Last Spring, I finally gave in and jumped on the eyelash extension craze. I’ve always been in awe of women with beautiful, long, voluminous lashes. So I decided it was time to see what all the fuss was about.

I tend to book services based on referrals from others or by scanning Instagram. In this case, I was following a fitness competitor on social media who tagged a photo of her lashes and the extension artist who put them on. So I followed up and booked an appointment ASAP.

The procedure itself took about an hour and a half. It was easy and painless. In fact, I think I may have fallen asleep while lying on the table! The entire experience was extremely relaxing.

When the technician finished applying the lashes, my eyelids felt a bit strange. But it wasn’t long before I forgot they were there.

Before I left, I was handed a sheet of paper with a long list of what I “should and shouldn’t” do while wearing lashes. I was urged to book a follow up appointment within two weeks to ensure my new Kardashian-esque lashes remained in decent condition.

Although eyelash extensions have several benefits, you should know that they are an expensive, high-maintenance procedure. And you may need to alter your lifestyle to ensure they last.

At first, I was impressed by the time I saved in the morning. I no longer had to wear eye makeup. This was a huge bonus for me. I woke up with beautiful, bright eyes. No mascara, eye shadow or liner needed. Amazing!

However, after a few days of wearing the extensions, they started to fall out. I would find lash hairs everywhere, including my bed, bathroom counter and other random places. Apparently this is normal, and depending on your hair’s growth cycle, it’s different for everyone. I was told not to wash the area around my lashes for the first 24 hours to ensure they would not fall out prematurely.

But I could not deny the attention. It seemed like everywhere I went I was complimented on my lashes. It’s a strange thing — do you tell the person that they aren’t yours? Or do you just say thank you? I always seem to struggle with this. But I usually end up telling them the truth in case it’s something they want to know more about. As women, we’ve got to help each other out in that department, right?!

I was also instructed “not” to sleep on my stomach. This was the hardest part for me. For my entire life, I’ve slept face down. So how would I be able to stop this habit? I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. And I should mention, you aren’t supposed to sweat, go swimming or allow your lashes to be submerged in steam. Yikes — as some who spends more time in the gym than anywhere else, I knew this would be a challenge.

After a few days, I noticed my eyes were extremely itchy. Was I having an allergic reaction to the glue? Quite possible. And the act of rubbing them was not good, as you aren’t supposed to touch your lashes.

I purchased a small bottle of gentle lash cleaner from the artist, which set me back $30. I was told to apply this every night to keep the lashes clean; especially if I decided to wear eye makeup. By the way, depending on the type of lashes you choose, a full set can starts at about $100 with a two-week fill costing about $65. If you do the math, this is about $150-$200 per month. This doesn’t factor in the time you need to invest in getting to the appointment and lying there for at least an hour.

I was addicted to these beautiful lashes, but I also felt like they were running my life. When they started to shed, they looked terrible! In fact, eventually I was getting them filled weekly. So I had to think about why I decided to get them and if it was worth it anymore. For me, I decided it was time to take a break and have them removed.

It’s been about six months since my last set. And although I still have lash envy on a daily basis, I’m not sure that lash extensions are for me. Since then, I’ve gone back to using Latisse; a serum that promotes natural lash growth. I still wear mascara, eye shadow and eyeliner, but I no longer feel like a slave to my lashes. Some women love wearing lash extensions. And quite frankly, I wish I had a better experience with them.

On a more positive note, I recently discovered another popular procedure that is much better suited to my lifestyle. A “lash lift” takes about 45 minutes. A solution is applied to your lashes, and as a result, you no longer need to curl them. I am in love with it! It is budget friendly, time efficient and there are no adverse effects.

Do you have experience with lash extensions or lash lifts? Do you love lash extensions or hate them? Feel free to leave us a comment. We’d love to hear your thoughts!

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