My Scottish heritage has made me very fair. I’m using SPF-50-in-the-shade, burnt-after-10-minutes-in-the-sun fair. This means that summer can be a long, difficult time for me. It also means I have no strong eyebrows or rich eyelashes. My eyebrows are threaded and tinted once a month, but I’ve never thought of lash treatments thanks to the amazing Shu Uemura curlers and a variety of mascaras. However, I was on vacation and wanted to be able to wake up and run to the beach without worrying about whether waterproof mascara would make me look like a newborn mole or not.

In my quest for flawlessly awake eyes, I researched. I wanted something subtle and natural so I opted for a lash lift. London’s Nails and Brows in Mayfair is were I have had my eyebrows done before, so I was intrigued by the YUMI Lash Lift. The website claims that this service will enhance your natural lashes, without the need to add extensions. For eye-opening results that last for the natural life of your lashes, your lashes are lifted and “set” to ensure they remain open. I was intrigued and booked an appointment.

person opening his right eye with blue iris

Here are my lashes before the lift. As you can see, my lashes are not as natural looking as they could be due to the shape of my lids. It looks like I have no lashes at all 99% the time. I really wanted to think that Nails & Brows can work magic. 48 hours prior to the treatment, I had to go in for a patch check. Sherrille Riley, founder, explains that this is essential. “In my twenty years of working in the beauty industry, I have seen only one reaction. However, I wouldn’t recommend any treatment without a patch testing.” It is very dangerous to work with products that are so close to the eyes. I was ready to undergo the three-step treatment in my London salon. My upper lids were first covered with a silicone pad. Your eyes remain closed for the entire treatment. However, this was very cooling and removed any puffiness that may have developed in my morning eyes. The silicone pad was then applied to my lashes and a lifting serum was used. Despite looking quite extreme in the photos, it didn’t hurt at all and I was not accidentally squeezed with any serum. The fixing serum was applied to the lashes and left on for around 20 minutes.

After the serum was removed, a lash tint applied to the lashes. Then the silicone pads were gently removed. To prevent drying my lashes, a conditioner was applied. This gives them a glossy look, much like a conditioner for hair. This is what they looked like right after the treatment.

close up photography of woman's right eye

Pretty good, huh? I was instructed not to use oil-based cleansers, or to go under water for 24hrs, and to only use conditioner for 48 hours. After that, it was easy and simple to care for my lashes. My lashes did not improve immediately, but I was hooked for the next 48 hours. Friends commented on the fullness of my lashes and my boyfriend inquired if I still used makeup at night. (I am a diligent double-cleanser, so thank you for asking). It was so liberating waking up and looking in the mirror, knowing I could just roll out of the house, skipping my usual curl-and-three-mascaras-routine.

They were darker than I expected and held up well in the heat and pool. They are still beautiful and open my eyes. My lashes are very weak and none have fallen out. The treatment lasts for 8-12 weeks. Most people will see a gradual fade in color and curl over the course of the treatment. However, by week 2, they still look great. Although my lashes look weak, thin, and uneven, the salon assured me that this treatment is available to everyone. The show-stopper of the entire thing for me? My new lashes using mascara

These are amazing! I’m so used to heating my curlers, then using three types of mascara (to prime, fan, and fatten) but this is what my eyes look like after one – I repeat, one slick of Benefit’s They’re Real. It costs just PS86 per 12 weeks. That’s $110 USD. This is about the same cost as a brow treatment once every three weeks. Think of the savings on mascara and eye makeup removers. Will I return for more? You can place a bet on your bottom dollar. I am hooked. It’s the exact same feeling that I had when I discovered eyebrow threading and tinting. My face looks more open and my beauty routine is cut in half. I can’t wait to go back.

By Lena Murray.

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