What are Individual eyelash extensions made from?
Synthetic Individual Eyelash Extensions are made from Polybutylene Terephthalate (PBT) a flexible and lightweight product with a soft sheen, which is a synthetic fibre. Many years ago, Eyelash Extensions were sadly made from real hair, usually from the mink which is a small mammal similar to the ferret. These animals were, and still are farmed for their fur and it was found that their strands of hair could be used for eyelash extensions.
Thankfully, it is now very rare to see real mink eyelash extensions used or even available in our industry. Instead the use of Synthetic eyelash extensions are the most popular choice and where the term “mink” eyelash extensions was derived from.
What is the difference between Mink and Silk eyelash extensions?
Both mink and silk eyelash extensions are made from PBT. Supplies often label their lashes as one or the other as a description of what the lash is like, rather than what it is made of.
At Eyelash Excellence we do not label our Eyelash Extensions as mink or silk. All of our lashes are a very soft and flexible lash that bonds effortless and flexes with the natural lashes for client comfort and to aid in retention.
What are Flat Lashes?
In 2015 the Lash Industry saw the introduction of a new type of eyelash extension – The Flat Lash. This extension is still a classic lash and applied individually, but the design of it is very different. The regular classic lash that we were all accustomed to is a conical shape (under a microscope it is shaped like a cone). The Flat lash is shaped like a long plank of wood with a tapered tip (hence it is flat). Flat lashes have a double tapered tip which looks like a snake’s tongue, this helps to soften the tip.
The Flat lash taper on most brand does not start until the middle of the extension, which is similar to silk lashes, this therefore gives it a thicker look.
The thickness of the lash (the diameter) is still measured in the same way as a classic lash, but overall it has a different measurement and is why the flat lash is lighter than a conical shaped lash with the same diameter.
Classic lashes are conical, therefore whichever way you measure it the diameter will stay the same.
Flat lashes due to their shape, are like a plank of wood, therefore they are wide and flat.
A 0.15mm flat lash is 0.15mm x 0.07mm
A 0.12mm flat lash is 0.12mm x 0.07mm
(the thinnest side is always 0.07mm – according to the manufacturers)
This is what makes flat lashes look the same thickness but weigh less, because there is less product present.
Flat lashes come in both normal and Matte. Matte flats have less sheen and offer a more natural effect. Normal Flat lashes are more dark and shiny, so offer a more dramatic effect.
Check out our range of Flat Lashes as well as our guide of which flat lash weights is safe to use:
Tell me about Eyelash Extension glue…
What Eyelash Extension Glue is the best?
There is no “one best” eyelash extension glue out there, instead an adhesive that suits that Lash Artist, their environment and their clients.
Why do we give a working range for each eyelash extension glue?
CA (cyanoacrylate) which is the key ingredient in most eyelash extension glues and requires the perfect control of both temperature and humidity in order to cure correctly.
Failure to control your levels to perfection will render your glue useless- it is like trying to bake a cake without setting your oven to the correct temperature.
Watch this video on how to work with your eyelash extension glue for more information:
What eyelash extensions adhesive suits me?
Every lash artist will work at a different speed and in a different environment (different temperature and humidity levels), as such it is impossible for there to be one eyelash extension glue that will suit all.
Therefore, the artist will always have to work by “trial and error” to find an eyelash extension adhesive that suits their personal working environment and their clients – (some client’s lashes are dry, some oily) as such it can never be one eyelash extension glue suits every client. Of course, it is a pain to have to purchase multiple adhesives, but it is the only way to find out which adhesive suits you or your client.
This is the reason why we at Eyelash Excellence offer a wide range of eyelash extension adhesives and not just one, so that we can provide adhesives to suit every artist.
My eyelash extension adhesive is taking too long to cure, what should I do?
Simply increase your temperature and humidity to speed up the curing process.
My eyelash extension glue is curing too quickly, what should I do?
Simply decrease your temperature and humidity to slow down the curing process.
What does eyelash extension glue cure speed mean in seconds?
This is just a guide, to assist “only” in understanding the average cure time from when you place the extension onto the natural lash to it starting the set cure (when the extension is set in place)
Cure speeds assist only in helping the lash artist choose the correct glue for their lashing speed and experience level and should in no way be taken as the exact guide of set times for the extension.
If you grab a larger bead of adhesive then your extension will take longer to cure, whereas if you grab a seamless amount your extension will cure quicker.
As such cure times can only “assist” and can never be taken as an exact set cure time.
We always recommend that you allow at least 3 seconds for the classic extension to cure before releasing it and at least 6 seconds for volume fans to ensure that fan does not close.
Why is my eyelash extension adhesive not working on my mannequin head?
If you are practicing on a mannequin head, you will always find that your adhesives will be very slow curing. This is because practice lashes are made from PBT and hold no moisture unlike real lashes. Therefore, when attempting to practice they will not grab, unless you use our fastest adhesive Ruby and use an accelerator.
Should I purchase an adhesive to suit my lash room’s natural temperature and humidity levels, or set my levels to suit the adhesive I am using?
You MUST always set your room levels to suit the adhesive you are using, never the other way around.
CA is very temperamental, as such we must always provide it with the levels it likes to work best at.
When we bake a cake, we always set the oven to suit that cake mixture, so adopt this understanding whenever you work with eyelash adhesive.
Can I work with just one adhesive?
Most experienced artists have 2-3 adhesives that they work with, each to suit whether they are classic or volume lashing, as well as the client they are working on at the appointment. It is very rare that one adhesive suits that artist alone as well as all of their clients.
How long do my adhesives last?
Stored unopened in the fridge, they will last up to 6 months. Once opened the recommended shelf life is 5-7 weeks, however if that glue is not used every day then most will last up to 3 months. Opened bottles should be stored upright, in an airtight container, at room temperature and out of direct sunlight.
Adhesive that has ‘gone off’ will usually take on a stringy consistency (with the exception of our oil resistant adhesive) or will not grab onto the NL.
I have just started working with a new adhesive that is unfamiliar to me. It does not grab or cure like my other adhesive and my clients are having retention issues. My Adhesive must be off or bad right?
It is very rare for adhesives to be off or bad. They are made in large batches, as such if one adhesive is reported to be off/bad then whole batch will be, and the supplier will be inundated with complaints.
Adhesives also travel really well around the globe and very rarely become compromised unless left in extreme environments of hot or cold for a long period of time (which is rare due to their express delivery times). As such it is unlikely that it has gone off – if it has it will usually show signs of a stringy consistency or a grey/separated appearance.
When working with a new glue, you must understand that it will work and perform very differently from your existing adhesive. You can never compare the two and instead learn how to work with that new glue differently and understand that to start off with you may have both application and retention issues with that adhesive. It is always very frustrating, especially if your clients are complaining or retention issues. Most Lash artists are very quick to blame the glue, however 99% of the time the key is taking your time to learn how to best work with that Eyelash Extension glue.
Should I shake my adhesive?
Always shake your adhesive at the start of your lash appointment, removing the lid and placing folded up paper wax strip over the nozzle. If you shake your adhesive with the lid on, then adhesive will travel up the nozzle and stick your lid to the nozzle.
How should I store my adhesive?
Store unopened bottles in the fridge. Bring the glue to room temperature before opening, to prevent the cold air inside the bottle drawing in warm air and activating glue. Opened bottles should be stored upright, in an airtight container, at room temperature and out of direct sunlight. Once opened never put your adhesive back in the fridge, this can compromise the adhesive.
How often should I change my adhesive dot?
For optimum performance always refresh your adhesive every 10- 20 minutes with a brand new dot.
Why are my clients lashes not lasting?
There are always so many reasons why you may be having retention issues on your clients and most of the time it can be impossible to ever really get to the bottom of it.
Sadly, most artists are very quick to blame the adhesive where as 99% this is not the case.
Most retention issues are caused by the following:
- Lash Artist working with a new glue – have not yet understood the workability of the new adhesive.
- Failing to control temperature and humidity
- Not refreshing your adhesive often enough
- Too little adhesive used (this is very common)
- Incorrect attachment
- Not working quick enough for that adhesive
- Extensions too long or too heavy for the NL
- In correct preparation of the lashes or using non-lash products
- Oily clients
- Clients failing to follow aftercare correctly
- Clients using high strength creams, hair products, heavy makeup etc.
- Clients taking oily supplements for skin and hair
- Clients sleeping on their faces – although they will rarely admit this.
This list could go on, but it is always important to work through the list before blaming the adhesive.
Why am I have retention issues since COVID-19?
The introduction of clients wearing face masks seems to be affecting lash retention across the globe. As we know, humidity levels play an important role in the curing of adhesives. The wearing of masks is now creating a high humidity environment around the client’s face. The breath from the client is then escaping through the top of the mask, thus increasing the levels of humidity close to the eyes. Although your hygrometer may be reading the correct levels, this is not detecting the levels around the face. Therefore, lash adhesive is shock curing due to the high levels and clients complaining of retention issues. To assist, tape the mask down to prevent breath escaping through the top. Lower your room levels to counteract this higher humidity. Do NOT nano mist or use Super bonders as this will shock cure the bonds. Use more adhesive to counteract any shock curing. Please research the forums for this subject where you can gain even more advice on how artists are dealing with this.
What should I do if after troubleshooting, I still think my adhesive is bad?
Always contact the supplier, they will then work with you and ask lots of questions to see if they can get to the bottom of it. Do not be offended by the questions they ask, they are simply trying to assist to see if there is an obvious solution.
99% the time, your supplier does not know you personally, or how you work, as such they will need to ask lots of questions to try to understand why you are having issues with the adhesive. They will then work back and forth with you, so they can gain as much information on the problems you are having. If need be they will ask for the glue to be sent back for testing, as well as construct a detailed report to send to their manufacturers.