5 oil-free mascaras that are lash extension safe

Anna Hunter 21 November 2018
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6 oil-free mascaras that are lash extension safe

The products on this page have been chosen by our editorial team. If you buy something we recommend we may earn an affiliate commission.

The main idea of lash extensions  is that we can enhance our natural assets without faffing about with mascara at all, but sometimes upping the ante with a jet black lash coater is just too irresistible. Before you start waving your wand around, here are some tips on the mascara + eyelash extension equation:

Do be gentle, and focus on ends only. Avoid tugging a mascara wand from root to tip: you’re likely to rip out your extensions, along with natural lashes, not to mention compromise eyelash glue and dissolve your bonds.

Don’t use waterproof mascara. This will cling to your lashes limpet-style, thus will be virtually impossible to remove at the end of the day without severing your eyelash extensions.

Don’t use oil-based mascara (hence the title of this edit). Lash-conditioning oils will dissolve eyelash extension glue, as will propylene glycol.

Don’t use fibre-based mascaras  (typically of the ‘ volumising ’ genre). The body-building fibres will get tangled in your extensions, so will look strange to say the least, while also possibly falling into your eyes during the day and being a beast to remove without nixing extensions/ a natural lash or two at the same time.

Now onto the good guys…

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Clinique Naturally Glossy Mascara, £20

Given the impact of lash extensions alone, you don’t want to be overdoing it with thick, spider lash style formulas and this quintessential groomer is the antithesis of bold and bulky mascaras. A straight and narrow brush glides through lashes nicely and the formula is creamy and richly pigmented yet easy to remove. If 'less is more' is on your agenda, this should tick your box.

"This is excellent for filling the gaps after few weeks of lash extensions for a more even look," says lash extension expert Daxita Vaghela  of the Atherton Cox salon  in Marylebone.

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Lash Perfect Mascara, £16.95

The safety first option, this mascara is custom designed to go gentle on extensions while still serving up some drama. It tidies and intensifies lashes neatly while washing off easily in water, allowing you to hold onto your precious extensions for as long as possible. It’s not the most glamorous offering, but it gets the seal of approval from lash extension specialists up and down the line, and that’s good enough for us.

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Lancôme Défenicils High Definition Mascara, £25

Another mascara with Daxita's seal of approval for extension wearers. This has a slim, long wand, and is perfect for capturing the end of each and every lash, without bringing on the dreaded clumps. With a silky formula, it delivers speedy theatrics, and once your lash extension era is over you can get it into the roots with amazing efficiency and little to no eye poking. Great at separating, although not the most volumising, but then again that’s why you forked out for lash add-ons…

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Nouveau Lashes Enhance Mascara, £19

Suitable for natural lashes, extensions and post- LVL treatment , this custom designed lashcare mascara has longer bristles on one side of the brush to catch big extensions, and a shorter bristled angle to wiggle product onto lower lashes and into the corners. Basically, it’s drama and subtlety in the same wand. It won’t impair your extension bonds or undo your LVL lift and curl , and it can be eased off nicely with water.

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BBB London Iconic Lash Mascara, £20

Created by brow and lash expert Blink Brow Bar, this mascara is what they recommend you used post-lash extensions as it's oil-free and has a tubing formula. "My advice would be to avoid the roots and apply the mascara on the tips of the lashes only, this is to avoid the lashes from falling out prematurely," says Jamineey Patel, head of training at Blink Brow Bar.

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