With borders opening up, it's time to face the world again...except that your actual face won't be seen by the world under your mask. This doesn't mean you can't max-out the impact of what's still on display through - your eyes. Here are some tips on how to give your windows to the soul some extra polish.
If you started slacking off on brow trimming and plucking when beauticians were closed for CB, guess what: The gurus of glam might approve! Hollywood beauty expert Kristie Streicher says that many of us might actually be maintaining less-than-deal brow shapes and that we should leave our brows out for 6-8 weeks in between plucking and threading to let them reach their full potential.
So if you've been skimping on the primping and allowing them to grow to their full lush length, feel free to trim the overlong hairs, by brushing it all up with a spoolie and - one hair at a time - using a small pair of scissors to trim only the very long hairs. With full brows looking like they're here to stay, you don't want to accidentally slice off too much and compromise the volume you're accumulated over the past few months.
Then if you feel like your brows are still too unruly, place your eyebrow pencil vertically in the middle of each nostril, see where it ends at the height of your brows, and then mark that spot. Pivot the pencil to the outside of your eye-pupil and see where it touches your eyebrow to find your arch, make another mark, then swing it to the outer corner of your eye and mark the point where it touches your eyebrow - that should be the tail end of your arch. Then, very stingily tweeze the stray hairs that fall below these marked points. Remember, full is cool, so when it comes to tweezing, less is more.
Or go to a pro to get them just perfect, whichever you prefer.
With Work-From-Home having screwed up our sleep schedules, our eyes might be carrying a little more baggage than usual. Thankfully, there are simple ways to lighten their load: Puffy eyes are generally caused by fluid retention, so you can try drinking more water to reassure your body that you are getting enough fluids and that it doesn't have to hoard them on your face. Avoiding salt and alcohol, and upping your intake of potassium (by eating more bananas, beans, yogurt, and lovely leafy greens) will also reduce excess fluids in your body.
You can also prop your head and feet up with extra pillows while sleeping, which will help divert any fluid retention from accumulating near your eyes, or help drain the fluid by using a cool compress on your peepers and/or applying eye creams and eye masks.
There are times when the whites of your eyes look a little less than white.
Unless it's an infection, bloodshot eyes usually clear by themselves and are nothing to worry about, but if you do want to keep the windows to your soul clear, avoid the two 'i's" - irritation and inflammation, which cause your blood vessels to expand. If you wear contacts, always make sure to wash your hands thoroughly with soap before putting on or removing clean lenses, and be very gentle to avoid corneal scratches. Also, prevent irritation that comes from dry eyes by avoiding alcohol (which is very dehydrating) or most types of eye drops (which actually encourage your eyes to produce fewer tears). And finally, don't rub your eyes, and try your best to get enough sleep.
It's amazing what slightly longer, darker lashes do for your eyes - suddenly you're a flirty fluttery femme fatale, mask or no mask.
You can help your lashes grow long and strong by using serums recommended by some of our trusted facial spas (contact your lash therapist to get a recommendation) and of course, maintain lash hygiene to protect them from thinning and falling out. Also, maintain the health of the eyelash follicles by removing your eye makeup thoroughly every night, and massaging your eyelashes with mild, non-irttiating soap to get the surfaces as clean as you can. This may even help the lashes grow up longer and curlier. Oh, and avoid heated eyelash curlers since they can damage your lashes.
And of course, you can get instant lash glamour with eyelash extensions. Nervous about people glueing things to your ocular area? Don't fret...here's our very own Editor-In-Chief's extensions experience.
Hi, I'm Agent G, Editor-in-Chief of Beauty Undercover. Managing this portal for almost a decade means that I've been the willing guinea pig for numerous hair and beauty services out there. However, I was wary about eyelash extensions - I really didn't like the idea of someone taking tools and mucking about my eye area. However, since I craved something that that could even out my the appearance of my asymmetrical lids, I decided to take the plunge.
Here's how I looked pre-extensions:
Your average girl-next-door, I guess.
And then came my first extensions experience. Any visible imbalance between the lids seemed to have become less obvious, and my overall gaze became brighter and more alert.
I was a convert!
As much as I enjoyed my regular lash salon, I got a little hesitant after a price increase. Still, I craved the experience of getting my lashes done by a skilled Japanese beauty professional. So when I heard that the celebrated Flamingo Hair Salon @ Tanjong Pagar was also providing lash services at prices as low as $40 for retouch, I sent them a beauty SOS and zipped down at warp speed.
As you can tell, I haven't had a touch-up for about 6 weeks or so (since my last visit) and was in desperate need of a retouch. Actually, scratch that...I needed a brand new set of extensions.
I always adore Flamingo Hair Salon's gorgeous interior, with murals and soft, woody, nature-themed furnishings. It all put me into a state of ease (for someone whose eyelids were balding, anyway). After a few brief moments of aesthetic appreciation, I was ushered into an airy, curtained private room - complete with a dressing table and mirror for you to touch up your makeup after treatment. Impressed, I lowered myself into the plush treatment seat.
It is extremely comfortable. Its wide softness enveloped my stressed out body, and allowed me to relax still more as I toggled the seat back...this magical chair can recline 180 degrees!
Then Aya, my lash therapist greeted me, handing me a form to understand my lash goals before the treatment (I pulled the seat back upright again for this, to be polite). This elfin Japanese beautician is new to Singapore and has yet to fully master English and Singlish, but she explained that she was constantly working to improve it. Meanwhile, the form I was filling out helped her thoroughly understand any concerns and beauty aims she needed to address.
I wasn't too worried...Flamingo has not disappointed me yet, and anyway, it was too much fun writing my answers with the themed pen.
Time to get prepped for prettifying! First, Aya made the station even more comfy by placing a pillow - complete with protective washable covering for these Covid times - under my head.
She explained she would be giving me lashes in their 'Gorgeous' style , featuring a largely consistent lash length throughout (between 9mm-11mm). There are various different lash styles for different eye shapes, and if you prefer to give your therapist some specific directions on your preferred look, you can check out this article in advance of your appointment.
Of course, the Flamingo folk themselves will give you a full, easy-to-understand lash menu before you proceed. There are so many options!
Aya also recommended that I try volume lashes, which would amp up the density of my sparse lashes because it attaches 2-6 fibre strands to each of my cilia.
She then took out a few 10mm extension fibres and placed them near my real lashes for me to examine in the mirror, and confirm that that was the length I was going for. It was, and I was excited already.
Aya then reclined my seat, and the beautification began!
First, she prepped a gentle tape to be placed on my eyelids and under my eyes, to prevent any glue from getting on the skin in those areas and causing irritation. Before placing these pieces of tape on my face, she repeatedly tested its stickiness on the sanitised back of her hand, to make sure it wasn't too strongly adhered to my skin and could easily be removed after the treatment.
After the tape was in place, she used cotton buds to clean my real lashes and remove any substances that would prevent the extensions from adhering properly to them.
Then using tweezers, she applied translucent gel to the roots of my old extensions, to soften the residual glue and remove them easily. I was going to have a completely fresh lash look.
Aya then delicately readied what were to be my new eyelashes - 120 strands of 10mm fibres.
She held a few of them in place on my lashline, and handed me a mirror to once again verify that I liked the length and curl of my chosen extensions.
We did decide on slightly shorter ones for the areas nearer to my nose, for a more natural look, going from 8mm fibres at my inner eye to a few 9mm ones, which blended smoothly into the lush 10mm lashes for the rest of my eyelid.
She prepared the black-tinted glue on her palette - black would blend in best with my lashes and give my eyes a little extra definition too. She dipped each fibre in the adhesive, one at a time.
She then attached each fibre strand by strand. This creates a natural look as opposed to when clumps are pasted on. This painstaking process also ensured my extensions would last longer, since they wouldn't all fall out at the same time.
Aya also pushed a counter every time she attached an extension fibre, to make sure that I got my full complement of 120 strands.
Once the intricate adhering process was complete, it was time to clean my new eyelashes and remove any extra glue.
Placing a piece of cotton wool below my closed eyelids, she brushed an extremely gentle shampoo foam onto my fluttery new cilia.
After they were squeaky clean, she used a lash brush to go over my eyelashes and extensions, to make sure everything was secure and no fibres were stuck together (nope, it had been a flawless job).
Aya then removed the tape expertly with her tweezers.
And voila...I had a brand new, beautiful blink!
I'm properly delighted with the final result, and feel my eyes are much more expressive now. Here's me making them speak, just for the heck of it.
I had a feeling the extensions would be durable, and true enough, they were still good as new one week later.
Day 7 of after First Lash Extension Visit
Day 14 of after First Lash Extension Visit
There had been almost no shedding, and their appearance continued to make me pleased as punch.
I've tried my share of lash extensions in the past few years, and I'd say these are great quality and adhered with impressive skill, for an incredible price! Touch-ups start from $40 if you return to Flamingo Hair Salon within 3 weeks of your initial extensions service.
2nd Lash Extension Visit ($40 Retouch for Single Lashes)
I make my appointment here every month so say hi if you do bump to me there for lash extensions :)
Their link for appointments is here: https://www.hairstudioflamingo.com/eyelash
Tried eyelash extensions? Share your experience with others at BU.sg.