How to apply false eyelashes like a #pro

6 June 2019

WORDS BY Fashion Quarterly New Zealand

Tried and tested tips and tricks from beauty insiders.

When Ariana Grande listed some of her favourite things in her song 7 Rings, we could relate. Not so much the part about buying jewels for all our bffs (goals, for sure), more the ones about making no apologies for an addiction to indulging in non-essential, yet fun, aesthetic upgrades.

Among the receipts for poppin’ gloss and gleamin’ skin, rating false lashes up there with diamonds had us nodding, “yes girl!”

A fringe of feathery eyelashes has long been amongst Ari’s calling cards, and although she wears them every day, for us they’re more an after-five obsession. That’s because we find them so darn tricky to get on – they need to be resigned to when we have time to mess with applying and re-applying, or when we have a professional to help.


But once they’re on, there’s an instant Cardi B level D.R.A.M.A. and that’s a feeling that can’t really be described.

With that in mind, we’ve collated some expert application tips to help you apply false lashes like a pro:

  • Trim your false lashes to fit the size of your eyes. Each set is generally larger than your lash line, so use a pair of tweezers to hold each lash near your eye and measure where you should trim them. Trimming from the outer edge, particularly if they are graduated and slightly longer there, gives a more natural look.
  • Pay attention to the band! The thicker or stiffer the band, the heavier they are, and the more obvious it is when they lift at the corners. Brands like Ardell and MAC have variations with less prominent, virtually invisible bands that look more natural on.
  • If you’re a beginner, a half set (or a set trimmed to 2/3rds in size) and applied to the outer corners is slightly easier and still provides a pretty wide-eyed look. Makeup queen Huda Kattan goes one step further and suggests if you want to try a full lash but you’re finding it tough to get it on successfully, try cutting each full lash into 3 equal pieces before applying each piece from the outside in.
  • Shape them by bending around a little finger. Some sets are slightly stiff, so to give them a more natural shape before applying, bend them around a makep brush handle or your little finger.
  • Put a dab of glue on the back of your hand and run the strip through to give it an even coating , rather than trying to apply glue directly to the band.
  • Wait 20-30 seconds until the glue goes slightly tacky before applying and they’ll stick instantly, rather than sliding around.
  • Apply with tweezers, coming straight at your eye and pressing the middle on first as close as you can to your lash line. Release and then use tweezer tips to push the outer and inner corners into place. After a minute use your fingers to squeeze the base of lashes together with your own.




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  • Some people find placing a handheld mirror on a table and looking down into the mirror while applying helps, as you can clearly see the base of your own lashes. Otherwise, MAC national makeup artist Kiekie Stanners suggests looking straight into the mirror, lifting your chin so you can see your lash line and where you want to apply the lash.
  • Wearing a dark colour eyeliner, (particularly liquid liner but soft kohl liner also works), helps disguise the base of the lash band. Apply before you place lashes and touch up after they are in place.
  • If you want reliable hold, use a professional brand eyelash glue like Duo Eyelash Adhesive, rather than the small vials that come with many sets. You’ll only use a tiny amount so each tube will lash through many applications. (FYI, white lash glue dries clear.)
  • Most people apply mascara (and the rest of your eye makeup) before lashes, but it’s worth applying another light coat afterwards to help blend your lashes and false lashes together.
  • To re-use, gently peel off your lashes and place between two cotton pads soaked with micellar water. Wait 30 seconds and then use a cotton bud to remove any excess glue and mascara. Store back in the case so they retain their shape until you need them again.

We love: (clockwise from L) Duo Eyelash Adhesive, $18MAC #4 lashes, $28Tarte Little Lash Helper Pro Lash Applicator, $24Glam By Manicare Sophia Lashes, $14

This article originally appeared on beautyheaven.

Words: Megan Bedford
Photos: Getty Images, Instagram


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