False Eyelashes: Awesome or Annoying?
June 17, 2007 4:46 PM   Subscribe

MeFi Ladies, a question for ye: What thinkest thou of false eyelashes?

No, I haven' lost all of mine, but it's summer, and I recently casually met a girl who wore falsies for everyday wear. I recognized them because I see enough of them in the theatre, but no one else (even my friend, her co-worker, who sees her everyday) noticed. That got me thinking - it's summertime, and I really wear very minimally noticeable makeup anyway - tinted moisturizer to level out my face, a little blush - really the most visible thing about my make up is my eyeliner and mascara. It's hot, and this is the point where mascara+heat=bad. I can't wear waterproof - it always irritates my eyes - so I was thinking that falsies might be kind of awesome.

Anyone here use them? Horror stories? Brand recommendations?
posted by Medieval Maven to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (23 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I've heard of people going to salons to get small pieces of them glued into their own eyelashes. It's not cheap, but the results look pretty awesome if you go somewhere good (and they last for a while).
posted by nursegracer at 4:50 PM on June 17, 2007

you could always get them tinted instead.....
posted by farfaraway at 5:09 PM on June 17, 2007

Ardell false lashes and glue from the drugstore are as good as the ones sold by MAC. It takes practice, of course, but one way to make them look a bit more natural is to snip them in half and only place them on the outer corners of the eye.
posted by Soda-Da at 5:14 PM on June 17, 2007

Best answer: I tried some out a month ago and really liked how they looked. They were pretty va-va-voom so if you don't normally wear a lot of makeup, you might look a little overdone on the lashes. At least I thought they made me look way more "done up" than usual and I wear more makeup than you. My mom was the only one that noticed outright. A word of caution - they drove me insane! I liked how they looked, but they irritated my eyes and it felt weird when I washed my face. However, I'd do it again, though for a special occasion and not "just because." The Ardell ones are fine, go for the "short" ones and try brown (I got short black and wished I had gotten brown). You should be able to find them at most drug stores. I got the individual lashes and used about half of the recommended number of lashes per eye. Don't forget the adhesive remover. Here's the link that convinced me to try it out :)
posted by ml98tu at 5:29 PM on June 17, 2007

If you're planning to DIY, get an eyelash curler and curl your lashes before you apply otherwise it looks like your real eyelashes are blinking. I don't know how else to describe it, but it looks funny. And Soda-Da is right. It does look more natural if you cut down the lashes.

Oh and if you are looking to get them professionally done, I think they call them "eyelash extensions."
posted by spec80 at 5:31 PM on June 17, 2007

I think they can look nice, but when I tried to wear them for a performing gig I had no patience for getting them on just right. I just never got the hang of it. I felt so lame...
posted by miss lynnster at 5:33 PM on June 17, 2007

I don't know why, but they always looked fake on me no matter what. That might be because I have red hair, though.

I think the difference is in the thickness of the hair and the fact that eyelash curlers simply don't work on my extremely coarse eyelash hairs. Also it wasn't easy to get my natural lashes to match the lash colour, even with mascara.
posted by watsondog at 5:41 PM on June 17, 2007

I'm a minimalist myself when it comes to makeup. I got my eyelashes tinted a while ago, and I got an enormous response at work, including a girlfriend taking me aside and asking if I was having an affair. So yeah, another vote for tinting. It took about 10 minutes and didn't irritate me at all, and I'm kinda fussy about that sort of thing.
posted by b33j at 6:08 PM on June 17, 2007

You can get false lashes as individual little groups, too -- I think they're three or so to a tiny bundle. They come in different lengths, too. I find that adding just a couple of individual bunches to my eyes' outer halves makes for a natural look that still makes a huge difference.
posted by houseofdanie at 6:18 PM on June 17, 2007

The individual lashes look great and really natural- I was just at a wedding where the bride had at the corner of each eye. I wouldn't have known if she hadn't told me.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:26 PM on June 17, 2007 [1 favorite]

I tried the individual lashes based on the Advice Smackdown article ml98tu mentioned. I got medium brown ones because I have light hair, but they weren't any longer than my own lashes and they were too light, probably because I'm used to wearing black mascara.

I had a problem with the double-lash look, though: even though I had curled my real lashes pre-application, they uncurled pretty quickly and sat quite a bit lower than the fake ones. It didn't matter from a distance, but my boyfriend noticed and thought it was weird.

And they didn't last two weeks. The first clump started falling off after about a week, and I couldn't find any glue remover in the store so I had to pick-pick-pick at them until they all came out. And some of them came out with my real lashes. Either that or I could reapply them.

Next time I would try the long black ones, because apparently my eyelashes are very long naturally. Being able to skip mascara in the mornings (and its removal at night) was so wonderful. I don't know if I would do them again.
posted by rhapsodie at 6:56 PM on June 17, 2007

Seconding houseofdanie. I even went swimming with them with no problems (not on purpose, but).

You can find full sets that're brown and fairly sparse and thin as false eyelashes go -- definitely worth a try.

Ditto on the cheap-is-fine. It might be worth buying one pair from MAC or some such just so you can get somebody else to put them on for you, and provide some application pointers.

Try a coat of clear mascara over the whole thing once they're on to get the falsies to mingle well with your own.

On preview: baby oil or any very greasy eye make-up remover will get them off for you.
posted by kmennie at 7:03 PM on June 17, 2007

The individual ones are the best — use a pair of tweezers and just the tiniest dab of glue, a little drop, really. Glue them to your actual lashes, right at the base, not to the skin on the lid. This will help prevent the "double lash" look. Also, curl your lashes before you start.

For me, it helps to sort of angle the falsies in the tweezers, so I'm not putting them on straight up and down. This is more in line with the natural growth of my lashes, which is what you want to follow for the best look. I do two on each eye, only on the upper, outer corner, and it looks great. Lasts all night, even after I wash my face, and sometimes I sleep in them, but I never wear them longer than a few days.

I get my lashes tinted sometimes in the summer. It's too hot in Houston to wear make-up, so I tint them instead. I have blonde hair and blonde lashes, so mascara is one of my make-up staples, even though I'm pretty much a minimalist. But with tinted lashes, all I do is curl 'em and go. Same with lip and cheek tint — it lasts all day but it still looks like you made an effort to look nice.
posted by Brittanie at 7:22 PM on June 17, 2007

Wow, weird timing. I just tried falsies out for the first time last night. I went with individuals, short, medium brown because i'm a blonde and I was going for a natural look. Even though it said short, they were still quite a bit longer than my natural lashes.

After quite a bit of fussing with them I have a few tips if you go with individuals. Curl your natural lashes first. Use tweezers to grab the falsies really close to the base. I kept grabbing them at the tip and not only would this crimp them a little, when I went to set them against my eye, they would bend because I didn't have them stable enough to press down.

For some reason I thought it would be better to apply them with my eye closed, but when I did it that way I kept setting them way above my actual lash line giving a super creepy two tier look. It was much easier to apply them with my eye open.

Also, I had better luck applying them to my actual skin instead of to my other lashes. When I got them on my other lashes, they would twist and then be turned the wrong direction which is very noticeable. I knew when I got them in the right place because it was a prickly feeling on my eyelid. When you apply the glue, dip the base of the lash into it and you'll end up having a perfect tiny drop at the end. If you lay the lash in instead of dipping, it glues the lash together and makes it look matted.

Once I got the prickly feeling, I left it there for two seconds or so and even after sleeping on them last night and wearing them all day tonight, they are still secure.

Really tricky at first, but by the second eye I felt like a pro. Good luck!
posted by Ugh at 7:43 PM on June 17, 2007

Ow, ow, ow, ow, blink blink blink, tear up tear up, blink, ow, blink, ow, blink, ow.

That was my one and only experience with false eyelashes - I wore them to my high school graduation and they were so uncomfortable and such an annoyance that I never wore them again.
posted by Lynsey at 7:57 PM on June 17, 2007

Best answer: Do it. They'll change your life. OK, it's a bit of an exaggeration but they will change your face. Here's how I apply mine:
1. Find the most natural looking...or glamorous pair you can. For the first few times, just pick up a cheap pair at the local drug store.

2. Cut the lashes in half.
3. Squeeze a bit of glue on the back of your hand.
4. Dip one half of the lashes in the glue and apply to the base of your upper lashes. Repeat with the other half.

If you mess up, just use a bit of liner to cover up. Have fun.
posted by notjustfoxybrown at 8:10 PM on June 17, 2007

I used to wear falsies all the time--I did drag--and while they can look fucking incredible (I absolutely unequivocally recommend MAC. I wore #5, but they may be a bit big for daytime wear) they're also bloody annoying after an hour or two.

Also, as said above, slice in half, trim carefully, and wear on the outer edge of your lids.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:28 PM on June 17, 2007

You'd have to be retarded to want to wear them regularly. Think- glue along the rim of your eyelid, clogging up the ducts. No matter how well you cleanse your face at night, you'll still wake up with balled dark bits of glue in the inner corners of your eyes in the morning. Peeling them off does pull your skin quite a bit and one has to wonder if your eyelids will bag out one day. And, of course, inevitably one will always peel off at the corner and you won't notice until someone points it out to you.

If you MUST, the Ardells are fine, the MACs are better, but rather expensive. It's not easy to get them straight. Put a thin strip of glue along the edge. Use tweezers to place flush with the top of the natural lashes.

How do I know? Ex showgirl- I wore them for 12 hours a day, 6 days a week for almost 4 years.

Falsies for money, yes, for fun, no.
posted by solongxenon at 8:48 PM on June 17, 2007

Fashionable and funny blogger Belle Waring heartily endorses them.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:52 PM on June 17, 2007

(the link under her name is the one with instructions etc; the second link is just a picture)
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:56 PM on June 17, 2007

I love AskMeFi. Seriously. I am SO piggybacking. Thanks for asking the question. False eyelashes on a Feminist/Smarty-pant/computer geek/bad-ass/whatever (!!!) makes my heart go pitter-patter.

Even if you (or I) end up hating them.
posted by metasav at 10:12 PM on June 17, 2007

Non related to false eye lashes; but - Kiss Me mascara by Blinc is not "waterproof" in the chemical way, but doesn't run with water. Essentially the mascara dries in a tube around your eyelash, so with water the worst thing is that it will slide straight off (looks creepy if you watch yourself wash your face; but doesn't smudge or anything during rain). Sold in Sephora, highly recommend it. Maybe its something to try if you are too stressed out by falsies.

Thanks for all the answers everyone, now I'm tempted to try this too :)
posted by olya at 10:51 PM on June 17, 2007

Glue them to your actual lashes, right at the base, not to the skin on the lid. This will help prevent the "double lash" look.

I glued the very ends of the lashes (the knots) to the very base of my own lashes, not to the skin at all (although one accidentally dried a little bit onto my lids and it felt so uncomfortable), and it still gave me the double lash look. It looked like my natural eyelashes grew straight out from their follicles, while the fake ones curled up beautifully.

They also were uncomfortable when sleeping with an eye mask, needed to block out all of Alaska's midnight sunshine.
posted by rhapsodie at 12:14 AM on June 18, 2007

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