The Ultimate Anti-Aging Battle: ANTI-LASH-THINNING. Find 7 ways to win the fight!
Long, strong lashes are beautiful. They are like a mini eye-lift that widens our eyes to make us look more awake.
Last month, I held a poll with my fans on their preference and 76% voted for natural lashes vs extensions.
This might be a representation of the mentality of my community who prefer a hassle-free beauty routine. But, it certainly does not mean that fuller lashes are not possible through a simple beauty routine!
LASH FACT 101: TINY HAIRS THAT BEAUTIFY AND PROTECT
Lashes are tiny hairs that are less than a centimeter long. Yet with less than 500 strands, they have a great impact on our eye health and beauty!
Do you know that lashes started growing since we were just an embryo in our mother’s womb during 22nd-26th week of gestation? That’s why beautiful babies are born!
We generally have between 100 -150 lashes emanating from our upper eyelids and half of them in the lower eyelashes. Though small in numbers, they protect our eyes from debris, wind and sunlight. And, long thick lashes have always been a sign of beauty.
THINNING EYELASHES IS PART OF AGING PROCESS
Unfortunately, as we age, the numbers dwindle. As the defence weakens, the beauty lessens.
If you look into your photos from 20 years ago, you’d probably realise you don’t have the same length and fullness they once did. Don’t worry, in most cases, there’s no reason for alarm. It’s just a (sad) part of aging.
Furthermore, during and after menopause, diffuse hair loss on the scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes is common, as the loss of estrogen stunts hair growth and can actually cause the destruction of hair follicles, leading to thinner, wispier hairs and lashes.
IS THERE ANYTHING WE CAN DO TO SAVE THE LASHES?
But there ISN’T one solution that fits all or one that works well solo.
I’ve listed here a myriad of solutions here ranging from temporal to permanent; instant to long-term; topical application to oral consumption. You can combine them to have the most optimal solution for yourself.
✩ And remember, the overarching and most important rule-of-thumb is --- good habits, good lash health.
Solutions that are #temporal #instant
Choose the formula that fits your needs, be it lash extending and/or thickening. With the following pointers in mind:
- Apply it sparingly as the weight of heavy mascara applications puts stress on your eyelashes.
- Use water-resistant mascara (not to be confused with waterproof mascara), as this is easier to remove.
- Always use hypoallergenic formula. If you notice your lashes thinning right after you try a new product, stop using it immediately as you are likely allergic to it.
- Be sure to replace your mascara every three to six months to avoid infection.
- Remove your mascara before you go to sleep. The stiffness from the mascara can break lashes.
- Use a gentle makeup remover. Pat or dab at your lids — don’t rub or pull.
- Never lay the bare mascara wand down on a countertop or table, since it can become contaminated through this process.
- Never share mascara or eye makeup with anyone, and don’t use “testers” at cosmetic counters unless they include single-use applicators.
- Use eyelash curlers sparingly and gently. When using a lash curler, n-e-v-e-r pull on your eyelids.
2) False eyelashes. Magnetic eyelashes.
The traditional falsies are affixed with glue but nowadays there are many magnetic options. As they tend to be rather dense and dramatic in effect, I’d use them only on special occasions and not daily. Especially if I want the natural lash look.
Solutions that are #permanent #long-term
3) Lash-boosting serums.
Lash serums feed our lashes with the vitamins they need for the lashes to grow healthily. As our lashes are made up of 10% water and 90% proteins, enhancing these essential components help to keep them strong and long. They boost the lashes with vitamins that protect them from external aggressors, condition and add shine. The lash serums also condition and strengthen lashes so they are less likely to break or fall out. They are most wonderful in fixing bald spots in eyelashes too, as discussed here.
Each serum will have its own usage directions, but I generally recommend once a day application – either in the morning or just before bed. Adding a lash serum into my skincare regime takes no more than a 10sec a day. It’s an easy step that you should consider to reap the long term benefits. After around 12 weeks you should see a marked difference to your lashes.
However, you have to be careful when choosing the lash serums, to avoid those with prostaglandins or growth-hormone ingredients. Although they give the quick boost, they have potential side effects like darken iris which you want to avoid. Read more about them here.
I will be sharing in the next blog about how lash serum works in tandem with our lash growth cycle and the 3 major categories of lash serums available – prescription, over-the-counter or DIY.
4) Eyelash transplants.
This surgical procedure actually transfers scalp follicles onto the eyelid, and is generally used in extreme cases.
5) Proper nutrition for healthy lashes.
This is very important for healthy eyelashes (also hair and nails) as they are the last in the supply chain. Without adequate nutrition, hair, nails and eyelashes tend to be dull, thin and brittle and turn gray.
The important nutrition for eyelash growth are protein and biotin. Other good vitamins you need to include would be iron, vitamin E, fatty acids, folic acid, Vitamin B, C, A.
Proteins are building blocks for the human body. They are made up of amino acids, and help build muscles, blood, skin, hair, nails and internal organs. Protein is the most plentiful substance in the body, next to water.
Good sources of proteins are beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk, feta cheese, grains, seeds and nuts.
Biotin (aka vitamin B7) promotes cell growth and metabolism that helps in hair, nails and eyelashes growth and prevents brittle, fragile hair.
Find your natural biotin in:
- Vegetable: beetroot (most amount of biotin!), carrots, onions, cucumbers and cauliflower.
- Nuts: almonds and walnuts
- Fruits: strawberries and raspberries.
- Fish: Halibut (hokkien calls them “ngor her 午鱼”)
- Milk: goat’s and cow’s milk
- Chicken eggs
Solutions that are #good habits for good lash health
6) Keep your hands away from your face.
Many people rub their eyes or absent-mindedly tug on their lashes when lost in thought. You can invite unwanted eyelid infection. So make a conscious effort to keep fingers away from eyes, hands away from face.
7) Wipe excess eye drops or tears.
Failure to do so might cause excess bacteria to accumulate in the eyelids, leading to Blepharitis. Blepharitis causes crusty eyelids and itchy and red eyes and can cause eyelashes to either fall out or to grow abnormally.
TO SUM UP: IT’S SIMPLE EFFORT!
Naturally long and beautiful eyelashes are what we yearn for. Nonetheless, there is always effort to be put in, to delay the thinning lashes due to aging and to make that wish come true.
As an advocate for “natural beauty”, I adopt the #permanent #long-term #good habits good lash health solutions (except lash transplant).
How about you?
A word of caution:
You would need to seek medical advice is you notice a sudden and rapid thinning of eyelashes. As this could signal health related issues like eyelid infections, thyroid problems and autoimmune disorders.