Credit for this photo goes to the gorgeous @fashionismyfortee on Instagram.

What is a eyelash lift?

By now, you may have heard of lash lifting, the newest alternative to lash extensions. It supposedly has longer-lasting results and less maintenance than falsies. But what is it? An eyelash lift changes your lashes from straight to curls. If this all sounds vaguely familiar and is giving you flashbacks of a popular 80s hairstyle, your suspicions are correct. An eyelash lift is a perm.

How does it work?

A silicone pad is placed on your lash line. Then adhesive glue is used to make your lashes stick to the silicone pad. After that, the perming solution goes on your lashes and breaks up the bonds that give your lashes their natural shape. Your lashes will form new bonds and take on the curl shape of the silicone pad. The next step is to apply a neutralizing solution to your lashes. Like its name, a neutralizer neutralizes the perming solution. Lastly, everything is removed from your lashes and you’re done. The whole process takes 45 minutes to an hour.

How much does it cost?

On average, a lash lift will cost you around $100.

How long will it last?

It depends on how long it takes your lashes to grow out. Just like the hair on your head, your lashes have a growth cycle. On average, eyelashes grow between 0.12 and 0.14 millimeters (0.004 and 0.005 inches) per day or 3.6 to 4.2 millimeters (0.14 to 0.16 inches) a month. That’s not much so it could last quite a while. On average, you should get at least 4 weeks out of it.

Is it damaging?

We’re not going to lie to you. The lash lifting process uses chemicals to go inside your lashes (the cuticle) and break up their natural pattern (the bonds that makes your lashes curly or straight). An eyelash lift has the same risks as a regular perm–breakage and hair falling out–because they use the same chemicals. But as with a perm, if you take proper care of your lashes, they can still be beautiful regardless.

Can I do it at home?

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. These are serious chemicals we’re talking about that can cause burning and irritation. If you really want to get an eyelash lift, go to a professional.

Have you tried lash lifting? How did it turn out? Let us know in the comments.