Understanding Eyelash Extension Glues

Understanding Eyelash Extension Glues

Published by BL / Lash Savvy on Nov 2nd 2021

Lash Glues are made from "cyanoacrylate," and the following formulation is typically used:

90% ~ 95% of Cyanoacrylate

5% ~ 10% of compounds such as thickener, hardening accelerator, black pigment, or stabilizers.

There are Different Types of Cyanoacrylate Which Include the Following


Methyl is toxic. It is strictly used in the industrial industry. It can cause blindness.


Ethyl is the most commonly used to make eyelash extension glue. It dries relatively fast, and the bond usually is pretty strong. It tends to have a strong order and is a little irritating to some eyes.


Alkoxy is far more expensive than Ethyl. It's less likely to cause an allergic reaction because of its low order.


Butyl is commonly used in the medical or veterinary fields. It is slower drying compared to Ethyl. Its' adhesion tends to be weaker.


Methoxy is the far less irritating and odorless of the cyanoacrylate family. It has a slow drying time and a weaker bond.

Humidity and Temperature 

Cyanoacrylates need humidity to dry. Without it, they would stay wet for a very long time. The drying time depends on how much humidity is present. All eyelash adhesives do well between 40% - 60%. Some do better within a particular range, such as 45%- as an example. It's best to keep track of the humidity and note when your glue seems to have the best retention and is working well. 

The lower your humidity is, the slower your lash glue will dry. However, over 70% is too high, and your glue may start to slow down because it's curing before you've had a chance to use it. It will not stick to the natural lashes any longer. This is a clear indication that you need to replace your adhesive drop. Also, a dehumidifier will work well in this situation.

When a glue says 1-2 seconds drying time, if the humidity is at the top of the recommended humidity range. It will likely dry in 1-2 seconds. If the humidity is lower in the humidity range, it will dry slower.

The Best Temperature Range to Work With Lash Adhesives is 65-73 Degrees

Eyelash Glue will get thicker if the temperatures are cooler, and it will get thinner if the temperature is higher. It is often confused for the opposite. Glue can seem slightly thinner or thicker or dry slower and sometimes faster daily. It is essential to control your lash room's atmosphere by either adding or taking away humidity if you are having issues with your drying times. Demographics play a huge part as well. Hot, humid states may need a dehumidifier to keep an acceptable humidity range, as dry conditions may require a humidifier. A known common occurrence within the lash industry. It's also very frustrating because it can directly cause issues with the retention of your lash extensions.

Cold Weather and Lash Glues

It is best to adjust your lash room to the recommended temperature and humidity level for the specific glue that you are using if possible. Most adhesives will dry decent if the humidity is within the 45~60% range.

Humidity tends to go lower in cold states/countries and seasons. The thickness of your glue will get thicker in low temperatures. So, using a faster drying glue during low humidity can be very helpful if you can't achieve a humidity level where your glue will dry promptly.

For faster drying glues, we recommend Ready.Set.Go (1~2 seconds drying time) or OMG! (2~3 seconds drying time) for lower humidity climates.

Best Ways to Improve Retention

Assuming you are applying the extensions correctly and that all bases are attached to clean and prepped lashes, the following is a guide to help with improving retention.

1) There is always a learning curve when using a new, unfamiliar glue. Some require the use of more or less for the best adhesion. It is best to use it on a friend or good client first to feel how much is best. Regardless, always make sure there is a small bead of glue at the very base. Some adhesives will wick up the extension leaving nothing on the base, which will cause a loose base as you attach the extension to the natural lash. If your glue has wicked up - re-dip just the extension base into the glueball a little faster, and this should work.

2) Make sure that you are using fresh glue. It shouldn't be stored unopened for more than 1-2 months, and once opened, the glue should be used within 45 days. If you are busy, I highly recommend replacing it every 30 days. Don't ever stock up on your lash adhesive! For the best retention, replace your adhesive every 30 days.

3) Make sure that your clients use the proper aftercare products and take care of their lashes correctly.

Decrease in Retention Issues

1) Materials: Compatibility of the lash extensions and the adhesive. Cheap materials with a very plastic feel and are stiff will not stay on the natural lashes very well. Flat lashes, in general, hold better due to the little grove that fits the natural lashes. Matte vs. shiny - matte lashes has an advantage when it comes to adhesion.

2) Inexperienced technician - if you are adhesive hopping because none work for you, it's probably your application, and you may need more experience/practice.

3) High humidity and high temperature. Cold and dry environment. Any rapid temperature differences.

4) Volume Lashes- bases not attached. Fans are not wrapped around the natural lash but are just sitting/placed on top. Not waiting long enough for the glue to dry before letting go of the fan causes the fan to rock forward and the bases to become loose.

5) Clients' that are "hard" on them. Saunas, hot tubs, pools, mascara, facials, and eye creams that contain oils. Constant sweating during exercise, especially hot yoga.

Primers and Pre-Treatments

1)Can be used on every client. Especially recommended for clients with oily skin or clients that wears mascara.

2) If you are struggling to keep lashes on a particular client and you don't use a Primer or Pre-Treatment on every client.

3) If you don't feel like you can get the natural lashes completely clean using Pre-Treatment will help remove any debris and the Primer will help prepare the extensions to stick to the natural lashes after using the Pre-Treatment.

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