When it comes to thick, fluffy eyelashes, sometimes mascara just isn’t enough. While solutions such as lash lifts and extensions have soared in popularity over recent years, nothing is as simple (or affordable) as a reliable pair of false eyelashes.
A lot of people are put off by falsies primarily because of the amount of effort required to apply to them. Thankfully, there’s a vast variety of options available on the market now – ranging from traditional strips to individual lashes and even magnetic sets – to make it as easy as possible.
Applying traditional lashes is an art that once perfected can transform your make-up routine. We recommend curling your lashes and applying one coat of mascara first, then using a pair of tweezers to gently place the false lashes on your lash line.
Make sure the eyelash glue is tacky before you do this – apply your lashes too soon after using the glue, and they’ll just slip out of place. Wait at least 15 seconds before applying and you’ll have the best chance at a perfect application.
You may also need to trim the lashes to suit your eye shape and size. Although the glue should dry clear, you can cover up any obvious lumps and bumps with mascara or eyeliner.
When searching for our favourite lashes, we wanted easy application, comfort and longwear. Our favourites saw us through day and night without pinging off or irritating our eyes.
Unless a pair is explicitly designed for one use only, most false lashes should also see you through a minimum of eight or so uses. Be sure to remove them carefully and clean off any product using a dash of make-up remover to keep them in tip top condition.
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Morphe mesmerised premium lashes
Full and fluffy, these lashes are subtly rounded to sit tightly on your lash line. We experienced no awkward lifting in the corners of our eyes (a common problem with falsies) and they kept their shape even after several wears. Handmade from synthetic fibres, they score the perfect balance between looking natural and dramatic. They’re designed to last for ten to fifteen uses and definitely keep their quality if you take good care of them, staying fresh for the longest period out of all the lashes we tried. Lash glue is sold separately.
Huda Beauty Jacqueline #20 lashes
Perfect for those with bigger eyes or looking for a dramatic finish, these are inspired by the sultry gaze of Bollywood actress Jacqueline Fernandez. The lashes are double-stacked for ultimate fluffiness and have a very thin band, which helps them blend into your lash line. While they are described as lasting up to 12 uses with proper care, we found it was more like eight or nine. We also found the lash line very long, so you may need to be generous when cutting them down to size. You’ll also need to purchase the glue separately.
Charlotte Tilbury Charlotte’s secret lash tricks Hollywood red carpet lash
Make-up artist to models and actresses everywhere, we trust Charlotte Tilbury to give us red carpet-ready lashes. With an emphasis on fullness rather than length, these give your eyes the appearance of a subtle lash lift. Unlike a lot of synthetic lashes, they didn’t look plastic-y and sit very comfortably on your lid. Our only critique is of the accompanying lash glue, which is thicker and harder to apply than others we’ve used.
Ardell magnetic lash natural accents
A cult classic, these lashes are affordable and reliable for last minute glam. They work by placing two thin layers of lashes above and below your natural lash line, with the two automatically clicking in place thanks to the use of magnets. While they are less messy and can be reused more than lashes with glue, they’re a lot more fiddly and require more patience. But if you find eyelash glue irritating, they are definitely worth trying. To make it easier, we recommend starting with the bottom layer first. The effect is quite natural, drawing attention to the outer corners of your eyes.
Anastasia Beverly Hills false eyelashes gorgina
If you’re looking for drama, these lashes have you covered. Surprisingly lightweight for how thick and fluffy they are, they provide maximum impact (especially when topped with a coat of mascara). They’re easy to clean, despite the multiple layers of fibres, but do require you to supply your own lash glue. If you’re looking for a natural look, these definitely aren’t for you.
Eylure London individuals
Touted as the UK’s number one lashes brand, Eylure offers every style possible, but we think its semi-permanent individual lashes are its magnum opus. While they’re definitely not the replacement for lash extensions they claim to be (ours lasted a week, rather than the expected three to four), they’re a more than suitable temporary replacement. There are three levels of lashes – small, medium and large – which then range in thickness. Although it’s more time consuming to apply individual lashes, we love how you can choose to be as natural or dramatic as you like. They also come with both glue and lash remover, minimising the risk of damaging your natural lashes.
Red Cherry lashes demi wispy
This style isn’t for everybody, but we love the dramatic, fluttery look they give. The lash hairs are long but aren’t too thick, overlapping each other in places to give a more natural texture. Don’t let the low price fool you – they’re good quality and survived several washes, despite their wispiness. While they don’t come with glue, you still get plenty for your money.
SOSU By Suzanne Jackson Kendall 3D fibre luxury lashes
Fluffy yet delicate, these are a great choice for a soft glam, smokey eye make-up look. We love the slight curl to these lashes, which helps open up your eyes. Although marketed as dramatic, the wispy style makes them wearable for a range of looks and occasions, and we found them very comfortable to wear. Glue is again not included.
Tarte Cosmetics llama lashes
In case you’ve never noticed, llamas have incredible eyelashes. Taking inspiration from our fluffy friends, Tarte Cosmetics designed these dramatic falsies to replicate llamas’ thick, fluttery hairs. They have a thin, clear band to maintain some sense of naturalness, while the fibres themselves look convincingly real considering the fact they're completely synthetic. As they’re so thick they can feel a bit tickly or irritating after a while, but we found they did the job for an evening look or event. They also hold up well after being washed, but do require you to purchase glue separately.
Trish McEvoy instant pick-me-up lashes
As the name suggests, these help perk up your eyes without the need for excessive mascara or lash lifts. They’re very natural, with one simple layer of fine fibres in differing lengths across the band. Used with the brand’s accompanying lash adhesive (sold separately), they grip comfortably along the lash line. The perfect everyday set.
The verdict: False eyelashes
The Morphe lashes are everything we wanted, playing up our eyes without weighing down our eyelids or peeling off in the corners as the night goes on. To go bolder, try the Tarte llama lashes, while the Trish McEvoy set is perfect for a more casual occasion.
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