Extension-Free Ways To Get Longer Lashes

When eyelash extensions first became a "thing", I thought it would be the next best stuff since... well, clip-in hair extensions. I'll preface this by saying I've never actually tried lash extensions myself, but if I'm taking the advice of any of my friends who have tried them out, I won't be experimenting any time soon.

Sure, those faux long lashes look great. But the tales I've heard from friends who gave them a shot make me pretty wary of the things. The horror stories ranged from their real eyelashes falling out, to the person applying the extensions accidentally putting one up into the eyelid instead of right along the lash line (OW DOT COM). Also, did you know lash extensions usually cost around $200 or so and only last for a few weeks before you have to pay to get them re-done? No thank you.

While it would be lovely to wake up every morning with perfectly long, full, wispy lashes, some of us just need to suck it up and pile on the mascara. However, there are some makeup tricks you can try out to make them look longer, fuller, and darker.

1. Add some dark liner riiiiight into the upper lash line

The point of this technique isn't to draw liner on your eyelid, as if you were doing a cat-eye. It's just meant to darken your lash line, which in turn, makes your lashes look thicker and more abundant. Press a creamy pencil right up into your upper lashline and smudge it in there. Yes, this looks and feels TOTALLY weird at first, but you'll get used to it!

2. Try the "lift and spin" method

If you've never heard of the "lift and spin" method, it's because I made it up. Eyelash curlers scare the shit out of me, so instead I've discovered if I spin the wand upwards and "lift" my lash when I'm applying mascara, I get a really pretty curled effect. This really helps my eyes look wide awake.

3. Cut those falsies

Sometimes a full strip lash can look a little fake/dramatic, and if it's for a special occasion or that's just how you like to roll, more power to you. If, however, you're looking for something a bit more wearable and natural, cut the strip lash in half and apply it only to the outer half of your eye. This will give you that pretty wispy effect — and you basically end up getting four lashes for each pair you buy. Here I am with my half-falsies, and taking this selfie way too seriously. But come on, how great do my lashes look?

4. Use a lash serum

Rimmel Lash Accelerator, $6, Amazon

Rimmel Lash Accelerator is one of the most affordable lash serums I've come across. It claims to give "visibly longer looking lashes after 30 days of use". I haven't tested it over the course of 30 days, but I have tried it out and it made my lashes look awesome. I like that it's not just a serum - it's a mascara, too, so you can wear this as your every day mascara and still get the serum benefits. Total win.

I'd love to know your favorite, budget-friendly methods for long, full-looking lashes! Tweet me (@thebloginista) and fill me in on your beauty secrets!

Images: Alexandra Kozinski; Rimmel