What are eyelash extensions?
Eyelash extensions are individual strands of synthetic fiber attached precisely to each of your individual eyelashes - not the eyelid skin - to create length and thickness that can’t be matched by mascara. The initial application can be a lengthy process - eyelash extension application is a delicate, intricate procedure. As your eyelashes grow, the extensions grow along with them. As your eyelashes fall out, the extensions fall out with them. Every two to three weeks, you will need to have your extensions refilled - this means new extensions will be attached to your new eyelash growth to replace the ones you have lost and make your extensions look as good as the day you got them.
But will extensions damage my natural lashes?
If applied properly by a trained professional, eyelash extensions should never damage your natural lashes. Eyelash extensions are applied one by one (or a few to one, more on that in a moment) to your natural lashes, each of them isolated from the others so that they are not stuck together. If any of your lashes are stuck together during the process, your stylist will go through and separate them. In the end you should have beautiful, separated eyelash extensions that are easily brushed. Eyelash extensions should never cause you pain. If your extensions hurt, usually that is a sign of them being placed too close to the lash line or that extensions may be stuck to one another. Each individual natural lash is at a different stage of growth, which means that clumped lashes can cause pain and damage as they grow.
Not every curl, thickness, or adhesive is right for every client. Eyelash extensions that are too long, too thick, or adhesive that is too heavy can cause natural lashes to shed prematurely, possibly damaging the eyelash follicles over time - which means less natural lashes will exist to which extensions can be applied! This is why proper consultation with a trained professional is important to determine which eyelash extensions are right for you.
Are there any contraindications for the eyelash extension procedure?
Most people can wear eyelash extensions with no problems, but there are a few contraindications for the procedure.
Alopecia/Loss of hair due to other factors (Chemotherapy, etc) - Eyelash extensions can only be placed on lashes that someone already has. That means if you don’t have eyelashes, you can’t wear extensions.
Trichotillomania (hair pulling) - People who suffer from trichotillomania compulsively pull hair from their bodies - sometimes including their lashes. Eyelash extensions are not recommended for these people.
Eye infections/eye surgeries - Eyelash extensions are not recommended for individuals who have undergone recent eye surgery or who are currently suffering an eye infection. Extensions can be applied as soon as the area has completely healed.
Contact lens wear is not a contraindication for eyelash extensions, though you may want to bring a contact lens case to deposit your lens into during the procedure.
What should I expect during the procedure?
Your initial eyelash extension application is booked for 2 ½ hours. Some people may not require this much time but we want to make sure we have plenty of time to consult with you and apply the extensions carefully and artfully. Fills range from 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours. You will lie upon a comfortable bed and have your lower lashes taped down so that they do not get tangled in your upper lashes. You will close your eyes and your lash stylist will begin to apply extensions individually to each of your natural lashes. The procedure is painless and many people find it very relaxing - some even fall asleep! Once your lash stylist is done applying extensions, your lashes will be separated, dried thoroughly and then the tape will come off your lower lashes and you can open your eyes to longer, fuller lashes!
What will they look like after they are applied?
Eyelash extensions look and feel like natural eyelashes. Even with a dramatic look, they will be undetectable to others. No one will know you have extensions! Your lash stylist will consult with you before application to determine what style you are going for as well as the length and thickness you wish to achieve.
How long do extensions last?
While longevity of eyelash extensions can be affected by a number of factors such as lifestyle and activity level, properly applied eyelash extensions should shed with the natural lash to which they are adhered. Humans naturally shed 1-4 eyelashes per day, sometimes more when experiencing stressful situations, hormonal imbalances, or sickness. This means that you will probably need to come in every two to three weeks to get your new eyelash growth extended and keep your extensions looking their best.
Can I shower, exercise, go to a spa, use a sauna with eyelash extensions on?
Yes, you can! Your eyelashes will be waterproof soon after your appointment. That’s the beauty of eyelash extensions - you can look beautiful even in situations where your regular mascara would melt off your lashes!
How do I care for my eyelash extensions?
We recommend trying not to get them wet for 24 hours, even though we will cure the adhesive before you leave. After that time, we recommend using an oil free makeup remover, applied however you feel most comfortable - with fingertips or the brush we give you - and then rinsed out with warm water. Please do not use a cloth or linty cotton pad - these can deposit lint onto your eyelash extensions that is hard to remove. Brush your eyelashes with the brush provided as needed. Please try not to use mascara - but if you do, please stay away from waterproof mascara. All mascaras will affect the longevity of your extensions.
How do I prepare for my appointment?
Please arrive with clean lashes - preferably with no eye makeup. If you do wear eye makeup, please keep your lashes clean. It will take time away from your appointment for us to clean them for you. Please refrain from anything that might keep you from being relaxed - some people find it easier to refrain from coffee before their appointment. Please wear clothing that will make it easy for you to lie back and relax during your appointment. If you wear contact lenses, you may want to bring a lens case to deposit your lens into during your appointment.
Does lash extension adhesive contain formaldehyde? What does it mean when an eyelash adhesive is called “medical-grade?”
Because eyelash extension adhesive contains ingredients that are often used to adhere skin after surgery, lots of eyelash extension companies attempt to bill their adhesive as “medical-grade.” The truth is, there is no semi-permanent eyelash extension adhesive that is FDA approved, although every glue sold in the United States is (or should be!) within FDA guidelines for having less than 2% formaldehyde added (as a preservative.)
Eyelash extension adhesive is a form of cyanoacrylate, the main ingredient in super glue. (No, we are not using plain super glue to adhere the extensions to your lashes!) Formaldehyde is formed as a result of the production of cyanoacrylate. Reputable eyelash extension adhesive companies purify their adhesive before it is bottled, meaning that the formaldehyde content should be negligible. Sometimes as the adhesive cures, a tiny amount of formaldehyde is released into the atmosphere. Take note: this will happen with every adhesive on the market. There is no such thing as a “formaldehyde-free” adhesive, though the amounts released by the curing process should be negligible at worst.
My friend got eyelash extensions and had a horrible allergic reaction. Will that happen to me?
That depends. Allergies are crazy beasts. They can occur at any time. At Gaze, we have only really seen about two true allergy cases in five years. That having been said, both of the women who ended up with allergies had been successfully wearing extensions for some time before the allergies presented themselves. One woman’s allergies resolved once Austin’s springtime allergy season was over. If an allergic reaction happens to you, we suggest calling your doctor and seeing what they say about your reaction before proceeding with removal. Sometimes removal is not needed. In some cases, your doctor may be able to help you mitigate allergic reactions to the point where we can continue with extensions - this isn’t the case for everyone. There are some techniques we can try for clients with allergy concerns, but these are not always successful. Keep in mind that adhesive for “sensitive clients” isn’t as strong as regular extension adhesive and may require more care or more frequent fills.
Do you have to be licensed in Texas to perform this procedure?
Yes, yes, a million times yes. In Texas, one must hold a current cosmetology or esthetics license to apply eyelash extensions. Jessica has been licensed since 2011 and certified by private eyelash extension companies since she was a student in 2010. She is certified by Lavish Lashes, Novalash, and Borboleta Beauty in both classic and volume eyelash extension application.
If you have any other questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will get back to you at our earliest convenience.