How To Apply Fake Eyelashes, According To The Pros

Give your lashes a boost without fumbling around.

If there’s any beauty product that instills as much fear as liquid eyeliner, it’s false eyelashes. We’ve all watched YouTube videos where gurus effortlessly place a strip of wispy false lashes along their lash line and blend them into their own. It seems easy enough, until you actually try to do it.

Of course, longer-lasting lash extensions can be a great alternative for those of us who weren’t born with lengthy lashes, but if you’re not interested in the upkeep or the price of such items, temporary falsies are the way to go. The quick fix leaves room to be as dramatic or as subtle as you want.

With the holiday season upon us, you might want to up the ante on your party look with falsies. If you’re trying lashes for the first time or just haven’t fully mastered the techniques, we have what you need to know.

We reached out to Claudia Soare, president of Anastasia Beverly Hills cosmetic company (better known as Norvina), and celebrity makeup artist Alana Wright, both lash devotees and experts. Read on to learn how to pick the right pair for you and apply them with ease.

Choose Your Lashes

You may find yourself overwhelmed at the drugstore or Sephora, standing in front of boxes of varying lash styles ― fluffy and wispy, lengthy and voluminous, spiked and dramatic, individual clusters ― wondering which to choose.

Strip lashes are the most common and beginner-friendly styles, but the most important thing to consider is the look you want to achieve.

“I think choosing the right lash style for you is all about the amount of drama that you want and the shape of your eye.” Soare said. For beginners looking for a more natural lash style, Soare recommends fanned-out lashes that enhance the eye with subtle volume and length (see the Snasy style below). For more drama, she suggests a fuller lash style that’s more voluminous and flared at the ends creates a cat-eye like effect (see Dreamy, below).

When it comes to eye shape, Soare notes that, “If you have more rounded eyes, then you might opt for a more flared option (see So Hollywood, below), and if you have more almond-shaped eyes you might want to choose a lash style that’s a bit heavier/ longer in the center of the lash” (see Domina, below).

For beginners looking for an easy, natural lash, Wright recommends styles “that are fluffy, longer in the center of the band and tapered on the inner and outer corner.”

If you want that subtle but lengthy lash look without the extra fuss of a full strip lash, Wright suggests half lashes, which are only applied to the outer corner of the eye. “Half lashes are great because you don’t have to stress about perfectly applying across the entire lash line,” she said. “Just pop them in the outer half of the eye. It’s complimentary of most eye shapes and great for beginners.”

Applying eyeliner underneath the false lashes helps conceal any gaps between the lashes and your skin.
AlexisZernescu via Getty Images
Applying eyeliner underneath the false lashes helps conceal any gaps between the lashes and your skin.

If you wear glasses but still want a little extra volume and length, there’s a solution for you. Wright said, “For those who wear glasses, try adding more density rather than length or lashes that fan outward.” She recommends an affordable beauty guru favorite and a half-strip lash, “One can never go wrong with Ardell Demi Wispies or Battington Beauty Demi 3D Half Lashes” (see below).

How To Prep Your Lashes

Since lashes aren’t one-size-fits-all, if you opted for a full-strip lash you may have to measure and cut the lash to better fit your eye and ease application. Before applying your lash glue, Wright suggests grabbing a mirror and getting as close as possible to get a better view of your eye. Then, she said, “Remove the lash from the package and gently lay it on your lash line. Be sure to not match up the inner corner with your tear duct because it can feel uncomfortable on the eye.”

Once you’ve made a note of how long the lashes should be, grab your sharpest pair of scissors to trim the excess. “The lash band can be cut from the outer corner,” Wright said.

Before you rush to apply your lashes, add one more step to your eye look: liner. Wright said, “Before you apply your lashes, try lining the upper lash line with a black or dark brown eyeliner. This covers up common mistakes, like too much space between the false lash and natural lash line.”

You may not get it perfect the first time around, but with this trick it will be easy to conceal.

Apply And Blend The Lashes

If your lashes don’t come with a tube of lash glue, you’ll have to grab your own. If you’re experimenting with lashes for the first time, you’ll want to make sure the lash wear is as comfortable as possible. “I’d say use a clear-toned, latex-free glue, as it’s easiest to use and you will avoid irritation,” Soare said. One major benefit of clear (vs. white) lash glue is that it won’t show up on your lash line if your application is a little messy.

After you’ve applied your glue and added a little extra to the ends of each strip to secure them, grab your mirror while the glue dries to a tacky finish ― don’t apply the lashes while the glue is still wet. “For getting closer to the lash line, I’d recommend looking down into a mirror rather than closing the eyes because it will help with the accuracy of your placement,” Soare explained. You can use tweezers to help guide the falsies onto your lash line or a pair of tweezers made especially for lash application.

When you’ve successfully applied your lashes, the next step is crucial: blend the falsies with your natural lashes. “Make sure to curl your natural lashes with an eyelash curler, then apply mascara after applying falsies and this should help for the most natural blend,” Soare said.

How To Remove Your False Lashes

At the end of the day, falsies are just as easy to remove as the rest of your makeup. “Gently rubbing a [cotton swab] soaked with the remover along the lash line will help loosen the lash adhesive,” Wright said. She recommends a remover that’s oil free. “Slowly pull from the outer corner and lash will come off with ease.” You should be able to get a few wears out of your strip lashes if you remove and store them within the original packaging. Excess glue on the strip can be removed gently with a tweezer.

Check out the products mentioned above!

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