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Keeping an eye on the next big thing: Lash extensions



Just as hair extensions are the secret behind so many magnificent celebrity manes, eyelash extensions are often the explanation for the spidery, smudge-free eyes fluttering on red carpets and catwalks. The eyelash-extension trend, which originated in Asia and then swept through Hollywood, is now making inroads in New York.

Are eyelash extensions destined to become yet another de rigueur NewYork beauty ritual along with manis, pedis and bikini waxes?

The folks who own salons such as Ebenezer (32 W. 32nd St., 212-947-5503), Wink (128 W. 36th St., 212-594-9465) and JJ Eyelashes (56 W. 56th St., 212-244-2921) certainly hope so.

The early adopters are dancers, actresses, models and fashion executives, but eyelash extensions also are filtering down to other working women, said Erika Rodriquez, marketing manager for JJ Eyelashes. Costs vary widely – the service can be as cheap as $40 or as pricey as $500, depending on the training of the technician. A complete set at JJ begins at $120 and takes about an hour to apply.

How do they work? Ideally, a skilled technician uses tiny tweezers to meticulously attach 80 to 100 eyelashes, one by one, to the base of the natural eyelashes (not the lid) with microdots of black-hued glue made out of acrylic resins. The fluttery, frond-like finish looks natural, just … better. The lashes fall out gradually, one by one, over the next three to six weeks.

Adherents love never having to apply mascara or worrying about raccoon eyes. Rodriguez admits she was at first repelled by the idea of permanent fake lashes. Then she got them: “I looked at myself in the mirror — now I’m addicted.”

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