My natural lashes are short, stubby blonde things with zero natural curl to them. So pre-Covid I had been wearing lash extensions for years. Unfortunately, I am also a natural fidgeter and I would occasionally pick at them. The weight and strain of the extensions, my messing with them, and years of using them without a break left my natural lashes basically nonexistent. It was a sad state of affairs.
My first reaction was to carefully glue on false eyelashes every day since I didn’t even have enough lashes left for mascara to make any impact. That was time consuming and for my lifestyle, not a sustainable option. So I began by taking the proper vitamins to stimulate hair growth. I took Nutrafol Women’s Balance (the best for my age) as well as using a collagen protein powder in my morning smoothie. Getting the right nutrients is key.
My second step was to stop using the fake eyelashes because my little baby lashes couldn’t take the weight. When I was going anywhere where I was insecure about how my eyes looked, I would wear a new brand of lash system I found — Lashify. These lashes are more expensive, but they don’t need to be applied every day (mine stay on an average of 2-3 days) and the big difference is that they are applied UNDER your natural lashes, not over. So they don’t pull on your natural lashes and cause even more damage.
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Once my lashes grew out a bit, I could get away with just mascara and I made sure to choose one with lash growing and strengthening treatment built right in. Here are a few with active ingredients to help grow your natural lashes including biotin, collagen, peptides, Vitamin E and natural oils. Make sure to avoid parabens, sulfites, and phthalates. It’s a bonus if they also include a primer, which protects your natural lash and can make them look longer and thicker.
Before bed, I apply a hair thickening or growth serum to my lashes as a new addition to my evening routine. I’m loving Kiehl’s Magic Elixir Hair Thickening Serum, Essy Hair Growth Oil, and The Ordinary Multi-Peptide Serum for Hair Density. Since you only need a single drop basically for your lashes, these products will last a long time.
While I can’t point to a single step in my routine that has made the most impact, I am really happy with the progress my lashes have made since removing my extensions a year ago. I still like to wear my Lashify system when I want an extra dramatic lash effect, but for every day I am finally at a place where I’m comfortable with my own natural lashes. A swipe of mascara (they’re still blonde, unfortunately) is all I need in the morning. And I don’t miss the biweekly hour-long appointments with my eyes taped shut and the irritation of lash extensions. Plus, I no longer fear sitting in the sauna, windy days, or riding with the top down due to my expensive, delicate lashes. I’m rocking a natural look and loving the freedom of it!