A Brief History Of Eyelash Extensions

Eyelash extensions have been around a lot longer than most people think! It’s easy to assume that eyelash extensions are a modern concept. After all, eyelash extensions have been a hot topic on social media for the past few years. But the truth is, eyelash extensions didn’t start with TikTok-the history of eyelash extensions goes back centuries! Here’s a look at how eyelash extensions developed.

Ancient Influencers

As early as 3500 BC, Egyptians would make their own mascara brushes and mascara to add thickness to their lashes. Throughout the history of eyelash extensions, this was also a practical way to style your lashes, as deepening and lengthening your lashes protected them from the sun.

Mascara Hits The Scene

For centuries, manicured lashes have come and gone. It wasn’t until the mid-19th century that Queen Victoria’s personal perfumer, Eugene Rimmel, invented the first crude mascara using petroleum jelly and coal dust. This exciting invention sparked a trend toward longer, lusher lashes.

The Dawn Of The First Artificial Eyelashes

While eyelash fashions have obviously evolved over the centuries, it wasn’t until 1911 that Canadian inventor Anna Taylor patented the first artificial lashes. From there, the history of eyelash extensions really began. They were the first strip lashes that could be attached with glue and were made from human hair.

Long Lashes Under The City Lights

The history of lash extensions continues with a German hairdresser named Karl Nessler who advertised Anna Taylor’s lashes as protection against New York City’s bright electric lights. Five years later, lash extensions were featured in a movie called Intolerance. The film’s director, D.W. Griffith, decided that actress Seena Owen’s eyes weren’t prominent enough on camera, so he commissioned the on-set wig-maker to whip up some lash extensions for the scene!

Lash Extensions Start Trending

After Owen’s stunning eyelashes hit the big screen, eyelash extensions burst dramatically into history, with women in the 1920s and ‘30s flocking to the trend. Lash extensions were featured in Vogue magazine, and they were worn proudly by famous mid-century actresses like Judy Garland and Marilyn Monroe. By the ‘50s, it was clear that lash extensions were here to stay!

Back To Present Day

Like any fashion trend, lash extensions have phased in and out of mainstream culture over the years, but there were always plenty of fans—some who wore them, some who wore them and pretended they didn’t wear them, and plenty who didn’t wear them but admired them.

In the early 2000s, the history of eyelash extensions was revitalized once again, as celebrities like Paris Hilton and Jennifer Lopez sported them prominently. Later, Katy Perry and Kim Kardashian also became known for rocking the look.

You’re Part Of History

Today, the fascinating history of lash extensions continues strong. They’re no longer considered a fad, but a fashion staple, and that’s largely due to fashion-forward people just like you. That’s right, you’re making history right now, so flutter those lashes proudly! And, as a lash tech, you’re not only influencing the future of fashion but helping to establish a lasting place for lash extensions in our culture.

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