How to Remove Eyelash Extensions

Close-up photo of doctor operating person's eyelash

Let’s face it — basic eyelashes are a thing of the past.

For most people, their own lashes just don’t give them the look they want. It’s become quite the beauty standard: 

“I want my eyes to pop, please.”

Hurray for eyelash extensions!

Because who wants natural, when you can have amazing?

Sadly though, lash extensions aren’t a forever thing and they eventually need to be removed. It isn’t just a case of pulling them off though (ouch — don’t try that). And makeup remover isn’t going to do it either.

Extensions need to be taken off carefully.

You know that surgical grade eyelash glue that kept them fluttering for so long? Well, it needs some help to loosen up.

The thing is, without proper treatment, removing extensions can cause damage to your natural lashes.

With that in mind, it’s important you know exactly how to detach them properly.

What Is The Easiest Way To Remove Extensions?

See A Lash Expert 

The best way to have your eyelash extensions removed is to book a lash removal treatment with a trained professional.

The removal process is way quicker than getting the extensions put on in the first place, and within about 15 minutes you’ll be back modelling a natural lash (boo).

A lash extension technician should: 

  • Be experienced in removing eyelash extensions
  • Have all the necessary equipment available
  • Protect your natural lashes in the process
how remove eyelash extension
Source: by Sarb Emanuel

If you were happy with the person who did the lash application in the first place, then your best bet is to go back to them so they can separate them too.

Alternatively, you can always take a look online for reputable technicians who remove lash extensions. It’s advisable to check out their reviews first to see what others think.

That way, you can have the extensions removed easily while protecting your natural lash.

The only downside to this lash removal option is cost — shelling out money for new lashes is one thing, but paying to have lash extensions removed is a bit of a kick in the teeth.

On top of that, putting time aside to visit the salon isn’t always convenient, especially if you’re leaving the appointment with nothing more than your sad old natural lashes in tow.

eyelash extension how to remove
Image courtesy

These are just some of the reasons that make people turn to other options instead, setting out to it themselves.

But, before you jump into loading your eyes up with coconut oil or taking tweezers to the glue, consider safety first.

Is It Safe To Pull Out Eyelash Extensions At Home?

It is certainly possible to pull out eyelash extensions at home safely.

The type of items you may use include things that you may already have. 

  • Coconut oil 
  • Olive oil 
  • Vaseline 

These are all safe products used for various purposes. But, no matter how gentle the oil you use, it has to be applied properly to make sure your natural lashes are kept intact.

The adhesive that bonds the lash extensions to your real lashes is extremely strong, and so it needs to be softened significantly — that way the lashes slide off. 

What Are The Risks?

  • If the extension glue is not removed properly, it could result in the loss of natural lashes
  • Because the false lashes are attached to your natural lashes strand by strand, you could pull out your natural ones accidentally
  • Incorrect removal could lead to permanent bald patches in your natural lashes
  • Misuse of a glue dissolver could affect your eye

Even though seeing a professional is highly advisable, if you go down the DIY route it’s important that you get geared up properly to avoid any lash mishaps.

Whatever you do, do it safely. 

How Do You Soak Off Eyelash Extensions At Home?

Buy A Home Removal Kit

When you go into a salon to have your eyelash extensions removed, the beauty therapist will have some specialist tools.

This means the products they use are specifically made for working on lash extensions.

In other words, in order to take off your lashes at home, you need to do more than just soak a cotton pad. 

An option you could consider is buying a DIY remover — a kit can be purchased from most reputable drugs stores as well as online.

But before you press ‘buy’, take a look at other buyers’ feedback so that you have an idea of quality.

The kits typically include:

  • Glue remover (can be gel, serum, clay, or oil based)
  • Mascara wand or applicator
  • Lint free under eye patches
  • Full instructions

As a rule of thumb, do not apply the glue remover directly to the lash line. It’s strong stuff, and you don’t want that in your eye.

If you do get the glue remover in your eye, rinse thoroughly with cold water.

With a good product, the lash extensions should only take about 10 minutes to remove.

Remember — it is imperative that you find a brand who promises to remove that strong lash glue whilst protecting your natural lashes at the same time. 

Try The Steam And Oil Method 

This tried and tested process takes a bit longer than using a specialised kit, but it is completely harmless and super low in cost.

eyelash extensions how to remove

Now for the method:

  1. Use your makeup remover to clean your face.
  2. Nearly fill a heatproof bowl with boiling water (and add a few drops of essential oil such as lavender if you fancy).
  3. Lean over the water bowl and place a towel over your head. Don’t get too close to the water, or you could burn your face. 
  4. Breathe, relax, and enjoy for 15 minutes. 
  5. Soak a cotton swab in your chosen oil (coconut oil or olive oil). 
  6. Using the oil soaked cotton swab, swipe from the lash line right to the tips of the lashes.
  7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 as many times as necessary until the extensions have all come away.

In order to remove the lashes as safely as possible, take note of the following warnings: 

  • Do not pull at the extensions — they should come away easily. If not, apply more oil.
  • If you experience irritation, stop immediately and go to a professional to remove the remaining lashes.
  • If excess oil happens to get into your eye, rinse with clean cold water. 

Can Vaseline Remove Eyelash Extensions?

Due to it being an oil based ointment, Vaseline is a good choice when removing your lash extensions at home.

It is effective at breaking down the molecules in the semi-permanent lash glue, making for easy removal.

The process is bit lengthier than the other removal options, but it will not damage your natural lashes. 

  1. Apply a small amount of Vaseline to a cotton swab.
  2. Use a cotton pad and set it underneath your eyelashes — this way you can prevent the Vaseline from going in your eye.
  3. With the cotton swab, spread the Vaseline across your lash line.
  4. Leave the Vaseline for 8 minutes, and then, using a cotton pad, sandwich the lashes in between. Gently rub your fingers in a sideways motion to loosen the lashes.
how remove eyelash extensions

Top Tips:

  • To give yourself a head start, place your head over a bowl of hot water for 10 minutes. The steam will start to loosen the adhesive glue, allowing for easier removal of the lashes.
  • Use an oil based makeup remover for extra lift on the lashes. 

Though Vaseline is effective when removing lashes, it is most useful for maintaining your lashes after they’ve been fitted.

How To Clean Eyelash Extensions covers this more. 

What Is The Best Way To Remove Eyelash Extensions? 

Now that you know how to remove eyelash extensions in several ways, it is entirely your choice to decide which method is best for you.

Seeking out the services of a trained professional is certainly a sure-fire way to ensure your lash extensions are properly detached from your natural lash, and going to the salon also includes the pamper element — which always feels like a bit of a treat.

Plus, it’s always a good excuse to get a quick nap in.

how to remove eyelash extension
Image courtesy

But if you’re low on funds (i.e. saving for the next set of lashes), can’t bear paying to have those darling lashes destroyed, or just don’t have the time for a salon visit, then you can try going the DIY route.

With a few things at hand, and following a process diligently, you should be able to remove your lashes with ease.

Don’t forget to take off your eye makeup before you start.

A few bits to help you on your way:

  • Cotton swabs
  • Cotton pads
  • Skin cleanser
  • Makeup wipes
  • Under Eye patches

Be smart if you’re going to buy a kit online.

There are many products promising the world, so be sure to read up on customer experiences before you shell out.

Though you may not love your natural lashes, you don’t want to damage them either — so quality of product is key.

Whatever method you choose, be kind to your lashes.

Looking for more advice? We share some more ideas with you on How to Remove Eyelash Extensions at Home.

Featured image: Pikrepo

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