February 19, 2016 4 min read

It’s National Lash day, beauties. Over the centuries, the eyelashes have been groomed and cared for in many different ways. Let’s celebrate  our national holiday by learning  more about the interesting history of lash and brow care!

Back when:

Egyptians associated cosmetic use with holiness, creating eye products, lip stains, cheek stains, and other beauty inventions for the Pharaohs and the wealthy.
Agents such as black kohl were the most popular method of coloring the lashes. They also used green and blue paints to color the eyes.
During the middle ages in Europe, hairlessness was an attribute of the wealthy and beautiful, so women would actually shave their eyebrows and remove their eyelashes. Mona Lisa much?
In the early 1800’s, a hairdresser wrote in amazement of what a difference lashes could make on a woman. She talked of a specific client who lost her hair due to an illness. The false lashes she had applied made her look like a completely different woman, and she recalled the surprised and pleased look on the client’s husband’s face.
False strip lashes may have been created as early as the 1870’s by wig-makers and beauty salon owners. Early lashes were made of natural hairs or animal furs.
In the late 1800’s, hair transplants were one method for longer-looking lashes. They physically sewed on hairs from the head onto the eyelid. Ouch!
In the early 20th century, the lengthening of lashes was attempted by application of all sorts of substances ranging from natural pomades to “walnut-leave water” to honey and more.

Hmm…sounds a bit pinterest-y.

The 1st patent for false eyelashes in the United States was by a Canadian woman named Anna Taylor back in 1911.
False-eyelash popularity took off in the mainstream U.S. population during early-WWI years and when the film industry prompted the rise of  celebrities and film stars.

Professional eyelash extension services started in the 1930’s and rose slowly but surely throughout WWII, during the post-war years and in the 1950’s.
Models and beauty icons like Twiggy and Brigette Bardot had the lush-lash trend soaring throughout the 1960’s. The beauty trends shifted from defining the lips to embellishing the eyes with lashes, eyeliners and pigmented eye shadows.
The 1970’s signified a natural-look, focusing on full, natural-brows and less face make-up. Long lashes were still a thing, as long as the look was “natural.” Groovy man.

In the 80’s, Brook Shields, it-girl of the decade, helped propel the trend for full eyebrows.

Eye shadows, hair, lips, brows, shoulder pads… what wasn’t full in the 80’s?

We won’t talk about eyebrows in the 90’s. The era is dead and gone to us bold-brow-lovers. Lashes were still ‘in’ of course, and the creation of colored mascaras even gained a place in the spotlight during the late 80’s and early 90’s ‘grunge’ years.

What We Know Today:

2008 is when RapidLash debuted itself as the over-the-counter lash serum for the masses. Other copycat companies have surfaced, but we continue to dominate the market.
The eyelashes are made up of about 90% proteins like keratin and melanin and about 10% water.
The lash hair follicles cycle through 3 distinct phases: the “growing” phase, the “declining” phase and the “shedding” phase. The growing phase lasts about 45 days on average, while the declining phase (growth of that hair stops) lasts about 3 weeks. The shedding phase lasts 1-2 weeks.
A lash that is pulled out can take about 2 months to regenerate!
Peptides and topical proteins are used to condition and enhance the look of lashes over time in the same way that skin care products containing amino acids and peptides aim to improve the look of the skin.
The eyelashes themselves and the blinking reflex are functionally protective. Both shield the eyes from debris, quick moving objects, and bugs. Ew!
Long eyelashes are a a marker of youth, beauty, and aren’t just for Instagram stars anymore. Long lashes are more attainable then ever.
2016 is another huge year for brows and eyelashes. Professional brow and lash extensions continue to grow as popular service in salons and spas throughout the country. We don’t see either of these trends declining any time soon.

How are you celebrating National Lash Day?

I go back and forth between applying super-lush false lashes and going completely sans-mascara. During what I call my “restoration” or “rest period,” I pamper the lashes back to optimum health with my RapidLash® Lash Enhancing Serum and refrain from using mascara. Once the lashes look full and healthy again, I feel more comfortable whipping out my super-fun falsies, especially for events and fun weekends. I consistently use my RapidBrow® daily to keep my eyebrows looking full, shiny, and healthy. I barely have to contour my brows anymore like I used to with my brow kits. It’s a real time saver, and that, my friends, is priceless.

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Catherine C., Lashing Out