Lash extensions: Everything you need to know

HerCanberra Team

Like a fine wine or a smart phone, lash extensions have gotten better with age as competitors innovate to create the best on the market. 

But many still wonder if extensions are the right fit for them (literally) or worry about what it could do to their natural lashes.

To dig a little deeper on the topic, we asked Canberra-based makeup artist and founder of Mojo Lash and Makeup Marie Donnell to share her expertise.

What are the benefits of lash extensions? 

Eyelash extensions are a great, non-permanent enhancement. Some of the benefits include no longer needing to wear mascara or use an eyelash curler day to day. The extensions are black, and made from PBT, a high-performance polymer. Due to the material, they retain their colour and curl the entire time they are worn.

Those who have very sparse, fine, light (blonde or invisible) or short lashes can greatly benefit from a set of extensions that are applied correctly. When styled to suit each individual, they can fill in gaps in lashes, create a different eye shape illusion and create length. Lashes can be a great asset for travel, weddings and events.

On holidays, you can walk out of the water at the beach with lush lashes and no panda eyes! Similarly, cry as much as you like on your wedding day with no black leakage. Many clients tell me that lashes greatly reduce the time it takes to get ready day to day too – moisturise, lip gloss, brush those babies and you’re good to go! Not to mention the confidence they give.

What are the different types? 

The three main different styles of eyelash extensions are:

  • Classic: This is where one single extension is applied to each one of the natural lashes, creating thickness and length.
  • Russian Volume: This is where thinner lashes are used to handcraft tiny little ‘lash fans’, and each of these custom created fans are applied to a single natural lash creating a fluffy voluminous look.
  • Hybrid: True to its name, the hybrid style is created combining both the classic and Russian Volume techniques to give a textured result.

Model: Tanisha Chinanai-Hill @chiap0d

What makes for quality extensions?

As for the technical side of things, there are many different thicknesses, lengths, curl strengths, colours and ways to style eyelash extensions – but you can leave that side of it up to your professional stylist.

During your consultation, a good lash technician will talk you through all of this to design the perfect set for you.

The main things to look for in quality eyelash extensions, and how to find a great artist are:

  • Check their social media! Look for beautiful lashes that aren’t too thick or long, and if the artist talks about lash care in their posts that’s even better!
  • Not too much adhesive. Even for the untrained eye, it’s easy to identify big black clumps of adhesive. This is not a good sign.
  • Not too long or thick. Quality eyelash extensions will not be too long or heavy for your natural lash to support.  If you’ve gotten a set that look like spider legs, or are touching your eyebrows, this too is not a good sign!
  • They were applied in 20 minutes. Warning bells! A quality set of eyelash extensions will take from 1.5 – 3 hours to apply depending on the style.
  • Quality extensions should be styled to suit each individual – one size does not fit all! Application should only follow a consultation process when you have discussed your set with a stylist and feel fully informed and comfortable to begin the treatment.
  • Incorrectly applied extensions can damage the natural lash severely. If you think you have had a bad set of eyelashes applied, get in contact with Mojo for an emergency removal to prevent any further damage.

Model: Tomasina Purcell

How should you care for your lash extensions? 

There are a few main pointers for caring for your eyelash extensions:


  • Wash and brush daily!  Not washing your lashes will result in a build-up of dead skin, dirt and oil, reducing retention (how long they last) and create the risk of a lash mite infection.
  • Cleanse lashes daily with an oil-free cleanser (NEVER blow dry them) and pat dry with a towel.
  • Don’t touch! There are oils on your hands, which will work away at the adhesive.
  • Don’t rub your eyes, or pull on the lashes. Rubbing will cause bad retention, and pulling will pull the natural lash off too.

Other care tips

  • Invest in a silk pillowcase – they’re great for your skin too.
  • Avoid oily skincare or makeup around the eye area – it will wear away at the adhesive and that means bye bye lashes.
  • Have them infilled every 2 – 3 weeks. This will keep them in tip-top shape, and your stylist can remove any grown out extensions.

Want to learn more? Marie will be at the Abbey Wedding Showcase this Sunday 27 May to answer all your lash and makeup related questions. 

Credit: Sarah Whiting @sarahthepalepinup

Images: Supplied. Makeup, lashes, photography and styling by Marie Donnell, flowers supplied by Moxom & Whitney.


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