Ladies, when you bat your eyelashes don’t you wish they fluttered like a butterfly? (Just admit it, there’s no shame in a little vanity!) Long, thick, healthy eyelashes are definitely something to be desired. And useful, too.
Eyelashes help to protect your eyes from particles in the air, like dust and sand, and keep sweat and moisture away. They signal your eyelids when to shut to keep particles and bugs out, much like a cat’s whiskers sense danger.
Purpose and beauty aside, what happens if you didn’t get luscious lashes from the start, what are you to do?
Makeup companies have created all sorts of mascaras which promise thicker, fuller lashes. But mascara can be quite taxing on your lashes, especially if it’s not removed safely and properly. When the product dries out or gets clumpy, it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria, so you need to toss it every three months.
Then there is the option of eyelash extensions, but even that can get quite pricy and high maintenance. There has to be a better way!
The growth of eyelashes
Before we provide you with ways to promote eyelash growth naturally, let’s explore how eyelashes came to be those mini hairs which rest on our eyelids.
Just like the hair on our head, arms and basically anywhere on our bodies, eyelashes grow in cycles. The phase in which the eyelash grows is called anagen and it differs among individuals because of genetics and sex.
After the growth phase we enter catagen, or the short resting phase. Neither growth nor pigment occurs during this phase and it can last between two to three weeks.
Post the rest phase we begin the shedding phase – telogen. This is when new hair begins to grow and so the old hair starts to shed. These hairs are easily removed and won’t hurt if tweezed. This is the phase, for example, when the hair on your head easily comes out – and no, it’s not a sign of balding. Shedding occurs naturally so that new hair can emerge. Eyelashes can stick around between four to six weeks before a new one grows, unlike eyebrows which can take up to 64 days.
Lastly, if you’re concerned that your eyelashes tend to fall out more, once again this isn’t a sign that they won’t grow back. Once a hair leaves a follicle another takes its place in the same follicle. As you can see, hair growth, no matter where it occurs, is a continuous cycle that relies mainly on your genes, not your plucking.
Remedies for thicker, longer, healthier eyelashes: Natural versus artificial
As we mentioned, there are products you can purchase which can promote eyelash growth and thickness. For starters, there is the option of mascara. Although this is not a permanent solution, it can temporarily provide you with the look you desire.
Another option is lash extension. These come in a few forms. There is one option where you glue a row of lashes on your eyelid to create fullness and thickness. Another option is to get individual strands bonded on your eyelid to create a more natural look. Both products use a bonding agent, a type of glue, and can be quite costly depending on quality.
Lastly, there are prescription options to achieve longer, thicker eyelashes. These options take months before you begin to notice results and once again can be quite costly. But as with any prescription medication there are some side effects. Some listed side effects for a mainstream prescription eyelash medication are:
- Itchy, red eyes
- Dry eyes
- Darkened eyelids
- Darkened pigmentation of the iris (the colored part of the eye)
- Hair growth around the eye.
Unfortunately, some of these side effects can end up being permanent. And not to mention that whenever we ingest medications, whether orally or absorbed by the skin, it gets processed through our liver, potentially creating a health risk there as well. Although medications may be effective, sometimes the risks outweigh the benefits, therefore not making them a great option.
Natural remedies, on the other hand, are often much cheaper and readily available. They tend to be safer for individual use as well. So if you’re looking for how to promote eyelash growth, choose the natural route.
6 Best natural remedies for thicker, longer, healthier eyelashes
We compiled 6 of the best natural remedies to provide you with thicker, longer, healthier eyelashes. One thing to keep in mind though is just like the hair on your head, eyelashes should be brushed. This helps not only promote growth but also move the natural oils from the follicle right to the tip keeping the hair moist and healthy.
1. Natural eyelash growth serum
You can create an eyelash growth serum which can help promote longer, thicker eyelashes. What you’ll need is fractionated coconut oil, lemon and lavender oil. By mixing these ingredients together you are not only promoting growth, but you’re also cleansing and nourishing the lashes from the follicle up.
2. Olive oil
Olive oil is beneficial for overall good health so it’s of no surprise that it can help promote eyelash growth as well. Simply apply it to your lashes nightly before bed using a clean mascara wand and you can promote eyelash growth. In the morning, clean it off and within a few months you should notice quite the difference.
3. Natural eyelash growth: Castor oil
Castor oil, similar to coconut oil and olive oil, can promote eyelash growth. Castor oil nourishes the skin and can bring out impurities all which lead to healthier lashes. Castor oil can be left in overnight or all day but it can be quite thick so be cautious of how much you’re applying to avoid irritation.
4. Petroleum jelly
Dryness can lead to eyelashes looking thin, so petroleum jelly helps keep them moist. Moisture makes eyelashes appear thicker and the stimulated hair follicle will help promote growth.
5. Diet for healthier eyelashes
A diet rich in healthy fats – think avocados – and protein is essential for healthier eyelashes. By nourishing the body from the inside it can work to produce thicker, longer eyelashes. Eat foods like eggs, yogurt and fish for optimal eyelash growth.
6. Eyelid massage
Just like when you go for a body massage you feel better and more energized, the same works for your eyelids. Massages promote circulation and blood flow, and blood flow is essential for functions to occur in our body. Massaging the eyelids with clean hands can promote greater blood flow which can lead to eyelash growth.
Enhance eyelashes naturally
If the Hollywood look is what you’re aiming for, these natural remedies for thicker, longer, healthier eyelashes can get you there. These methods are not invasive and won’t cost too much. Unlike other remedies which can lead to side effects, natural remedies are safe and can still achieve great results.
Our eyes put up with a lot: Hours in front of the TV or computer, low mood lighting in a restaurant, squinting into the sun while driving (even with sunglasses). There’s a long list. Despite how important our eyesight is, we tend to take it for granted.
It is often said that our eyes are the gateway to our soul. Although this may be true, your eyes can reveal much more than that. Eyes not only provide us with the ability to see, but they can also tell us what’s going on inside our bodies.