How to Clean Lash Extensions

Eliza Barlow
February 25, 2019

Semi-permanent eyelash extensions – they’re beautiful, full-bodied, stay put for weeks with proper care, and just add a little extra something to your overall look without the hassle of reapplication every morning all over again. Wouldn’t you want to prolong the quality of your radiant eyelash extensions? Doing so is actually quite simple, but it does require regular upkeep, care, and maintenance. Part of this routine is regularly cleaning your lash extensions. Washing eyelash extensions might seem like a strange action because consistently applying water may seem counterintuitive, but it is an absolutely necessary part of your eyelash care routine if you have opted to wear semi-permanent eyelash extensions. It may not seem immediately clear how to clean eyelash extensions, so in this article, we will explain easy, low-cost ways to correctly wash your eyelashes so that no potential problems can arise. The truth is, you don’t even have to buy a specialized lash extensions cleaner; you’ll just need to look out for certain specific ingredients. It is important to note that for the first 24-48 hours after your appointment you should NOT touch your eyelashes – do not wash them and do not get any water, sweat, steam, oil, etc. near them. This day-or-two long initial period is crucial for the overall life of your extensions. Improperly washed eyelash extensions, thereafter, can lead to eyelash extensions that are itchy, along with infections, irritations, and in the worst case scenario an incredibly unpleasant condition called blepharitis from eyelash extensions. This process should not be a cause for concern – soon regularly washing your eyelash extensions will become a regular part of your makeup routine and beauty regimen.

What Are Semi-Permanent Lash Extensions?

A longer lasting version of day-wear false eyelashes, semi-permanent falsies are applied by a qualified eyelash technician in a process that takes around 1.5-2.5 hours and must be followed up with a fill-in every 2-3 weeks depending upon the individual. Semi-permanent eyelash extensions offer natural-looking lashes that are dark, voluminous, lengthy, and totally customizable, which is why they have become such a favorite throughout the beauty industry, with numerous celebrities getting this treatment for more than a decade. Although semi-permanent eyelashes mean no more fiddling with lash glue and false eyelash strips or those pesky individual hairs, these extensions do come at a cost. Getting a full set of these lashes can cost you anywhere from $85-$500 USD, which can truly impact your bank account. Semi-permanent eyelashes also are not a maintenance-free option, you still need to follow certain guidelines and care for your lashes, as well as regularly cleanse them, as we will explain in depth in this article.

How Do I Clean Eyelash Extensions?

If you’re looking for the best way to clean eyelash extensions then keep following along. Clean lash extensions lead to an increase in the overall longevity of your expensive and time-consuming semi-permanent eyelash extensions, and it reduces the risk of infection, itchy eyelids, and other irritations. You should be cleaning your eyelash extensions every other day at least, but every day is even more preferable. Dirt, oil, debris, dead skill cells, and other leftovers can build up at your lash line, which may not even be visible to the naked eye without the help of a magnifying glass. For this reason, the most ideal time to cleanse your eyelash extensions is actually at night after you have finished removing your makeup. A helpful tip: Be careful when you remove your makeup if you have eyelash extensions. It is best not to use makeup wipes or any material that can tug at your lashes. Oil-free makeup remover applied by your finger and then gently rubbed off with a damp cloth is a damage-free method of taking off eye makeup. Many lash technicians will recommend purchasing a specialized eyelash extension cleaning solution or eyelash wash, which is certainly a fail-proof option. The only issue is these cleansers can sometimes get expensive and are not always an additional cost that you want to have on top of the hefty price of the semi-permanent eyelash extensions themselves. If you don’t want to go out and purchase a specialized eyelash wash, there are some alternative, more readily available solutions. Important: Regardless of what solution you end up using to cleanse your eyelashes, do not use a cotton swab or any fibrous material to apply the solution to your lashes. This will leave behind residue and tug at your lashes, potentially creating fallout and damage. Instead, use your clean fingers or a spoolie/special lash brush to work the solution onto your eyelashes.

Alternatives to Specialized Eyelash Extension Cleanser

The reason why any old cleanser won’t work with washing eyelash extensions is that commercial cleansers often contain harsh ingredients that can break the bond of the adhesive to your extensions, causing your extensions to fall out quicker, potentially creating some serious lash damage. Therefore, when finding a suitable cleanser for your lashes, these are the ingredients that you’ll need to look out for: any type of oil (including mineral oil), propylene glycol, P.E.G. (polyethylene glycol), any other type of glycol, any type of carbonate. If you don’t feel like carefully reading the ingredients list of every product in the store or in your house, you can make an eyelash extension cleanser yourself using this simple formula.

How to Make Eyelash Extension Cleanser At Home

This do-it-yourself eyelash extension formula is straightforward and only requires 3 main ingredients, many of which you probably already have sitting around your home. What you’ll need:

  • Super gentle baby shampoo (any brand as long as it is oil-free and chemical-free)
  • Distilled, filtered water
  • Baking soda
  • An empty, reusable soap bottle with a foaming pump at the top

How to make the cleanser:

  1. Add one tablespoon of baby shampoo and 1 teaspoon of baking soda in the empty foaming pump bottle.
  2. Pour in the distilled water leaving a little space to be able to shake the contents of the bottle easily.
  3. Shake the bottle and blend everything together. Your eyelash cleanser is ready for use!
  4. Be sure to give your bottle a shake before you use it again to ensure the contents are thoroughly combined.

Store-Bought Options

If you don’t have these ingredients on hand or if you simply want to go out and purchase a cleanser that’ll work for your eyelashes, here are some options you can easily find at your local shop:

  • Micellar Gentle Foaming Cleanser for All Skin Types by Garnier
  • Micellar Cleansing Water by Caudalie
  • Sens’eyes by Make Up For Ever
  • Soy Face Cleanser by FRESH
  • Purifying Cleansing Gel by Boscia
  • Deep Clean Foaming Cleanser by Neutrogena

Our Final Thoughts on How to Clean Lash Extensions

If you have just gotten a brand new set of stunning semi-permanent eyelash extensions and want to clean them to improve the overall life of your lashes, as well as minimize the risk of irritation, infection, and excess build-up, then this article accurately explains just how you should clean your lash extensions. If you are getting ready to have your first set of eyelash extensions applied and want to be prepared with knowing all the aftercare and upkeep, then be sure to cleanse your eyelashes at least every two days following the details above. Semi-permanent eyelash extensions, although not low-maintenance, are a gorgeous and incredible alternative to many other false eyelash solutions, and that is part of why they remain a favorite throughout the beauty world. We hope you not only found this article to be entertaining but also educational and informative. If you are just getting into the world of fake eyelashes, then you have to check out this article we did. Here we cover the 10 Best Fake (False) Eyelashes of 2020.