Follow these three simple steps for eyelash perfection

Now I’m older, I’ve noticed my lashes aren’t as lush, so I’ve been on an improvement kick - Getty
Now I’m older, I’ve noticed my lashes aren’t as lush, so I’ve been on an improvement kick - Getty

About 16 years ago, I was a Disney princess. No, I didn’t work at a themed restaurant; I booked into a basement beauty salon to have eyelash extensions, just when they were becoming mainstream in the UK.

I opted for the shortest available because I thought they’d be subtle. They weren’t. They were super-long and feathery. My husband (then new partner) loved them. And to be honest, once I’d got used to waking up like I was about to go on stage in Cabaret, I rather liked them too. But as I had decent lashes anyway, I didn’t bother again.

Now I’m older, I’ve noticed my lashes aren’t as lush, so I’ve been on an improvement kick, discovering three tricks that – to my wide-eyed surprise – make a difference.

So eyes down, here goes…

1. Use a separate eye make-up remover

Instead of simply slapping on your usual facial cleanser, try Aurelia London’s Conditioning Eye & Lash Cleanser (£32, aurelialondon.com). With the consistency of a micellar water, it contains cucumber and rose otto, as well as extract of Inca maca. The latter is a root from Peru that has been known to stimulate the scalp’s follicles, so why not your lashes and brows? The formula certainly leaves them feeling conditioned and fresh.

I’ve also cleaned up my act in the way I physically wipe away mascara. Saturate a soft, flat cotton pad (cotton wool balls can release fibres) and hold it on your closed eye, letting it be for a few seconds to allow the loosening-up process to begin. Then use a downwards and outwards motion. What’s left can be gently swept away. After adopting this technique, I hardly saw any lashes lying prematurely dead on the pad.

2. Use an eyelash growth serum

These are designed to condition the lashes, especially during the growth (or anagen) phase and often contain peptides. These are amino acids that act as the building blocks of keratin, the primary substance of lashes.

Uklash Eyelash Serum (£37.99, uklash.com) is a great one to try. It contains biotin peptide and myristoyl pentapeptide-17 – bit of a mouthful but they’re there to encourage and support growth. At night, on clean eyes, apply one stroke as you would eyeliner, right along the base of your upper lashes. For results, you’ll have to be patient. Given only 40 per cent of upper lashes are in the growth phase at any one time, it can take at least six weeks, if not double, to judge results. But results it doth deliver.

3. Swap your usual mascara for one with flutter-boosting ingredients

New Watermans Lashology Lash Conditioning Enhancement Mascara (£24.99, watermanshair.com) contains black castor oil, along with amino acids, biotin and peptides – all lash-lavishing ingredients. What’s really nice about this mascara is that it has a fine brush that allows you to coat every lash from root to tip.

If you use eyelash curlers before mascara application (I do, and have done for decades) warm them in your hand first, which is better than the steely-cold approach. Once you’ve positioned them close to the base of your lashes, use a few regular pressing motions, which is kinder than holding a single, hard clamp for a long time.

Watermans suggests its Lashology mascara can replace a serum, so I’d pick one or the other rather than pile in with everything at once because a) there’s less chance of a reaction when you’re not mixing formulations; and b) you can pinpoint what’s bringing your lashes up to peak Disney princess perfection.

This week I am mostly...

  • Enjoying Sarah Chapman’s Intense Hydrating Booster Serum (£69, sarahchapman.com). With a super-silky texture, it’s the perfect oasis for parched change-of-season skin.

  • Eschewing the slouch position at my computer. Every time I catch myself, I sit up straight, stop rounding my shoulders and put my feet flat on the floor. Aah, that’s better.

  • Envying those women who waft about in elegant dressing gowns instead of a clapped-out towelling robe (like mine). I’m fancying a bird-print Susannah Cotton one (£59.95, susannahcotton.co.uk).

What are your tips for achieving long and luscious eyelashes? Tell us in the comments section below