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The Instant Non-Invasive Eye Lift: Could this be the answer to thinning lashes?

Nov 23, 2015 01:07PM ● By Becca Newell
By Becca Newell

Lashes can easily transform from lackluster to luscious with a few gentle squeezes of a curling tool and a lick or two of mascara. But as lashes begin to lighten, thin, and shorten with age, makeup can only do so much.

That’s where semi-permanent eyelash extensions step in. These beauties are non-harmful, pain-free, and look (and feel!) natural. Whereas false strip or cluster lashes are glued to the eyelid, an extension is a singular synthetic lash individually attached to an existing eyelash using FDA-approved, hypoallergenic adhesive.

“It doesn’t touch the skin at all,” says Julie Nguyen, co-owner and senior stylist at Lash Moi in Crofton.

Extensions further deviate from fake lashes in their durability. Unlike falsies, which are typically a one-time use product, extensions remain in place for approximately one month, depending on the lash’s natural life cycle (60 to 90 days).

Nguyen swears by the Xtreme Lashes brand. These lashes, she says, are lightweight and durable; designed for everyday wear. They’re even customizable with styles ranging in volume, length, and curl.

“Each lash is the right weight and length, so it doesn’t over-stress the natural lash,” she says. “Our goal is to keep the natural lashes healthy while wearing extensions. Having the right products and training is key to making sure your lashes remain healthy.”

The application process takes about an hour. Clients lie on a massage table with their eyelids taped closed. The relaxing process is led by a certified eyelash specialist who endures rigorous training before servicing clients. Additionally, Nguyen established her own course that specialists must complete, too.

“My criteria is a little bit harder. My expectations are high and quality is really, really important to make sure the lashes are applied appropriately,” she says.

Eyelash extensions aren’t quite for the carefree crowd, however. Daily cleaning is a must and touchups are imperative, with maintenance appointments scheduled every three to four weeks to replace fallen lashes.

That being said, with proper care and regular maintenance, extensions can last indefinitely. Now those are some lashes worth batting!

A full set of Xtreme lashes start at $300. Other styles priced at $60+. Visit for more information.


Tips for long-lasting extensions:

• Avoid getting wet during the first 48 hours
• Avoid excessive heat and oil-based eye care products
• Don’t pluck, pull, or rub
• Sleep on your back or sides; never face down
• Never use an eyelash curler
• Excessive mascara application isn’t recommended If you must wear mascara, avoid any waterproof variety and apply it only to the lash tips, not the lash line
• Carefully clean with a specially-formulated cleanser
• Comb daily with an eyelash wand

What’s in the adhesive?

Xtreme Lashes’ adhesives are made using the same properties and ingredients found in medical-grade adhesives, which are used by surgeons to close wounds without stitches. A completely “formaldehyde-free” adhesive does not exist. Ultra-low amounts of formaldehyde naturally occur as the adhesive degrades over time. However, this amount is below the lowest detectable level of lab tests that measure formaldehyde. (

Are extensions safe?

If you have allergies or other inflammatory conditions of the eyes and eyelids, eyelash extensions could exacerbate those conditions. An American Academy of Ophthalmology news release in 2013, warned about possible complications related to eyelash extension such as eyelash loss (permanent or temporary), infections of the eyelids and corneas, and allergic reactions. While I don’t discuss the option of extensions with my patients, I can recommend alternative solutions if they develop any issues with them.

—Dr. Elba M. Pacheco, MD, Center for Eye & Laser Surgery and Adoro Medical Spa in Severna Park