Who doesn’t dream of having long, voluminous, luscious eyelashes? Some women are lucky enough to have been born with them, but what options exist for those of us whose lashes could use a little oomph? If you aren’t interested in trying Latisse, which is a topical solution you have to apply to eyelashes each night, there are other ways to help your lashes grow. We spoke with experts who offered 5 eyelash tips you need in your life.
1. Consider oils. Some essential oils may help your hair grow or, at the very least, strengthen hair so that it remains intact until it’s time for it to shed naturally. “Many swear by castor oil when applied to eyelashes nightly,” says Dr. Gillian Palette, medical director and co-founder of Skyngenuity Medical Spa and Apothecary in New York City. “Some use a combination of castor oil, Vitamin E, olive oil , coconut oil, aloe vera gel, or even Vaseline (not my preference). Lavender essential oil is also said to increase hair growth. Please beware that whichever combination of oils or creams are chosen to be extremely careful when applying anything near the eye.”
Makeup Artist Sarah Najafi says she is partial to olive oil because it is rich in Vitamin E, and castor oil, which contains an omega-9 fatty acid called ricinoleic acid, which stimulates growth. “Apply a few drops (of either oil) onto lashes with a q-tip,” Najafi says. “Leave on overnight and rinse with warm water and a mild cleanser the next morning. Repeat daily until you see an improvement in your lashes.”
2. Take supplements. Dr. David E. Bank of The Center for Dermatology, Cosmetic & Laser Surgery, says taking at least 2500 mcg of biotin daily has been known to help with hair growth over a period of time of continuous use. “You can also try Rogaine,” Bank says.
3. Eat the right foods. “Eating foods rich in Vitamins B3 (niacin), C, E, H (AKA Biotin) and calcium are said to increase eyelash growth,” Palette says. “Foods rich in Vitamin C include cranberries, cauliflower, broccoli, pineapples, kale, strawberries, and tomatoes. Vitamin E-rich foods include almonds, hazelnuts, kale, spinach, blueberries, avocado and peanut butter. To get your daily does of vitamin H-Biotin, eat soybeans, bananas, mushrooms, eggs, and beans.”
Palette adds, “One of the least expensive options is apple cider vinegar (ingesting it, not applying it topically), which is also said to increase hair growth including eyelashes.”
4. Try a strengthening treatment. Bank recommends RevitaLash Advanced, which conditions the lashes to grow stronger and fuller.
Another affordable option: Rimmel Lash Accelerator Serum, which is a strengthening and conditioning gel that has the added benefit of shaping and separating lashes.
5. Use the right mascara. “If nothing works, lengthening mascara is your best friend,” Najafi says. “Try one with a rubber bristle wand–they really grab the lashes and coat them without clumping.” One to try: Lancome Definicils Waterproof High Definition Mascara.
Najafi also says several cosmetics companies have come out with mascaras that are formulated with ingredients known to help hair grow. “Many beauty brands are now creating mascaras with lash accelerating ingredients. It’s as easy as putting on a coat of mascara, but patience is required.”