When getting eyelash extensions, it's important to know the natural eyelash growth cycles. Knowing this will help you understand what extensions are best for you.
Eyelash Hair Growth
The average lifespan of a natural eyelash is around 90 days. It will go through three different phases in the growth cycle.
Just like regular hair, each lash is in a different part of the cycle at any time. While one lash may be falling, another may be growing.
New lashes are often too small to support extensions. This is why it is important to know the different growth cycles.
The Anagen Phase is the first stage in the eyelash growth cycle. The lashes are actively growing for about 30 to 45 days, or 4 to 6 weeks.
About 40% of the upper lashes are in the Anagen Phase at any given time. Conversely, about 15% of lower lashes may be in this phase at any time.
Once the natural lashes reach their full length, they move to the next phase.
The Catagen Phase is the second stage in the growth cycle. It is the transition period between growth and resting. Here, the lash stops growing and the hair follicle will begin to shrink.
This phase lasts about 2 to 3 weeks for most people. This is when the lash can be considered an adolescent in the maturation cycle.
If a lash falls out or is plucked during the Catagen Phase, it won't start growing back right away. The follicle must complete the phase to continue the growth cycle.
The Telogen Phase is the final stage in the cycle. It is the resting phase where there is no more growth. Here adult lashes are fully matured and will begin to fall out naturally.
Most people lose 1 to 5 lashes per day from natural shedding. The entire growth cycle can take between 4 to 8 weeks or 1 to 2 months on average.
Why Know These Phases?
If the lash artist knows the growth cycle, the extensions will usually last longer.
Placing extensions on lashes in the Telogen phase might make them fall out sooner than expected. Placing extensions on small baby lashes will stunt their growth.
The lash artist needs to find the strongest lashes in the right stage of the growth cycle. This will ensure the extensions last as long as possible.