Friday, October 23, 2015

MY EXPERIENCE WITH EYELASH EXTENSIONS

Hey guys! During the summer this year I started going to the salon for eyelash extensions - a process that has dramatically changed my make-up routine and has given me a lot more confidence. It's fair to say that it is an addicting process, mostly because the benefits of it save me a lot of time and effort. In this post I will try to summarize my experience with this procedure, and the ways it affected me and my daily routine. Hope you enjoy!

I decided to try eyelash extensions, because my natural lashes are really light colored and I always feel the need to apply lots of mascara before I go anywhere. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having light colored eyelashes, and not accentuating your eyelashes at at all, for that matter. It is simply a personal preference, as it is the feature I tend to focus on when I do my make-up. It gives me a confidence boost, so personally I can only see it as a good thing. I'm one of those people who would choose mascara, if I was only allowed one make-up item for the rest of my life!

Eyelash extensions before after
So far I have only done it twice and I have had no complications at all. I've seen scary stories floating around the internet, however I think it really depends on your beautician and their experience. I would recommend going to someone who has a good reputation and works in a good salon. Check their social media, online reviews and trust your intuition! The first time I got them done was in Latvia at Spray Tan Studio, and the second time I got them done in Vilar, Luxembourg. I have already been to Vilar before for a gelish nail treatment, and was excited to go back. 

Eyelash extensions before after

I went there with make-up free eyes, apart from some foundation around the area. Make sure you have clean eyelashes prior to treatment. The technician may choose to remove some of the foundation if there is too much, but it's not always the case. The treatment itself lasts about an hour and a half, or sometimes up to two hours. It really depends on the style of lashes (natural versus thick and glamorous) and also your natural lashes. For example it takes me a bit longer because my lashes are so light, that they are more difficult to miss, whereas with dark lashes you can easily catch them. Each eyelash is glued on separately to a natural lash. 

The first time I went for super thick lashes (see photo here), which took about 2 hours, because to achieve such a look literally every single eyelash had an extension on. This time I went for a more natural look, which took about an hour and forty minutes. I have to say that the first time my lashes were falling out very fast and they felt quite thick and hard - perhaps the cluster effect made them more prone to falling out quickly. As you can see, this time I started off with a more natural set, and my lashes have remained pretty much the same 3 weeks later. The "after" photo was taken about an hour after the procedure, without any mascara on my new lashes. 

Eyelash extensions before after
I do like to wear mascara almost daily, also in this "3 week update" photo. I simply think of my lash extensions as my own eyelashes. While they are a "better" version of my own lashes, I still like using mascara to make them thicker. You can see that the lashes are not as "regular" as they were 3 weeks ago, however in terms of thickness they still look really good. With my first set, that was thick and voluminous, every time I used mascara my lashes would fall out or become clumpy. For that reason I prefer the more natural look, because it's easier to work with. The lashes still fall out every now and then, but they integrate well with my own lashes too. Feel free to zoom into the photos to have a better look!

Here is a list of things and habits that I have had to adjust due to my eyelash extensions:

  • Using oil-free make-up remover around the eyes, because oil softens up the glue and will make them fall out a lot sooner. I like to use up ALL my skincare and make-up products, so at the moment I use an oil based remover on my face, and micellar water solution on my eyes. I usually soak the cotton pad really wet with the micellar water and then close my eye and keep the cotton pad on for about 10 seconds. If I have a lot of mascara on, I sometimes gently move it back and forth too. Then I clean the bit under my eyes as the previous action always gives me panda eyes haha. 
  • Sleeping without my beloved Wildfox sleeping mask (nostalgic insta-photo here) was a bit difficult at first, as I'm an extremely light sleeper. I absolutely love distancing myself from the world at night. However, the will to not destroy my brand new fab lashes was greater! I simply switched to sleeping with ear-plugs as surrounding sounds wake me up just as easily. Also, this was not an issue for me as I (usually) sleep straight, but falling asleep with your face on the pillow might dent the lashes or make them fall out quicker.
  • The gentle make-up removing process seems to stop me from experimenting with make-up or using eyeliner. Whenever I used liquid eyeliner, it would go between the lashes (as it would with my natural lashes too), but this meant I had to remove more make-up. If I wouldn't do it properly, I'd wake up with dry eyeliner bits on my eyes. Also, the look my extensions give my face makes me feel like I genuinely don't need much more. Having said all that, I want to stress that this is definitely a good thing, because I'm not compelled to spend money on make-up anymore. My current foundation will last me at least 2-3 more months, my brushes are still good for a very long time and if I use mascara, it's just a random one from my little collection. 
  • It becomes an addicting process, because I get used to my lashes always being perfect, so it's difficult to envision how it would be without them. When I look at my "before" photo, I feel inclined to keep doing them forever. I personally have not experienced any bad side effects. My natural lashes were still as long as they were before, when I removed my first set of lashes. Having the extensions didn't make my natural lashes fall out quicker. I also had a great experience while they were being applied, so I have literally had no complications during this process. But where to draw the line? I just know that at the moment I'm happy to forget about the line! 

All in all, having my lashes done has lowered my daily maintenance significantly and gives me a great feeling of confidence. They require maintenance and upkeep, however I would just say it's a different type of maintenance to your usual routine. In terms of price, I would say that for me it balances out the costs I would otherwise spend on make-up. I also think that the time and self-esteem I gained are invaluable benefits from this process. The lovely girls at Vilar salon in Luxembourg are currently doing a promotion where you can get your lashes done for 54EUR. That's a great price if you compare it to the £120 they charge you at the brow bar located at my job in UK. I think the main thing for price/quality is to do your research, because there are a lot of beauticians who are certified in this, so the prices will vary. The longevity of the extensions depends mostly on yourself. As each extension is glued onto a natural lash, it will fall out when the lash does. Your eyelashes have a typical lifecycle of around 2-3 months. The more careful you are with your new lashes, the longer they will stay! 

You can follow Vilar on Facebook to see any updates on current promotions that they are doing. If you have any questions on anything  I might have forgotten to add, don't hesitate to leave me a comment below! Hope you enjoyed. ♥

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

MISSING SUMMER

Guildford fashion blogger Kristiana Vasarina All white summer outfit Latvian fashion blogger Adidas all white superstars Oysho dress (out of stock but similar below), Adidas Superstars, Biba cross-body bag 

Hey guys! I can finally breathe again, as I've settled into my new flat for my final year at university. I also handed in my 10,000 word report, which, is fair to say, drained the life out of me. Somehow I had agreed to also work during this chaos, so my days were pretty crazy last week. This week university has finally started and I already had my first lectures. It definitely feels weird to be back, but I have to say that taking my placement year made me see things in perspective, and I am coming into the year feeling like I can just about tackle anything.

Speaking of tackling everything, I decided to give my blog a new design for my 22nd birthday two weeks ago. I'm not one of those people who will pay whatever amount for a design from Etsy that probably quite a few other bloggers use (nothing wrong with that, by the way). I've been occasionally working with HTML and CSS since I was 11, that is a whooping half of my life. While my knowledge is FAR from extensive, I have a logical understanding of what I'm doing, so paying someone for a design and having their name at the bottom of my page seemed like I was letting myself down. It took me 2 full days and a lot of patience, but I'm really proud of the design I've created. It's crazy how much work can go into the things that are less than obvious or even visible. 

Due to my blog break, I've got quite a few summer outfits that I have yet to publish - it feels extremely inappropriate to post them in October. Then again I'm crossing my fingers for a warm family getaway this autumn/winter. I was recently gifted the much hyped Olympus PEN E-PL7 camera - as soon as I get the lens I want, I will be posting more weather-appropriate outfits here too. But for now I hope you enjoy this summer outfit that we shot in my garden in Latvia! Adios!!! XO