Summer-proof your lashes

www.latisselonger lashes.comDo you want long lashes, but hate to wear mascara on hot, humid summer days? Then perhaps you have been tempted by some of the new lash growers.

There is very little most women won’t do for long, lush lashes. Our own Anne Gravel loves her lashes. She is our resident lash expert.

The FDA has finally approved Allergan’s Latisse, a drug to grow eye lashes. It was developed from another Allergan drug, Lumigan, used to treat glaucoma. According to Allergan and the FDA, Latisse grows long, dark lashes. It can cause some side effects, mostly itchy eyes, redness, and sensitivity. It may also cause the pigment of the eye to darken permanently. Doctors have approved the treatment as safe. The results: long dark lashes that are impressively flirty-looking. You need a prescription and the price is about $120.  There are reports that prices have gone down a bit. So if it interests you, shop around. It can take several months for the full effect, and the results are not permanent. And even in this economy women, flock to buy it.
For those who prefer a more natural approach, there are several new botanical-based lash growers on the market. Do they work? Will they work as well as Latisse? That’s a good question, and since we first brought you this story in January our editors and contributors have been testing them.
Our results are mixed. Our testers reported that they saw some improvement in their lashes. Their lashes appeared to different degrees, to become fuller and glossier after a few weeks. I tried two of them and found them itchy. But I am a dedicated mascara wearer, in any weather, so I was not very persistent. The bottom line seems to be that results vary from woman to woman. The only way to know if you will love a particular lash grower — even Latisse — is to try it.
neuLash Active Eyelash Technology contains bioengineered peptides, hyaluronic acid, biotin, panthenol, licorice extract and other ingredients to promote lash growth. neuLash says it will show results in 30 days by promoting moisture and elasticity in the lashes. It can also be used on the brows.
The formula, according to the manufacturer, has passed safety testing in the U.S. and the European Union. (The EU has stricter standards for cosmetics than the U.S.) A three-month supply costs about $150. It’s available at Saks Fifth Avenue or online.
LiLash is a lash stimulator. LiLash uses a glycol-peptide from the sweet almond as a super conditioner. White lupine seed extract, a botanical, is used to stimulate hair regrowth.
The manufacture says you should see some results after two weeks; it takes six weeks for full results. A tube costs $139 and should last five to six months. LiLash offers a 90-day, full money-back guarantee.
Lash Food is a natural eyelash conditioner that says it will grow longer, darker, fuller lashes. It contains biotin and arginine (a complex of natural amino acids), iris extract, and many other botanicals popular in oriental medicine and homeopathy.
The maker of LashFood suggests there will be results after two weeks for most people, and full results after two or three months. LashFood is not recommended for pregnant women. It offers a 60-day money-back guarantee. A tube costs $129 and lasts for five months.

All of these products are applied nightly to clean eye lids, just as you would apply eye liner. They can also be used on sparse brows. They are all recommended for use with eye lash extensions. They won’t loosen the extensions, but claim to minimize the breakage and dryness that extensions can sometimes cause.
So whatever you choose, lash grower, mascara, or au naturel, bat your lashes. The world loves a flirt.