Mascara is perhaps my favorite beauty item after sunscreen, but it can only do so much, and when you're out on the holiday party circuit, you need something with a little more drama and a little less under-eye smudging. And that's where false lashes come in. They're easy to apply if you do it with a light hand (or use tweezers), stay on all night, and instantly make you look hot like an office building in December. To see a surfeit of fabulous falsies, just click through the widget below.
Straight from Japan comes the newest innovation in false eyelashes — light-up LEDs that come on and off at your will. Totally necessary and probably prohibitively expensive? Yes. Just so awesome, and I want some right now? Yup, that too. ETA: These lashes were actually invented in Korea by Soomi Park.
Back in 1919, famed makeup artist Max Factor invented false eyelashes to enhance the dramatic performances of leading Hollywood starlets. Since then, there's been a bevy of lashes from which to choose, with Shu Uemura leading the industry in the most fashion-forward styles. (Even I've gotten in on the action.) These "lotsa lashes" looks are always quite memorable. Who can forget Twiggy's batting lashes or Madonna's notorious $10,000 mink-and-diamond pair? See more now.
False eyelashes are a lot of fun, especially when you have the opportunity to play around with unusual and wild styles. Sometimes, wacky lashes are bold and brash, but other times, they're artistic and fantastic. Shu Uemura's Fleur-Ever lashes fit firmly into the latter category. Designed by Gina Brooke, Madonna's personal makeup artist, the $79 lashes provide beautiful plumage for a dramatic look. Then again, not everyone has an extra $79 to spend on something so fanciful. But if you want to try the look for less than $10, check out what I found
There are many pros for lengthening your lashes, particularly when the method is inexpensive and works in an instant. Recently, reader Krissysrose reviewed Ardell Invisiband Eyelashes ($4), and here's what she had to say about these temporary enhancers:
I love these eyelashes! They fit well and can look completely natural or drag-queen-dramatic depending on the style. And even if I ruin them by falling asleep in them, they only cost a few dollars.
Now it's your turn. Yes, I'm talking to you. Tell me what you love and/or don't love about your favorite/not so favorite beauty items by going to the Product Reviews page.
The desire to draw attention to the eyelashes has been going strong since around 4000 BC, when ancient Egyptians used kohl to darken lashes and eye areas. Fast-forward thousands of years later, and the mascara industry brings in over an astonishing one billion dollars a year. That's not even including other eyelash-enhancing products such as extensions, false eyelashes, and now Latisse, an eyelash-growth drug approved by the FDA last December. Take a look at my chart below to compare products available on the market now. How much would you pay for long and full lashes?
|Easy to find and come in a wide variety of styles from vibrating, scented, colored, thickening, and lengthening. Cheap — ranging in price from $5 to $10 at the drugstore. Assuming you keep your mascara around three months, it's mere pennies per use.||Can run and smudge, doesn't always look natural, and very temporary.|
|Very accessible, easy to apply (see my attempt here), and relatively cheap, ranging in price from inexpensive like E.L.F. False Eyelashes ($1 to $3) to moderate/slightly expensive such as Shu Uemura ($16 for accent lashes to $95 for fantasy lashes). Also, they're just plain fun — bedazzled lashes, anyone?||Can fall off easily, don't last very long, can't always be reused, and can look, well, fake!|
|Natural looking, long lasting (around two to three months), and doesn't take very long to apply by a spa professional (around 80 minutes or so). Check out my experience with eyelash extensions here.||Expensive, averaging around $200 to $600.|
|Effective, easy to apply — similar to putting on eyeliner, treats hypotrichosis (sparse eyelashes), long-lasting (several weeks to months), and looks very natural because it's your own hair growing out.||Available by prescription only, expensive ($120 for 30-day supply), needs to be applied daily, and side effects can include skin darkening, irritation, dryness, and redness of the eyelids.|
Graphic designer Amitis Pahlevan created this typeface out of individual false eyelashes. No, it's not a font that you can install on your computer — yet — but it's an inspiring example of the creative things people make out of everyday items. I particularly like how the softness of the lash flares sets off the black tips, giving the letters a fuzzy quality that's retro and artsy at the same time. This could be a cool DIY project for decorating part of your home (just add super glue!), or merely as practice for wearing false lashes on New Year's Eve.
I love the festive look of false eyelashes but have trouble swallowing the price. Many times I've passed by this lash line in my local drugstore, and decided to pick up the Andrea Modlash Starter Kit ($5.79) for a holiday party.
I was most intrigued by the applicator – I've used tweezers before but this fits the entire length of the lashes and looked to me like I could get quite the grip, but did I? Below you'll find a photo with eyeshadow and liner but no mascara . . .
See the after shot (and pictures of the application process) when you read more
Remember Madonna's famous mink-and-diamond lashes from a few years ago? Her makeup artist, Gina Brooke, made them by hand; they proved to be so popular that she developed a Madonna-inspired set ($25) for Shu Uemura. For Halloween or just a glam night on the town, they're super-slick.
But what if you don't have $25 to spend on fantasy lashes? I've found a pair that gives you the look for the fraction of the price. To check them out, read more
Dutch designers Viktor & Rolf are famously outrageous, and their fantasy eyelashes ($95) for Shu Uemura are in line with the duo's avant-garde aesthetic. Check out this video to see what these limited-edition lashes look like on a real person — and learn how to apply false lashes while you're at it!