Eyelash growth is relatively straightforward to boost, once you know some basic do’s and don’ts. I’ll cover those in this post and lay out a very basic DIY eyelash growth serum for you that can’t fail.
When I was crossing the tween to teen phase of my life I started reading this girl beauty magazine that was very popular at the time. It had your basic fashion and beauty, including even some DIY stuff, and it was the highest authority on anything beauty related in my world.
It was in this magazine, years ago, that I read that eyelashes actually don’t grow back at all! Gasp! So you should beware and take great care to preserve the integrity of the ones you have. (Insert probable shameless ad to whatever eyelash miracle serum they were peddling at the time).
Now, had I stopped for 2 seconds and actually thought about it, I would have realized that could not possibly be true. We all lose eyelashes every now and then, and the fact is we don’t have a whole lot to begin with. If they didn’t grow back, then no one would reach adulthood with eyelashes, which is obviously not the case!
So, on that note…
Attractive as they may or may not be considered at any given moment, eyelashes actually have a more practical purpose – to protect and maintain the health of the lid margin.
They do this by reducing the number of particles in the air from reaching the eye. This also contributes to the balance and health of the eye surface itself (homeostasis).
Like any other part of the human body, the eye and the eyelids have a microflora that constitutes its protective microbiome. When it’s disrupted it can lead to all kinds of eye problems and infections. An interesting fact, the variety of lash microflora of each individual is actually unique to them!
Eyelashes have a life cycle similar to other hair follicles in our body. They have a growth phase (anagen), a degradation phase (catagen), and a rest phase (telogen). And the whole thing begins again. The daily growth rate of an eyelash is between 0.12–0.14 mm, and it can take anywhere from 4 to 11 months to complete a full cycle.
They differ from other hair on our body in that the growth phase and rate is shorter. Also, eyelash hair goes grey significantly later in life and it very rarely ever goes white.
Another interesting trait of eyelash hair is that it’s structurally very close to curly hair, i.e., they are curved, regardless of ethnicity.
What makes eyelashes grow?
Eyelashes are somewhat different from other hair on your body, but they are hair.
They have follicles and those follicles receive nutrition from our diet. So, healthy fats, plenty of vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidants, to keep them growing strong.
They also respond to treatments with nourishing oils that will help protect the hair shaft, enhance health and growth rate, and make it more resistant to breakage and loss.
What causes eyelashes to fall out?
Among the things most likely to cause your eyelashes to fall out excessively are:
- Physical trauma, like excessive use of false eyelashes, or chemical dyes and solvents present in makeup or makeup removers.
- Mishandling, excessive rubbing, or excessive force used when cleansing, applying skincare or removing makeup.
- Eye or eyelid inflammation, or infections (like blepharitis or conjunctivitis).
- Alopecia areata (patchy hair loss). It’s a type of autoimmune condition that can lead to hair loss anywhere on the body, including eyelashes.
- Momentary skin issues or hereditary conditions.
- And, as always, certain medication (those “possible side effects” lists aren’t terrifying at all, are they?!).
Are eyelash extensions safe?
In a word, no. Eyelash extensions require some type of glue to keep them in place. A great many of these commercial glues or adhesives actually contain formaldehyde, which is toxic and has been connected to conjunctivitis.
On the other hand, the solutions for dissolving this glue and removing the extensions also tend to include eye irritants, which have been linked to inflammation.
So, they are not only potentially harmful for the health of your eye and eyelids, but it can also lead to excessive eyelash loss.
Basic eyelash growth Do’s & Don’ts
Reconsider your use of mascara. There is a verified connection between the frequency of use and the degree of breakage of the eyelash cuticle. Meaning, the more you use mascara, the higher the likelihood of eyelash damage or breakage.
Try not to use extensions, if at all possible. As I mentioned earlier, it is linked to eye disorders and infections, such as conjunctivitis and blepharitis.
Treat your eyelashes and eye area with care. The skin around your eyes is very thin and delicate. You see so many people rubbing the hell out of it, either trying to remove makeup or just to scratch an itch. There’s absolutely no need and doing it will not only lead to unnecessary skin stretching and wrinkling, it will also lead to more eyelash loss.
Use a dedicated eyelash serum regularly. Whether you want to prepare a whole recipe, or you just apply a bit of nourishing oil or butter to them at night. It’ll make a huge difference in the protection and growth rate of your eyelashes.
DIY EYELASH GROWTH SERUM
If you’ve searched for DIY eyelash growth serum online you might have realized that there is not much variation in terms of recipes. This is because there are 2 or 3 ingredients that people use that seem to produce the most dramatic results, so they tend to get recommended the most.
The fact is you don’t really need to prepare a whole DIY recipe for your eyelashes. You can of course, if you prefer, but simply applying any of those ingredients, or some kind of nourishing carrier oil or butter, with the tip of your finger on your eyelashes is enough.
If you prefer to “cover your bases” and apply more than one ingredient, and make it into a real treat, you can find a basic and highly effective DIY eyelash growth serum below.
"Back-to-basics" DIY Eyelash Growth Serum
1 ½ teaspoon castor oil
1 teaspoon coconut
½ teaspoon vitamin E
Mix together (melting the coconut oil, if needed) and put into container. Apply to the lashes once or twice a day, using a brush or the tips of your fingers. Apply preferably at night.
Allow 2 to 3 weeks for results to show.
You can add 1 drop of essential oil of lavender if you want. However, it is not a very good idea to put essential oils into a product that will come into such close contact with the surface of your eye.
Essential oils are extremely concentrated and potent! They can cause allergic reactions, redness and serious inflammation on tissue that sensitive. I would avoid it, if possible.
Best ingredients for crazy eyelash growth
For my money, the most effective natural ingredients for crazy eyelash growth are castor oil and vitamin E. I always have one or the other on hand and I usually apply a dab to my eyelashes of whatever is handiest at the time.
Castor oil is also a good option to keep any eye inflammation at bay, since it’s used successfully in treating eye issues like blepharitis (eyelid inflammation).
Topical vitamin E application, on the other hand, has actually been shown to accelerate hair growth.
Coconut oil is also an excellent choice, since it has been more than proven to be able to penetrate the hair shaft. This will nourish the hair and follicle, but also help protect it from damage.
Like I mentioned, you don’t need to get that complicated with eyelash serums. The ingredients above are super boosters let’s say, but even if you don’t have any of them on hand, you can just dab on some other quality carrier oil.
Or, alternatively, melt a bit of Shea or mango butter in the palm of your hand and apply that to your lashes at night.
The important thing is that you’re not being too harsh with your eyelashes and that you’re applying some sort of oily coat on them. This will help keep them protected and nourish the follicles to produce stronger and healthier lashes.