As a Lash Artist, one of your top priorities aside from safety and sanitation is to achieve a perfect bond between the natural lashes and extensions. You can give the best consultation, choose the perfect design, and isolate each lash carefully, but if the extensions aren’t bonded correctly, chances are your client will experience premature shedding and won't be happy. Here are some tips to help you achieve the perfect bond with each lash applied.
CLIENTS SHOULD ARRIVE WITH CLEAN LASHES
To ensure that you’re giving your clients the best possible bond have them come with no eye makeup or moisturizer around the eye area. Even though you cleanse your clients' lashes at the start of the appointment, cleaning off makeup takes twice as long and sometimes can be difficult to remove thoroughly. Often, the lashes need to be cleansed a few times to remove all of the eye makeup since it just gets moved around in the process. Remind them that arriving sans makeup will give them more lash time!
CLEANSE & PRIME
Once you have finished your consultation and decided on a design, cleanse the natural lashes with an oil-free foam cleanser to remove excess oils and makeup. I prefer the TLC Foaming Lash Cleanser. Blot with a paper towel and rinse with saline to fully remove the cleanser. Saline will also remove any oils and proteins from the lashes. When using primer, make sure to place your eye pads before placing the primer on the lashes because primer should not touch the skin, ever. Primer will dry up any oils and provide you with a clean slate for application but be sure the lashes are completely dry before you begin to place the extensions.
Note: Be sure to place your eye pads correctly so that they are not pulling the skin or touching the conjunctiva. This can cause discomfort and watery eyes, which can weaken the bonds due to shock polymerization.
STORE YOUR ADHESIVE CORRECTLY
Be sure to replace your adhesive bottle 4 to 6 weeks after opening. Store your adhesive in an airtight container in a cool space to keep moisture out. Do not store your adhesives in a refrigerator or freezer. Order your bottles as needed and only open them when you are ready to use it. Write the date you opened the bottle on the bottom, so you’ll know when to open a fresh bottle. Click the photo below to purchase the perfect home for your lash adhesive.
Note: During the summer months, order your adhesive to arrive on a day where you can be present so that the adhesive isn’t sitting in the heat.
REPLACE YOUR ADHESIVE DOT FREQUENTLY
Dispensing your adhesive should be the last step before you start applying lashes. The adhesive needs to be as fresh as possible, so it's best to drop a single dot of adhesive every 15 to 20 minutes (this is just a guide, the most important thing to do is pay attention to your product and how it’s performing). Let gravity dispense the drop. Try not to squeeze the bottle. After each use, “burp” the bottle to push out excess air from the nozzle, and wipe the nozzle clean with a piece of foil or latex free makeup sponge before replacing the cap. (Don’t use cotton products because it will react with the cyanoacrylate in the adhesive and give off heat!) You will notice a cloudy, white ring around your adhesive or a change in the consistency if you’re not using a fresh dot. Using a jade stone can help keep the adhesive cool as you work too. Click the photo below to purchase a jade stone.
LESS IS MORE
When you dip an extension into the adhesive, make sure you’re only dipping about 1 to 2 mm into the adhesive and exiting out of the same insertion point. Dragging, sliding, or tapping your extension on the adhesive will result in grabbing the film that accumulates over the adhesive. This film is already curing and won’t fully adhere to the natural lash. With a quick-set, thin adhesive like Lash Affair’s The One, you’ll only need a small amount of adhesive to achieve a strong bond. It results in a seamless, more realistic look, without clumps or brittle, plastic looking lashes. As well, you only need to place and hold extensions on the natural lash rather than shimmying, sliding or painting the extension on the natural lash. Try to set the extension exactly where you want it to go (about 1 to 2 mm away from the base of the lash) so that the adhesive can grab and the bond can start curing as soon as it hits the natural lash.
It's best to practice double handed isolation, meaning you have already chosen and isolated a natural lash prior to placing an extension into the adhesive and onto a natural lash. The second the extension is pulled out of the adhesive it has started curing, so the quicker you can bond the extension to the natural lash, the better. Make sure each extension you place is on a perfectly isolated natural lash so that it is bonding to one single lash. Sticking natural lashes together can cause damage to your clients lashes, as we all know.
HUMIDITY AND ADHESIVE SHOULD CORRELATE
Since the adhesive cures with moisture(water), the humidity in the air plays a big part in how well the adhesive grabs and bonds. Invest in a hygrometer which reads the humidity in the room; they are relatively inexpensive. You may need to get a humidifier or dehumidifier to regulate the humidity in the room so that the adhesive is not curing too quickly or too slow. You could also stock a few different adhesives to correlate the adhesive to what the humidity is that day. For example, Lash Affair’s True Love Bond works best in 40-60% humidity while The One Bond works best in 35-45% humidity and Love Potion works best in 40-70% humidity.
USE A NANO MISTER
Using a Nano Mister after an appointment will speed up the curing (polymerization) process by introducing a controlled amount of moisture to the air. Be sure to wait until the bonds appear matte before misting. Too much moisture can shock polymerize the adhesive and cause “blooming” (white residue on the lashes) and impact retention so be sure to only nano mist in less than 55% humidity. Misters should be held 18 to 24 inches away from the client and you should never see water droplets on the lashes. Click photo to purchase.
INSTRUCT YOUR CLIENTS ON PROPER AFTER CARE
Your client should receive verbal and written aftercare instructions. The lashes cannot get wet for 24 hours to allow the adhesive to cure fully. The adhesive is dry after a few seconds, which is why we can brush them after application, but the adhesive will cure in layers so remind your client to plan showering and workouts before each appointment.
Oil can compromise the bonds so your client must cleanse the lashes daily. Natural oil, oil-based products, and make-up can create a film or build up on the lashes. Failure to cleanse the lashes daily will weaken the bond and cause the lashes to slip off prematurely. You can purchase aftercare instruction cards on Lash Affair's site. Or direct them to follow our clients only blog!
Your clients will thank you by giving you repeat business because they will be happy with how well the lashes are lasting! The base of the extensions should not be lifted when they return for a fill and they should inform you that most of the extensions shed with a natural lash attached. These are good signs that you’re making perfect bonds!
Shelby Tarleton | Lash Affair Trainer | TX