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Summer Beauty Trend 101: Faux Lashes
Three luscious lash options and the price you pay
It used to be that only the lucky few were born with long, thick, voluptuous eyelashes. We all have that story of our niece, sister’s son or co-worker’s daughter who “has the longest lashes!” The rest of us, it seemed, were out of luck. Willing to spend major cash on the latest mascara products in order to achieve our batty-eye-beauty goals, like a pack of gum we’d toss in a last minute $12 mascara here, $28 there, $39 and so on. Problem is, none of them worked. In fact, while many of these cosmetic companies confidently and oh-so-eloquently over promised results on their glossy packages, women all over the world would walk away feeling under delivered and taken for granted — myself included.
I couldn’t help but feel inspired by the latest This is Your Year! magazine themes everywhere I turned. So, I decided I’d had enough. This would be my year, and I was going to make all of my health and beauty goals my reality. I researched the many options that offer so-called lash growth miracles and instant results and narrowed my search down to three well-known products or brands. After analytically and intensely weighing the pros and cons of each (some of these beauty products run the risk of changing your eye color as a result), I decided to choose the one that fit my lifestyle best and give it a whirl. Well, guess what? It worked!
Thanks to technology and the ever-evolving cosmetic industry, science and art have mixed and the results are truly astounding. In order to save you time, energy and money, I have weeded-out the marketing mumbo-jumbo to get you the stats on three of the most popular lash-magnifying products on the market today. While there will always be the random outlier, from the testimonies I gathered mixed with my own personal experience, I can confidently say that these products deliver what they promise. Choose the route that works best for your comfort-level, lifestyle and finances. Get ready to check that quest for the perfect mascara off your beauty to-do list and watch your wallet — along with your lashes — begin to thicken.
1. Lash Extensions
How it works:
You’ve probably seen or heard of lash extensions. They are definitely a growing trend and for good reason. Mirroring the concept of hair extensions and acrylic nails, lash extensions take real mink hair or pre-curled synthetic polymer hair and attach the single hair extension to each individual natural lash. Michael Nebeker¬, owner of Got Lashes in Salt Lake City and Layton, explains that his team prefers working with the synthetic polymer hair because clients get a very natural feathery effect and synthetic hair minimizes the risk of an adverse reaction in clients.
When applied correctly by a certified lash technician, the lash extension should not touch the skin; the synthetic lash should be applied near the root of the client’s natural lash. The result? Lashes appear longer, thicker and darker right away. “The benefit of lash extensions is that you don’t need mascara; it’s one of those products that once you try them you’ll never want to go without them!” Nebeker exclaims.
With lash extensions, clients get the satisfaction of automatic results. Clients can walk into their appointment with short, stubby, dry lashes and walk out feeling more glamorous in a matter of an hour. If you have a summer vacation, wedding, or reunion coming-up, this may be the perfect route for you. Without having to put in the time, you will get the automatic results you want.
“Every time I walk out of my lash extension appointment, I feel more confident, rejuvenated and ready to take on the world,” says Summer Swindell, a Park City native. “The transformation is a great feeling when you need a boost.”
Another benefit to lash extensions is for those who may have suffered from lash-fallout. This may be due to health problems or simply a case of pulling too hard on your eyelash curler, but eyelash extensions can be a great temporary solution while giving your own lashes a chance to grow again.
If you have ever had hair extensions or acrylic nails, you know the maintenance can be a bit exhausting. While we all want to look and feel our best, if you find that you spend your weekends maintaining your looks verses doing the things that you love, you may have become the epidemy of “high maintenance.” If that works for your personality and lifestyle, great, but if you feel drained after running all of your beauty errands verses energized, it may be time to re-assess your beauty routine to one that is less tiring physically and mentally.
Also, while some clients look simply amazing, others have lash extensions that look fake and distract from the client’s eyes rather than enhancing them. According to Got Lashes, finding the right certified lash technician is key to get the results you want. Nebeker suggests that you ask for actual photos of the lash technician’s past clients to ensure they are the real deal and not using misleading stock photos. Ask around and go somewhere that has received rave reviews. It’s not worth saving a buck if the results are awful.
Speaking of finances lash extensions can be a costly cycle once you jump in. However, many loyal customers say it’s worth every penny and it’s become their most important beauty routine. Pricing varies per location and on how dramatic you want your results to be. Initial consultation and placement of the lashes usually runs about $99-$350 and takes 2–3 hours to apply. According to Nebeker, “Your lash cycle is 90 days, and you will want to get a fill about every 4 weeks to maintain the look.” Fills run about $49–$79 each time and take about 1 hour to complete.
How it works:
RevitaLash is marketed as an “eyelash conditioner” and does not require a prescription or doctor visit unlike many other lash growing products. According to Robbi Boyer, spa director at Xage Medical Spa in Provo, the inventor of RevitaLash is an optometrist who created the product because his wife had breast cancer, went through chemotherapy and lost all of her lashes and other facial hair as a result. Seeing his wife unhappy, the doctor created the formula to help her grow hair again. While this modern love story alone catches the interest of clients, many new clients feel comforted by the short ingredient list and safe way in which it promises dramatic results.
RevitaLash is a clear, liquid substance that comes in a silver mascara-like tube with a tiny brush on the end for easy application. The directions are simple: apply at night only, after you have washed your face and before applying any other nighttime beauty products. Take the wand with the tiny brush and simply paint on a thin line of the liquid at the base of the top lashes, where eyeliner would normally go. That’s it.
This is the beauty route I decided to go with because the pros outweighed the cons in my book and the doctor who invented the product had ideals that resonated with me. I am extremely pleased with the results and highly recommend. This product promises to give clients the amazing real eyelash effect without the harmful risks associated with the more intense, prescription versions. This product is consistent; it works and has no harmful side effects. While clients may pay more initially for the product, it lasts so long that over the course of multiple months, clients tend to save money.
RevitaLash works with the natural cycle of your lashes, promoting growth of the lashes you already see and extending the life longer while also conditioning and promoting the growth of new lashes. “A lot of our clients use RevitaLash and lash extensions together because RevitaLash makes their old and new lashes longer, making it easier for the lash technician to apply the extension when it’s time for a fill,” Boyer explains.
Added bonus: a portion of all proceeds benefit breast cancer research initiatives. Beauty and giving back—where do I sign up?
Patience. Since RevitaLash does not provide instant results and does not require a prescription, the results take a little longer to achieve. Personally, I did begin to notice a change in the look, feel and thickness of my lashes within a few weeks. But it wasn’t until the one-month mark that I really took a second glance at my lashes and noticed it was really working. Now, about 2 months into the product, I couldn’t be happier with the results. But, you have to ask yourself if patience is worth saving money and avoiding some of the warnings on the other products.
Also, some clients reported a temporary redness or dryness on their lash-line where the product was applied. I noticed this very slightly at first, but as I continued to use the product, it went away quickly.
One tube will cost you between $110-$160, depending on where you go and the promotion offered at that time. While it says that RevitaLash lasts a few months, Boyer explains that very little is needed to get results. By using the less-is-more mentality, her tube lasted four months.
How it works:
According to Boyer, “What Latisse does is help prolong the anagen growth phase, so the active growth phase is just being extended a little bit longer.” The anagen growth phase is the growth phase for hair all over your body. For example, say the average lash phase is 2 weeks. Latisse allows that phase to extend to 3 or 4 weeks instead, making the lash longer before it falls out. All hair is not in the same phase at the same time; otherwise you would be like a snake and shed all of your lashes at once. There are multiple phases of hair growth occurring at the same time, and Latisse extends the life of each hair. The key ingredient is a pharmaceutical ingredient called Latisse, a bimantoprist ophthalmic solution, which is why it is regulated and only distributed by physicians.
Clients report that they love Latisse because it provides fast results while still having the benefit of being your own lashes. You will get results — period. This guaranteed, celebrity-endorsed product gives clients the “familiar face” factor of comfort. Many Latisse users feel that if Brooke Shields or Claire Danes are using it, it must be safe. Jeri Deitlas at Xage Medical Spa has used all three lash amplifying products. Besides the initial redness that went away, she prefers Latisse and has had zero problems and gets great results.
When I first heard the warning that Latisse could change the iris color of certain colored eyes, I was a bit intimidated. Excuse me, did you say change my eye color? But as I researched more, I discovered that the percentage of people who reported this change was almost immeasurable, but the FDA requires it be documented. “The only time the eye color change was noted was when optometrists dropped the pharmaceutical ingredient, prostoglandin, directly into the eye,” Boyer explains. She says that because the pharmaceutical product is diluted with other ingredients and does not go directly in the eye, clients do not need to be concerned.
The application of Latisse is okay. The product comes in an eye drop like bottle and the box provides lip-gloss looking applicators, which clients dispose after each use. Boyer mentioned that if clients like the product but not the applicators, she suggests they use the sanitized RevitaLash applicator or thin eyeliner brush with the Latisse product to make it more user-friendly.
Deitlas mentioned that she noticed that RevitaLash seemed to make her lashes grow equally long while Latisse seems to make some lashes grow longer than others. Since Latisse works faster than RevitaLash, RevitaLash will grow at a slow, consistent pace, while Latisse will make the lashes that already exist shoot up in length before the new growth cycle, which can result in some uneven length. “They both work. It’s all personal preference on the look you prefer,” Deitlas says.
One bottle of Latisse with applicators costs around $120-$150 and lasts about 4–6 weeks. Many doctors and medical spas offer great promotions on this product. Doing your homework can save you a lot of money.
So, there you have it. At the end of the day, all three beauty options are effective and should give you the results you desire in a safe and measurable way. Regardless of the route you decide, enjoy the ease, comfort, and natural glamour that comes with your new look this summer.