The Lash Extension Dictionary

There’s lots of big words flying around the lash world and sometimes it’s hard to know what they actually mean (or how to pronounce them!) But don’t worry, at LashBase – we got you. We’ve put together all the lash terminology we can think of, so next time someone mentions the word ‘Cyanoacrylate’ or ‘Crystallising’ you’ll know exactly what there talking about.



You’ve probably heard of the word ‘retention’ before, but in short retention refers to how long the lash extensions stay adhered to the natural lashes so basically how long the lash extensions last. Often, we get the question of “what adhesive is the best for retention?” however the truth is there is no ‘best adhesive’ for retention. If the lashes are applied correctly, and aftercare is followed, the lashes will last as long as the natural lash cycle allows regardless of what adhesive you use! Retention can be affected by so many different variables, if you would like to know more then we have a blog post which will help here


Curing Times

When purchasing an adhesive, you’ll often look at its ‘curing time’. This refers to how long it takes for the adhesive to adhere the eyelash extension to the natural lash. Every lash artist is different, so we always recommend choosing an adhesive based on your speed and technique. If you are an experienced lash artist, who works quickly then choose a fast curing adhesive (such as Supreme which cures in 0.5 of a second!). If you’re just starting out then we recommend using a slower curing adhesive such as Extreme (2-3 seconds). To find out more about the curing times for each adhesive in our range, have a read of the blog post here.



Crystallising happens when too much heat or moisture is getting to the adhesive. which then causes it to dry/bloom/crystallise! This can be caused if you are using a primer, speed up solution or any liquid on the lash extensions as you may be accidentally dipping a lash extension with the liquid on into the adhesive blob which causes it to set. The heat from a lamp may also cause this crystallisation to happen too.

Crystallising or Blooming can be recognised as the unattractive white stuff that can sometimes occur when using Cyanoacrylate adhesives. The residue is a byproduct of the cure process of the adhesive. Once the monomer is in vapour form, it will react with moisture in the air or moisture on the skin/eyelashes, cure, and settle on the surface around the bond area. There are several ways to prevent the blooming process such as sufficient ventilation over the application area, making sure the client’s skin and eyelashes are free of moisture and making sure your work environment is suitable i.e correct temperatures and humidity.



Viscosity is the texture of the adhesive. Lash adhesives come in a range of viscosities and you’ll often hear the words ‘thick’ and ‘thin’ being used to describe the viscosity of an adhesive. A thin viscosity adhesive will cure quicker and a thick viscosity will mean your adhesive will cure slower. A thick viscosity adhesive cannot be used for Volume lashes as it takes too long to cure when making fans. So, it’s worth keeping this in mind, when selecting an adhesive for your lash sets.



Cyanoacrylate is the main ingredient in all lash adhesives. Some brands claim that their adhesive is “hypoallergenic” and "formaldehyde-free" but these are simply marketing buzz words. ALL lash adhesive is "formaldehyde-free". Formaldehyde is used to make cyanoacrylate. After cyanoacrylate is formed, the eyelash adhesive is purified through a process known as chromatography to get rid of excess reactant (formaldehyde). This process purifies the lash adhesive and makes it safe for client use. After this process, there are only trace amounts left. This is true for ALL brands due to physical limitations and is classed as “formaldehyde-free”. 



'Stickies' is the term used for eyelashes that have become stuck together during a lash extension treatment. Stickies can occur when your client's natural lash has not been completely isolated, and/or you have not allowed the adhesive to dry properly before moving onto another lash. Using too much adhesive can also cause stickies, you do not want a ball of adhesive on the extension.  Using too much adhesive can not only cause stickies, but it can also cause irritation or make it difficult for you at in-fills. It can also slow adhesive drying time, make the bond look clumpy and can also seep onto the skin and into the eye. Read more about how to avoid stickies on our blog. 


Carbon Black

Carbon Black is the deep black colour of the adhesive. Sometimes clients can be allergic or have sensitivities to the carbon black. In this case you can switch to using a clear adhesive such as Crystal Plus!



Allergies can often present themselves in the form of reddening, swelling or itching. If a client has an allergic reaction you may not be able to treat them again. It’s always important for the client to seek medical advice from a GP for a proper diagnosis if they think they are experiencing an allergic reaction. Read more about allergies and irritations on our blog here



Isolation is the technique of using two sets of tweezers to separate (or isolate) one natural lash in order to apply an eyelash extension. Correct isolation is key for a safe application process and to avoid stickies! Some lashes are harder to isolate than others, due to being in different growth stages, we recommend moving from side of the eye to the other when applying extensions. You should hold your isolation for a few seconds before moving on to another lash to allow the adhesive to bond properly and prevent any neighbouring lashes getting caught in the bond.



Kim K - one of the most popular lash styles. The Kim K look involves placing ‘spikes’ (longer lengths) in different sections of the eye to create a wispy set. Suits: Almond and Round Eyes

Squirrel: This look is created by starting short and gradually getting longer with the halfway point being the longest length and then gradually getting shorter again. Suits: Almond, Close-set, Downturned, Monolid, Hooded, Protruding and Round eyes.

Cat: To create the illusion of wide-set “exotic” eyes, you would use the longest lashes towards the outside edge of the lashes. Suits: Almond, Close-set, and Round eyes.

Round: Applying lash extensions to follow the way in which the natural lashes sit will create fuller and longer-looking lashes whilst maintaining the natural eyelash pattern. Suits: Almond and Upturned eyes.

Dolly – By using longer lengths throughout the midsection of the lashes it will create the appearance of large, open eyes. Hence the name “Dolly”. Suits: Almond and Wide-set eyes.  


Eye Shapes

Deep Set - The eyes are deep within the eye socket with the brow bone protruding over.

Hooded - Drooping eyelids with no lid space. Common in older clients.

Almond- The perfect shape.

Round - The width between the upper and lower lid is larger than usual. Especially in the middle.

Protruding - Appear to be popping out of the eye socket.

Mono lid - No lid space with usually very straight or downward facing lashes.

Downturned - The outer corners of the eyes are droopy and point down.

Upturned - The outer corners are upward facing, and the inner corners can drop down a little.

Wide Set - The width between the eyes is larger than normal.

Close Set - The width between the eyes is smaller than usual.


Lash Styles

Classic - Classic lashes are the are the most natural-looking eyelash extensions as they are applied 1:1 (1 extension is applied to 1 natural lash). Classic lashes can be made to look more ‘dramatic’ depending on the condition of the natural lashes as well as the amount. They are heavier in weight (usually 0.10g-0.20g) hence why it is only safe to apply 1 extension to 1 individual natural lash.

Volume - Russian volume is a more advanced technique that has taken the lash world by storm! These lashes are much thinner in weight (usually 0.05g-0.07g) therefore more than 1 extension can be applied to 1 natural lash. The lash artist will use several techniques to create a ‘fan’ of lashes before applying it to the natural lash which creates a fuller and more ‘fluffy’ looking set of extensions. Although more extensions can be applied these lashes can also be made to look as natural or as dramatic as you like depending on the condition of the clients natural lashes.

Hybrid - Hybrid Lashes are a mixture of classic lashes and volume lashes. Hybrid lashes are great if your clients wants classic lashes to extend the length but also would like the volume from the Russian if the natural lashes are sparse. This technique is also preferred in the styling of ‘spikes’ or ‘Kim k lashes’.

Mega Volume - Mega Volume is as glam and dense as it gets. Mega Volume lashes are very similar to the Russian volume technique except they are created using even lighter weight lashes than those used in Russian Volume (usually 0.03g) and so a much bigger ‘fan’ of lashes can be created. These lashes are also great if you have a client that has sparse natural lashes as they can give the illusion of filling in any gaps. 

We hope you found our lash dictionary helpful! Don't forget to follow us on Instagram @LashBase_UK for more tips and tricks!