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Are magnetic eyelashes worth the hype?

False lashes can leave you in a sticky situation ... literally!

If you find yourself ripping out your own lashes or tugging at leftover goo two days later, then allow me to introduce you to the concept of magnetic lashes.

What makes magnetic lashes so appealing is that they're reusable, they don't require messy glue and they're less likely to rip off your natural lashes. Basically, they seem like a cool, low-maintenance version of the original, glue-on version.

While there are some luxe varieties on the market (around $70), Ardell just launched a drugstore version that's a lot more affordable (at $11).

Instead of two magnets (like the first-generation versions), Ardell touts that these have anywhere from three to eight smaller, virtually invisible magnets embedded end to end so it will lay down seamlessly on the lashline and won’t bulge out in the middle.

The company launched both full strips as well as accents, which are placed on the outer corners of the eyes. At TODAY Style, we had to give them all a try!

The brand recommends applying a layer of mascara prior to application. This gives the lashes some grip and also helps natural lashes blend in.

Lashes are marked as upper and lower in each package. I don't know exactly what would happen if you mixed them up (the thought gives me shivers), so let's assume we'll all delicately and mindfully place them back in their proper home after every use.

It seemed simple enough: With the top strip, you line up the outside of the lash with the outer edge of your lashline. Next, you bring the bottom lashes to meet the top and when they are close enough — click — the magnets snap together and you're golden.

I won't lie, there’s definitely a learning curve. That top lash will inevitably fall on the ground, the bottom one won't snap into place, but after a few attempts, I started to get the hang of positioning both. The most satisfying part is hearing it actually click into place. Success!

If you do need to realign or start over, just grab the magnets at the base of your lashline and roll your thumb and index finger in opposite directions to unlock them. Then, gently slide them off your lashes.

Things seemed to be going well until ... well, until I looked in the mirror. Yikes. They are a bit too bold for me! The lashes didn't blend well with my own and I could distinctly see the magnet on the underside of the lash. If I blinked slowly enough I could feel the cold magnet on my eyeball.

It's a feeling that's tough to describe, but certainly not ideal.

IF YOU CONSIDER a quick swipe of mascara sufficient lash enhancement, this news may confound you, but among a growing segment of America’s female population, false lashes are a daily staple. Touted by influencers like “Shahs of Sunset” star and Lilly Lashes founder Lilly Ghalichi, fake fringes are no longer fringe, with U.S. sales reaching nearly $270 million in 2018, up 31% from 2017, according to polling firm Nielsen. Fans of fake lashes value their exaggerated, eye-opening drama, but, with their messy, irritating glue, applying them has always been a pain.

The even bigger news for lash lovers: Reusable magnetic fake lashes—which attach via a thin strip of magnets at the base instead of glue—have recently come on the scene. Intriguingly, I received a kit as a gift, but after one frustrating session trying to master the tweezer-like applicator, I understood why “how to apply magnetic lashes” was Google’s top trending beauty search in 2018. The struggle to get them on has spawned a subgenre of YouTube videos offering either clever hacks or brokenhearted reviews.

These polarized (and polarizing) temporary lashes consist of a set of two lash strips studded with tiny magnets that adhere to each other, sandwiching the wearer’s own upper lashes. They’re typically made of synthetic or human hair, and for a luxe option Uptown Lashes sells a mink set ($30, uptownlashes.com). Some kits, such as the one from One Two Cosmetics, are sold with a tweezer-like applicator included ($69, onetwocosmetics.com). Ardell’s popular lashes are more of a deal starting at $14 a kit, with an applicator sold separately for $4 (ardellshop.com). Some women use tweezers or their fingers to apply the lashes. Though simple in concept, the process is difficult in practice due to the magnets’ minute size and the exacting placement required.

New York-based makeup artist Mary Irwin said that a magnifying mirror could help, and recommends looking down into the mirror so you can see the underside of the lash. Then, dexterous users can “gently drop the top part of the magnetic lash above the natural lash,” which is the step that requires extensive practice. However, Ms. Irwin conceded that “for everyday wear, I don’t think they’re the most practical.” Having studied online tutorials carefully and still failed to apply my own set, I would have to agree.

The boom of eyelash growth serums, lash extension and curling procedures, and lengthening mascaras should prove the point—the world is obsessed with the quest to longer, fuller eyelashes. But despite all this new beauty tech, applying false eyelashes is one tried-and-true trick that makeup artists and celebrities have been using for years. And the surge of magnetic eyelashes hitting the market proves this option isn't one to ignore.

Once only adhered to your natural lash with adhesive glue, mink magnetic eyelashes secure to each other, and your lash line, with tiny magnets. The latest brand to launch this type of technology is celebrated falsies brand, Ardell. According to Jadene Munson, the Global Brand Ambassador, they "feature virtually invisible magnets placed along the lash line that lock together and secure the lash along your natural lash line." This brand's full strip lashes, specifically, feature four magnets for an impressive hold, while the accent lashes feature three magnets. Basically, you are sandwiching your natural eyelashes between two strips held together with magnetic force.

It's relatively simple. Each product will differ slightly, so it's best to follow the instructions on the package. First, it's often recommended to trim the lash so it'll naturally fit along your natural lash line. Then, Munson recommends applying mascara to give your eyelashes more grip. For Ardell's strip eyelashes, the next step is to lay the Upper Magnetic Lash across the top of your lash line. Then, you place the Under Magnetic Lash from the tray and place it underneath your natural lash line. Thanks to the magnets, they will lock in place.

Another popular brand is One Two Cosmetics, seen above. These magnetic lashes come in full strips or half lashes to accent the outer corners. This brand's magnetic lashes also come with an applicator that looks a little like tweezers, but you can apply them with your fingers, too. The same logic applies—the upper lash is magnetically attracted to the bottom—but you can watch this short video for a visual breakdown.

To remove the Ardell lashes, Munson says to gently pull them apart by lifting the top lash up and pulling the bottom one down. You can also slide the top and bottom magnets away from each other "one by one." However, you should never pull them straight off, as this could harm your natural lashes. One Two recommends using your thumb and index finger to slide them apart.

RELATED: The 10 Best Eyelash Growth Serums on the Market

The Best Faux Mink Magnetic Eyelashes

The two brands that are creating the most buzz are One Two ($59; hsn.com) and Ardell ($8; walmart.com), both of which are reusable. When deciding between the two, consider the price-tag, and also the material used. And if you have sensitivities or allergies, this is extremely important. Ardell's are made with 100 percent human hair, while One Two's are synthetic. We should note that while they're easier to use than traditional glue-on lashes, there is still a slight learning curve. Make sure to give yourself a few test-runs before applying them for an important event. As far as options go, both of these brands offer different styles to choose from, whether it's a bold and glamorous look you're attempting to recreate, or something more subtle and natural.

In the world of eyelashes, there’s always a new product or two floating around that claims to be better at giving you the longer, fuller lashes you’ve wanted. We’ve been searching for ways to enhance our eyes for centuries. Nothing frames your eyes and makes them more noticeable than a great set of soft, voluminous lashes, and we would do practically anything to get them.

One of the newer beauty trends to hit the eyelash scene are magnetic eyelash strips. We admit, our curiosity was piqued when we first heard of these. How can magnets help you get longer, fuller lashes? Is it safe? Affordable? You know we’re your eyelash info insiders, so we got the scoop on magnetic lashes so you don’t have to waste your time researching them for yourself.

Serums, salon treatments, and miracle lash conditions may have all made a name for themselves in the realm of lash enhancement, but the tried-and-true method of eyelash lengthening and thickening has always been the use of falsies. This is the go-to method of eye enhancement for everyone from celebrities to the coworker sitting in the cubicle next to you. Eyelash strips are the industry standard for many reasons.

They’re safe. Serums with certain formulas and salon extensions come with some pretty risky side effects. Skin and iris discoloration, natural eyelash loss, and eye infection are all safety concerns for these methods of enhancement. Eyelash strips are generally well tolerated by everyone and are safe to apply and remove on a daily basis.

They’re affordable. Other methods of magnetic false eyelashes enhancement can be extremely expensive. A full set of professionally applied eyelash extensions alone can be upwards of $300, and that doesn’t factor in the cost for maintenance and upkeep.

Serums are not much cheaper, considering that they often cost over $100 and usually last about thirty days. Once you stop using a serum, any lash lengthening effects disappear, so if you want to continue the effect a serum can potentially offer, you’ll need to continue using it.

Eyelash strips cost a fraction of the price and are reusable twelve to fifteen times. Doe Lashes cost just under $13 per pair, which means you can have glamorous lashes all month for less than it costs you to go grab brunch with your friends.

They’re instant. Other lash enhancement options may take time to provide results. Eyelash serums can take up to three to four weeks before taking effect, and that growth isn’t as noticeable or remarkable as a set of false lashes. Eyelash extensions can give you instant length and volume...after a few hours in the salon chair. Get comfortable in the chair, because you’ll be headed back to the salon for “fills” every few weeks.

Eyelash strips can be easily applied and removed within minutes, without any in-between or continued maintenance required.

They’re DIY. You can apply false eyelash strips at home without any prior experience and get professional looking, gorgeous results right in your own bathroom or bedroom, no tipping required.

Since false eyelash strips are the industry standard for eyelash enhancement, it’s no surprise companies are continually trying to change or repackage the design. Magnetic lashes are different from strip lashes in how they attach to your lash line. Traditionally, eyelash strips attach just above your natural lash line with glue or a holding gel. Glue is the most traditional method of adhering false magnetic eyelash accessories to your lids, and a great quality glue can hold your lashes in place for hours on end. Depending on the brand, they can even endure things like sweat and water. Just like some companies sell eyeliner kits, you can also get lash kits for convenience. 

Magnetic lashes are held in place by complete magnetic contact. Think of it as using basically invisible magnets (or smaller magnets that are compact). You will have lashes with bottom magnets and an upper magnetic lash as well. To apply magnetic lashes, you will need to invest in not only specially made eyelash strips that have tiny magnets attached to the lash band, but also a specialty iron-oxide magnetic liner. 

Magnetic lashes are applied by first applying a thin strip of liquid iron-oxide eyeliner on top of your natural lash line, waiting for it to dry, and then clipping the magnetic lash strip to the eyeliner using an applicator tool. Some people like to put all their items on a small tray so they don't lose anything during the application process. 

To remove magnetic lashes, you’ll need to pull the magnetic lash bands off, and then remove the liner. Try using your index finger and thumb for a solid grip. Some companies suggest using olive oil to remove the eyeliner, while other manufacturers carry a specialized iron oxide eyeliner removing solution. It isn’t recommended you use regular eye makeup remover, as it may not be effective in removing the liner and can be damaging to the lash band if it is exposed to a remover containing oil.