Long, full and fluttery lashes will never go out of style. But what to do if you’re are giving your lashes a break from eyelash extensions or just want to skip the tedious application of falsies? Enter lash-enhancing serums. These supercharged elixirs claim to help your natural lashes grow longer, thicker and more curled. Over the years, more products that promise to enhance the growth of your natural lashes have been hitting the beauty aisle. Topically applied along the lash line, many of these products promise longer lashes with daily use.
According to Dr Calvin Chan, a doctor with an interest in aesthetics and the medical director of Calvin Chan Aesthetic & Laser Clinic, lash serums that really work need to impact the lash growth cycle and so far only certain types of ingredients are known to do this. These are prostagladin or prostaglandin-like compounds similar to the original lash growing ingredient bimatoprost contained in Latisse (which is no longer carried in Singapore).
HOW SAFE ARE LASH GROWTH PRODUCTS?
Taiwanese host, Dee Hsu, recently took to Instagram to share her eyelash serum health scare. Posting a photo of her bloodshot eyes, her caption in Chinese read “When the instructions say to use it three times a day, don’t go overboard with it. I applied 50 coats of serum in a day. It doesn’t matter if my lashes don’t grow. I think I’m going blind!”.
As Dee rightly mentioned, while eyelash enhancers seem like a convenient way to get fluttery lush and long lashes, it is important to exercise caution when using eyelash serums.
According to Dr Chan, potenial complications of eyelash serums made with prostagladin or prostaglandin-like compounds include slight reddening and or subsequent darkening of the skin in the area around the lashline. He added that newer formulations of lash enhancers while still able to lengthen the growth cycle of your lashes, are much milder in terms of any negative reaction, but as a tradeoff, also work slightly slower.
As a rule of thumb, always follow the directions provided by the manufacturer closely especially for eye or lash products which can get into your eyes by accident.
DO EYELASH SERUMS POSE ANY DANGER TO YOUR VISION?
When it comes to buying eyelash serums and conditioners, always make it a point to look for brands that have been tried and tested by dermatologist or ophthalmologist approved. An example of such a product is Revitalash Advanced which was developed by an ophthalmologist to help his wife overcome the ravages of cancer and subsequent chemotherapy.
Dr Chan says that “if used correctly and sparingly as directed, a product like Revitalash is unlikely to cause blindness except in rare cases if eye disease is already present there’s a chance it may worsen the condition”. However, he warns of the dangers of over-using a product or exceeding the recommended usage amount which can “heighten any side effects experienced. Additionally, there’s always a chance a user may be allergic to certain ingredients”. If you experience any signs of swelling or irritation, stop using the product immediately and consult your physician.