Have you ever spent hours in front of the mirror trying to apply fake eyelashes, only to end up with them sticking out at strange angles, or—worse—fall off completely after a few hours? Because falsies are tricky to master, we tapped Los Angeles–based makeup artist Gia Brascia to show us her tried-and-true application (and removal) tips.
1: Before you do anything else, measure the length of the lash to make sure it fits your eye shape. If the strip needs to be cut to fit, snip the outer edge completely off with small nail scissors. This will avoid drooping at the corner (meaning: no more lashes poking your eyeball).
2: Take both edges of the lash and bend inward to create a “C” shape, and hold for a couple of seconds. That’s the best way to take out the straightness and ensure it molds to our curved eye shape and stays put without the corners lifting up. Just this alone will make the rest of the process effortless.
3: Apply a high-quality glue such as DUO Eyelash Adhesive for lasting results (Brascia suggests avoiding the glue that comes with your lashes). If you have a steady hand, you can squeeze straight from the tube onto the strip. Tend to get shaky? An easy trick: put glue on the reverse (handle) end of a tweezer and glide it across the strip, as pictured. Be generous at both the inner and outer corners so the glue won’t unstick when you blink.
4: Wait ten seconds or so for the glue to become more tactile and sticky (you can also blow on the glue or wave it gently in the air) before placing the lash. This is the best way to keep the strip from slipping around while you’re trying to line it up properly.
5: Aim for the base of your natural lash line, right on top of your real lashes, not touching the eyelid at all. The glue dries clear, so don’t worry if a little gets on your skin.
6: Once you’ve placed both lashes, you can do your mascara; this will help integrate the natural lashes with the false ones.
7: If you see a gap showing on the eyelid between your real lashes and falsies, don’t worry! You don’t have to pull it off and start again, says Brascia. Just fill in the gap, using a matte black eye shadow as a liner to hide it (we used Inglot Cosmetics Freedom System Eyeshadow in 391). This step will also help the glue dry more quickly.
Removal Tips: Always remove false lashes before taking off rest of your eye makeup. First pre-soften the glue with a cotton swab that’s been soaked in an oily makeup remover, like rms beauty Raw Coconut Cream. Dab the swab along the lash line to loosen the glue and break down its stickiness. With your eye open, take hold of the lash at tip of the outer corner. Then close your eyes and very slowly peel the strip away from your real lash, working from outer to inner corner—toward the nose.