How to remove eyelash extensions – and is it safe to do it at home?
Even the most die-hard eyelash extension enthusiasts agree that they look best freshly applied, and the longer you go without a touch-up, the less impressive they get. Applied by an experienced specialist and well taken care of, eyelash extensions can last in great shape for up to six weeks. Nevertheless, sooner or later you are faced with a tough decision – to either book a refill or have your thinning fans removed.
Let’s be very honest now. The safest and most effective way to get eyelash extensions off is to schedule an appointment with your lash artist. However, we are painfully aware that sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures (been there, done that), so if you are forced by circumstances to do some DIY, it’s best to know how to do it properly.
Without any further ado, let’s have some in-depth talk about removing eyelash extensions.
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Removing eyelash extensions at home – what are the risks?
Keep in mind that lash extensions are not the same as your good old fake lashes – they are kept in place by professional-grade glue and attached to your natural lashes, not skin on the lash line. You cannot remove extensions the same way you could remove strip lashes and there are a few things that can go wrong. Very, very wrong.
You can damage your natural lashes
If you keep pulling on your extensions, trying to remove them mechanically, you’ll probably remove them very effectively along with your own lashes. Again – they are not attached to your skin and you cannot take them off as if they were strap falsies! Even the slightest amount of pressure can result in catastrophic consequences.
The worst part? Once damaged, your natural lashes can take months to recover – sometimes they never go back to their original length and fullness. You are left with a lash line full of bald spots, and probably won’t be able to get extensions done again until they are in better shape. Not a situation you would like to find yourself in!
You may get an eye infection
The eye area is exceptionally sensitive in more ways than one. Your skin there is thin and fragile and your actual eyeballs can very easily get irritated or even infected.
When a professional lash artist removes your extensions, they use sanitized tools and products intended to be used in that area. Furthermore, as they do the work for you, you keep your eyes closed throughout the entire procedure, reducing the possibility of anything getting into your eyeballs. This way the chance of things going south is much lower.
How to remove lash extensions at home safely
Now that you are aware of the stakes and know what behaviour (pulling, picking) you should avoid, let’s get ready for the removal process.
What should you prepare for your DIY adventure? Most guides you can find online indicate one of four products – vaseline, olive oil, castor oil or coconut oil.
Although there are many tutorials on how to remove eyelash extensions with Vaseline, we actually want to discourage you from using this particular remover. Vaseline is 100% petroleum jelly which is powerful enough to dissolve certain types of semi-permanent lash extension glue, however, it’s very dense and once it gets into your eyes, your vision will become blurry for quite a while. If you really must use it, at least make sure you are using the original product (Vaseline is a brand name!), as it does not include any additional, potentially harmful ingredients.
Out of all of the mentioned, coconut oil is arguably the safest lash extension remover. It’s a natural product, easier to work with than liquid oils, most of us already have it at home and unless you have a coconut allergy, it shouldn’t irritate the sensitive skin around your eye area. Nevertheless, you still should try to keep it out of your eyes.
How to get eyelash extensions off – step by step
Remember all the tips you received from your lash artist when getting the lashes done? If you need a little reminder, we have a little article on looking after eyelash extensions to refresh your memory. Anyway, they probably advised you to avoid long, steamy baths, using oil-based products and washing your eyes along with the rest of the face. Now you will basically be doing what they asked you not to do. Crazy, I know!
- Start by taking a relaxing bath/shower – the steam and your own swear will loosen the extension (and get you relaxed for the rest of the procedure!)
- Wash your face thoroughly in order to clean any built-up makeup or debris in the lashes. Be gentle and do not pull at the extensions!
- Fill a small bowl with steaming-hot water, place your face over it (though far enough to not risk burning yourself!) and remain in this position for 10-15 minutes. For better effectiveness, drape a towel over your head.
- Dip a cosmetic pad in coconut oil (or other oil of your choice) and place the pad on your eye. Let it sit there for 5 minutes, keeping the eye closed at all times.
- Gently wipe your upper and lower lash lines.
- Repeat the last two steps on the other eye.
- Once the extensions come off, delicately remove them from your face, as well as the remaining oil.
How to take off eyelash extensions at home – aftercare
Now that you know how to get eyelash extensions off without damage, it’s also good to learn how to take care of your own lashes in the days after the removal. Your natural fans will probably be a little more delicate than usual – so give them a break. If you can give up on wearing eye makeup, especially mascara, for a while, that would be very helpful – if not, make sure you are putting it on and washing off gently. No tugging and rubbing! Moreover, it’s good to invest in a lash serum that will provide some much-needed nourishment and help them grow longer and thicker.
How to get lash extensions off – the simplest, fastest and safest way
If all of that sounds exhausting to you – and let’s be honest, it is quite an ordeal – consider getting your extensions removed professionally. This way you do not risk losing your natural lashes and your eyes will also thank you for that. What’s more, with Booksy you do not have to worry about anything – you will easily find the best-rated lash artist in your neighbourhood and book a removal service with just a few clicks. With Booksy you simply flutter the problems away – with extensions or without!