Twenty-twenty was the year for, well, a lot of things, including a sometimes amicable and sometimes not-so-amicable breakup with our favorite in-salon or in-office beauty treatments. Stay-at-home orders and business closures have definitely varied, but it's safe to say that many of us have gotten comparatively used to a life sans professional hair, nail, and lash jobs (just to name a few). We do miss our old routines, but there has been something rather refreshing and freeing about letting go. In fact, we've ultimately relished in the process of reinventing our favorite beauty splurges at home (facials! manicures!) and saying goodbye to some old habits altogether.
Even though I gave up my lash-extension habit years ago, I know so many people who have really missed their regular appointments and the long, super-fluttery results they'd get from their technician. Unfortunately, you can't create the exact magic at home, but there are some amazing options that can hold their own in the meantime. Mascara, of course, is one of our all-time favorite ways to enhance our gaze, but if you're looking for a little extra oomph, false eyelashes can be an excellent way to go, too. That said, only the very best eyelashes truly mimic professional lash extensions, so it's important to be choosy while shopping. Luckily, many of the best brands offer tons of different styles and lengths, so you can find a vibe that cohesively meshes with what you like at the lash studio, and many strips have come a long way in the believability arena.
We know there's a surplus of options on the market to choose from, so we lent a helping hand by selecting our top 10 eyelash brands and some of our favorite and most frequently recommended styles from each. Keep scrolling!
In case you missed it, Jenna Lyons burst onto the beauty scene last year when she debuted her very own false-eyelash brand, LoveSeen. (You can read every last detail about the launch here!) WWW HQ is still just as obsessed with the beautiful, natural-looking options as when they first launched, and Editor in Chief Kat Collings is wearing LoveSeen in the picture above! Choose from a variety of options, many of which come in your choice of either Black or Brown/Black for a slightly more surreptitious finish. If we had to play favorites, we'd recommend Jack (this is also the model Lyons wears most often!) or Romy.
Remember red carpet events? Well, more often than not, all of our favorite celebrities are wearing these very real-looking gossamer lashes from Lashify. The kits might be a bit more expensive than the average set of strips you can find at your drugstore, but the ultimate effect is so damn believable and eye-catching. Plus, each kit comes stocked with everything you could possibly need for professional-level application: a control wand, two sets of lashes, a bonding agent, and a waterproof lash extender.
If you're looking for the brand of eyelashes most worn by celebrities, we'd like to introduce you to Lilly Lashes. Most recently, we spotted them on former First Lady Michelle Obama at President Joe Biden's inauguration. They've also been spotted around town with A-list names such as Jennifer Lopez, Kim Kardashian West, Kylie Jenner, and so on. The selection is glamorous and gives you a 3D effect for lots of oomph and depth.
We'll just say this: MAC is the OG beauty brand when it comes to pretty much everything. (Name a trend or type of product and MAC was the brand that made it cool.) MAC will always reign supreme on the false-lash front, and while there are plenty of new and exciting brands we love, the brand's signature cool factor and diversity in terms of styles, lengths, and colors will be loved forever and ever.
Thrive might have exploded onto the beauty scene with the most Instagram-famous mascara ever. (Seriously, it's amazing, and you might forget about falsies altogether after trying it), but recently, the brand has extended its lash presence by debuting its own brand of lash extensions (you can pick from three different styles) that handily come with their own nonirritating and waterproof glue.
Word on the street is that Porsche Cooper, makeup artist to stars such as Mary J. Blige and Joan Smalls, is obsessed with lashes from Black-owned brand Camara Aunique. In fact, she recently told The Cut how fabulous they are: "The bands on these lashes are superior—they are invisible and über-flexible, which allows for an easy and seamless application on the lash line without the need for eyeliner." Um, sold.
There's a lot to love about Velour Lashes. For one, the brand uses a super-innovative lash fiber that makes for an incredibly natural-looking result, and its lashes are ethically sourced and cruelty-free. If you care for them correctly, one set will last for an average of 25+ applications. (Yes, really!)
Next to the Lashify Gossamers (which are more of an investment) that we mentioned above, Ardell's iconic Wispies are probably the most used among pro makeup artists when they're prepping a celebrity client for a shoot or red carpet. They're super affordable, and although there are tons of options sure to strike every kind of fancy, we'll always be besotted with its line is Wispies. We keep both the regular and the Demi length, which is a touch shorter, on hand for all of our faux-lash needs. (Plus, you really can't beat five pairs of eyelashes for just $12.)
Magnetic lashes can be tricky any way you slice it, but we're in agreement that Eylure is the way to go if you're going the magnetic route. They're comparatively inexpensive, so if you decide you're not into the magnetic vibe, then it's not a huge wallet suck for naught. And the brand boasts a patent-pending technology that allows you to seemlessly apply the magnetic eyeliner, let it dry, then apply your lashes sans glue, mess, or stress.
Individual lashes are game-changing if you're looking for longer and/or dense-looking lashes without the sometimes heavy side effect of strips. Most brands make their own iterations, but we're especially fond of the options from Kiss, which have a flat (versus knotted) band at the bases for easier application and a maxed-out extension effect. (That said, if you prefer a knotted band, they make those, too—see below!)