Eyelash extensions: what are they?

Many people wish to have long, thick lashes that give an intense look. So it's no surprise that eyelash extensions are a new trend in the beauty industry. These extensions are usually applied by beauticians or technicians in a spa or beauty salon. They are made of either synthetic fibers such as nylon or natural fibers such as silk or mink, and are glued to the base of natural lashes with an adhesive. The extensions will fall out at the same time as the person's natural lashes, usually after one or two months. Check misencil.com for more about eyelash extensions products.

Applying eyelash extensions

Currently, there are no regulations in Canada that determine who can apply eyelash extensions or which products can be used. Caution should be exercised when approaching sharp objects such as tweezers. Adhesives used for eyelash extensions can also be hazardous, as most of these products contain cyanoacrylate compounds.  These compounds may contain or release small amounts of formaldehyde, which can be toxic. If the adhesive comes into contact with the skin of the eyelid or the surface of the eye, allergic reactions or chemical burns may occur.  If the surface of the eyelid or cornea is affected, there is a greater chance of infection, which could leave marks or even lead to permanent loss of vision.  Damage to the accessory lacrimal gland and Meibomius glands around the eye may also reduce the amount of tears produced, resulting in dry eyes. False eyelashes weigh down the natural lashes and can cause permanent or temporary madarose (eyelash loss).

Reducing the risks associated with eyelash extensions

Consumers should take the following precautions to potentially reduce the risks associated with eyelash extensions:
  • Check the technician's certification and ensure that she is experienced.
  • Ensure that the installation is carried out in a clean and reputable facility.
  • Ensure that the technician washes her hands thoroughly and that the instruments have been properly disinfected.
  • Check the ingredients of the adhesive before use.

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