How does lash growth actually work? Why does the serum work quicker for some and slower for others? And how does our Lash & Brow Enhancing Serum work with the natural lash cycle? We’re answering all these questions in today’s blog!
LASH BIOLOGY 101
Most of us have 90 – 160 lashes on the upper lash line, distributed among five to six rows. The lower lash line can have up to 80 eyelashes.
Each eyelash is made up of a hair shaft (the lash you see), a root beneath the skin, and a bulb where the new hair begins growing. The bulb is connected to the dermal papilla (blood supply) which nourishes the lashes so they can grow.
Although we love lashes for their eye-framing drama, they also have a purely functional purpose. Eyelashes are extra sensitive to touch, and when an object or particle touches them, they send automatic signals to the brain to close the eye. Lashes also help filter sunlight and shield the eyes from any unwanted debris or sweat.
Fun fact: eyelashes are the most pigmented of all human hair, which is why they don’t turn grey with age (unlike the hair on our head!)
THE EYELASH GROWTH CYCLE
Eyelashes go through three distinct phases in their growth cycle: Anagen (active growth), Catagen (transition), and Telogen (resting). The complete cycle can take anywhere from four to eleven months to complete.
Keep reading for how the phases work, our lash serum’s role in each phase, and how your time-to-results can change depending on where you are in the cycle when you start your serum.
Anagen (Active Growth) Phase
In this phase, the hair is attached to the dermal papilla (blood supply) which ‘feeds’ the lash and helps it grow. About 35-40% of the upper lashes (and 15% of lower lashes) will be in the growth phase at one time – this ensures you don’t lose all your lashes at once when the falling-out phase starts.
The Anagen phase lasts for 4 – 10 weeks, where lashes will grow at a rate of 0.12 to 0.14 mm per day. The longer an eyelash stays in the growth phase, the longer it will grow.
This is where Plume comes in – Our serum aims to support the duration of this particular lash phase, allowing lashes to appear denser and fuller.
Keep in mind, only 40% of your lashes may be in this phase at one time, so when you start a lash serum, you’ll likely see increased length/new lashes on a portion of your lashes, while the other 60% cycle through the other phases.
Catagen (Transition) Phase
In this phase, the hair follicle shrinks, detaches from the blood supply, and the eyelash stops growing. Named the ‘transition phase’, lashes maintain length gained from the Anagen phase while waiting for the next phase. This stage lasts for 2 – 3 weeks.
If an eyelash unnaturally falls out (or is pulled out) during this phase, that follicle stays empty while it completes this phase and moves on to Telogen. That means you’ll have an empty spot until that follicle reaches the Anagen phase again.
Our serum’s role in this phase: Length is one thing, but fullness is another. It’s essential to keep lashes strong and healthy so that they don’t fall out during this stage and leave gaping holes in the lash line. Our serum creates supple, non-brittle, nourished lashes that won’t easily break or fall out. This means you have more lashes in place at any one time, creating a fuller lash line.
Telogen (Resting & Shedding) Phase
In this phase, lashes sit dormant and rest while a new baby hair begins to grow inside the follicle and the old lash sheds naturally. This stage lasts for 3 to 4 months before the eyelash falls out and re-enters the active growth phase. Approximately 50% of eyelashes will be in this phase at one time.
Our lash serum aims to support the natural progression of the Telogen phase, which may facilitate a quicker return of lashes to their subsequent phase.
WHY DOES THE SERUM WORK QUICKER FOR SOME PEOPLE?
The effectiveness of our serum may depend on where your lashes are in their natural cycle when you begin using it. While approximately 35-40% of lashes may be in the growth phase, the serum aims to support and extend this phase. However, the remaining 60% require time to progress through the cycle before returning to the growth phase.
The optimal outcome for achieving swift results involves beginning the serum when 40% of lashes are completing the growth phase and 50% are finishing the resting phase. The serum can extend the growth phase for the 40% of lashes and expedite the return of the remaining 50% to the growth phase. However, in the reverse situation where 50% of lashes are just entering the resting phase, it may take up to 4-8 weeks before these lashes return to the growth phase again.
As a result, many individuals may observe a boost in lash fullness before seeing an increase in length. Our serum aims to prevent lash breakage or fallout during the Catagen and Telogen phases, resulting in an overall increase in the number of lashes.
Replacing an eyelash typically requires 4-8 weeks, implying that if half of your lashes have just entered the resting phase when beginning the serum, it may take this duration to see noticeable length changes in those lashes. In summary, it's important to be patient and wait for the desired results to manifest.
LASH GROWTH AS YOU AGE
As we age, the lash cycle slows down and it takes longer for new lashes to regenerate. Also, eyelashes lose their ability to retain moisture as effectively, often resulting in damage to the follicle. Our lash serum is effective in both of these circumstances, however, results are often slower to appear with advanced age. Allow 12 – 16 weeks of consistent use to see full, fabulous results!
A BONUS EFFECT OF OUR SERUM
Coleus Forskohlii Root Oil is known to increase the melanin in the hair follicles, meaning darker, more noticeable lashes! Hello, natural lash tint!
Thanks for tuning into our blog! The moral of the lash growth story - timing is everything & patience is a virtue! If you have any lash-related questions we didn't cover here, send us a message anytime.
- The Plume Team <3