Fake eyelashes are a fun way to add a little extra oomph to any outfit. But most of us aren’t too practiced at applying them.. And anytime glue near your eyeballs is involved, you want to make sure you’re doing it right. So we asked Wende Zomnir, chief creative officer and co-founder of Urban Decay to share her tips for applying faux lashes sans any beauty emergencies:
1. Trim the lashes first.
False lashes are a bit longer in width than the average eye, so unless you’ve got Bette Davis eyes, you should trim around 3/4 of the original width across, Zomnir expalined. This ensures the inner edge won’t poke your eye, and the outer edge won’t hang of the side (not a good look). When cutting your false lash, cut in a way that won’t disrupt the overall shape and style of the lash. If the lash flares out at the ends, trim the inner shorter part. If the hairs are longer in the center, and shorter at the edges, trim a little from each side to maintain the shape.
You’ll also want to add a gentle curve to the lashes to mimic the shape of the eye. This will make application easier and help them last longer. Gently bend the lash by rolling the ends between your index finger and thumb, Zomnir suggests. “No matter how much glue you try to stifle them with, if you forget to bend your lashes, you’ll likely end up with the ends popping up or worse the whole lash popping up!” If your set is reusable, store them in their original molded trays to maintain the shape.
2. Use eyeliner.
Line your eyes both before and after applying lashes to avoid ending up with any weirdly unlined spots between what’s real and what’s fake.
3. Apply glue sparingly!
Start by applying lash glue directly to the false lash. Before pressing onto your lash line, wait for about 30 seconds for the glue to get slightly tacky. “This prevents your lashes from sliding out of place,” Zomnir notes. Then, place the lashes onto your lash line, holding the inner and outer corners down for 30 seconds.
4. Finish your makeup.
After the glue is completely dry, apply your eyeliner again. Gently push the pencil or angled liner brush you’re using along the band of the falsies to help seal them in place. Zomnir recommends Urban Decay’s Super Saturated Ultra Intense Waterproof Cream Eyeliner or 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils.
6. Curl away.
“This a critical step if lashes aren’t positioned exactly the same on each eye (maybe one is slanting more downward),” Zomnir says, because curling them into each other can make them look more even.
7. Apply mascara.
A few coats of mascara — in the same color of your false eyelashes, obviously ‚ marry the falsies with your real lashes and make them look as naturally full as possible. To balance out the falsie-enhanced top with the totally natural bottom, use a thickening mascara on the bottom. “Hold the wand vertically to avoid clumping,” instructed Zomnir.
8. Soak and remove.
To take your false eyelashes off, use a makeup remover and leave it on your eyes for a few minutes so it can break down the glue — you don’t want the falsies to still be bonded and rip out any of your real lashes (ouch). You should be able to slide them right off if the remover has worked well enough. Swipe remover over your lashes one more time to get any remnant glue. We like Fresh Soy Conditioning Eye Makeup Remover.
Before putting them away for storage, thoroughly clean the lashes so you don’t have to cotend with crusty gunk next time you pick them up. “As long as you take good care of your false lashes, they will look and work great multiple times.”