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What Are Lash Extensions?
Semi-permanent extensions comprised of individual synthetic eyelashes that are curved to replicate a natural eyelash. Lashes are thicker at the base and taper to a fine point.  They are applied to individual eyelashes, one extension at a time, for a natural, elegant look to lengthen and add fullness to your existing lashes.  Eyelash extensions should only be applied by professionals.  Self-application or application by untrained individuals is strongly discouraged and can result in overuse of glues or removers, misapplication of lashes, irritation to eyes, infections and damage, sometimes permanent, to your natural lashes.  

What are lash extensions made out of and where are the materials from?
Extensions are crafted from synthetic polyester and silk.  Synthetic and silk lashes respond better to wear and tear than other materials.  Synthetics also have the least possible chance of allergic reactions with human skin.  Tests show a higher incidence of adverse reactions among eyelash extension customer using extensions made from animal hairs such as mink.

Lashes are available in a variety of materials including human hair, synthetic fiber, silk and mink. We prefer silk, mink and synthetic mink lashes.  Extensions range from fine to very thick in diameter and from very short to very long. The bonding adhesive is specially formulated for human lashes.
  • Synthetic mink: These lashes are available in every color (black, brown, red, gold, green, purple, etc.) and in a variety of thicknesses. These lashes are lighter and more flexible then conventional synthetic lashes. Individual synthetic mink lashes are high gloss, curled and tapered to perfection. They are excellent for anyone who wants the most dramatic look. Synthetic minks are a great affordable lash.
  • Mink: No minks are harmed or killed to make the mink lashes. The mink is by far the superior lash extension. Mink are the preferred lash of celebrities. The mink are black, shiny and soft. They are weightless and so as many as three can be applied to each natural lash and quite comfortable. They have a luscious feathered look once applied.  Mink may require less fills, but are more costly overall.
  • Silk: Silk lashes are a super fine synthetic lash that mimics human hair. They are not as stiff as the synthetic mink but do not give the thickness that mink and synthetic mink can. They are great for anyone who has very thick lashes naturally and desire only length and curl.

What is the difference between the traditional false eyelashes and modern extensions?
The main differences are the:

  • Adhesive formula
  • Lash type- No strips
  • Application technique
  • Lash appearance
  • Lasting duration

Traditional false lashes are held together in a strip or are multiple lashes knotted together and applied onto the eyelid using a hard drying adhesive. They are often uncomfortable and cause natural lashes to fall out. They last only a few days to a week and look unnatural and feel heavy. Some salons call the multiple flare lashes "extensions" or "individual lashes" but they are not individual at all. They can cause a great deal of damage to natural lashes because the strip is attached at the lash line and when the strip is removed, usually by pulling, lashes are torn away along with it sometimes causing permanent damage to the follicles.  See here.

Eyelash Extensions are applied with an adhesive that dries soft and pliable allowing lashes to stay flexible and bouncy. Synthetic mink, silk and mink lashes have the most flex. Because the bonding is to each individual lash and not to skin, extensions will look and act more natural and last significantly longer than traditional false lashes or flares.  Extensions look, act and feel like human lashes because they are literally an extension of each natural lash.

What do they look like and how do they feel?
With proper application lash extensions look and feel real.  Each application is customized to suit the individual.  Lengths range from 6mm to 15mm for different effects.  Differing individual synthetic lash lengths are chosen to carefully replicate the shape and frame of a natural lash line. The thickness of the lashes applied is determined by the health and thickness of your natural lashes as well as personal preference. The overall effect is added curl, thickness and length, opening up the eye for added definition.

Modern lash extensions are designed to be indistinguishable in size and weight to human lashes. They are flexible yet crimp-resistant and they move with and like your natural lashes.  Natural lash extensions are an exact replica of an eyelash; it weighs about as much as a natural lash- practically nothing. You will not notice the addition of the extensions to your lashes and they will not cause your natural lashes to fall out ahead of their natural cycle.   As long as you keep up with the touch up applications, it is almost impossible to tell that you are wearing the extensions.


What are the benefits of wearing Lash Extensions?
Most women choose lash extensions to lengthen their natural lashes while others want their lashes to look fuller.  Women with naturally light colored lashes choose extensions to darken their existing lashes.  Still others love the different, fun looks they can achieve with highlighting and layering.

Extensions can create a younger appearance for many clients.  Many of our customers who were contemplating having work done on their faces have stated that they no longer feel the need as a result of wearing extensions.  Semi-permanent eyelash extensions create the appearance of a brighter, more open and rested eye thereby creating a more youthful and rejuvenated look.  Above all the main advantage of extensions is how much time you can save during your beauty regimen.  Extensions allow you to spend less time with makeup. For example, mascara is no longer necessary.  Because our lashes are larger at the base they create the same effect as eyeliner so you may find you can skip that step as well. 

Overall, extensions will give you the appearance of having put significant effort into your eye makeup each day when, in reality, you spent no time at all.  No application of eye makeup and no need for removal at the end of the day.  The added benefit is that they look beautiful morning and night, all day, every day- 24/7.  Say goodbye to the application of mascara, stained tears and mascara smudged around the eyes.  With eyelash extensions you can look and feel gorgeous from the moment you wake up until the moment you fall asleep with little effort.

How long do eyelash extension last?
When properly applied, an eyelash extension will remain in place until the natural lash on which it rests falls out. This can be as long as two months or more.
  • Natural eyelashes grow in and fall out in cycles (every 60 to 90 days). When a natural lash matures and falls out a new lash has already been growing and quickly replaces it without us noticing the turnover.  This process is continuous and at any given moment our many natural lashes are at different stages of maturity. Some are just growing in while others are ready to shed.  Most people typically shed between 1 and 5 natural lashes each day depending on their individual growth cycles.  On shorter natural lashes this growing and shedding cycle is virtually unnoticeable.
  • When wearing extensions, it's more noticeable when these lashes shed because they are longer and darker than natural lashes.  Please keep in mind the shedding of lashes is a perfectly normal occurrence with or without extensions.  Lash Stylists will apply extensions primarily to those lashes that are in the middle of their maturation cycle to maximize the amount of time they will last, without jeopardizing the health of ‘baby lashes’.  The extension will fall out with the natural lash it is attached to when it reaches the end of its growth cycle. A few extensions may shed within the first week because the attached natural lashes are at the end of their growth cycle.  Most will remain in place for approximately one to two months.
  • With proper care and maintenance, touch ups, or "fills", are typically only needed once every 2 to 3 weeks to replace the lashes that have shed.  Your Lash Stylist will add extensions to the newest mature natural lashes to maintain a full, lush appearance.
I have no lashes at all, can I wear eyelash extensions?
Because eyelash extensions are applied to existing natural lashes you must have some natural lashes to receive the procedure.  Eyelash extensions should not, and in many cases cannot, be applied to clients who have alopecia, are undergoing chemotherapy or those who suffer from Trichotillomania, unless and until the individual has received effective treatment and normal lash growth has resumed.

Can I apply eyelash extensions to my own eyelashes?
I don't know, can you?  Seriously though, you shouldn't attempt it and won't want to when you understand the facts.  Only a trained professional will be able to safely apply eyelash extensions. Unprofessional or self-application may cause eye injury, irritation, infections, permanent lash damage, overuse of glue and removers and usually, at the very least,- unnatural, clumpy or even terrible looking lashes (see the pic below of extension jobs gone bad). 


Eyelash extensions are applied one lash at a time to your individual natural eyelashes to achieve long, thick and natural looking eyelashes using glues, quality precision instruments, magnifying glasses with excellent lighting, skill, practice, time, focus and experience.  The procedure involves carefully and precisely bonding a synthetic extension (up to three if using Minks!) to each of your natural eyelashes, one at a time, without sticking to or interfering with other lashes. The subject must be relaxed with eyes closed and very still which is best achieved lying down.  Can a person do all that to herself using tweezers and a mirror?  Eyelash extensions should be performed only by professionally trained Lash Stylists in a proper setting with the proper tools. Bad extensions or Eyelash Extensions Gone Wrong is not a good look and  this is one beauty technique that should definitely not be tried at home!

How much does it cost for Eyelash Extensions?
The major investment in eyelash extensions consists of the initial full set, typically between 30 and 70 lashes per eye. This can run anywhere from $95 to $600 depending on how many lashes are applied, type of lash extensions, the skill level of the Lash Stylist and the practitioner's pricing.  The application of eyelash extensions are a blend of art and science, heavier on the art, and just as with hair styling and coloring, the best can cost a bit more.  After the initial set is applied touch ups are required every 2-3 weeks to maintain the fullest, most natural look.

Eyelash extension touch ups or "fills" usually range anywhere from $50-$90 depending on how often the touch ups are done, the amount of lashes required and the style/type of the extensions.  Skipping touch-ups or trying to extend the time between them is not a good idea and will cost more in the long run.  Most lash extension stylists will charge more than the usual touch-up price if more than 50% of the lash extensions require replacement which becomes more likely the longer the interval between touch ups.

A note of caution: We hear countless stories of individuals who go to untrained lash technicians because the cost is "low". They often receive a substandard set of lashes that is clumpy, painful and often damaging to their lashes.  A proper application of lashes is not painful during or after the procedure.  Eyelash extension application is an exacting process that takes skill and time. If the cost is very cheap you should certainly question the training of the technician as well as the quality of the product. These unhappy customers often end up seeking out a Professional Stylist after they try the cheap alternatives. In some cases there is additional costs and hassles to undo the poor, low quality, "low cost" lash extensions. 

Ultimately, most have realized from the experience that the old adage “you get what you pay for” is true!


How long does it take?
Your eyes are closed the entire time and it is not uncommon to fall asleep. It takes at least two hours for the original first set and fills usually take an hour.  Touch ups (fills) usually take 30-45 minutes.


CARE & MAINTENANCE:

How do I take care of eyelash extensions?
Though eyelash extensions are easy to maintain, the first twenty-four hours are crucial for a strong bond. You should keep your lashes dry and avoid touching them.  After twenty-four hours, care is fairly simple: avoid oil based products and be gentle with the lashes.

In general, to maintain your new look and extend the life of your lashes, follow these simple guidelines:
  • For the first 24 hours after application the lashes should not be exposed to water or steam to allow the adhesive time to fully bond. We recommend avoiding swimming and the spa or very steamy showers for 48 hours after lash application for best results.
  • Be gentle with your lashes; do not pull on the extensions or rub the eyes excessively.  DO NOT mess with them or try to "improve" the arrangement. If you have an issue with the application, take it up with your extension specialist.
  • Avoid the use of oil-based products on or around the lashes and do not use waterproof mascara.  Water based mascara and water based mascara remover may be used if desired.  Apply the mascara sparingly and remove it gently with a water-based eye makeup remover. Apply mascara on the tips only.  Note: eyelash extensions are ideally suited for individuals who want longer, fuller lashes without the need for much additional eye makeup. Constant application of heavy eye makeup, particularly mascara and eyeliner, may reduce the lifespan of your eyelash extension and require more frequent touch ups.
  • We recommend getting a touch up every two to three weeks to maintain maximum fullness of your eyelash extension.
Can I swim, shower, exercise or visit a spa while wearing eyelash extensions?
You can enjoy these lashes with little need to adjust your lifestyle. Provided you follow the simple maintenance instructions above, are not involved excessively in heat or water activities and treat the lashes with care they will last through the natural lash life cycle and fall off with the natural lash, not before.  (As stated previously it is best not to swim or spa for 48 hours after the procedure to allow the adhesive to fully cure.)

A competitive swimmer who is constantly in the chlorinated water may lose some lashes earlier than the average person as may someone who gets very frequent facials (weekly) or goes into the steam room daily.  Doing an above average level of activities related to heat or constant water exposure may weaken the adhesive bond causing some early lash loss.

What if I want them removed?
As the natural lashes cycle out and shed, eyelash extensions will shed with them.  However, if necessary, eyelash extensions can be professionally removed by a Lash Stylist using specially formulated adhesive remover. The removal process normally takes approximately 30 minutes. Never try to remove eyelash extensions on your own. Damage can be caused by pulling the extensions off with the natural lash thereby removing the natural lash before it is ready to shed naturally.

How often should touch-ups or "fills" be done?
We recommend getting a touch up, also called "fills" every two weeks to maintain the fullest, most natural look and overall cost effectiveness. Three week touch ups can be done but if more then 50% of the extensions are gone additional fees will be charged. And the longer the interval between touch ups the more likely you'll cross that 50% threshold.   A natural eyelash falls off every 40 days on average due to the natural growth cycle and is naturally replaced with the growth of a new eyelash. At any given moment, each of your natural eyelashes is at a different stage of its life cycle. A touch up on newer lashes is needed to replenish the lashes that have completed their life cycle and fallen out, taking extensions with them.

HEALTH & SAFETY CONCERNS
:

Do eyelash extensions damage natural lashes?
Eyelash extensions cause no damage to the natural lashes when properly applied and using medical grade adhesive especially for them. Medical grade adhesives have been developed to exacting specifications, hypoallergenics and other compatibility concerns. These adhesives are the perfect blend of safety, longevity, flexibility and strength.

What about possible allergic reactions?
With almost everything applied to the body there is always risk of allergy. The fact that the lashes are applied to the eyelashes and not the skin makes reactions extremely rare. An allergic reaction would probably require removal of the extensions with a remover.

Is there anyone who cannot or should not have eyelash extension applied?
Because eyelash extensions are applied to existing natural lashes an individual must have some natural lashes for the procedure.  Eyelash extensions should not, and in many cases cannot, be applied to clients who have alopecia, are undergoing chemotherapy or those who suffer from Trichotillomania, unless and until the individual has received effective treatment and normal lash growth has resumed.

I heard extensions will harm my own lashes! Is this true?
Excellent question and one that everyone should be asking!  Eyelash extensions will not harm your lashes and will look natural, full and beautiful if they are applied safely and correctly. The pictures below are unfortunately, great examples of very bad lash extensions applications.  You can see that the lashes are clumped together with adhesive (no, that's not mascara!) and some of their natural lashes have even broken off due to the damage (see center pic).  In some cases, it will take months for these unfortunate women's lashes to get back to normal-- if they grow back at all.  In addition to a poor quality job, the issue of safety should not be overlooked.  Since adhesive in your eyeball is obviously something that will harm you, be sure to have your extensions done by someone who has engaged in a hands-on training course by a reputable company and is trained in proper safety of the technique.  



It never fails- a few times every month we gain a new client who had a pretty bad experience.  The outcome and quality of your lash extensions will rely heavily upon whom you choose to do your application!   Don't be one of our "extension job gone bad stories", get beautiful lashes done right with Cat!



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    Cat's Eye...Authentic Beauty & Skin Care
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