You may find yourself in a situation where a client is complaining that their eyelash extensions have damaged their natural lashes. Unfortunately, this isn’t unusual. Damage to the natural lashes can happen due to bad lash extension application technique, overuse of very long lash extensions or when low quality adhesives/materials are used. Part of our job as lash artists is to address the client’s concerns and advise them on how to move forward!
You might find yourself in one of two situations:
You might have a new client come in with brittle, short, and weak natural eyelashes, or even with an irritation of the lash line. This could be the result of them having had an unprofessional and inexperienced lash technician in the past, who either had a sloppy technique or was using low quality adhesives and lash extensions.
The second scenario is one in which your own client finds that their natural lashes have been damaged and weakened by the extensions.
In both of these situations you should do what might feel counter-intuitive: tell your client to take a break from lash extensions.
As a professional eyelash extension technician, it is your duty to make sure that your clients are healthy and to inform them of the risks that come with overuse of lash extensions, as well as about the care their natural lashes need. Although it might seem tempting to give in to the needs of a “lash addict” and make money off of them, in the long run this is not the way to build a sustainable business.
Damage prevention starts with the application of the extensions. As a general rule, extensions should never be more than 2mm longer than the natural lash so as to avoid overloading the natural lashes and causing them to break or fall out prematurely. This problem is amplified when the natural lashes grow out - the extensions will be even further from the base of the natural lash causing unnecessary stress and likely some significant damage.
In addition to good application practices, it’s important to give your clients proper aftercare instructions so that they can properly take care of their lashes in between appointments. Lashes that are properly taken care of last longer, look better and the extensions are less likely to cause damage to the natural lashes.
Make sure that they’re aware of their lash growth cycle and advise them on the healthy frequency of applying lash extensions.
Read more about lash shedding and growth cycles.
Read more about the importance of proper aftercare.
If your client is suffering from damaged natural lashes, it’s best to give them some advice on how they can repair their eyelashes. Here are our 5 tips for successful lash rejuvenation:
A very effective way to repair damaged lashes is treating them with natural oils. Advise your client to treat their lashes with coconut oil, lavender oil, castor oil, or rosemary oil. You could even consider having these products on hand in your salon. Moisture binding molecules within the oils help ward off breakage and strengthen the lashes. Instruct your client to gently massage small amounts of natural oils into their eyelashes before bed. Make sure they understand that the oil shouldn’t be applied directly into the eye - they should squeeze out a couple of drops on their fingertips or a mascara wand and gently treat the lashes while their eyes are closed shut.
There are a number of eyelash serums available on the market. Lash serums strengthen the lashes, enhance their growth, and make them thicker and blacker. The peptides, which are an ingredient of the serums, strengthen eyelash follicle proteins which help repair damage, and working together with moisture molecules, lash serums promote eyelash repair and recovery. This is a more expensive option than natural oils, and you should advise your clients to check the ingredients list before purchasing any serum. Like with any products that contain chemicals, eyelash serum comes with the risk of irritation, agitation, and allergic reactions!
Our favourite lash serums:
Probably the best piece of advice you can give your client, and the one they will certainly least want to hear. The fastest road to eyelash recovery is not only taking a break from lash extensions but taking a break from make up altogether. Going bare for at least one lash growth cycle can do wonders for the strength and speed of eyelash growth.
If your client isn’t willing to go bare, advise them to start using natural make up. This won’t be good just for their eyelashes, but for their skin in general! Organic make up with natural ingredients is a bit more expensive, but not so hard to come by anymore. You should especially stress the importance of all-natural mascara. Waterproof mascara should be off limits! Make sure your clients become aware of the harsh chemicals that can be found in a lot of make up products, and teach them to avoid products that are potentially damaging to their lashes and their skin.
Beauty is always tied to health - and lashes are no exception!
Drink a lot of water: water seems to be the magic potion; it’s beneficial for our bodies in more ways than we can count. A well hydrated body grows strong and luscious lashes which repair themselves at a faster rate!
Eat a lot of protein:hair is mostly protein, so it responds well to a protein-rich diet. Advise your clients to add more fish, eggs, beans, nuts and yogurt to their diets.
Vitamin supplements: biotic (Vitamin H) is our lashes’ best friend. Biotic promotes hair growth, thickens hair follicles, and helps the body absorb nutrients. Vitamin B (B3,B5,B6, and B12) as well as Vitamin E are very beneficial for hair growth and will strengthen the lashes.
Make sure to remind your client that you’re not a medical professional and that they should consult a doctor before deciding on taking any supplements, especially if they’re already on some type of medication!
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