Like many beauty procedures, it's easy to get hooked on eyelash tinting, especially once you've seen all of your invisible baby hairs on the tip-tops of your lashes in their newfound dyed status. The first time I got my eyelashes tinted during a brow wax appointment, I certainly knew it wasn't going to be my last. Who was that long-lashed siren staring back at me in the mirror? These weren't my sheer blonde eyelashes; these were longer-looking, thicker-looking, and all-around dreamy. Mascara? Didn't know her anymore. A lash curler became my new bestie.
Always on the hunt for dupes on a budget, I decided after spending around $20 extra at a few brow appointments, I was going to do them myself at home. I'm no stranger to dyeing my own eyebrows at home with beard dye—hear me out!—but lashes are a whole other beast. One misstep and your eyes will be burning like fire and the whole operation a bust. Luckily, I've spent many nights at home honing in the process, so you don't have to. So if you're interested in trying to tint your own lashes at home, make sure to follow my self-tested tips. (Disclaimer: I'm no professional. This is from personal experience only.)
First things first, you need to order yourself something to dye your lashes. Now, I've tried multiple dye kits—from beard dye to traditional lash dye—and there are two that have become my tried-and-true favorites. (Linked below.) And in general, the only tweak you'll need to make when using a dye kit is lengthening the amount of time that you let the dye sit on your lashes. For example, when I use my go-to Godefroy Tint Kit, I only allow it to sit on my brows for two minutes. But the lashes? I try to wait at least 10 minutes, if not 15. (For reference, when you get your lashes tinted in a salon, it takes about 20 minutes.)
In order to tint your own lashes at home safely, you need to be extra careful when applying the dye and developer to your lashes. Just remember that you want to avoid getting any product in your eyes at all or they'll start watering too much for the dye to have any effect. My best tip for avoiding that fiasco is to start by focusing mainly midway and up to the tips of your lashes and largely ignoring the base altogether. (The tips are what will make your lashes look longer, anyway! And midway is where you get major thickness.) In the event you get product in your eyes, rinse them out with cold water repeatedly to help soothe and clear your eyes of dye.
My tool of choice is a Q-tip, and I make sure to have tons of extras laying around in case the product wanders too closely to my eye. Just make sure to cover your lashes pretty thickly, using a back and forth motion, as well as up and down, to ensure each lash is coated and not lost in a clump. Trust me on this one. Also, I make sure to have something geared up on Netflix to distract me while waiting 10 to 15 minutes—Virgin River, anyone?—or I'll get antsy and want to take it off sooner.
Remember: Tinting your own lashes at home can be precarious, and some might find it more irritating than I do. Just feel it out and don't be afraid to scrap the whole endeavor if you're uncomfortable. And make sure you're always keeping away from your actual eyes. That's a big no-no—and trying to cover every last millimeter of lash line isn't worth it.
For anyone looking for more reasons to skip mascara on a daily basis, shop two of my recommended kits below.
Godefroy Lash Tint Kit
This popular kit with over 6,600 Amazon reviews works great for brow and lash tinting—mainly because it comes with small capsules of dye powder that can be used one by one as needed. Since it takes only just a smidge of dye when applying to brows or lashes, you won't waste a ton of extra product (or your money). I use the medium brown shade.
Shop It: $10.95; amazon.com
Just For Men Mustache & Beard Easy Brush-In Color
Turns out, beard dye works great on women, too. My first foray into at-home brow tinting is all thanks to this best-selling Amazon kit with over 5,000 reviews, and I still highly recommend it despite preferring the small capsules and shorter process time of the Godefroy kit. Choose from light to dark shades. (I use light-medium brown.)
Shop It: $8.99; amazon.com