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Natural Remedies for Growing Longer & Thicker Eyelashes
When we were little, we never even thought about them. Now that we’re adults, we are consumed by the quest to make them thicker, longer, and more luscious than ever before. We curl them, layer on extensions, and apply makeup to give them the illusion of voluptuousness, but to no avail.
I am talking, of course, about eyelashes. The appearance of our lashes has a huge effect on how beautiful we are to others, as well as to ourselves—for women in particular, lash length seems to have a large impact on self-esteem and confidence levels.
Everyone wants to add length and thickness to their real eyelashes, but few of us are sure how to go about it in a natural, simple way. Fortunately for you, the Internet is full of eyelash experts, and we have compiled some of the best wisdom for you here today.
Makeup, of course, works wonders. No eyelash-sculpting woman will deny the incredible power of the perfect cake, liquid, or cream mascara in providing instant results. Many of us have fallen in love with eye makeup of all sorts, from the darkest black eyeliner to the brightest festive eyeshadow shades, and that includes mascara.
But, even if your mascara is waterproof, its results are sadly limited. Your mascara does not actually make your eyelashes thicker, longer, or darker. Over time, our mascara addiction can actually make our situation worse—constantly applying our favorite makeup can thin out what precious little lashes we already have.
Even worse are fake eyelashes. Though falsies make us look like impossibly beautiful nymphs, all that glue can create wear and tear that damages our real eyelashes. In addition, wearing falsies on a regular basis can be unhygienic. All of us have heard horror stories about friends who have fallen prey to pink eye or other infections thanks to their favorite pair of fake eyelashes.
The best solution seems to be actually improving the appearance of your real eyelashes, but many of the cosmetics sold for this purpose are pricey and, well, questionable. If wearing mascara is enough to damage your skin or your eyelashes, what on earth is the super-secret, possibly glow-in-the-dark magic potion going to do? You can’t even pronounce half the ingredients! And, if that were not bad enough, the magic potion would have you bankrupt after two months of regular use.
No, we need safe, affordable, at-home fixes. Like so many areas of health and beauty, the most striking results come from simple, consistent remedies that we can use in the long term.
Want to know how to get longer and thicker eyelashes naturally? Here are eleven natural (and homemade!) remedies for sparse, underwhelming little lashes:
- Eyelash Growth Serum
This sounds like a possibly-radioactive science experiment, but it is easy to concoct your own topical mixture to help encourage the growth of thick, strong lashes. Just like the hair on your scalp, your eyelashes suffer if they are not getting enough vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. Eating these nutrients is by far the best way to make sure you get enough of them, but applying them to your eyelashes may be enough to give them the extra boost you’re looking for.
Here’s a recipe:
-1/4 tsp coconut
-1 tsp castor oil
-1 tsp olive oil or Vitamin E oil
Simply mix the ingredients, drop them in an airtight bottle, and apply a drop directly to your eyelashes. You can make this in a fairly large batch and store it for several months. If you have another ingredient you favor for healthy skin and hair, feel free to add that, too. Just remember: use caution when you apply anything near your eyes!
2. Eat for Hair Growth
As previously mentioned, one of the biggest factors in hair, skin, and eyelash health is your diet. Eating a bunch of calories is not enough—if you are living on high-sugar, low-vitamin foods, your hair and eyelashes may become dull, thin, and brittle. So you need to eat to nourish your entire body, not just the demands of your sweet tooth!
Focus on foods rich in vitamins, healthy fats, antioxidants, and fluids. Minimally processed plant foods like leafy greens, mangos, avocados, bananas, berries, nuts, seeds, and sweet potatoes are packed with the micronutrients that will encourage growth and maintenance of skin, hair, and eyelashes.
Avocados, nuts, and seeds also provide large amounts of healthy fats and a moderate amount of protein, which is also thought to improve hair growth. If you suspect your diet is lacking in any one nutrient, talk to your doctor. Addressing an underlying vitamin deficiency may work wonders on the appearance of your eyelashes—and the rest of your body, too.
3. Give your Lashes a Luxurious Massage
Okay, so it probably is not a good idea to go to a masseuse and ask them to work the knots out of your eyelids, but touch can, in fact, stimulate hair growth. This will not come as a surprise to anyone who gets a massage with any regularity. Touch can help with healing, stress reduction, and even fatigue, so why would it be surprising that it can fix your hair growth woes?
Massages stimulate hair growth by increasing blood flow to the area, which brings more oxygen, fluid, and nutrients into the hair follicles. By massaging your eyelids gently, you can not only boost hair growth, but actually improve the strength and thickness of the hairs. This will make each individual lash less likely to break or fall out prematurely.
To give your eyelashes the pampering they deserve: first, wash your hands. Second, find your favorite oil or moisturizer and apply a small amount to each eyelid. Then massage near your lash line for around five minutes. For best results, do this daily for several months.
4. Apply Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera seems to fix just about everything, so it’s no surprise that it may be able to give your eyelashes a boost, too. This multi-purpose remedy makes the perfect before-bed multivitamin for your lashes. Simply apply it to the eyelashes with a clean mascara wand before you hit the hay every night.
Don’t want to sleep with this on your face? Find time once or twice a day when you can let it soak for around 20 minutes, then wash it off with warm water and carry on with your routine. Letting the Aloe Vera sit overnight will give you the best results, but a 20-minute soak is better than nothing!
5. Use Petroleum Jelly
This option is a little less exciting than Aloe Vera, but it works in much the same way. Apply it like mascara before bed each night for thicker, stronger, longer lashes.
6. Give Olive Oil a Try
This is another at-home remedy that seems to cure all that ails us! Olive oil has already earned a reputation as a great way to keep your luscious locks in good shape despite constant flat ironing, but it can also help with the tiny little hairs that your mascara has abused day after day. This easy-to-find cooking oil is naturally loaded with Vitamin E and healthy fats, which will help darken eyelashes naturally.
For this remedy, warm a small amount of olive oil. Dip a Q-tip or cotton ball into the warm (not hot!) oil, then gently apply it to your lash line. Let it soak overnight. When you wake up, use warm water to wash it off, and repeat for a couple months.
7. Brush Your Eyelashes
Yes, really. It sounds downright bizarre, but some swear by brushing your eyelashes to stimulate growth. The theory is that brushing your eyelashes, like brushing your hair, helps to remove dirt, makeup, and other debris that can clog pores or otherwise impede hair growth.
If you give your eyelashes a good brushing two or three times a day, you may find that they grow to be thicker, longer, and more resilient over time.
Apply a few drops of olive oil, Vitamin E oil, or Aloe Vera mixture to an eyelash brush. Using upward strokes, gently brush your lashes out from root to tip for three to five minutes twice per day. If you’re afraid of getting oil/aloe/whatever else in your eyes, do it without any oil the first couple times—it’s better to get the hang of the motion first than it is to wind up with oil in your eye!
8. Ditch the Falsies
You love them, but if you want what is best for your real, natural eyelashes, the falsies have got to go. Wearing eyelash extensions and fake eyelashes makes us feel glamorous and fashionable, but it wreaks havoc on our natural lashes. The glue we use is harmful—and, when we remove the falsies, we often yank out the ‘realsies’ right along with them. This means that, though they may make an excellent short-term fix for a night out with friends, they are only making your eyelash problem worse in the long run.
While you are actively rehabbing your poor, beaten-down eyelashes, you have to stop abusing them to get the results you want. If you can’t give up fake eyelashes completely, use them as infrequently as possible.
9. Treat Your Lashes to a Green Tea Pick-Me-Up
If olive oil was your eyelashes’ before bed multivitamin, green tea is its morning caffeine fix. Green tea, which has become a favorite among health nuts thanks to its high amounts of flavonoids and moderate amount of caffeine, also works as an excellent skin and haircare product.
Simply brew a cup of fresh green tea and set aside a teaspoon of it to cool. For best results, opt for plain green tea, or green tea that has been flavored with herbs. Do not buy a bottle of sweetened tea.
By the time you’ve finished drinking your cup, the teaspoon should be ready—just dip a cotton ball into it and wipe it along your lash line. Repeat daily.
10. Be Kind to Your Eyes
Even when we’re not gluing on fake lashes, we can be awfully hard on our eyes. Whether we’re struggling with itchy contact lenses or roughly trying to remove our waterproof eyeliner, the delicate skin and follicles around our eyes take a beating. Make an effort to be as gentle as possible when moisturizing your skin or removing makeup. Resist the urge to get impatient and start rubbing aggressively or tugging at your eyelashes. If you find it too much of a hassle to get your makeup off, it may be time to switch to an option that will come off easier. It is better to have to touch up your eyeliner during the day than to have to damage your eyelashes wiping it off at night!
Speaking of wiping it off: one of the most important things you can do to encourage eyelash growth is to remove all makeup before bed. Giving your skin the breathing room overnight will help prevent acne and wrinkles, but it will also keep your eyelashes in much better shape. So, no matter how tired you are when you get home on a Saturday night, do not go to bed with a face full of makeup.
11. When Life Gives You Lemons, Lengthen Your Lashes
It turns out lemon peels are a great tool for hair and eyelash growth. Lemons are loaded with Vitamin C and several B vitamins, plus folic acid and antioxidants, which will help keep your eyelashes in good shape.
This remedy does require a bit of planning, but many believe it is worth the effort. Peel a lemon and let it dry out a little bit, then drop the lemon peels into your favorite Tupperware container and pour in olive oil until the peels are completely covered. Set the mixture in a cool, dark place to soak for several days to a week, then apply this to your eyelashes before bed at night. Be careful not to get any citrus in your eye!