If the eyes are the windows to the soul, then the eyelashes are the curtains adorning those spectacular windows. They’re so important that ancient beauticians used a paste of manure and other ingredients to make the eyelashes of their royal patrons look longer, thicker and more alluring. Nowadays, there are lots of safe (and manure-free) products on the market designed to give you longer lashes. With the right products and a few tips from us, your eyes will look more dramatic and totally captivating.
1. Use Eyelash Primer
Eyelash primers are applied before mascara. Think of them as structural enhancements. They actually add fibers to your individual lashes, lengthening and thickening them. Primer also makes a smooth undercoat that holds mascara better, so you’ll typically use less and still get better coverage. Some mascara products include primer like ingredients in their formulations, but you might prefer the cleaner look of a two-step process: lengthener (primer) and then mascara. Primers are sold individually, but you may find them as part of a two-product application kit.
2. Buy the Right Lengthening Mascara
Mascara has changed a lot in the last few years. There are formulas designed specifically for lengthening as opposed to multi-purpose products or those designed to do a great job of adding volume to lashes. Look for an applicator that will lift, separate and coat each individual lash, without clumping or creating fat, fake looking lashes. When you’re evaluating any mascara product, be sure to check out the applicator. Close bristles usually mean a formula designed to add volume, while more widely spaced bristles are effective at separating and adding length to lashes.
3. Use an Eyelash Curler
Eyelash curlers increase the natural curve of your lashes, making them look longer even without makeup. Depending on how straight your lashes are naturally, the results can be dramatic. If you use a curler and makeup, the upward tilt will set and hold for hours. These tools look like torture devices, but they’re actually easy to get used to and safe to use. Once you become proficient, try warming the curler (just a little) with your hair dryer. It works a little like adding hot rollers to your hair. You’ll get lifted, arched lashes that will last all day.
Here’s another tip: Even though eyelash curlers are usually applied to bare lashes, curling your lashes again after adding mascara will create a dramatic effect. Repair any damage caused by the curler with an additional layer of mascara. This is a great alternative to wearing false eyelashes for an evening out.