At the most basic level, lash extensions are composed of either man-made materials or animal fur. The animal fur choices are mink, sable and fox. Sound like a dreamy fur coat for your eyes? That’s right, honey.

Mink Lash Extensions

Mink lashes come from the tail fur of Siberian minks and Chinese minks. Siberian minks produce the most premium fur, which is, you guessed it, also the most desirable. If you’re a newbie to eyelash extensions, and you want a natural look, mink might be what you’re looking for. It most closely mimics the look and luster of your own lashes. Mink is lightweight and fluffy. The downsides? If you have an allergy or sensitivity to animal fur, you should not consider mink lashes. Likewise, if you have ethical concerns about the treatment of minks, or using their fur, you may decide against it. Mink is also expensive.

Sable Lash Extensions

Sable is even more fine and fluffy than mink. It’s the lightest possible material available for extensions. Lash stylists really only recommend it for those with the finest natural lashes. It’s also not as readily available as mink, so you won’t find it at all salons. The downsides of mink are the same for sable: Don’t choose sable lashes if you have an allergy to animal fur.

Fox Lash Extensions

Fox fur lash extensions are on-trend right now. In their natural state, fox fur lashes are a soft, reddish tone. You can also find them with black tips, or dyed in an ombré style. If fox extensions interest you, be sure to check around. Not all salons have them.

While animal fur lash extensions are lightweight and natural looking, they must be permed to give them a curl. This means they’ll involve some upkeep for you. You’ll need to perm them yourself to maintain the curl. If looking beautiful is all in a day’s work, fur lashes might be for you. On the other hand, if you hate to iron, like I do, and you want to save some money, there are several man-made choices, too.

Man-Made Eyelash Extensions

Want to know the biggest benefit of man-made lash extensions? CURL, baby. Unlike real animal fur lashes, you won’t need to perm them.

Faux-Mink and Faux-Fox Lash Extensions

Yes, you can get the look of mink or fox, but without the hefty price tag. Extension manufacturers have gotten very innovative, and they’re making some feather-weight, fluttery lash extensions that won’t set you back like the real thing.

Silk Lash Extensions

These lashes are called “silk,” but they’re not made of genuine silk, like you would find in a blouse or a scarf. Silk lashes are mid-weight, and for most people, they’re heavier and not as comfortable as the faux-mink or faux-fox options. They’re best for a special occasion look, and not every-day wear.

Synthetic Lash Extensions

Synthetic lashes are the heaviest and least natural looking on your eyes. They have a sheen to them, rather than a soft luster that you would see in human or animal fur lashes. Some people find them to be too heavy for their eyelids.

Volume Lash Extensions, also known as Russian, or XD Lash Extensions

One of the latest trends is volume lashes. With this type of extension, your lash artist will apply 2-6 ultra lightweight lashes to each of your own natural lashes. You can choose either 2D, 3D, 4D, 5D or 6D lash options. Hello, gorgeous. Volume lashes are generally made of silk or mink. A different application method is used than your more traditional eyelash extensions, and so you should expect volume lashes to take longer to apply, and to cost more.

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