes already have a little bit of length, so if your lashes are naturally short, she recommends growing them out with the help of a lash conditioner or serum before attempting the service.

What’s the Difference Between a Lash Lift and Lash Extensions?

Lash lifts tend to be more cost effective than eyelash extensions. Lifts will set you back about $75 to $100 (cost will vary depending on where you live), while extensions go for about $150 for a new set. Lash lifts also require less maintenance. “Extensions replace eye makeup, but a lift replaces the need of a lash curler and heavy mascara,” says Starr.

Do Lash Lifts Damage Your Eyelashes?

Although repeated use of a curler can add wear and tear to natural lashes, lash lifts, says Starr, will not. Like with all beauty treatments and services, it’s important to go to a professional with experience to ensure a safe, positive experience.

Person applying mascara

The Pros of Getting a Lash Lift

It’s a (Relatively) Easy Procedure

Lash lifts generally take 45 minutes from start to finish, are painless and last up to eight weeks. One look doesn’t fit all, though, so prior to application your technician should customize your lash look based on your natural lash length, how you like to style them and your curl preference. Then, your tech will choose a specific silicone pad (which comes in multiple sizes) to achieve the look. 

As for what happens during a lash lift, according to Starr: “The technician will clean your lashes, glue down a silicone shield onto your upper lid, apply adhesive to that shield, lift your lashes up onto the silicone shield, and then apply the odorless, non-damaging lash lift product to your lashes.” This is a chemical product that works to curl your lashes — just like a perm. 

There Is Minimal After-Care

According to Starr, you should avoid wearing eye makeup, getting your lashes wet or using oil-based products for 24 hours after the procedure. But beyond that, there’s not much you need to do to take care of your newly lifted lashes. Plan on coming back for another treatment about six to eight weeks later, when your lashes will start to revert to their natural curl.

Lash Lifts Pair Well With Lash Tints

Lash tinting consists of using a special dye to darken your lashes, offering weeks of ultra-black lashes without the help of mascara. This goes particularly well with a lash lift and gives lashes a natural, full look. Many places can perform the treatments in tandem.

Things to Note About Lash Lifts

Research Your Lash Technician

When looking for a lash technician, make sure you choose someone who specializes in lash services and is certified to provide the treatment. Starr recommends researching your tech before your visit and looking at customer photos and reviews. It’s also a good idea to get a consultation prior to booking an appointment as well. 

Avoid Waterproof Mascara

While skincare and eye products are fine to use with a lash lift, Starr says, “waterproof or smudge-proof mascara strips the treatment and will affect its longevity.” That means you’ll have to avoid waterproof mascara formulas if you’re looking for your curl to last the full six to eight weeks.

Lash Lifts Aren’t for Everyone

“Those who have naturally curly lashes or lashes with a natural ‘criss cross’ pattern won’t benefit from a lash lift,” says Starr. This also applies to anyone with “really coarse lashes [because] the solution might not take.”

Whatever You Do, Don’t DIY

Although the lash lift procedure looks fairly simple on Instagram, Starr insists that they should only be done by a professional due to the amount of chemicals being applied so close to the eye area.

Photo: Jonet Williamson of @jonetwmakeup

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