False eyelashes and I have some serious history. I was first introduced to
lash strips when I started competing in beauty pageants at the age of 16. For the next seven years, it became second nature for me to put on lashes at any time of the day, whether for an early appearance at a charity event or before hitting the stage for a competition. But once I retired, my lash-wearing days were behind me — or so I thought.
With dramatic lashes at the center of attention in 2018 — Pinterest
labeled lashes one of the biggest beauty trends of the year — I became intrigued to give falsies another run. I had a hunch that I'd feel different about false eyelashes now that my life is dramatically different from my pageant days. Instead of jetting to runway lessons after work, I'm going to avoiding the gym and going home to catch up on the latest episode of Power. Would lashes become a regular part of my routine now that my speed is more corporate?
Before I could commit to adding lashes to my makeup routine permanently, I embarked on a 7-day trial. For one week I wore lashes every day, including regular days at work and concerts. I looked into best-selling, celebrity-favourite, and even
magnetic options (yep, totally a thing) and prepared myself mentally for the lash drama that lie ahead.
Here's my honest verdict.
Day 1: Ardell Demi Wispies
Ardell is a high street favourite when it comes to false lashes - even celebrity makeup artists like Mario Dedivanovic swears by them. But be warned: No matter how much experience you have, it's easy to end up with a goopy mess of glue on your eyelids, which is exactly what happened to me on my first day back to the lash life.
Demi Wispies, £5.49, available at
Boots The Verdict
I'm not a complete newbie at this, and I actually remembered a great trick as I was applying these lashes. You want to layer the lashes on looking downwards at your mirror, then bring the mirror up and secure the lashes looking straight forward. I chose to apply with
Kiss' Strip Lash Adhesive with Aloe, £3.29
, which is a more natural alternative to most lash glues.
The lashes were super comfortable,
natural looking, and gave a winged effect — which I loved as someone who can't ever get a cat-eye right. As comfortable as they felt throughout the work day, it was when I got to the Drake concert at 8 p.m. — after wearing them for 12 hours — that I thought, "OK, now they're bothering me." I stripped them off (carefully) in the middle of the concert, put them away since lashes can be saved for another wear, and enjoyed the rest of my night.
When I got home, I removed the rest of the glue from my lids with micellar water and Q-tips, which
is the recommended method
for gentle cleansing. It's a safer bet for people like me who are prone to skin issues from oil-based products.
Day 2: Eylure Magnetic Lashes
This was the option I was most excited about. If you're promising me a non-messy, innovative way to apply falsies, I'm in! Let me give you a little lowdown on how these magnet-powered lashes work. There are two lash pieces per eye, you bring them together from the top and bottom of your lashes, and the magnets (supposedly) click together at the lash line. No glue is needed. How intriguing does that sound?
Magnetic Opulent Accent Lashes, £13.95, available at
Eyelure The Verdict That easy-to-apply advertising did not apply to me. It took me about 27 times (no joke, I counted) before I had to call it quits. I actually left my house, came back, tried again another five times, and then quit again. It was difficult to get the two magnets to align right at my lash line, and the magnets were clearly visible among my natural lashes. I also worried that my eyes were in danger because I kept getting the magnet piece in my eyes. All I could think was, "How can this be safe?" Alas, these never made it onto my lashes. So, unless you have a lot of patience or plain ole luck, this might not be the best option for you. Luckily, I was trying this set of lashes out on a Saturday, when I didn't have to go to work. Day 2 (retry): Huda Beauty Classic Lash in Samantha #7
Committed to my eyelash experience, I put away the magnetic lashes and took out another pair. These lashes are a bestseller from beauty mogul and makeup artist
, and they're sold at Sephora. Huda is more or less the
queen of false eyelashes
, so I had high expectations.
Samantha Lashes #7, £15.50, available at
Cult Beauty The Verdict Out of all the eyelashes I tried during the week, these were the easiest to apply, which was surprising since the description says that they're an ideal option for regular users. It didn't take me more than one try with the usual tweezer application method. I loved how pretty they looked on. It was a natural-looking drama that didn't scream "falsies." With voluminous lashes like these, it's key to apply eyeliner so that it looks more natural and not like the lashes are just randomly popping out of your lids. Although these were much more glamorous than the first pair I tried, this Huda Beauty set was comfortable on my eyes — so much so that I fell asleep in them. Day 3: Kiss Lash Couture Triple Push-Up
When I saw
Cardi B's lashes at the MTV VMAs
, I knew I had to add the look to my roundup. But once I had them in my hand, I was flat out scared. These were
. But if Cardi loves this look, then it's good enough for me to try.
Lash Couture Push Up, £7.99, available at
Superdrug The Verdict These took a bit more time to apply since they were a lot more lash than usual. When I finally got them on, it was overwhelming, and I wanted to take them off right away. But I fought through it and made my way to work. The reactions to these lashes throughout the day were more on the "Whoa" side, and a few people felt bad about all the squinting I was doing. These were heavier than I expected, which didn't make them comfortable for all-day wear. Around 6 p.m., when I found myself wanting to just shut my eyes, I finally stripped them off. This left me with eyeliner everywhere, but the relief felt a lot like taking off your bra after a long summer day. If I ever found myself on a red carpet or had a professional makeup artist doing a full-glam look, I would definitely consider this option, but for an everyday style, not so much. Day 4: Kevyn Aucoin The Starlet
When I received this pair, I was already sold by the chic magnetic box with a mirror for easier application. I actually used this mirror for the rest of the week when applying lashes. At first glance, these lashes definitely stood out because there is a
noticeable change in volume from beginning to end.
The Starlet Lashes, £20, available at
Space NK Day 5: Lilly Lashes Mykonos
From Kim Kardashian to Jennifer Lopez, this brand is a favourite among Hollywood A-listers, so I knew I had to give it a try. I went for a pair that has been worn by Rihanna and Christina Aguilera, so I was prepared for some fabulousness.
in Mykonos, £30, available at
Beauty Bay The Verdict These went on pretty easy, and I immediately noticed how the hairs were extra fluffy and interlaced, which made for a seamless blend with my natural lashes (I didn't even need to add mascara). The look was more on the dramatic side and called for a smoky eye. I would've preferred to save these for a night out or a date night, but the great thing is that the brand claims they're reusable up to 25 wears. Day 6: House of Lashes Iconic Lite
At this point, waking up to get fully glammed in the morning was getting to be a hassle. Shout out to the influencers who do this on a daily basis. I was super tired, so I got frustrated putting these on before going to work, but it still didn't take more than two tries.
House of Lashes
Iconic Lite, £14, available at
Beauty Bay The Verdict My boyfriend loved these, which was surprising since he didn't like the drama of most of the lashes, All the compliments that followed from colleagues and one woman on my commute made me feel like these were the most flattering. This set is actually a more natural version of the brand's original Iconic Lashes — favoured by tons of YouTubers. I appreciated that the band was thinner than most false lashes. It made for a tighter application, and the criss-cross pattern of the hairs made for an easy blend with my natural ones, just like the Lilly Lashes. Day 7: Velour Momma Knows Best
I decided to end with a bang. This pricey option, which is a bestseller at Sephora, is more exaggerated than a natural-looking lash, so I saved them for a night out.
Momma Knows Best,
£20, available at
Velour Lashes The Verdict Although these seemed more dramatic initially, the extra length and volume towards the outside of the lash made for a more relaxed look. It also created a winged effect, which I was a fan of. These lashes lasted throughout the night, which included a New York City heat advisory and an outdoor bar. Sturdy? Check. I never had the urge to snag them off, either. Comfortable? Check. If you're looking to add length to your lashes without added weight, this pair is my top recommendation. Conclusion After seven days, I now know exactly what I'm looking for when it comes to eyelashes. I want a more natural look and easy application (so I don't end up yanking the lashes off in frustration). Of all the pairs I tried, I'd give the crown to Kevyn Aucoin The Starlet for delivering on awesome packaging, natural fluff, and comfortable wear. As for the runner-up, I'd definitely award Ardell Demi Wispies for giving me a winged look while still being subtle. It's clear now that false eyelashes aren't meant to be a regular thing for me. For a special night out or event? Sure. It definitely makes a difference in the look versus just wearing mascara alone. Plus, people notice, which makes for great compliments — and who doesn't love that? Although all these lashes gave me an extra confidence boost throughout the week, it's safe to say that I'll stick to applying mascara on a regular basis. Those extra 15 minutes in the morning make all the difference.