The Eyelash Extension industry – can we change it to the better?The Eyelash Industry started off on the wrong foot, and the short, quick-fix courses have set a standard too low, resulting in technicians leaving training with lack of information, and no experience, having to apply a set of lashes on their clients eyes but completely insecure to do so safely.
We have seen some cases ending in catastrophy, and the technician herself is not to blame, she simply doesn’t know she is doing anything wrong because she wasn’t taught the right way.
Eyelash Extensions is an art and a skill that takes time and practice to master, and you just cannot learn it in one or two days.
What are the industry standards?
A study was done by Lashia, one of the most comprehensive courses in Australia, where they asked Lash Artists from all over the world about the training standards in their country.
The countries in the study were UK, USA, Canada, Scandinavia, Russia, Switzerland, Netherlands, Scotland, Estonia, Mexico, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.
Scandinavia (Sweden, Norway and Denmark) had the highest standard. Still not regulated by a government, but an average training course in these countries is between 3-5 days and most brands offer free support and certification through a practical exam.
Shortest was Estonia, with on average half to one day courses, and cheapest was Mexico with an average Eyelash course costing only equivalent to $350AUD, lasting 1 day.
In USA you need to be a cosmetologist or beautician to apply Eyelash Extensions, but the training itself is not regulated at all. Most courses are 1-2 days and a certificate is given the same day.
In the United Kingdom, A generic teaching qualification such as PTTLS or City & Guilds teaching qualification is required for trainers, they can then teach their area.
However, the way training requirements are non-regulated.
Courses vary from 1-2 days and a certificate is usually given the same day or after case studies where students send in photos to receive their certificate.
In Australia there are no Goverment regulations, in fact they are deregulating our industry even further. There is a Unit of competency, SHBBMUP001: Apply Eyelash Extensions. This unit can only be offered by an RTO (Registered Training Organisation = TAFE) and the standards of this unit is way below what most comprehensive educators in this country agrees with.
So this is where we stand today. The industry world-wide is not up to standard and there are no government regulations in any countries.
- What are the major areas where poor Eyelash Extension training are lacking?
-The length of training.
-The lack of knowledge by trainers.
-The lack of experience in teaching.
(just because you do lashes doesn’t mean you are a good teacher)
-The lack of support and follow-up.
-Money hunger from product suppliers.
-The way certificates are given out left right and center.
-Beauty courses that has lashes as an add-on.
-No respect from government bodies and a complete ignorance in recognizing our industry.
-People “teach themselves”. – No regulations.
- What can be done to raise standards world-wide?-Educators have the courage to lengthen the amount of training and raise prices.
-Join forces in each country to approach government bodies.
-Question beauty colleges and product suppliers that teaches lash extensions without enough training.
-Keep educating clients and technicians around us of quality eyelash extensions and the importance in proper training and justified pricing structures.
The more people realizing our profession is actually fine artistry and takes skill and practice to master, the closer we get to getting recognized and respected.
What should I look for in a comprehensive Eyelash Extension course?
Look for an educator that cares about her art, and offer training in small groups.
The more comprehensive your training is, the faster you will reach your goal in becoming a Lash Artist.
There are many cheap, quick courses out there offered by big branded companies, mainly to just sell you the product, or beauty schools, where the focus on the Art of Eyelash Extensions is lacking.
Many times these trainers aren’t specialized in Eyelash Extensions. The risk you take is that you may need to re-train completely if wanting to pursue a career as a Lash Artist.
When looking for training in Eyelash Extensions you need to ensure training include enough days to cover all important information such as safety, sanitation, hygiene, isolation, application, face mapping, lash shaping, processes and procedures, infills, removals, clients and customer service, and if you have no business sense, even guidelines on how to start up your own lash business.
Also the training needs to have enough time for practical application of the techniques, overseen by a mentor, that can guide you through all your trial and errors, and ensure you leave the training school with confidence that you can apply a set safely on a person’s eyes.
Then you also need to check if the training school offers practical support after training, and if they certify by case studies or practical exam. The most comprehensive schools let you come back unlimited times, and also won’t give you a certificate until you prove you can apply a set of lashes safely, through a practical assessment. Some even require you to sit a theoretical assessment.
What should I be paying for an Eyelash course?
You basically buy yourself a whole new career. And a good Lash Artist can easily take $4000-5000 weekly. Product costs are low, and if you work from a room in your home or rent a room in a salon, your outgoings are very low.
A great Lash Educator charge between $2000-5000 for a 4-5 day course and offer unlimited support afterwards, and certification through a practical exam.
Where do I move on from here if I want to be part of the future of Eyelash Extensions?