Better Than False Lashes Nylon Lash Extension System ($35), designed to give you the length and volume of false lashes with three simple steps. The three-step lash extension system includes two products: an activating mascara base and top coat and the Flexistretch nylon lash fibers. Does it work? Kinda sorta.
The look of false lashes has never been easier or more affordable with this do-it-yourself system that's an alternative to messy false lashes and expensive lash extensions. The activating mascara base and top coat is designed specifically to melt and seal the Flexistretch nylon fibers into long, thick, dramatic lashes without the risk, mess, or commitment of other false lash alternatives. Unlike traditional fiber mascaras, Better Than False Lashes allows you to dial up the lengthening fibers so you easily get better, longer, thicker, more dramatic lashes instantly.
Too Faced kindly sent me Better Than False Lashes to test. I may be dense, but I was a little confused when I read the directions. Step 1 is a priming step, which actually turns out to be a full-fledged mascara application. Step 2 is a build step in which you apply nylon fibers to your lashes over the mascara (base and top coat). More on that below. Step 3 is a sealing step; you finish by sealing the fibers to the lashes with the same mascara you used in Step 1. I had to try it to understand how it worked - and that there were two products for three steps - obvious from the box, but not intuitive.
I am blessed with long lashes, and all it takes is a nice lengthening mascara to make them pop. I am very impressed with the Too Faced "Activating Mascara" I use in Step 1. My lashes look fabulous after the first step. Step 2 gets a little weird. When I use the mascara wand to apply the nylon fibers, I feel like something's wrong with my technique. I have a hard time getting the fibers to stick to the mascara (they are dry), and occasionally I get what looks like a little cotton ball on my lashes. The cotton ball will flick away easily with another pass of the wand. The lesson here? Apply Step 2 as fast as possible before the mascara applied in Step 1 dries (and it dries very quickly). Otherwise, the little fibers have nothing to grab them. Step 3 is basically a second coat of mascara, and that ought to make your lashes look more full and potentially longer, with or without the fibers.
I don't plan to show you photos of my lashes (hate close-ups), but you can see a great review with before and after shots, published by my sweet blogger friend Musings of a Muse. Unfortunately, you can see the little white fibers on her lashes. I don't know whether she was unable to cover them completely with Step 3 (mascara) before she took her photos, but she loves Better Than False Lashes.
Even though Too Faced says that the product was ophthalmologist-tested and approved for use by those who wear contact lenses, I'm skeptical. I can feel the extra coating on my lashes for about an hour after application. My lashes feel heavy. I'm sure I'd get used to that eventually, but I don't like the feeling of having something with weight on my lashes. The little fibers have fallen into my contacts on occasion. My eyes are extremely sensitive to foreign bodies. The tiniest speck can feel like a rock to me. If you try this product and wear contacts, make sure to apply the product before you put in your contacts. Also seal the fibers into your lashes by coating them extremely well. If you can see white fuzz, you haven't finished sealing.
I have mixed feelings about Better Than False Lashes. It does work in the sense that it adds length and volume. Too Faced claims a 98% increase in volume and a 42% increase in length. I see small increases on my own lashes. I suspect the results you get will depend on the length and thickness of your lashes. Another plus is that the product can be removed easily with water - no heavy-duty eye makeup remover is required. I do not think Better Than False Lashes is ideal for contact lens wearers, based on my personal experience. Tread carefully if you have sensitive eyes.
For now, Better Than False Lashes is available only at Sephora. The customer reviews are overwhelmingly positive. I seldom read customer reviews because...well, I'll keep the snarky reason to myself. I read them this time because I wanted to know what others thought of this unique lash product. Think you'll try it?
Photo courtesy of Sephora