How To: Wear False Lashes for Day

Sunday 20 January 2013

Wearing false lashes for every day. It's a little bit of a contentious topic. If you say it, people tend to think you're either extremely high-maintenance, or drastically insecure (or possibly both..). And indeed, there is something about the degree of faff required to do it that would put most sane people off. Until you have to, that is...

I will freely admit I'm a bit obsessed with eyelashes. Although they don't seem majorly noticeable, having a bit of a flutter is something that makes me feel more confident and, well, prettier. A nation seems to agree with me, judging from the rocketing sales of false lashes, growth serums, and volumising mascaras. When I was younger, fake lashes were the preserve of make-up artists, whereas today you can wander into any drugstore and be confronted with a dazzling array of fluttering falsies.

Like a lot of girls, I've become a dab hand at applying strip lashes to boost my flutter power on a night out, but until recently, I've never worn them during the day.

However, this all changed after I had individual permanent eyelash extensions applied during the Christmas party season. My best friend, Lady T, continually has them and is always singing their praises, so I assumed I'd love them as well. In fact, the only reason I hadn't gotten them done before was the high initial cost (good extensions are upwards of £70 for a full set, and then £30 every three to four weeks to maintain and infill them). However, I managed to get a deal on Wowcher to have a full set for just £19 at a place near where I work.

I did not get on with them at all. When I first had them done, it was almost as if I had an allergic reaction to the glue, as my eyes were streaming and stinging for a good couple of hours after they were applied, which was weird. And then, although I liked the look of them, I really struggled with the feel. They felt heavy and scratchy, like they were pulling on my real lashes. My eyes were even more puffy than usual, sore and irritated in the mornings. Plus, you have to be so careful with how you remove your makeup and not getting them wet, which is near-impossible in the shower. They also got foundation or some other makeup caked in them which I couldn't remove!

I did intend to keep up the maintenance of them, but being away over the Christmas holidays and then I wasn't able to go either on my first week back at work- before I knew it, lots had shed and they looked patchy and awful. Then I just wanted them off. But even though I had a little tube of removal formula, most of them wouldn't budge. I tried soaking cotton pads in baby oil but it was only half- successful. It took ages for them all to finally shift, and it had ruined my real lashes, which were left short, sparse and patchy. In short, I won't be having extensions again!

Anyhow, the state of my remaining lashes is pitiful. I was so embarrassed, I actually tried wearing strip lashes to work, just to cover up the bald patches in my own lashes.

I thought it would be a major hassle each morning to put on falsies, plus I didn't want my colleagues to notice I was wearing any, either. However, it turned out that with the right tips and tricks, wearing lashes can be just as quick and easy as piling on mascara every day! So I wanted to share the great things I've found that make falsies every day an effortless reality...

1. Choose the right type of lash

Thick, dense or fancy falsies can look amazing on a night out. But during the day, you don't want to look overdone. So choosing the right lashes for the job is the most important part of the process. Lashes with a big, thick band that needs to be disguised with heavy eyeliner are not a good choice. I discovered Eyelure do a range called 'Ultra Naturals', that, you guessed it, are designed to look like your own lashes- only better. Why are they so natural?
  • The strands on them are ultra-fine to blend perfectly with your real lashes.
  • The lashes are a mix of brown and black fibres, to tone with your own
  • The band is very thin and clear- virtually undetectable
This makes them the perfect choice for wearing during the day without announcing to the world that you're faux! They are also reusable, so if you care for them properly you can get a lot of uses from them. They're advertised on the packaging as an 'alternative to mascara'

2. Trim to fit your peepers

It's a really important step, but one a lot of my friends who complain that they find it hard to apply fake lashes never seem to do! Eyes come in all different shapes and sizes, whereas lashes are standard, so before putting any glue anywhere, hold the lashes up to your eye and check the length. If they are too long (and they usually are, even though these Eyelure Ultra Naturals fit me perfectly), trim a little section of the inside edge with nail scissors. Taking off from the inside edge looks far better than trimming off the outer edge, which generally ruins the gradient of the lash. Make sure you match up both lashes!

3. Choose the right glue

I think most people now know that, generally speaking, the little bottle of glue that comes with your lashes, is not great quality and only really good for touch-ups on the go. And if you're going to be wearing falsies on the regular, then you need a good quality, waterproof glue that won't let you down. I've got nothing but praise for the 'quick beauty' brand Girls With Attitude that does false lashes and nails and nail wraps. But more importantly, you're going to need one that comes with an application brush, like their Hypoallergenic Eyelash Glue. Either that, or source a very fine eyeliner brush that you don't mind messing up, because...

3. Apply the glue to your lashline, not to your falsies!

Admittedly, this is not what we're usually told when it comes to applying our lashes, but I have to tell you its the single thing that makes the most difference to getting a good fit and getting them on quickly, and if you're really using your falsies as a mascara alternative, a quick application means they are practical. I can honestly say that, even though its a simple concept, I had never considered using glue on my lashline rather than on the band of the lashes.But I was idly browsing YouTube for false lash application tips (I like to think I'm fairly good at it, but you can always learn new things) and found a video with this tip.And now I've discovered it, I'll never go back to doing it the other way. It's a small change, but its sooo much better because:
  • The lash goes on exactly where you place it, rather than sliding about wet and smearing glue over your lid
  • If you reuse your lashes as I do, there is less of the glue build-up on the lash band over time, which is hard to clean and is usually the main reason I end up throwing a pair away

4. Use an application tool

With the rise in popularity of false lashes recently, more and more tools have started to appear to help us to put them on swiftly and accurately. I've had a couple of different applicators now, but hands down the best I've tried are the Bourjois 2-in-1 Lash Applicators, which they launched alongside their own line of fake lashes. If you find putting on lashes is difficult, this will perhaps be the best investment you could make. You use the shallow fan 'tweezer' end to grip the lashes and position them, and the end that looks like a cuticle pusher to press down the corners and make sure they adhere nice and tightly. Using these babies to apply my lashes literally made it a two second job, meaning you could do it every day with no fuss. These are much better than the other lash applicators I've bought, and well worth the £4.99 price tag if you plan on wearing lashes a lot.

5. Rinse and repeat...

You really need to clean and care for the lashes properly if you expect to get multiple uses out of a pair. At the end of the day, take a cotton pad and soak in some eye make-up remover and a drop of two of Baby Oil (this will gently dissolve any glue left on the lash band). Peel off your lashes carefully, and place them onto half of the pad before folding it over. Leave to soak while you take off your other make-up. Gently press down on the pad to pick up any residue, but don't rub too much or you might end up damaging the lashes. Keep your lashes stored inside a proper travel eyelash container when not in use to keep the shape. Lots of cute travel lash cases are easily available on eBay, like this...
If you take the small amount of time to look after your lashes properly, you'll get many uses from one pair, which means wearing them regularly and during the day needn't cost a fortune!

And voila, the finished, natural daytime look...

So, what do you think? Would you wear falsies during the day? Have you got any top application tips?

Til next time... xxx