My Eyelash Technician Works Out of Her Grandmother's Basement

So, just to clarify... you are allowing an untrained, unlicensed, uninsured gal to put liquid adhesive on your eyes.  Not sure what to say about that.

Oh wait, yes I am.  

Let me start by saying that I get it!  You are getting an incredible deal!  Eyelash extensions can range in price from $100 to $250 for the initial application.  That is a lot of money.  With this basement tech, its a screamer at only $45 and you get another $5 off if you refer your friends.  40 bucks.  Right!  And as it should be.  Your DIY trained lash technician saved tons of money by cutting around all of the red tape; no license, no training, no rent, no insurance, no taxes... it would save me tons of money too!  But its risky for many reasons.

First, let's consider the lack of training.  Eyelash Certification Courses usually cost about $2000 and there is a reason. Skilled professionals train licensed technicians to use medical grade adhesives to glue individual lashes, one by one, onto your lashes.  It is a delicate, very intricate technique, and in untrained hands, it is very dangerous.  On the lighter side, you may just lose your eyelashes, which should grow back.  No worries!  However, on the heavy, getting that glue in someone's eye can cause burning, severe irritation and if bad enough, blindness.  Proper training is necessary because in the event that something goes wrong, the technician will know what to do to save your eyes and your lashes.  

Hopefully this will never happen, but let's pretend you end up with glue in your eye and you are severely injured.  Straight to the hospital you go.  Who is going to pay that bill?  Your good-deal-slinging basement tech?  Highly unlikely.  Licensed technicians carry insurance or are insured by the salon or spa they work for just in case something like this happens.  Having good insurance is one reason that a licensed technician, salon or spa has to charge more for services.  Oh but don't worry!  You will have someone to sue if you get hurt... Grandma.  That's right.  You'll probably be going after her home-owner's policy.  That should be fun.  (Sorry Grandma!) But I'm guessing that because you knew you were getting them done in an unlicensed arena, you'll be paying that bill yourself.

And just for kicks, take a look at the photos of the eyelash extensions below.  These are great examples of extended lashes done by untrained lash technicians.  They are fabulous, aren't they? Can you imagine letting these babies grow out?  Actually, that would be a good day considering the modest (cough-cough) clumps of glue.  They probably started really hurting anywhere from a couple hours to a few days after they were applied because they pulled at the lashes as they grew and I bet they caused severe pain or at the very least, discomfort.  Not to mention that they look like poop.  Lashes should be glued on individually.  The next time you get your lashes done, look at them in a magnifying mirror.  Are they in clumps?  Are they going in different directions?  If they are, your lash technician does not how to properly apply lashes.

If you aren't sure if your lash technician holds a license or has training, there are a couple of tell-tale signs.  First, if she is using scotch tape to hold your lower eye lashes down - BIG RED FLAG!  (This isn't a practice used by trained technicians!)  If she doesn't have a sign up in front of her shop - BIG RED FLAG!  (This is required by The Commonwealth of PA.)  If she can't produce a license for you to see - BIG RED FLAG! (And no one should ever be offended if you ask to see this. On the contrary, she should be proud to show you her license!) If your technician can't tell you the name of the school she went to for her cosmetology training - BIG RED FLAG!  (Eyelash extension training almost always requires a valid cosmetology license.)  

And for your final consideration... if she is unlicensed, her basement boutique has not been inspected.  This may seem like no big deal, but the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has some very strict rules for salons and spas.  We go through rigorous procedures to make sure that our implements, including those tweezers that are being used on your eyes when getting extensions, are properly cleaned so that no disease or bacteria spreads from client to client.  The state will only do inspections if the salon or spa has a license.  If your basement technician doesn't hold a cosmetology license, then she doesn't hold a salon license, then she doesn't have training, then she doesn't hold insurance, then she doesn't pay taxes, but...  she sure is a good deal.  

Just so we are the same page.

And if you don't believe me, I've attached a few news articles about how dangerous getting eyelashes are from unlicensed, untrained technicians.  Just click on the LEARN MORE buttons below.



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And just for kicks, take a look at the photos of these really bad eyelash extensions!  OUCH!

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Oh Sh*t! I have a zit.


The big night is fast approaching. Its your homecoming, your prom or even your wedding day. You have the dress. You have the shoes. Your hair appointment is set. And you wake to find a huge boil-like zit on your face!  Ughhhh!

We have all experienced this dastardly scenario.  And while it is frustrating, there are steps you can take to help both avoid and fix zits that are trying to ruin your beautiful event.

Pimple Tip #1: Keep your hands off!  Do not attempt to squeeze, pop or otherwise remove the pimple, unless of course you are a trained esthetician with the correct implements to do so. Typically this will only inflame your new friend, making it worse or leaving a scar to remind you of this pimple for rest of your life.  (Trust me.  I know personally.)  And this is the exact opposite of what you want.

Pimple Tip #2: Clean your skin every... single... day.  Choose a Benzoyl Peroxide based product line.  This should make a noticeable difference in your skin, but you need to use it consistently for 6 to 8 weeks prior to your event.  The key here is consistency.  That means wash your face every, single night.  No exceptions.  

Pimple Tip #3: See your dermatologist for a Cortisone shot.  If your big day is approaching and you find yourself with a few pimples, your Derm can help.  It takes about 36 hours for this method to work, so get in there and watch your zits flatten like pancakes.

Pimple Tip #4: Try Salicylic Peels.  Salicylic Acid reduces oil and cleanses the pores while helping prevent break outs.  It is best to do these peels in a series of three over a few months, so get your calendar out and plan. Your esthetician can help you design your peel schedule specifically to meet your needs.  And these peels shouldn't break the bank at around $60 to $80 per treatment.

Pimple Tip #5: For that last-minute-party-crashing zit, try a blemish stick.  We recommend the Pevonia Blemish-B-Gone Stick followed with Pevonia's Youth Renew Tinted Cream.  First, you wipe out the swelling with the blemish stick and then cover the redness with this tinted cream that is actually good for your skin.

Pimple Tip #6: Avoid dairy.  If you tend to have break outs, avoid dairy for about 4 weeks prior to your big event.  Dairy contains extra hormones that can irritate skin and make you more prone to inviting zits to that special occasion.

No one wants to bring a big, red zit to a special event.  Following a regular skin care regimen is a great way to keep your skin healthy, but if pimples just seem to plague you, these tips should make a difference.  And as always, drink lots of water to help flush your pores regularly.  

by Rae Jean Catrabone,

Acting Owner of SandCille Spa & Host of SandCilleTV Original Series, Spa Talk