How to Clean Your Eyelash Extensions

by | Oct 16, 2018

Batting long, luscious, dark eyelashes is a beauty staple that is always coveted! Thanks to some pretty stellar production, today’s eyelash extensions can be pretty safely worn and add that real dash of drop-dead drama to the perfect face. The critical sticking point here, though, is that eyelash extensions – since they go on your face and so close to your unprotected eyes – need to be kept undeniably and meticulously clean.

First of all, you will want to cleanse them to clean them out and break down and wash away foreign build-up and daily dirt and grime and makeup dust. The trick, though, is not to break down the adhesive that is on your extensions and so you will want to look for a gentle cleanser that is both oil and alcohol-free. Some people even swear by baby shampoo, since it’s naturally free or irritants and ingredients that break down glue. Remember, you don’t have to fear a cleanser being too harsh in the long run, because you can always dilute it with a little bit of water. Just stick to oil-free and alcohol-free ones as a general rule, and you can personalize from there.

When it comes to the actual physical act of washing your lashes, you will want to follow some careful, gentle steps. First, softly wet your extensions with warm water, so they are not bone dry. Put a little dab of your cleanser right on your fingertip and, with soft, gentle motions, rub it into your eyelid and eyelashes. Always use up-and-down movements and never go side-to-side – sideways rubs will rub against the glue and the grain and will only serve to damage your natural lashes while also damaging and tearing away your false ones.

While you are doing the actual washing, be sure not to neglect your natural lash line as well, as this is where bacteria and buildup will accumulate, and you really don’t want to irritate your eyes!  After the gentle scrubbing of the cleanser is done, rinse once more with warm water.

You should always, always avoid cotton balls or cotton pads as well. Cotton has tiny little fibers that easily stick and will happily make a home in your extensions. Instead, dry your lashes and gently pat down your face with a towel, so there is no dripping water, but be sure NOT to hit your eyes. Your lashes should air dry, mostly, but if you need to get them dry in a bit more of a hurry, there are a few tricks you can do. First, you can use some toilet paper, wrap around your index finger to lightly blot at them and soak up excess water.

If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, feel free to incorporate your hair dryer into the routine. It is important to make sure it is set on its coolest setting and kept at least an arm’s length away from your face to avoid a blast of damage. This should not be done too often, however, as the forced air will work against the extensions’ adhesive.

It is also important to remember that cleaning your extensions is not just a one-time thing. Oil and grime and all kinds of buildup occur daily, so you will have a regular schedule for cleaning them. If a wash every day is too much to manage, we suggest at least doing this weekly. Even if you can’t commit to the full cleaning, you should at least be wetting your extensions with warm water and gently combing them out to remove the bigger particles.

You can help reduce the need for more frequent intense cleanings by being selective about what goes on your face. Facial products should always be oil-free so as not to drip and clog your lashes. When you are shampooing your hair, be careful to keep the suds from dripping onto your lashes.

When applying eyeshadow, be extra careful, as shadows that are too dry and dusty will inevitably waft down into your lashes and settle in against the lash line, while cream shadows sit heavy on the lids and can cause severe irritation. Never use mascara of false extensions – it defeats the very purpose, it will not go on smoothly, and it will definitely damage them. You should also avoid rubbing your eyes throughout the day since this will loosen the lashes and clump them up.

Eyelash extensions are a marvelous beauty aid and can really up your entire eye look. When cared for properly and cleaned regularly, not only will they continue to look fabulous and last their full potential time, but you will ensure your natural lashes are protected, and your all-important eyes themselves are not at risk for bacterial infections.