In a world where Lucy Boynton-level lashes seem like an unattainable dream, the rise of eyelash growth serums has caught the attention of many beauty enthusiasts.

The quest for lusher, longer lashes without the hassle of mascara or the commitment of eyelash extensions has become a beauty trend, especially with the increased focus on the eyes during the COVID-19 pandemic.

But do these serums really work, and are they safe? Let’s uncover the truth behind the two most popular lash serums and see what experts say about them.

The Science Behind Lash Serums

Understanding how lash serums work requires delving into the intricacies of hair follicles. These tiny structures in the epidermis play a crucial role in hair growth, including lashes.

Top view young woman posing with roses

Lash serums, whether prescription or over-the-counter (OTC), aim to nourish and promote healthy hair follicles by supplying them with essential vitamins, nutrients, and growth factors.

Experts say these serums stimulate growth by directly applying these elements to the lashes and brows.

The accidental discovery of the lash serum phenomenon was designed initially as a medication for glaucoma.

When applied to the eye, it was observed that patients experienced significant eyelash growth. Since then, it has been repurposed as a brush applicator for lashes and eyebrows, harnessing the power of stimulating growth.

The Active Ingredients in Lash Serums

Lash growth serums typically include two main categories of ingredients:

  • Conditioners
  • Growth stimulants

These components further contribute to the effectiveness of the serums:

  • Botanical Extracts
  • Vitamins
  • Ceramides
  • Peptides
Front view human eye

Prescription vs. OTC Lash Serums

Prescription and OTC lash serums differ in their classification and approval processes. Prescription products undergo rigorous testing by the FDA, allowing them to make growth claims.

On the other hand, OTC products focus on cosmetic effects without the same level of scrutiny. Some OTC serums contain growth-stimulating ingredients similar to prescription-grade bimatoprost. Others rely on conditioning compounds, often botanical in nature.

Results and Timing

While we all crave instant results, lash serums demand patience. The natural growth cycle of hair, including lashes, dictates that initial results can be seen around four weeks, with maximum benefits appearing after three months of consistent use. However, the catch is that the benefits may fade once you stop using the serum regularly.

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Safety Concerns and Side Effects

The safety of lash serums depends on their classification. Prescription serums are deemed safe and effective under physician supervision.

Potential side effects include dry eyes, darkening of eyelids, and a rare risk of eye color change. For OTC serums, ingredients must be scrutinized, especially those containing prostaglandin analogs.

Using Lash Serums with Extensions

Contrary to a common myth, lash serums can complement eyelash extensions and help prevent the loss of natural lashes.

Choosing a serum safe for extensions is crucial, avoiding products that break down the glue used in most lash treatments.

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Choosing the Best Lash Serum

The decision between prescription and OTC lash serums depends on individual needs, budget, and biology. Seeking recommendations and researching popular brands with proven track records can guide selection.

Ultimately, lash serums offer an array of choices for those desiring longer, fuller lashes. Whether opting for a prescription or OTC serum, the key is understanding the risks, benefits, and proper use.