A Belated Happy New Year, and My Fake Eyelash Hell

So sorry for the mysterious silence, bellas. 2007 hit me like a Mack truck.

Coming back from a blissful vacation to a new job with bigger responsibilities, an immediately pressing deadline, no food in the house, and a husband out sick with the flu has been a tad overwhelming. Unexpectedly, one of my most major sources of stress was totally Afrobella related. I got fake lashes put on for New Year’s, and I absolutely hated the experience.

I got individual false eyelashes applied on New Year’s Day, shortly before our family festivities began. Other than the strong scent of the glue so close to my eyes and nose, the process wasn’t bad at all. Mama Bella and I chatted with Julie the whole time, and it was done in a flash.

When I was done, I was thoroughly impressed. My lashes were thicker and longer and more fabulous than ever before. I felt gorgeous, and received beaucoup compliments from people who normally don’t notice what kind of makeup I’m wearing. Then, the trouble began.

I first noticed that I might experience some eyelash turbulence during the party itself. I became suddenly verklempt after kissing my niece goodbye – I knew she wouldn’t be awake ‘foreday morning to wave and say bye when we left for the airport. Then I went to say adios to my dog, Souris. The poor guy is on his last legs (literally – he has chronic arthritis and splits half a pill with my mom every day. It’s so sad to watch. He’s like 98 years old in dog years).

I guess it was the drinking + homesickness made me bawl like a baby, right there crouched next to my poor, old dog. When I tried to dry my tears, I encountered spiky, painful plastic protrusions coming from my eyelids. They HURT.

From that moment on, I became hyper-aware of the fact that I had glued on plastic spikes to my eyelids. No – correction – I had paid for the pleasure of having plastic spikes glued to my eyelids. I had no idea how sensitive my eyes were until this point.

Julie had warned me to sleep carefully on my back – she could tell by the way some of my outer lashes curved that I slept in the fetal position. After copious glasses of champagne followed by strong rum and cokes (and rum and Peardrax. Try it! Such an inspired combination), I slept any which way I could.

When I awoke to head to the airport, the lashes were fine. When I awoke after sleeping on the plane, they were fine but a bit “kilkitay,” as they might say at home. By the time I got back to our place, my lids ached. I wanted these lashes OFF and I was going to make it happen by hook or by crook!

I spent two days cleaning my eyelids with makeup remover. Kiehl’s, Philosophy, Rimmel… none of them worked. I did a Google search for removing fake lashes, and all of the information I read recommended soaking my eyelashes with makeup remover, then removing the lashes. It was not that easy, bellas.

At one point, one of the most painful of the lashes became disengaged, only to become stuck in the spiderweb upside down. I looked like I had a large mosquito trapped in my eyelashes. It was terrible. My eyes were red, my lids were swollen, and they hurt. Every time I blinked I felt these spiky bastards on my aching eyelids. I cursed myself for being so vain. For going against my credo of all-natural beauty. Why oh why did I not think my own lashes were good enough, and leave well enough alone?

It took two days of repeated cleansing, delicate picking at the hard, black clumps of glue, and I don’t want to speculate how many real lashes got lost along the way… but finally I’m happy to say that all of my fake lashes are removed. I will never torture them like that again.

In retrospect, I wonder if I had bought softer fake lashes – these Shu Uemura ones look divine – or if Julie had used a different sort of glue, I would have had a better experience. Either way, I’m glad they’re finally off. I don’t know how Mama Bella does it!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I had the experience and I don’t regret a thing. Fake lashes made me appreciate my real lashes that much more. Now I just want to pamper my eyelashes to the max. I slathered them with Vaseline and told them I love them. Now I want to buy some kind of brush-on eyelash conditioner, to really take better care of them. If any of you have tried such a product, let me know.

I hope you all had a wonderful New Year’s, and that 2007 brings happiness and blessings to us all! I’ll be making up for lost time and posting all weekend long. I missed you guys!

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Comments

  1. Akilah aka Ami J. says:

    I missed you too! I was hoping you wrote something soon. Your eyelash story was well worth the wait. I love how candid you are with your stories! Take Care!

  2. Welcome back Bella!

    I am sorry you went through such a eyelash nightmare. I too looked at a pair of ultra stylish false eyelashes over the weekend and decided against them. Had I heard your story I probably would have run away from them. I havent used an eyelash conditioner myself, but I will ask around the beautyblog circuit and see what I can find for you.

    Happy New Year Honey

  3. *shrugs* pain is beauty righ?

  4. Wow, Diamond – you sound just like my mom. She still believes that, too. I refuse to torture myself just to be “pretty.” That includes not forcing my flat-as-a-pancake size 10 feet into high heeled shoes as well, so maybe I’m an extremist that way…

  5. ‘Bella. I hear you knew Bert Allette too. I’m hoping to do a post about his murder but girl, don’t know if I can nah. He was such a good man; very kind and very giving. To think he was murdered trying to help teh same people he’d been trying to help.

  6. What a nightmare! I’ve never tried falsies, as I have pretty nice lashes, but the temptation was always there. No more, that’s for sure.

  7. Ciao bella, da il benvenuto di nuovo (Hello beautiful, welcome back). I missed you and I’m glad you’re back. I just want to let you know that you are truly an inspiration to me.

  8. Diamond if pain is beauty then let pleasure be UG-GA-LAY!!! I’ve heard that Organic Castor Oil helps to make eyelashes grow longer. So I tried it and sure enough within 2 weeks of applying it every night before bed I did notice a difference – my lashes are now very thick and quite long. OK … not long enough to plait or anything but long, thick, strong and shiny nonetheless.
    Just do a Google for “castor oil on eyelashes”

  9. That experience sounded painful, Bella! Yikes. But this sentence
    I slathered them with Vaseline and told them I love them
    had me LMAO!

    Happy New Year!

  10. Anonymous says:

    I agree with Anita Grant, I have been using Castor oil on my eyelashes for a month now and have definitely noticed thickness, strength and shine. Nice to have you back!

  11. Ooooh, Anita and Anonymous! I’m gonna have to get some castor oil. My eyelids still feel tender, but so happy to not have clumps of glue stuck in there!

    Thanks for all the welcomes back, ladies. I missed you too – so glad to be back on the scene.

    Hottie, Bert’s funeral was today and I can’t stop thinking about him. Our old house in Belmont was literally behind his, and when he was a little one his family rented the front house from my Aunty Iris and Uncle Eric. Needless to say, my mom and aunts and uncle have known Bertie since birth, and the funny thing is because he came here to Miami for our wedding, all of my American friends also got to know him and are sad to hear what happened.

    To have such a bright, sweet person so cruelly and senselessly snuffed out has me totally brokenhearted and depressed. Trinidad is still beautiful, it will always be where my heart is. But what has happened to the sweet T&T I always knew and loved, I don’t know. Did you also read about the poor woman from Never Dirty who got caught talking to the Anti Kidnapping Squad? That ripped my gut out, reading it. I can’t wait to see what you write because I know you also knew Bert well.

    RIP, Bert. You worked hard to make things better. You will be missed by many.

  12. Welcome back, seems like the lashes got the best of ya. don’t give up, there are adhesives that are made for contact lens wearers which are super gentle. any teasers for this weekends post?

  13. Coffy! Happy New Year!

    You want teasers, huh? Well – serendipity might lead me to interview a long-requested Afrobella of the Week candidate next week. But over the weekend, I’ve got tips for caring for little afrobellas, the best fade cream evah, and some new commercials that are bugging the bejesus out of me. I’ve got a backlog of Ask Afrobella questions to answer, and some fabulous new products to review! Mixed Chicks, Matrix Biolage, Oscar Blandi… I could go on and on. But I won’t!

  14. bella, i’m a very natural sista myself. just recently i started wearing mascara and now thinkin about stopping again cuz i hate they way they make my lashes feel (hard) and sometimes they break off (and i use your recommend maybelline XXL).

    but i said “pain is beauty” cuz folks do too much to their bodies to “look good!” and like you, i dont believe its worth it

    and far as your feet, I AGREE!!! i wear an 11 wide and i’m flat footed,pidgeon toed and knock kneed, so i sometimes look a hot mess in heels if i cant rock them right, so i dont force my feet in them..

  15. I love falsies, but I hate individual lashes. MAC #7′s come in a strip and look so good. it’s like your natural lashes just fuller. I dont wear them often but they are beautiful!

  16. ok, Bella i’m hooked. if you don’t want to wear fake lashes, but still want attention to be drawn to the eyes use a soft brown mascara on the top lashes and black on the bottom. i know crazy but it works, pair that with Innoxa eyedrops or Visine and you are cooking with gas.

  17. I been a lurker on this site for a looooooog time.
    I must say Bella that I’m happy that your eyes are now okay. I think indivuals can be very dangerous for some people.
    Its funny how good Indivual lashes look thought, you can stop cars with nice eyelashes if you wink them at a man(in a good way).

  18. Bella,

    While you were away, I got inspired and helplessly walked into a MAC store in SF to get some lashes. The saleslady promised me that I could buy them and have them applied for me any time and at any MAC store, and then quietly told me not to get them. She wore them herself, and they were stunning. But, I figured that when a salesperson tells me not to buy, I shouldn’t.

    Have you tried Kevin Aucoin’s mascara? The one with the tiny brush & microtubules.

    Welcome back and I hope 2007 only improves for you!

    Buon anno!
    Brunsli

  19. Brunsli –

    Why did the MAC sales rep tell you not to buy the lashes? Especially since she wears them?

    Peace,
    Dana

  20. Also – Brunsli, you rock. I came home exhausted and hungover from Trinidad, and found a beautifully wrapped Bella gift from you. I am excited to figure it out and I plan to make wearing my new hair jewelry a weekend project. =)

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. Happy New Year!

    I adore an honest salesperson! I guess I identify with them. I’m glad the MAC lady was telling it like it is. I guess this first experience was bad, but maybe the strips would be a better way to go. At least then it would be a quick removal, rather than two days of sufferation.

  21. Yummm…I love Peardrax. We never get it at Chrsitmas though. My grandmother goes down for Carnival,brings some back with her and of course we drink it all. We did tear up some sorrel and black cake this Christmas.

    BTW…I love your blog! Natural hair, makeup, and Trinidad? Three of my favorite things….

  22. welcome back bella! sorry about the tragic lash experience.

  23. AppleDiva says:

    Enjoy the blog. I am glad that you had a great time in TT. Looking forward to 2007. Thanks for referring me to the TT Food blogs. You have the best beauty blog on the internets..

  24. Try Ardell brow and lash accelerator as a conditioner. They sell it at drugstore.com. Or you can rub castor oil on them. Hope that helps, good luck!

  25. Yikes! That experience sounds awful. Hopefully other beauty experiments in 2007 won’t be so tramatic.

  26. oooh, that sounds so terrible! i have to plug for MAC here. I have had lashes from them a couple of times, and they stay put all day, and when you take your makeup off at night (i use those pond’s wipes), the lashes slide right off. no kiddin’. it’s super easy and they look fabulous. don’t beat yourself up for being vain… i think there’s nothing so decadent and face-transforming as the fake lashes. they look amazing. but not if it hurts that bad! that’s a point where fashion shouldn’t take precedence over function. :)

  27. I hope your new year is going well so far. I wear fake lashes all the time and the lady who does mine uses this glue that kind of soft so you can just work the lashes off, the glue doesn’t harden because believe me I have used that hard glue before and it can be very uncomfortable and tormenting because it seems like they won’t come off. So if you do decide to get fake lashes again ask who ever puts them on, tell them the type of glue that he can use feels almost like play glue, because my aunt has sensitive eyes also so that glue is what works best for her.Next time tell them to put it on the lash not on the lid because sometimes it’s to far down on the lid, before the glue dries all they do is use there tweezers and kind of slide them off the lid and then I think you’ll have better luck…oh and like the first three days do wet your face completely just use a washcloth.Happy New Year Everyone

  28. coiltastic says:

    ouch!! that was painful to read. You actually got me into trying to fluff my eyelashes. But I haven’t gone for fake ones yet. I must say I don’t think I should bother after seeing this.

  29. jerseybred says:

    Afrobella, your a nut and why does Vaseline after all these years still make us feel better?

    WELCOME BACK

  30. Hey Sis, I too am au’ natural and lashes are my first weave, lol. I put them on 2 years ago and promised never too do it again because itwas painful taking it off. however at my launch party last month I rocked them, hell they make you look fabulous!!! I put them on for the New Year as well, and the edges became undone on 1 and irritated me, so I ripped it off, vaseline and baby oil really do help to coax them off. But girl I must confess yesterday I had them replace the missing one on my swollen eyelid. I am a vaseine wearing chick, a lil dab on my face and on my lips, but when I have on the lashes I wake up looking ready made. When these come off next week, I will let my lids rest…til my b’day Feb. 5, lol!!! I am hooked girl.

  31. Dana,

    She told me I didn’t need them because my eyelashes were thick enough already. I figured she wouldn’t miss out on a commission for no reason and thanked her for her honest opinion.

    Bella,

    I’m so glad you got the hairtie! I hope you like it. You might have to shorten it because wrapping it around several times can be tricky.

    Brunsli

  32. Happy New Year Bella!

    Sorry about your eyelash experience! That’s why I only rock the strip lashes. My eyes tear up so bad from the individual eyelash glue and then most of the lashes are on the pillow the next morning. I wear strip lashes almost every day. Instead of lash glue, I use hair weave glue. It gives a better hold and it’s easier to remove.

  33. Hi I LOVE your site!! Thanks for the knowledge and reviews! I too had lash extensions. They looked great but I was so aware of them. LOL! I think the glue your person used caused your problems. My glue was transparent. I did remove mine though because I could not apply eyeshadow w/o getting it on the lashes. I got them toooooo long.

  34. eyelash conditioner??? lol I heart you Bella!

  35. You have excellent analysis. thanks for writting

  36. If you are ever tempted again only get the mink lashes. I had an awful experience in the Bahamas – the salt water in my eyes and the pokey lashes were not a good combo. I have mink lashes now and they are awesome – the only way to go…

  37. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. :) Cheers! Sandra. R.

  38. I love your site. :) Love design!!! I just came across your blog and wanted to say that I?ve really enjoyed browsing your blog posts. Sign: ndsam

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  40. Hi everyone, I use fake eyelash strips on a daily basis and tried two kinds of eyelash glue. One is called “Duo” and the other .. I forget what name. But both of them make my eyelids red and swollen after just one use. And after repeated use, it makes my eyelids crack and bleed! Am I the only who experiences this and does anyone have alternative recommendations on how to solve my eyelash problem? Thanks.

  41. I always wanted to write something like that on my site but I guess you’re faster :)

  42. @ diane,
    you are probably allergic to latex which is a common allergy. most strip eyelash glues has rubber latex as the main ingredient.

  43. Thank you for the tip. Dare to be imperfect and one day there will tug at your sleeve a soulmate. ~Robert Brault, http://www.robertbrault.com

  44. Sign: zdbrw Hello!!! ceatw and 8173hmukzutaev and 2029 : Sorry, what did you mean?? A??

  45. Iam sorry that you went through such a nightmare and i dont wear them often but they are so beautiful.

  46. OMG! This is hilarious! I felt the same exact way. I wanted my lashes off so bad. I tried everything from oils to makeu remover and nothing worked!! I ended up pulling them off! Now i have no eyelashes. Although my lids are swollen and hurt like hell, Id rather feel this way then to have to ridiculous lashes stuck to my eyelid. I cant wait until they grow back. Ill NEVER do that again

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Anyone remember my fake eyelash hell from last year? I think enough time has passed for me to consider a retry for New Year’s Eve. This time, instead of individually glued in lashes, I’m dying to try some Shu Uemura lashes. And the time is right — the company known for producing the best fake lashes on the market is having a friends and family event! From 12:01am EST on Thursday, December 13th through 11:59pm EST on Monday, December 17th, you can get 20% off when you enter the promotion code HOLIDAY07 at checkout. This offer isn’t available in stores, you gotta buy online at Shuuemura-USA.com. Click here to check out some of their craziest lash styles. I’m not THAT out there – I’ve got my eye on the Premium Lashes Set. Hint hint, Santa baby! [...]

  2. [...] remember my fake eyelash hell from last year? I think enough time has passed for me to consider a retry for New Year’s Eve. [...]

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