Interested in getting lash extensions? Read this before you lash out!
While it’s tempting to ditch mascara and falsies for a plush set of lash extensions, they are a big commitment and require a great deal of maintenance. From barely-there lashes to ultra-dramatic styles, celebrity lash stylist Shigeru Hanai has been dishing out lash advice for years— besides training with world-renowned lash artist Takao Yoshida, Hanai has created luxe lash looks for celebrities like TV actress Venus Nicolino (aka “Dr. V” from hit Bravo shows like Real Housewives of New Jersey and L.A. Shrinks), at his private studio located inside Salon Republic in Beverly Hills, California—and insists that not all lashes are created equal. Before you amp up your flutter factor, check out Hanai’s top five tips for red carpet-worthy lashes.
Tip #1: Pick your lashes wisely.
Before committing to a single style, make sure you come to the appointment with a clear idea of what you want. If you’re looking for a more natural appearance, Hanai recommends opting for mink extensions, noting, “Real mink looks natural and is extremely light.”
Tip #2: Don’t let your lash stylist start the application without the proper prep.
Hanai stresses that it’s essential to start every application with clean lashes. “If lashes still have makeup or oil on them, the extensions will not adhere correctly,” he says.
Tip #3: Listen to your stylist’s feedback.
“I always consider the length and thickness of my client’s natural lashes,” says Hanai. “If a client has very short or thin lashes, I may refuse a service and put her on a treatment plan to restore her natural lashes.”
Tip #4: Baby your lashes.
Wearing lash extensions is a 3 to 5 week commitment and requires extra TLC. Avoid any oil-based cleansers or makeup removal products as they will compromise the lash glue. Also, sleep on your side or back to avoid smashing your lashes in your pillow.
Tip #5: Do your research.
Treat your lash stylist like your hair stylist. Says Hanai, “Most women are very careful when it comes to choosing their hairstylist—you should be the same way when it comes to finding a lash stylist.” Although lashes are quickly becoming a top salon service across the country, not everyone is properly trained. (Remember: Bad lash extensions can lead to major damage to your natural lashes!) Read reviews of different lash stylists before your appointment and, if possible, reach out to other clients to hear their true experience. When applied correctly, lash extensions shouldn’t leave any damage to the natural lashes. Trained lash stylists like Hanai know how to apply each individual extension directly to the natural lash without disrupting potential lash growth.
Follow Hanai on Instagram to see more of his work! @lashesbyshigeru
Images of Venus Nicolino, courtesy of Shigeru Hanai