Silk or mink lash extensions have become ever more popular in the last 3-5 years. New techniques, such as Russian volume, allow even more variations of style and fullness to the lash line. The lash extensions are very different than the typical cluster or flare individual lashes. Cluster or flare (also called tab) lashes are a group of 6-12 or so false lashes, grouped in a cluster, typically with a knot at the base to hold the together (knotless flares are glued together at the base). When applied, this cluster of 6-12 lashes spans several of your natural lashes.
When your lashes naturally shed (4-12 week lash cycle) with cluster or flare lashes, they are often still attached to natural lashes that are still firmly attached to your lash line. However, the weight of the cluster can begin to pull at those natural lashes, potentially damaging the follicle or pulling healthy natural lashes out. Using unapproved products for the eye, such as hair bonding glue, can greatly worsen these effects and cause excessive balding of the lash line.
Pictured below are examples of what can happen when using glues NOT approved for the lash line! Healthy natural lashes being pulled out by the root! This can also happen with any properly done set of cluster or flare lashes if you do not have them properly removed when they start to loosen!
Silk or mink lash extensions however, are applied one single false lash to one single natural lash for the Classic technique. The Russian volume technique is done by applying several micro fine lashes to one single natural lash. The important difference here is that since the natural lash is singled out for the lash extensions process, as your lashes naturally shed according to your lash growth cycle, they can freely fall out without affecting any other natural lash. This MAJOR difference results in fuller, healthier natural lashes as there is no potential to weigh down your hair follicles on your lash line (unless your lash tech gives you a lash too thick for your own natural lash!)
Another benefit of silk or mink lash extensions is the almost infinite customization options! Even within the realm of Classics, you have a variety of lash options, with different lengths, curls, and diameters. With the Russian volume technique, you can stack 2 lashes onto a single lash (2D), or maybe 3 lashes on a single natural lash (3D). I've seen all the way to even a 7D lash set!!!
J- curl is closest to the majority of actual lashes for the most natural looking set of extensions. B-curl mimics the look of using a lash curler. A C-curl is most popular amongst my own clients, and creates the look of permed lashes. D-curls create doll like lashes and are typically used for special occasions or for people with extremely curly natural lashes.
3-5 mm are typically used for lower lash extensions, which don't tend to last as long as upper extensions. 6-8 mm are typically used for the inner and/or outer corners of the eyes and 9-12 mm are typically used for the center of the lid. Some clients opt for longer lashes on the outer corner for a cat eye effect, but the 13-20 mm can be too much for many people's natural lash and is best used as a special occasion lash instead of for everyday wear unless you already have fairly long thick lashes to begin with.
.15 and .20 are the most popular thicknesses for lash extensions in my experience. Very few people have lashes strong enough to hold .25 or greater lashes without causing potential damage to their natural lashes.
.05 - .12 are the thicknesses used for Russian volume lashes. The lighter, thinner lash allows for the use of multiple lashes on your natural lash without weighing it down.
The eyelash cycle is approximately four to twelve weeks. Do not be alarmed if some of your lashes fall out quickly (they most likely were at the end of their cycle). The majority of extensions will stay through a complete cycle if you follow these guidelines:
Your natural eyelashes should not get wet for a minimum of two hours; 48 hours would be ideal to allow the adhesive properly to bond to a dry eyelash (soggy eyelashes do not make for a good adhesion). A dry washcloth can be rolled up and placed over your brows when you shower to protect your extensions from becoming totally saturated.
Do not use regular or waterproof mascara. Most brands of mascara contain chemical properties and oils that will break down the adhesive. Removing mascara from your lashes can cause the extensions to fall off prematurely as well. If you want to further enhance your lash extensions, we have a specially formulated eyelash extension mascara that is ideal for coating your extensions. Certain waterproof eyeliner can have the same effect. Ask your lash stylist for more information.
Take special care around the eye area when cleansing your face. Gently cleanse the eye area and do not scrub or tug your eyes. Avoid any type of oil-based product around the eyes. Again, the oils will break down the adhesive and cause the extensions to fall off prematurely. Resuming with normal activities is ok (i.e. - face washing). When possible, it is best to wait up to 12 hours.
Never use a clamp-style eyelash curler on your extensions. This can permanently damage not only the extensions, but your natural eyelashes as well. Eyelash combs/spoolies are great for grooming your lashes every morning and a new spoolie is provided to each client with a new set of extensions.
By avoiding extreme variation of heat, humidity, and cold weather (i.e. – hot showers, saunas, zero degree weather), your extensions can last longer. Normal activities like swimming, can resume after the lash glue has set.
Be sure to schedule a fill appointment every 2 to 3 weeks for timely touch-ups. This will keep your lashes looking full and natural, indefinitely. Fills in the first week are complimentary.
Do not attempt to remove the extensions yourself. Have them removed by a licensed esthetician.