Giving Lash Extensions for the First Time
It can be very daunting once you’ve completed your lash training and you’re off into the world with your little lash kit. For me, I practiced at home for hours before I applied lash extensions on people for free. Trust me, giving lash extensions for free was a great experience because I was able to get many hours of hands on practice and build my lashing stamina. I did tons of research online and watched lots of Youtube videos for extra tips and ideas.
My First Lash Model
I remember my very first lash model. That morning, I had been practicing on my mannequin and was able to give a full set in an hour so I was feeling confident. She was a free model and a very nice woman with blond hair so her natural lashes were blond too. It seemed as though she was nervous so she talked the entire time to fill the silence and as she did her eyes FLUTTERED a lot. It ended up taking me two and half hours to apply 35 lashes on each eye. A light set of lashes is 35-50 lashes per eye and a full set is 80-100 per eye. My poor model left with a spidery set of lashes and I could tell she wasn’t happy with the results.
Mistakes I Made That You Don’t Have to Make
- Caffeine: I drink coffee all the time but it made my hands jittery when applying lash extensions. Also being nervous in the beginning may cause shaky hands and fingers.
- Light Colored Hair: With lighter hair it’s difficult to see against the white eye pad and your working light reflects off of them. I would recommend using brunette models to start to get a feel for human lashes before you move onto blondes.
- Short Lashes: If your client has short lashes you’ll have to work SUPER close to the last line and risk poking their eyelid. I did that once so I recommend applying tape onto their lids for extra protection. The tape also helps lift the lashes off the eye pad.
- Lengths: DO NOT use really long lashes on your first few models because until you pick up speed you will not be able to provide a full set of lashes within two hours. I recommend using 7mm-11mm to give your client a fuller lash line but just make sure the extension itself is longer than the natural lash. If I would’ve done this with my first model she wouldn’t have walked away with spidery lashes.
- Speak Up: If your client can’t keep still while talking or her eyes flutter when she talks, let her know because a lot of times they don’t feel it. Just explain to them that placement of the lash is very important for retention and that you want them to look perfect.
- Move Their Head: Moving your client’s head left and right for better access to lashes will save your neck and sanity.
- Bottom Lashes: Make sure all the bottom lashes are secured. It helps to check halfway through because if the client coughs, sneezes, or close their eyes tightly during the treatment, their bottom lashes can become loose and you’ll risk gluing the top lashes to the bottom which is uncomfortable to fix.
It Will Get Easier
Don’t worry! It’s completely normal to take 2-3 hours to apply a full set of lashes in the beginning. As I said before, when I was practicing at home I would be done in one hour. But a mannequin with practice lash strips can only prepare you so much for the real thing. Real human lashes are nothing like the practice lash. In real life, there are ROWS of lashes, lashes going in every direction, and tons of fine baby lashes. So be prepared to spend A LOT of time ISOLATING. And believe me when I say it’s sooo important to isolate because if you glue two natural lashes together with an extension it can become very uncomfortable for your client when the lashes grow out and cause twisting. Honestly, even very seasoned lash artists still glue a couple of my lashes together. But going back to my first day, after I was done the rest of my day was shot. My neck hurt, I was mentally exhausted from focusing and being nervous, I had a headache, and I rarely get headaches. I even told my friends that I didn’t think it was for me. But I had more models booked the following days and guess what, it got easier OVERNIGHT! Yes, I got better and my body was getting use to it. So don’t worry, it will get easier. New clients will bring new challenges and the opportunity for you to improve your skills as a lash artist.