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How to Remove Eyelash Extensions at Home

How to Remove Eyelash Extensions at Home

Eyelash extensions are a fantastic way to obtain a glamourous, no-effort look on the daily. Without the need to apply false eyelashes on a regular basis, you’ll be saving both money and time. Plus, your extensions can last up to a month before they start to need a touch-up or reapplication.

When getting extensions removed, the best idea is always to return to the professional who applied them. If you have concerns over your initial application, you can head to a different salon for the removal process. However, sometimes life gets in the way and you aren’t able to make salon appointments, or maybe so many of your extensions have fallen out that you decide the rest need to come off right now.

In these cases, there are some steps you can take to safely remove your extensions without damaging the natural eyelashes below. We’ve collected the most effective ways for you to read about below.

The Basics of Eyelash Extensions

Lash extensions are applied using a strong lash adhesive. Each lash is hand-glued over your real lashes by a professional. While time-consuming, this process means that your eyelash appearance is totally customizable and will look incredibly natural. A good technician will help you select the best curl shape, density, and length to perfectly highlight your face and capture the exact look you are after.

Your natural lashes will usually remain undamaged with correctly applied extensions. Poor application and improper care can easily lead to lash damage though, so try your best to go to reputable salons and be careful with your extensions once they are applied.

Over time, the extensions will grow out and begin to fall off, just like your natural lashes. This can take anywhere between 4 to 8 weeks depending on how you care for them and your natural eyelash growth.

Methods to Remove Eyelash Extensions

Because extensions are stuck on with an adhesive, the key to removing them at home involves breaking down that adhesive. Once it is dissolved, you should be able to gently brush or slide off your extensions.

Apply Oil Before Bed

Oils have the ability to cut through the extension glue and loosen the adhesive bond. Applying an oil, such as coconut, olive, or castor oil, before you go to sleep will start the process of removing your extensions. Castor oil is especially helpful due to its growth properties; using it even after your extensions have been removed will let you grow and maintain long, healthy lashes.

For this method to work, dab a cotton pad or your fingers in a small bowl of your chosen oil. You can also use a clean mascara wand for this. Swipe the oil gently over your lashes, focusing on the root. Be careful not to get any oil in your eye.

Leave the oil on overnight and rinse it off in the morning. It may take several applications to loosen the extensions’ adhesive.

Use Oil-Based Makeup Remover

Part of good extension upkeep is being careful not to use oil-based makeup removers. However, since you are trying to rid yourself of the extensions, you have the green-light to ignore this advice.

This method follows the same theory as the one above – oil loosens the bonds of the glue. Simply add makeup remover to a cotton pad and gently move it up your lashes. Don’t rub or scrub at them. You can let it sit there for a minute or two before washing it off. For best results, use the remover twice a day.

Use Steam

Hot steam is another easy option for extension removal. The heat from the steam will dry out the adhesive and make it brittle so that the glue begins to lose its bond. You can use either a hot shower or a hot bowl of water for this method.

In the shower, turn the water on hot and let steam build up. You can then adjust it to a comfortable temperature and jump in – the steam will work its magic. If you are using a bowl of water, the easiest thing to do is hold your head over the steam. Place a towel above your head to cover you and the bowl, trapping the heat in.

This is another method you will probably have to repeat several times before your extensions are loose enough to slide off.

Buy Professional Extension Remover

You can find professional grade extension remover to use at home. This method requires a little more skill to be done safely, so only attempt it if you are sure of the steps.

  1. Make sure your eyes are completely makeup free. Examine your lashes to determine where the natural ones end and the extensions begin.
  2. Use under-eye pads to protect your skin. Place them as close as you can to your bottom eyelid.
  3. Apply the extension glue remover to two different clean spoolies or used mascara wands.
  4. Tightly close your eye before using the remover and leave it closed until your extensions are off. Getting the glue in your eye could lead to stinging and irritation.
  5. Move your glue applicator slowly down your lashes, concentrating on the middle and the tip. Wait three minutes with the remover on your eyelash.
  6. After the time is up, use the second glue-covered applicator to sweep down your lashes. The extensions should come off. You can use makeup remover to clean any leftover glue before moving to the next eye.

Remember to be careful when using any kind of product near your eye. If the extensions don’t come off on the first try, you can apply a little bit more glue remover and attempt it again.

After Eyelash Extension Removal

Be extra careful with your natural eyelashes after you have removed the extensions. Try not to touch them too much or apply lots of heavy makeup in order to give them the time they need to strengthen and repair themselves. If you want, you can apply a lash serum to help speed up this process.
woman with eyelash extensions

Things to Avoid When Wearing or Removing Eyelash Extensions

There are a few things that should be avoided when it comes to caring for, and removing, eyelash extensions. Try to avoid the following so your extensions continue to look their best.

Applying Mascara

It is not recommended to apply mascara over extensions. Mascara can add too much weight onto your lashes, which can lead to damage over time. If you have to apply mascara, use it sparingly and make sure the formula is oil-free.

Mechanical Eyelash Curlers

You should probably stay away from mechanical curlers while your extensions are in. These curlers can crimp and damage both your extensions and your natural eyelashes. Most extensions already come with a curl to them, but if you want more volume, consider a heated eyelash curler. At low heat, these are usually safe for use with extensions.

Pulling at Your Extensions

The worst thing you can do when trying to remove your extensions is pull at them. The action of pulling, cutting, or picking at your extensions will likely only damage your natural lashes and leave the extensions attached. You want to keep your natural eyelashes as healthy as possible, so refrain from tugging at your extensions and try one of the safe removal methods we’ve listed instead.

General Eyelash Extension Care

Your eyelash extensions will last much longer, and look much nicer, with proper care. A few simple additions to your beauty routine will enable your extensions to look as excellent as the day you got them, months later.

Brush Them Out

Brushing out your lashes can help stop tangles. Tangled lashes will often break off and start to look patchy. This is an especially important step if you chose to apply very long, dramatic lashes, or if your extensions are particularly dense.

Use a clean spoolie or mascara wand and gently brush from root to tip, separating each lash. You can do this upon waking up in the morning to prepare your extensions for the day.

Take Breaks

Between each set of extensions, consider taking breaks. Leaving a couple of weeks between sets can help your natural eyelashes stay strong and healthy, so the next time you get extensions they can easily be applied without risk of damage.

Clean Them

Your extensions will benefit from a cleanse a few times a week. You can purchase an extension cleansing foam made with ingredients that will gently wash your lashes without disturbing the glue or irritating your eye.

Final Thoughts

When you’re in a pinch and can’t get a professional to remove your extensions, these home removal methods provide a safe alternative. Remember to always be careful when putting products near your eyes, and if something feels off, do your best to contact a salon experienced with eyelash extensions. We hope you enjoyed this guide, and that you love your fresh, extension-free look!