When trying to differentiate our lash businesses on quality and results rather than price, lash retention, or how long the lash extensions last between fills is very important. For my business, I justify my prices because my lashes last 6-8 weeks between fills. My clients will pay more to have less maintenance. Many pros ask me why they can't get the same retention so here are the top ten things that can be shortening your clients lash retention:
1. Adhesive age - Cyanoacrylate adhesives age with and without air introduction. Its important to refer to your manufacturer to find out how long your adhesive lasts both before you open it and after. For our LAshX Speed Adhesive we throw out the open bottle at the 3 month mark. I date my bottles just to make sure they are always fresh.
2. Over Shaking - Too much shaking is never a good idea. Shaking introduces more air into the product and can prematurely age the product. While some shaking to mix the product is recommended, using a crazy machine to shake the heck out of your bottle is both unnecessary and counterproductive.
3. Adding Humidity - I have blogged about humidity before SEE HERE if you haven't read my humidity blog yet. Adding water or humidity to cure lashes faster is called shock curing and will speed the dry time but will result in a stiffer more brittle hold that can cause damage and breakage, ultimately extensions will end up falling off sooner.
4. Not Cleansing - Or worse, using a non lash extensions safe cleanser, can kill your retention. Oils, and bacteria build up on lashes with daily touching and life. I know what you're thinking, this isn't up to me, this is my client's responsibility. The first step is to show them proper cleaning technique so you start with clean dry lashes to prevent any oils from being on the lash prior to application. It is important to educate your clients about proper lash care and they are typically happy to hear your expert advice that will keep their lashes looking great longer. Cleansing can help remove oils from skin and makeup and salts from working out, crying, swimming. Removing salts and oils will give you weeks more of healthy, soft extension wear. Cleansers should be oil and glycol free and specifically formulated to hydrate natural lashes without oils, while killing bacteria. Check out our lash extension friendly cleanser.
5. Saline - or salt, can be in contact solutions, and eye drops. I have actually heard some lash pros prep with saline. Salt and Cyanoacrylate are not friends. The salt dehydrates the hair making lashes feel dry and brittle and more likely to pop off. You will know if a client has been crying by the dry, stiff feeling of the extensions. These saline coated lashes typically fall off just from brushing them, leaving the natural hair behind.
6. Sweat - No These glasses won't protect your lashes! Sweat is salty. Therefore your guests must wash these salts or sweat off the lashes after work outs or the same issues will occur as with the saline eye drops. It is best for guests to wait 24 hours before a workout and then make sure to cleanse their lashes to remove sweat after it.
7. Glue Rings - I know some of you LOVE your glue ring. It can cause faster lash extension loss if you aren't very careful. The shape of the glue ring is concave and this causes more adhesive to get onto your extension when dipping than if you were dipping on a flat surface like the back of the eye pad. Too much adhesive cause lots of issues. It can cause a less flexible bond, feel thick and uncomfortable and not cure as strongly. With Cyanoacrylates less product actually gives a stronger bond. Truly less IS more!
8. How you Clean Your Adhesive Bottle - Cotton and fibers actually create a chemical reaction with your adhesive, as does water, and alcohol. You will notice this if you have ever gotten adhesive on your sleeve while lashing, I do this every time I wear white, it feels hot. The reaction actually causes heat production and can clog your nozzle and change the composition of the adhesive. The best way to clean your adhesive bottle is with a clean dry sponge, or not at all if you shake and drop it properly.
9. Lash Growers - Using traditional eyelash growth products will speed up the natural lash cycle causing quicker shedding. Even worse, some products are steroid based. Steroid based products will cause shedding when you use it AND when you stop using them as well. If a client is using one of these products it can take up to 90 days for the lash cycle to go back to normal and for the steroid to be out of their system. Our LAshX ProLiner and Treatment prolongs the lash cycle but will not triple lashes until these other products are out of the guest's system.
10. Makeup - Using the wrong eye makeup can be the worst culprit to lash retention. Many eyeliners have oils in them that can cause the bases of the lash extensions to pop or clump. Mascaras can cause volume fans to clump and adhesives to soften. Oils and glycol should be avoided in the lash area and care should be taken when removing any products with oils that they get removed to the sides and not through the lash line.
Avoiding these top ten lash retention killers can help you to increase client's retention and your bottom line! Please comment with your own ideas and suggestions, we love to hear from you!