Some of your friends and loved ones sporting celeb-worthy, thicker, longer eyelashes overnight had a little help along the way.
Over the past several years, Long Island has seen a flurry of eyelash extension salons pop up — boasting of luxe surroundings and customized services — and more are on the way.
Amazing Lash Studio, the largest lash salon chain in the industry, saw its fourth Long Island franchise open Nov. 1 in Massapequa in the Village Square shopping center at 25 Hicksville Rd.
The second-largest chain, the Lash Lounge, will have its first franchise on Long Island — and second in New York State — when it opens in Carle Place, at 215 Glen Cove Rd. in Parkway Plaza, in the first quarter of 2019, according to CBRE, the Los Angeles-based real estate firm that represents the chain nationwide in lease negotiations.
At lash shops, aestheticians — those in New York must be licensed by the state — attach semi-permanent lashes made of synthetic, mink or silk fibers to clients’ natural lashes, one by one, using an adhesive. Refills (touchup maintenance) occur about every two to three weeks.
Eyelash extensions continue to be a highly sought-after service because consumers want personalized and easy beauty, said Dana Kreutzer, senior analyst of consumer products at Kline & Co, a Parsippany, New Jersey-based market research firm.
“There are few major, nationwide lash bar chains in the U.S.; however, there are hundreds of small, independent lash extension studios or spas offering this service,” she said.
Some of the players in the Long Island market include Little Lash Boutique, which opened in Babylon in 2013; Manhasset Lash Bar, which opened in October 2017; and Envious Lashes in Commack, which Clementina Richardson, a lash stylist to celebrities, opened in March.
Amazing Lash Studio entered the Long Island market in 2016 with a franchise in Commack.
Founded in 2010, the Scottsdale, Arizona-based chain has 211 locations across the country, and 19 more slated to open soon. WellBiz Brands Inc., an Englewood, Colorado-based franchise portfolio company, bought the Amazing Lash Studio franchise brand in September.
North Bellmore resident Claudine Orlian and Babylon resident Aleksandra Giambalvo said they decided to open an Amazing Lash Studio franchise in Massapequa after seeing the success of their first location, which opened in June 2016 in Merrick.
Among all the chain’s franchises, the Merrick shop had the highest gross sales in September, and it had record-breaking second-year sales, company spokeswoman Andrea Kalmanovitz said.
At Amazing Lash Studio clients receive customized eyelash extensions, with synthetic lashes, in private suites.
“You lay down, hear beautiful spa music, get a warm blanket on you, charge your phone. You get these beautiful extensions put on. …People love it because it’s luxury at an affordable price,” said Orlian.
At Amazing Lash Studio franchises, monthly membership fees range from $79.99 to $89.99, depending on the location, and that includes one refill and 10 percent off retail products.
Anthony Elias of New York City, the franchisee for the Lash Lounge planned for Carle Place, said he has a background in mechanical engineering but no experience in the beauty industry.
“The [lash] business provides a convenience to the client, customization as far as the look they want and the confidence to face the world,” he said.
Lash Lounge base prices range from $109 to $159 for monthly memberships, depending on the location, and include two lash refills and 10 percent off retail products or additional services, such as eyebrow extensions or tinting, said Taylor Hulyksmith, spokeswoman for the Grapevine, Texas-based company.
The chain, founded in 2006, has 46 franchises and 300 more units in development.
“If we look at this at a macro level, lash and eye-related cosmetics is a nearly $61 billion industry, so it’s not surprising that semi-permanent lash extensions have become the hot new thing,” Lash Lounge founder Anna Phillips said via email.
Folks, please note that the American Academy of Ophthalmology, a San Francisco-based association of eye doctors, has some warnings about eyelash extensions to reduce the risk of trauma to or infection of the eyelid or cornea.
To minimize the risk, check out the salon in advance and read reviews online; check the glue’s ingredient list for allergens, and confirm the expiration date; and ask for a spot test of the glue on the inside of your wrist before the adhesive is applied to your eyes.
Retail Roundup is a column about major retail news on Long Island — store openings, closings, expansions, acquisitions, etc. — that is published online and in the Monday paper. To read more of these columns, click here. If you have news to share, please send an email to Newsday reporter Tory N. Parrish at firstname.lastname@example.org.