In the beauty world, there have been many ways to achieve long, lush lashes, ranging from eyelash extensions, false eyelashes, eyelash curlers, and mascaras. Eyelash growth serum supposedly helps boost the length, volume, and health of your lashes, but how do they really work, and with so many versions out there, which one do you choose?
In this article we’ll first go through how our eyelashes grow, before explaining how eyelash growth serums work. We will touch on the safety of eyelash serums, and introduce a dermatologist designed eyelash growth serum.
First, how do our eyelashes grow?
Just like any of our hair on our scalp, eyelashes follow a specific growth cycle – anagen, catagen, and telogen. During the anagen stage, the eyelashes are actively growing. This period lasts about 4-6 weeks. In the catagen phase, the eyelashes are at their maximum length, and follicles begin to shrink. This period lasts about 2-3 weeks. Finally, the lashes are in the telogen phase, or the resting phase, which lasts around 100 days. After that, when an eyelash falls out, a new one will grow back in its place.
How do eyelash growth serums work?
The eyelash growth serums that you see in the store tend to contain these ingredients:
It is the most common active ingredient in eyelash growth serums, and often marketed as a conditioning treatment. Biotin is a B vitamin, and claims to improve the hair’s health by strengthening keratin. Unfortunately, there is no compelling scientific evidence that biotin will enhance lash growth. Many supplements of biotin rarely gets absorbed into one’s system, unless one is extremely deficient, indicating that it won’t be able to show you the results you’re expecting.
Furthemore, overconsumption of biotin can make it harder for your body to release insulin. This can have detrimental effects such as being harder to absorb sugar, which can reduce energy and also increase blood sugar.
Castor Oil is a popular DIY lash growth serum. While ‘hacks’ like this can make your eyelashes look longer, it’s most likely an illusion rather than actual growth of the lashes. Instead, what may be occurring is that the glossing and coating effect of the oil gives off the illusion that the hairs are thicker. While the oil may have the benefit of preventing hair breakage, it does not enhance lash growth.
Hyaluronic acid, panthenol
Other eyelash growth serums contain a combination of these ingredients, but the effects, if any, are often subtle. These ingredients act as moisturizers, binding in water. They can increase the flexibility of the hair, helping to reduce fracturing and breaking, or even coat them to make them look thicker. But when it comes to lash growth, there is not much compelling evidence that they are effective.
Are eyelash growth serums safe?
When using an eyelash growth serum, you have to be careful about how you apply them to your lashes. Most serum instructions recommend to apply the product close to the root, but you need exercise more caution since it can be hard avoiding products getting into your eye or the delicate skin around the eye.
The easiest way to apply serums is to use the included applicator, starting on the inner corner of the eye and working your way out. You should also use the hand on the same side as the eye you’re working on to avoid your view being obstructed.
What is Latisse®?
Latisse® is an FDA approved treatment proven to make eyelashes grow by extending the anagen phase. The treatment’s key ingredient, 0.03% bimatoprost, was originally used in glaucoma medicine to reduce pressure against the eye. Longer, thicker and darker eyelash growth was an unexpected side effect of the medication. Hence, the treatment is considered a pharmaceutical drug, as it contains the same active ingredient as an eye-drop medication to treat glaucoma.
Though effective, it does come with side effects. Common side effects include hyperpigmentation and sensitivity to the eyelids, itchy, red eyes, darkened brown pigmentation of the iris (colored part of the eye), and hair growth around the eyes if medication regularly runs off or drips off the eyelid.
A dermatologist designed eyelash growth serum
“Eyelash extensions are potentially dangerous due to the chemicals used, which also induce damage to your natural lashes. The important thing to understand is that our goal should be to encourage healthy and full growth of eyelashes, and chemical treatments and glues actually end up leaving the skin irritated by disrupting the skin barrier, and can even cause lash breakage,” accredited dermatologist, Dr. Teo Wan Lin.
The Eyelash Growth Enhancer is a dual oligopeptide serum by Dr. TWL Pharmacy. It has demonstrated in in-vivo studies to show 25% increase with thicker and longer eyelashes after 2 weeks of use & 66% increase in lash length and density in just 28 days- with zero risk of hyperpigmentation and minimal allergenicity.
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