Do you envy those beautiful, fanned out and curled eyelashes? Many of us weren’t blessed with naturally curly lashes, but don’t lose hope! With some TLC and using the right techniques, you can encourage your eyelashes to curl upwards beautifully.
In this article, I’ll walk you through what makes your eyelashes grow the way they do, as well as tips and tricks for caring for your lashes to maximize their natural curl. With a simple eyelash care routine using the right eyelash curler and mascara, you can achieve gorgeous lifted lashes.
Eyelash Anatomy and Growth Cycles
To understand how to maximize your lashes’ curling potential, it helps to understand how eyelashes grow.
Your eyelash shape is determined by genetics and the shape of the follicle from which each lash grows. Just like hair elsewhere on the body, some people are blessed with curly eyelash follicles, while others are straight.
Eyelashes grow in cycles, just like the hair on your head. They go through an active growing phase where the lash lengthens, followed by a dormant phase where the lash stays put. Finally, the lash sheds and a new lash begins growing in its place.
So while you can’t change your genetically-determined eyelash shape, you can care for your lashes to encourage each new lash to reach its maximum curling potential as it grows in.
Tips for Caring for Lashes to Encourage Natural Curl
While you can’t control the growth cycle itself, you can care for your lashes to help maximize their natural curling ability. Here are some key tips:
Prep Your Lashes
Gently cleanse your eyelashes daily to remove any makeup, oil, or debris that may be weighing lashes down. Use a makeup remover that is designed for sensitive eyes.
When washing your face, take care not to tug or scrub the delicate eye area. Simply splash with water, then pat gently with a soft washcloth to dry. Rubbing can cause lashes to kink or break before their growth cycle is complete.
Use a clean mascara wand or spoolie brush to gently comb through lashes, separating any that are sticking together. This helps set them in the optimal growing position.
Avoid Damaging Behaviors
Be mindful of habits that can damage eyelashes during their growing phase:
- Don’t rub your eyes roughly, which can misshapen emerging lashes.
- Avoid pulling or tugging lashes, which can dislodge follicles.
- Don’t use makeup remover pads or cleansers that contain harsh chemicals, which can weaken lashes.
Giving your lashes a break from mascara 1-2 days a week allows them to regain strength and resilience.
Use an Eyelash Curler
Using an eyelash curler is key for boosting your lashes’ natural curl, setting them in an lifted position while the mascara dries.
Curl your lashes before applying mascara – curling after mascara is applied risks pulling lashes out or creating clumps.
Choose Your Curler
Select a curler based on your eye shape for the best fit:
- Round eyes do best with a wide, flat curler to catch all lashes.
- Almond eyes or those with more prominent lids need a more arched curler barrel to match their shape.
- Deep set eyes also benefit from a more dramatically curved curler.
Maximize the curling power of your eyelash curler:
- Warm the curler briefly under a hairdryer or with a warm washcloth. This heats the metal, setting the curl better.
- Position the curler as close to the lash line as possible.
- Gently squeeze the handles together, hold for 3-5 seconds, then release. Don’t pinch!
- Repeat, moving the curler up your lashes in sections to maximize lift from base to tip.
Reheat and recurl between coats of mascara for extra staying power.
Apply the Right Mascara
Choosing the right mascara formula and proper application technique will help lock in curl as your mascara dries.
Curling Mascara Formulas
Look for formulas that enhance lash volume and curl:
- Volumizing mascaras thicken and darken lashes to play up your eyes. Inky black shades give the most impact.
- Look for conditioning ingredients like vitamin E, collagen, and proteins that strengthen lashes.
- Waterproof mascaras hold curl extremely well for special events or humid days.
Apply mascara with techniques that boost curl:
- Wiggle the mascara wand back and forth from lash base to tip to coat every side of your lashes.
- Let each coat dry completely before applying another for maximum lift.
- Apply 2-3 thin coats for ideal separation, volume, and curl.
Look at the Ingredients
You can also boost lash health from within by applying natural oils that nourish lashes and follicles:
- Coconut oil penetrates into hair follicles, strengthening lashes to prevent breakage. It also moisturizes.
- Apply a tiny bit to your lashes before bedtime 2-3 times per week. Rinse off gently in the morning.
- Other oils like olive, almond, and castor oil also condition lashes.
The Bottom Line
With a simple eyelash care routine using the right curling techniques and mascara formulas, you can play up your eyes and achieve beautiful curled lashes. The key is being gentle, taking breaks from mascara, and using natural oils to nourish your lashes.
Give your lashes some TLC with these tips and you’ll be rewarded with gorgeous, fanned-out lashes that naturally curl skyward. Say goodbye to sticking straight lashes down with Loads of mascara. By maximizing their health and growth cycles, you allow your natural eyelash curling potential shine through beautifully.
Sophia Rodriguez is the creative force behind IGXO Cosmetics, a popular beauty blog and brand. As a long-time makeup artist and beauty industry insider, Sophia realized there was a lack of authentic, relatable content for the everyday woman. This inspired her to launch IGXO Cosmetics in 2018 as a platform to share her passion for beauty.