Are eyelash extensions bad for my eyes?

Nothing beats that long-lash-feeling ūüíô. But what‚Äôs the deal with eyelash extensions? We asked a top optometrist for the lowdown‚Ķ¬†


What is your expert opinion on eyelash extensions - are they good or bad for you?

If you're a good candidate for eyelash extensions (for example, you tend not to rub or touch your eyes much, do not have allergies/sensitivities to lash glue or the materials of the lashes themselves, are not prone to eye infections and have generally healthy eyes, lids and lashes) then occasional eyelash extensions are fine. 

Extensions themselves are as good or bad as the person who applies them (are they qualified, meticulous and hygienic?) and who they are applied to (are they a good candidate to start with, will they take daily care of the extensions and will they take regular breaks?).


Do lash extensions damage/deplete your natural lashes?

Just like hair extensions, eyelash extensions do tend to weaken and break your natural eyelashes - it's an unnatural weight attached to quite a fine hair follicle. 

But there are better and worse ways of applying lash extensions that can make a huge difference to your natural eyelash health. If the eyelash extensions are too heavy or thick for your natural eyelashes, they will weigh down and break the natural follicle. 

The glue is also very important - each lash extension should be glued to one individual natural eyelash - not clumps of lashes at a time and there should never be any glue applied to the lash line - that is a surefire way to affect the growth of your own natural eyelashes. 

Something else to think about; the better the glue is applied, the easier it is to clean the extensions and prevent a bacterial infection of the lids and lashes.  

If there is no damage to the follicle itself, the natural growth cycle of eyelashes is around 6 weeks, but it can take up to 16 weeks if the follicle itself has been affected (for example if the lash has been pulled out). 


What are some ways to protect your lashes if you’re going to get eyelash extensions? 

If eyelash extensions are important to you, three pieces of advice I always give are:

  1. Do your homework and choose an experienced qualified professional to apply them (this could make all the difference) and make sure you know how they sterilise their tools
  2. Daily eyelid hygiene is essential. Clean your lashes with an oil-free lash foam to prevent bacterial infections
  3. Take breaks of at least three months every month 

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