When you hear quotes like, "The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing" or "a person who never made a mistake never tried anything new," do you think there is an apparent valuable takeaway lesson there? If you are a lash artist determined to make a career or are currently on a path to mastering the art, you may have had moments of restlessness, frustration, or feelings of failure while doing lashes.
Honestly, all lash artists have undergone these emotions at some point, so don't fret or give up on this fantastic career. We want to give you a leg up; we have listed down some of the common eyelash extension mistakes beginner lash artists make, so you can be prepared and hopefully avoid making these mistakes yourself. We have also shared a few tips on how to rectify them. But remember, if you do find yourself in one of the following situations, never fear; every mistake is a learning opportunity.
1. Make Sure To Prep Right
- Mistake: When clients walk in for their appointment, do you rush the prep time and get straight on to applying lashes? This can lead to premature fallout or a messy-looking infill. Ensure that they are make-up-free and that their lashes are free of dead skin cells, build-up, dust, and dirt. If they have mascara or eyeliner on, make sure it is thoroughly removed before lash application. Remove any grown-out extensions before beginning the application process to ensure the result of the infill is perfect every time. Prolong Lash Foaming Pump Cleanser and Cleansing Brushes do a thorough job cleaning lashes and the entire face. Consider adding a cleansing step to the beginning of your service (new set or refill) as an essential part of guiding you in the right direction as a lash artist.
- Tip: When booking appointments, remind your clients to arrive make-up-free. Educating your clients regarding lash aftercare is a huge time saver for you in the long run. If your clients understand the importance of lash care, wash their extensions daily, and avoid oil-based products, they will arrive at their appointments with highly manageable extensions, which will require minimal clean-up.
2. Lost Without A Lash Map
- Mistake: In the truest sense, without a lash map, your lashing efforts may be lost. There is a reason lash training courses have extensive sessions on mapping, so overlooking its importance makes your job that much harder. Every client has different eye shapes, face structures, and natural lashes. To create a set of extensions that accentuate the eyes in a flattering way and avoid drawing attention to less desirable facial traits is an art, and mapping is your key to creating the perfect set.
- Tip: If you can have your client send in a picture of their face before their appointment, you can start to analyze and plan your map before your client arrives. The photo should be of the client facing front onto the camera. You can begin to determine if there is any asymmetry that may need correcting or if they have any features that you should or shouldn't draw attention to.
3. Eyepad Predicament
- Mistake: Some clients are far too shy to tell you that they are uncomfortable, so if your eyepads have snuck up to the waterline, you could be in for some trouble. Gel leaking from the eyepad can cause a burning sensation, redness, and ongoing irritation or excessive watering. If using surgical tape to assist with holding down natural lashes, the tape can even cut into the eyeball.
- Tip: Stress to your client the importance of them telling you if they feel uncomfortable, the sooner you know there is an issue, the more minor damage will be caused. If you notice your client squeezing their eyes closed or experiencing watering or flickering, make sure you check the pads. Applying the pads when the client's eyes are closed can help with the placement; the pads can end up in quite a different position between the eyes being open and the eyes being closed.
4. Brushing Too Often
- Mistake: When applying lashes, it's very tempting to grab the mascara wand and give them a brush to see how they are shaping up. While we recommend the occasional brush through, brushing them constantly is not only a time-waster, but if the glue is not 100% dry, brushing can spread the glue. Extensions can stick to their neighboring lashes, resulting in a lot of extra work for you.
- Tip: Try to limit brushing, occasionally brush to check the shape and direction of the extensions, and ideally, do not brush immediately after applying a lash. Work on the other eye for a little while, or give the lashes some air with a lash fan before brushing.
5. Putting Too Much Emphasis on Lash Isolation
- Mistake: Isolating each lash requires attention and precision. We get that. But if you are spending too much time just looking for that perfect lash to work on, you are probably just wasting your time. If you are going for 100% coverage, each lash will have to be attended to anyway, so if you can just start working on every lash as you go, you save yourself time in the long run.
- Tip: Start with the easy-to-access lashes; attend to the baby lashes and hard-to-isolate lashes once you have finished with the straight-forward lashes. Using another eyepad or some gentle tape to lift lashes you have already lashed out of the way can help.
6. No Direction
- Mistake: Natural lashes have a mind of their own. Not every natural lash grows in the ideal direction for lashing. It's essential to apply the extension at the angle you need it to go, not necessarily in the natural lash direction.
- Tip: Don't be afraid to mix sizes or curls. If you have a rouge lash pointing downward, you may need to apply a tighter curl, so for example, if you are using C Curls, perhaps consider a D Curl for that lash. If you have a lash sitting slightly high in the lash line, you might consider using an extension that is 1mm-2mm shorter than the other lashes so that the tip of the extension remains in line with the rest of the lashes.
7. Quality of Product
- Mistake: When starting out, income may be limited. But it is a mistake to use cheap, low-quality products. This approach to saving money in the short term can cost you long-term. Inferior products such as low-cost lash glues, eye pads, or tapes have higher chances of causing allergies, and cheap extensions can look fake, feel stiff or unnatural, or don't last for as long once applied. And dare we mention using baby shampoo instead of a dedicated lash cleanser? You may have exceptional lashing skills, but using cheap products may discredit your expertise and future brand.
- Tip: Prolong Lash eyelash extension aftercare products are trusted worldwide and formulated specially to keep lashes clean and retain them.
8. Scheduling in Too Many Clients
- Mistake: Slow and steady wins the race. Many people are not aware of just how long it takes to apply a precision set of lash extensions. When you start accepting clients, don't put too much pressure on yourself; allow each set the time it requires. Secondly, you won't do yourself any favors by squeezing ten sets into your workday. Lashing is hard on the body and the eyes; allow yourself breaks. If you spend all day lashing, when do you allow yourself time to hone your skills or practice something new? You may fear losing or irritating clients because of the time you are taking, but doing subpar work to save time will cause much more damage to your career.
- Tip: Considering it is a labor-intensive job, you must cut yourself some slack and focus only on the quality of your work. That will become your brand in the long run. Eventually, you will pick up your speed with practice. Advertise the times each service takes, so people know how long it will take before turning up. Stick to your guns! Don't let someone talk you out of your lunch break or starting or finishing time; lock those times in your diary; downtime is essential!
The world of eyelash extensions is unlike any other, and for that reason, the lash community is close-knit, and there are many resources out there for you to share in. Get involved in lash conferences, lash forums or community groups. If your lash trainer is worth their salt, they should be able to provide you with ongoing support or mentorship. And trusted suppliers, like Prolong Lash, have dedicated staff to help with your concerns and queries.
Remember to give yourself grace, use mistakes as learning opportunities, prioritize rest times, dedicate time to practice, and provide a quality service to your customers. You will build a strong and trusted brand in no time.