How to grow eyelashes? Top tips from experts

how to grow eyelashes

Do you want to learn how to grow your eyelashes to look longer, fuller, and thicker? Welcome to the club. Lash growth is a surprisingly complex process largely influenced by genetics. But you don’t need to let that restrict you! 

In this post, we cover all of the truly effective methods to boost lash growth. We’ll also explain the pitfalls that can cause lash shedding so you can help your lashline thrive.

Table of Contents

4 Proven Ways of Growing Eyelashes

Tips and tricks for growing lashes are plenty, but the real and proven methods are few and far between. These are the best ways to improve your lash growth. 

Way 1: Use a Lash Serum

Whether you’re recovering from lash loss or trying to get a little more oomph, lash serums are your best bet for growing lashes. They’re very accessible and can create really surprising results! There are a few main types of active lash serum ingredients out there, including:

  • Natural formulas with plant extracts like red clove, larch wood, or mung bean. These ingredients are often better researched for hair growth, but brand-sponsored studies show that they can also boost lash length and density. 
  • Peptides are tiny amino acid chains that are usually part of trademarked complexes such as Capixyl or Sympeptide Xlash. These cell-communicating ingredients are believed to target the dermal papillae in a way that stimulates keratin production.  
  • Prostaglandin analogs such as isopropyl cloprostenate work by extending the lash growth period. These ingredients are quite controversial since they may be associated with similar side effects to prescription lash growth products.  

Our lashes go through phases of growth, rest, and shedding that play a major role in lash line fullness and eyelash length. Lash serums work by actively inhibiting the processes that cause lashes to shed while also helping to extend the growth phase. 

This is why they can make lashes seem longer and thicker while also visibly improving the density of the lash line. Some formulas also condition the skin and lashes to keep them strong and prevent breakage. 

To see results, it’s important to use a lash serum daily and even twice daily. Ensure your eyes are clean, and apply the serum right up against the lash line like an eyeliner.

Depending on the product, you can expect to see results within a few weeks. Some serums can have very dramatic results - especially ones containing prostaglandin analogs. Remember that once you stop using a lash serum, your lashes will probably return to normal within a similar period. 

Way 2: Consider a Prescription Lash Treatment Carefully

Prescription lash growth products like Latisse take lash growth to the next level. The active ingredient in them is bimatoprost, a prostaglandin analog. It’s the only FDA-approved lash growth drug currently on the market. 

Bimatoprost was first available as a treatment for glaucoma, helping to relieve pressure on the eyes. It was soon discovered that this ingredient can also make lashes grow longer by extending the growth phase. 

While highly effective, bimatoprost also comes with potential side effects. Eye irritation (hyperemia) is the most common, followed by pigmentation changes. Recently, there have been documented cases of fat loss around the eyes, which usually becomes apparent after long periods of consistent use. It can lead to a sunken look that many find isn't worth enhancing the lashes.

Way 3: Diet

Healthy hair and lash production depend on the body having access to sustenance, especially proteins (lashes, like other hairs, are made of a protein called keratin and diverse micronutrients. If your diet has been lacking, a nutritional adjustment might be the key to giving your lashes the boost they need. 

A great diet for healthy lashes isn’t just about eating specific nutrients. Moreso, it’s about ensuring you don’t have any major gaps and that you’re getting all the vitamins and minerals your body needs. It’s also important to eat enough, and especially enough proteins. 

Way 4: Supplements

Beauty supplements are an increasingly popular option for anyone who wants to boost their lash growth. The most popular ingredient in beauty supplements is biotin, but other ingredients you may come across include zinc, B vitamins, collagen, selenium, vitamin C, iron, and more. 

While many of these ingredients are associated with improving hair growth, it’s important to remember that the science isn’t rigorous. There isn’t any high-quality research on taking supplements for lash growth, but many do notice results after starting a multivitamin. 

It’s possible that a supplement could make a difference, especially if you think you might have a nutritional deficiency. Consider speaking to a doctor to determine if a supplement might suit you. 

What Not to Do for Longer, Healthier Lashes

When figuring out how to improve your lash growth, knowing what not to do is just as important. Some little habits and mistakes can damage your lashes. By avoiding them, you may discover that your lashes can grow long and healthy just fine on their own. 

Don’t rub or tug

It can be hard not to rub your eyes when you’re sleepy, but this is a pretty major source of lash line trauma. When you rub, that side-to-side motion effectively can pull out lashes that weren’t ready to shed yet, so you end up with sparse areas.  

Don’t sleep on your stomach

When you sleep on your stomach, you inevitably end up with your face and eyes pressed against the pillow. Even soft pillowcases are still made of fibers, which leads to friction against the lash line. 

If you sleep on your stomach, you probably find a few lashes on your pillowcase every morning - sleeping on your back instead will help keep them intact. There are a few other ways to get around the issue, such as using a silk pillowcase or wearing a domed eye mask

Don’t neglect your health

The appearance of your lashes is largely genetic, but your health still plays a role. A poor diet won’t provide your body with the nutrients it needs to grow hair, while lack of sleep can generate hormones that suppress hair and lash growth. 

Following our suggestions for how to grow eyelashes will help, but prioritizing your well-being is just as important. Mental health is also important, especially if you’re prone to pulling on your lashes when you’re nervous or stressed. 

A sparse lash line can sometimes be a symptom of other health conditions. If you’re experiencing abnormal lash loss, make sure to speak to your physician so you can seek a proper diagnosis. 

Don’t remove mascara with water

Another thing that can harm your lashes is attempting to remove mascara with water (except for washable tubing mascaras). Most mascaras are designed to resist water, even if they’re not officially waterproof. On the other hand, oil melts them down immediately and helps preserve your lashes. 

Don’t put too much faith in DIYs 

From castor oil to aloe vera, there are endless suggestions out there for natural or DIY recipes that can help with lash growth. However, home remedies aren’t formulated or studied in the same way as lash serums. Using castor oil for lash growth is probably the most popular DIY recommendation, but for every person who sees results, another will not.

The natural lash growth ingredients you’ll actually find in serums have some scientific backing, and they’re combined into formulas designed to penetrate the lash line. Brands usually conduct their own studies to ensure that their products work.

If you still want to try some highly-raved-about DIY lash growth hack, that’s perfectly fine. It’s just important to maintain realistic expectations. For your safety’s sake, skip homemade concoctions that include essential oils (they can be sensitizing). Don’t leave your DIY remedies sitting around at room temperature, where they can breed bacteria. 

Additional Tips for Healthy Eyelashes

We have a few more tips to help ensure you’re giving your lashes the best chance to grow. These aren’t necessarily game-changers but are great habits to pick up!

  • Keep them clean: Don’t underestimate the importance of washing your lashes! Pathogens can damage your hair follicles and lead to lash loss, so always remove makeup thoroughly and wash your lashes with a dedicated lash cleanser if you’re prone to styes or eye irritation. 
  • Take makeup breaks: Wearing mascara frequently can lead to lash loss, so try to give your lashes a break as often as possible.  
  • Moisturize: Your hair benefits from being conditioned, so your eyelashes might as well! Light eye cream or oil on your lash line may be beneficial if you cleanse the area regularly.
  • Try extensions: Options like professional and DIY lash extensions are an easy way to dramatically enhance your lash line, far beyond what you could possibly grow naturally.  
  • But be careful with professional services: Improper technique during lash extension or lash lift services can lead to lash loss, as can improper removal of extensions and false lashes. Choose your providers carefully to avoid issues. 

Your Luscious Lashes Awaits

When figuring out how to grow your lashes, we think it’s best to start with the basics - taking great care of your lashes and your body as a whole. Aside from that, lash serums and treatments are your best bet since they can actively stimulate your eyelash follicles, helping them reach their full potential. That said, it’s just important to be aware of the ingredients science and their potential side effects so you can choose the best formula for you. 

Explore the world of eyelash growth with Lilac St. and learn more articles: 

Understanding Eyelash Regrowth: Do Eyelashes Grow Back Naturally?   

Why Are My Eyelashes Falling Out? 14 Causes and Conditions. 

The Truth Revealed: Does Mascara Make Your Eyelashes Fall Out?

Enhance Your Lashes: Is Vaseline Good for Eyelashes?

Coconut Oil for Eyelashes: Is it good? Does it help the eyelashes grow?

Unlock the Truth: Does Castor Oil Grow Eyelashes?

Does Crying Make Your Eyelashes Longer? Debunking the Myth.

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Maya Adivi

Make Up Artist | Beauty Writer

Maya Adivi is a makeup artist and beauty writer originally from Toronto, Canada. She’s passionate about all things makeup, skincare, and beauty. She takes a science-based approach to writing, ignoring the marketing buzz in favor of facts and re...