This column on lash growth serums was planned for last month, but I had to delay it because a major TikTok craze caused my planned product picks to sell out. Lash growth serums aren’t new. But the way they’re made is changing. Old-school versions mostly use the lipid prostaglandin, which has hormone-like effects. This essentially helps lashes grow for longer, artificially delaying their shedding cycle. Because these hung on to lashes way beyond their natural residency, it was not unusual to end up with the lash equivalent of needing a bloody good haircut. Ends were gnarly, a bit chewed looking, like slept-in falsies after a big night.
The newer peptide-based serums assist the natural growth process, conditioning lashes and providing silky, strengthened quality for only a fraction less quantity. And they’re much gentler.
Teresa Smith, lash expert and founder of I Love Lash, says she’s happier to recommend these to her post-chemo clients, as well as those who’ve “over-scrubbed their eyes, been subjected to botched lash extensions elsewhere, or simply seen their lashes thin out and become shorter with age”.
If that’s you – and you’re able to get your hands on some – try Sweed Beauty’s terrific Eyelash Growth Serum. It’s applied in the same way as all others (by painting along the base of clean, dry upper lashes, as though applying liquid eyeliner, only before skincare), and the results can be so impressive as to be implausible – a friend began using it on Saturday and by Wednesday her lashes were noticeably longer. I get a slight tingle upon application of this one, but it soon passes. At £44 for 3ml it sounds expensive – and it is – but it’s not in the same neighbourhood as the £100-plus hormone-charged serums of yore.
If you’re already a Beauty Pie member (I am), then a lash serum is a good way to flex your discount. Beauty Pie’s Korean-made Lash Fuel, £19.50, is well worth a punt. I experienced zero itch or irritation with this, and it leaves my lashes feeling soft and conditioned. You should begin to see the results in around four weeks, and the 5ml helping per tube will see you over the line.
If you’re curious but not convinced, I recommend The Ordinary’s Multi-Peptide Lash and Brow Serum for just £12.40, which doubles up as an aid to the over-plucked, feels as good as the others and has coaxed two of my friends’ stunted lashes out of hiding.
Photography assistant: Bruce Horak