How do they work?
You've likely heard of taking biotin tablets in a quest to get longer locks, but did you know the vitamin can be applied topically too? Biotin doesn't help hair grow faster, but instead promotes longer hair by strengthening the hair follicle; which allows each hair – or in this case, eyelash – to reach the end of its growth cycle. It's one of the main actives in lash serum formulas, hence all the hype.
But as Joanne Corcoran from RevitaLash – one of the original lash serum brands – explains, not all lash serums are created equal. For the best effects, she advises opting for formulas containing a blend of nourishing and conditioning ingredients – including a range of vitamins, antioxidants and fatty acids – to improve lash flexibility, prevent brittleness and breakage, and boost moisture and shine.
What's the catch?
Firstly, the results aren’t permanent. “Once you stop using the serum your eyelashes will return to normal, so when you’ve achieved the desired length it’s best to use the product two to three times per week to maintain results,” Corcoran explains.
You’ll also need a bit of patience and a dose of determination: to see the effects, you’ll need to apply the serums religiously once a day to make-up free lashes; preferably at night, before you go to bed. “It doesn’t happen overnight,” Corcoran says. “Typically results should be seen in roughly 12 weeks.”
In rare cases, some lash serums have been found to cause hyperpigmentation of the eyelid and, if the product is not applied correctly, can cause lashes to pop up where they’re not wanted. “To avoid this, make sure you use a small amount and keep the brush as close to the lash line as possible,” says Joanne.
Should I try one?
If you never quite feel like mascara does the job, this is the beauty innovation you’ve been waiting for – especially if you're tired of faffing with eyelash glue or lengthy salon appointments. But, as with any beauty product, eyelash serums should also be approached with caution if you have particularly sensitive skin or eyes.