Luxurious lashes are all the rage right now and Transitions Co-winner Judi Kirkpatrick is batting her eyelashes and getting a lot of attention.“People ask me all the time if I have on extensions or fake eyelashes,” Kirkpatrick says, “I tell them, no; my eyelashes are courtesy of Latisse.”
Kirkpatrick has been using Latisse since January when she won Transitions with Dr. Lori, a medical make-over journey that helps women transition into a new stage in their lives. For Judi, her “Transition” is from cancer survivor to Mother-of-The-Bride.
“I’m amazed at just how much my eyelashes have grown,” Kirkpatrick said. “I just use my favorite drug-store mascara. The wow-factor really comes from using Latisse during the last few months.”
Judi’s dramatic eyelash transformation brings up a good question: what’s the best and most cost-effective way to enhance your natural eye lashes? As we mentioned, eye lash extensions seem to be the rage but they do come with some unpleasant side effects. The extensions are fibers that are glued to your existing lashes; a process that takes at least two hours for a full set. Or you can opt for an FDA-approved prescription – Latisse – that stimulates lash growth. Jodi, the Medical Aesthetician at Vivesse Med Spa, says a lot of clients come to her in search of Latisse after they’ve had a bad experience with the extensions, “We see people who are sick of the maintenance and the glue can weaken the lashes and sometimes make them fall out.”
That’s exactly what happened to Julia, a professional in the beauty business: “I had the extensions for seven months straight. When all of the lashes fell off, I felt like I had lost a lot of my natural lashes.” But Julia admits, “I absolutely loved every minute of them.” For her, the major drawback was price: $300 for a full set and $75 for a refill. Beauty websites recommend a touch-up every six weeks because in a month, half of the extensions fall out along with the natural lash – the normal growth cycle.
The glue used in the extension process can also cause discomfort for people because it contains formaldehyde or other chemicals. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, there’s a list of potential side effects: swollen lids, eyelid or cornea infection, and temporary or permanent loss of eyelashes. At Vivesse Med Spa, Jodi has treated clients who’ve suffered some of these symptoms, “Most of my patients who’ve used the extensions, the glue has harmed their lashes.” Ashley- another lash aficionado who works in the beauty industry- says the glue started to burn her eyes and she eventually became allergic to it. So now she opts for the drug-store falsies when she wants a dramatic look for a special event. Ashley says her daughter freaked out the first time she came home with the extensions because they were so long, “She thought it looked like I had spiders on my eyelids!”
Many beauty fashionistas love that spider look; if they can’t accomplish it with extensions, they opt for Latisse. “My clients swear by it,” says Jodi. Her typical client has sparse eyelashes that are very fair.
The active ingredient in Latisse is bimatoprost, which was initially approved by the FDA in 2001 to treat glaucoma. Patients started noticing longer, thicker, darker eyelashes as a side effect. Seven years later, the drug was marketed as a beauty product, promoting lash growth for people who lost their lashes, such as chemo patients.
Jodi does caution that not everyone can use Latisse and recommends women book a free consultation first to see if the product is right for them. Jodi says the product is very easy to use: a nightly application to the top of the lid for three months. It takes about one to two months for patients to start seeing results and they are usually dramatic: “ Lashes are luscious, dramatic, long and thick!”
Fill out this contact form for a free consultation to see if Latisse is right for your or call Vivess Med Spa at 860-761-6666