There’s admittedly a certain amount of risk involved in something that can sound like a routine beauty treatment: the wax could be too hot, the manicure tools could be insufficiently sterilized or an exfoliation could be too vigorous. But one woman in Thailand may have experienced one of the most harrowing results of an otherwise run-of-the-mill lash extension appointment.
Fara Foosaeng, owner of Fara Beauty Salon in Phuket, Thailand, said a client came to her salon when her eyes were glued shut after getting lash extensions. The reason: the technician who performed her treatment used superglue to attach the extensions to her existing lashes.
In a video Foosaeng posted to Facebook, she can be seen carefully applying an oil to the woman’s lashes to help dissolve the glue and painstakingly removing the extensions. The end result left the woman with sparse and shortened lashes, as well as red and swollen eyelids.
There are a number of complications that can arise from getting eyelash extensions, not the least of which are reactions to the glue itself.
In an interview with Allure, Dr. Susan Bard of Manhattan Dermatology Specialists, said a safe glue contains a semi-permanent, latex-free and formaldehyde-free formula to decrease the risk of an allergic reaction.
Similarly, Clementina Richardson, celebrity lash expert and founder of Envious Lashes, told Pop Sugar that the best type of glue (and one that salons should use) is a medical-grade formula that can’t be bought in beauty supply stores. In addition, a reputable salon should suggest a patch test of the glue 48 hours before carrying out the treatment.
“Some adhesives dry clumpy and are visible; those are ones to avoid. Do not use crazy glue, hair glue or any other glue, that is a big no-no,” Richardson said.
Both experts stressed that a low price should never dictate where you go to get eyelash extensions.
“Your eyes are not a place to start bargain hunting,” Bard said. “Go to a reputable salon and avoid the Groupons.”
According to Consumer Reports, eyelash adhesives can cause an allergic reaction, as can the adhesive solvents. The lashes themselves can carry a risk of bacterial and fungal infection and can cause conjunctivitis or irritation to the cornea.
In a study of over 100 women in Japan, a number of ocular complications were identified from eyelash extensions, the most frequent being keratoconjunctivitis, which can cause redness, swelling of the eyelids and sensitivity to light, and allergic blepharitis, or chronic irritation of the eyelids, due to the glue or solvents.
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