While chatting with New York City-based esthetician Gennesis Alexandra recently, she shared that she’s been bleaching a lot of brows and doing a lot of lower lash lifts lately. With Julia Fox, Dove Cameron, Bella Hadid, and plenty of people on TikTok donning platinum arches these days, I wasn’t fazed by the first trend at all. The second one surprised me, though — I didn’t even know lower lash lifts were an option.
Typically, lash lifts are only done on upper lashes to give them a semi-permanent curl while helping them appear longer and fuller. However, over the past couple of months, lash technicians have been using that same technique on lower lashes to balance out the post-lift volume of the top lashes, Saidy Yu Salas, owner of Eyes For Beautys in Pasadena, California, tells TZR. “If you have unruly lower lashes, a lash lift will also help make them become more uniform and stay in place,” she adds.
With very little effort, Gennesis was able to convince me to get a lower lash lift. After all, my lower lashes tend to look sparse and almost invisible, so I was intrigued by the prospect of them looking thicker and more noticeable. Plus, I was already planning to get a standard lash lift, so it was an incredibly easy add-on service. Both upper and lower lashes can be done simultaneously, so you don’t have to worry about making two separate appointments. But what exactly is the appointment like? Allow me to walk you through what it’s like to get a lower lash lift, as well as the results you can expect and the risks that come with this trending treatment.
The Process Of Getting A Lower Lash Lift
Well, it’s not much different from upper lash lifts. “A lower lash lift uses the exact same four-step treatment process to define and separate your lashes,” Salas says. For those unfamiliar, here’s a quick rundown:
- Lashes are glued in place on top of silicone pads.
- A perming solution is gently combed through lashes “to help redirect the hair,” Alisandra Tobia, licensed esthetician at Beauty Mood, previously told TZR. For upper lashes, it will help them curl upward; for lower, it helps all the hairs fan downwards in the right direction.
- A formula is added to stop the neutralizer from breaking down the bonds in your lashes.
- Finally, a conditioning agent helps soften and strengthen lashes.
Throughout the whole process, which takes about an hour and a half, your eyes will be closed. I thought I would be able to get a little nap in, but I must admit that the process is uncomfortable. I’m not used to someone constantly touching my eyes and having my waterlines exposed to the air for that long. There were a couple of moments when I started having regrets and told myself this would be the first and last time I would get a lash lift.
The Results of Lower Lash Lifts
Whenever my intrusive thoughts started taking the wheel, Gennesis would just so happen to say, “You’re going to look like a doll.” And by the time she was done, I looked into the mirror, and sure enough, my eyes had a new sort of fluttery, doe-eyed doll vibe that I couldn’t stop staring at. All feelings of regret disappeared. Beauty really is pain, I guess.
My lower lashes looked longer and straighter than ever before. Combined with my newly curled upper lashes, the lash lifts truly gave my eyes “an instant wake-up effect,” as Salas puts it. As someone who deals with chronic nightmares, I need all the help I can get to look more bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in the morning. Now, you can catch me at 9 a.m. at the dog park looking refreshed and wide awake before I’ve even had a sip of coffee.
And since I’m already being honest with you, I will also admit that I’m on a mission to wear as little makeup as possible on a daily basis. My lash lifts now give me the luxury of skipping mascara almost every day — especially on my lower lashes.
I’m pretty confident in my makeup application skills, but when it comes to coating those tiny little hairs below my eyes, it’s like I’m 12 again, applying mascara for the very first time. Salas assured me that the clumping and smearing that I often encounter with my lower lashes is not because I’m not lacking any sort of makeup finesse, though. “I believe we all have unruly lower lashes that can make applying lower-lash mascara complicated,” she explains.
When I do decide to wear mascara these days — Isamaya’s Rubberlash or Guerlain’s Noir G Volumizing & Curling Mascara — I hardly need to put any on. It also sweeps through both my lower and upper lashes incredibly easily.
Lower lash lifts last anywhere from four to eight weeks depending on how well you care for your lashes, Salas says. Gennesis repeatedly told me to not get any water on my lashes for 24 hours and to not wear mascara for up to 48 hours. This allows your lashes to cure and set to perfection, Salas adds.
The Risks of Lower Lash Lifts
Obviously, the main risk of lower lashes is chemicals being placed extremely close to your eyes, New York City-based ophthalmologist Ashley Brissette, MD, says. “I’ve seen chemical injuries to the eyes and eyelids from lifts and lash dyes,” she tells TZR. “The skin of the eyelids is very delicate and thin and much more prone to redness and swelling than skin elsewhere on the face.
Jennifer Tsai, OD, an optometrist in New York City, agrees, adding that these chemicals can put you at risk of inflamed corneas and redness of the eyes and lids. You also may experience lash loss or an allergic reaction to the chemicals.
If you have sensitive skin or eyes, “I would avoid this procedure,” Dr. Brissette says. “Your eyes are so precious — why risk it?” Also, those who have a history of contact dermatitis, blepharitis, recurrent styes, blepharoplasty, and certain eye surgeries shouldn’t get a lash lift either, Dr. Tsai adds.
But if you simply must have your lower lashes lifted, Dr. Brissette recommends consulting with a licensed esthetician with lots of experience before committing to a lower lash lift and even trying a patch test of the chemicals first.
In the case that all goes well, be sure to regularly remove any and all dust and debris that your lashes will probably end up collecting in their newly lifted state. Dr. Brissette suggests washing your eyes while they are closed with a gentle face wash or eyelid cleanser, like Daily Practice’s Eye Revive, to improve the health of your lashes. “You will find they look thicker and fuller,” she adds.
As for the damage a lower lash lift will do to your wallet, well, you can anticipate spending about $100 to $250, Salas says.