The Pros and Cons of Having Lash Extensions

The Pros and Cons of Having Lash ExtensionsThe Pros and Cons of Having Lash Extensions.

Like many of my female friends, I was born with eyelashes that are relatively straight, lacking in volume, curl and thickness—basically lacking everything that makes a pair of lashes enviable. Tired of being dependent on mascara, I debated lash extensions for a long while before getting them. There are a lot of sources out there that I encountered in my research—from friends and family to Youtubers and Reddit users—but all seemed strongly split on the idea of extensions, either completely for or completely against them. In the end, I decided to get them cause I was bored and looking for something new to entertain myself with. Based on my experience, I’ve compiled all you need to know about the pros and cons of having artificially, semi-permanent long lashes so that you too can decide if this venture is worth a temporary reprieve from boredom.

The Pros:

They’re beautiful. The days lamenting your stubby, straight lashes are over. With lash extensions, you wake up with doll’s lashes everyday. Other options exist, sure, such as false lashes and lash lift treatments, but nobody has the time to be gluing on falsies every morning and lash lifts cost the same but don’t look as good. Neither of those options—and no mascara brand in the world—can achieve the natural look that extensions can, which move and flutter with your real eyelashes.

They’re customizable. A good lash technician will look at your natural lashes, see what they can handle, and give you his/her recommendation. From that point, you can decide everything for yourself, customizing your extensions in the colour, curl, length, volume and thickness that you want. You can ask for your extensions to be arranged in a myriad of ways that can dramatically alter the look of your eyes—placing the longest extensions at the outer corner will give you an up-tilted, cat-eye look, while having them in the center of your lash line will open your eyes and make them look bigger. Being able to cater them to what flatters your face specifically makes them all the more worth it.

It’s time and energy-saving. As somebody who was so lazy that she wore makeup only twice throughout the entirety of high school, I thought I was too apathetic about beauty regimens to ever consider getting eyelash extensions. But turns out, laziness makes you a prime candidate. You no longer have to look bleary-eyed in the mirror every morning, debating if you can muster the energy to curl your lashes and put on mascara. The time and energy you save in the morning, and at night, from having to scrub off waterproof makeup, is much-welcomed. Rolling out of bed without putting on any makeup and still looking long-lashed and doe-eyed is now a possibility. Packing for a trip means not having to bring with you mascara, eyeliner, eye-makeup remover and the cotton pads to wipe everything off with. This also means you don’t have to worry about looking like a raccoon the morning after a night out at the club, no matter where you found yourself waking up.

The Cons:

They cost a lot of money. If you think waking up with fluttery, wispy lashes that scrape the heavens comes cheap, it doesn’t. This was a big factor as to why I was against extensions—services can range typically from $100-200 and they only last about three weeks before they need to be filled in again, at which point you’re going to be throwing another $50-100 down the drain. Like with any service, you can find places that are cheaper but at your own risk. If you frequently include manicures, pedicures, facials, haircuts and eyebrow waxing as part of your beauty expenditures, eyelash extensions are not a cheap habit to be adding to the list.

Lifestyle changes are required. Not drastic ones, but they should be considered nonetheless. Sleeping face-down or with the comforter smushed against your face, which I used to do frequently, is not permitted unless you want to wake up to a lash graveyard on your pillow. Sleeping sideways isn’t recommended either and can lead to some fallout, a loss I take since this is usually the only way I sleep. Two additional steps are now part of my daily skincare routine: washing my lashes separately from the rest of my face with an oil-free cleanser (such as baby shampoo), and then brushing them with a spoolie afterwards.

They strain your natural lashes. Just like how leaving your hair the way it is naturally instead of straightening it, dyeing it, or putting it in a ponytail is healthier, extensions will, at best, put some strain on your natural lashes. They may not be damaged irreparably, but some strain and loss will likely be noticeable once the extensions have come out. The degree to which your real lashes are strained will depend partly on your technician’s skill. It’s also important to pick a length and thickness not so extreme that your real lashes can’t handle carrying them—a good technician should be able to evaluate your actual lashes and provide their recommendation on a set of extensions that’ll minimize any damage.

These are the biggest and most important points to consider when you’re debating whether or not to get lash extensions. Despite the costs, I find that they are absolutely worth it and I love having them. Even at your worst, when your skin is breaking out and there are dark circles under your eyes and your hair’s greasy, you’ll find yourself thinking “fuck, but my lashes look good.” And it’s not a bad feeling.

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