Types of Eyelash Extensions: How to Pick the Right Lashes

Have you ever gone to a salon to get eyelash extensions and heard something about the different types of lashes?

Answering the question could be quite confusing. It’s easier to choose between individual lashes and strip lashes. Confusion sets in when you begin to hear words like mink, synthetic, classic, and hybrid lashes. Everyone has been there at one time or the other.

Sometimes, the lash technician or makeup artist chooses for you and saves you the stress. But on the days you need to choose for yourself, you need this article. Ahead, here is a detailed guide to the different types of eyelash extensions according to different categorizations.

What Are Eyelash Extensions?

Eyelash extensions are beauty products that can help enhance the length, thickness, and volume of your natural lashes. They form a part of a makeup routine to give your eye makeup more accent and a dramatic effect.

Falsies, as they are commonly called, are made of different materials, in different lengths, and curl patterns and they come in different packaging. During the application of falsies, the lash technician applies the extensions over your natural lashes with an adhesive without allowing the glue to get close to your eyelids.

Additionally, not every eyelash extension would make a perfect fit for everyone. Therefore, you should carefully pick your extensions before they are installed. If you feel unsure, you can ask an expert to choose for you.

Types of Eyelash Extensions

There are different types of eyelash extensions. These types are classified based on the material they are made of, the method of application, length of the lashes, thickness of the lashes, type of curls, and the shape of the lashes.

1. Based on Material

Mink eyelash extensions

Mink lashes are natural-looking, lightweight lashes that are gotten from the fur of the Siberian Mink or the Chinese mink. They are also very fluffy and do not weigh down the natural lashes no matter how much of them you apply.

However, they could be quite pricey (they look very luxurious) and this is one of the reasons why they are more common with celebrities. One of the major drawbacks of mink lashes is that they may cause allergic reactions.

Also, they easily lose their curls and require heat to become curly again. Another thing worth noting is that getting mink promotes inhumane practices on animals to get the lashes.

Faux mink eyelash extensions

Faux mink lashes are a replacement for real mink lashes to stop the unethical practices that bring about pure mink lashes. These eyelash extensions are gotten from a synthetic material called polybutylene terephthalate (PBT).

Unlike pure mink, these types of eyelash extensions are not so light but they are neither heavy enough to weigh down your natural lashes. It is cruelty-free, soft, cheaper than pure mink, and could be fuller and fluffier.

Sable eyelash extensions

Sable eyelash extensions are also gotten from animal fur. They are gotten from the Asian or Russian sable. They are thinner, lighter, and fluffier than mink lashes. Sable lashes also do not weigh down your natural lashes but they are not as common as mink lashes.

Furthermore, they are great for people with thin natural lashes. However, if you have allergies to animal fur, stay away from sable eyelash extensions. Also, they are high-maintenance lashes. They easily lose their curls and require heat to curl them again.

SEE: Pros and Cons of Eyelash Extensions- Know This Before Picking One

Silk eyelash extensions

As the name implies, silk eyelash extensions are made from synthetic silk fibers. Unlike mink and sable eyelash extensions, silk lashes can retain their form and curls. You do not need to curl them again; this makes them low-maintenance lashes.

Silk lashes look like a combination of mink and synthetic lashes. They are thicker at the roots become thinner towards the ends. In addition, they are glossy and a perfect pick for people who don’t want anything to do with animal fur.

They have their drawbacks too, like every other eyelash extension. Silk lashes are not for people with thin lashes because they tend to weigh down natural lashes. They are also not for everyday use.

Synthetic eyelash extensions

As you go down the spectrum, synthetic eyelash extensions are highly unnatural. They are heavy and sheeny (which makes them harder than other lashes). Synthetic lashes are the most affordable lashes but they are only for people with strong natural lashes.

These lashes are bolder, give a fuller appearance, and hold their curls better. Additionally, you need to be careful with synthetic lashes because prolonged use can damage the natural lashes.

2. Based on Application

Classic eyelash extensions

The classic eyelash extensions technique involves placing one extension on a natural lash (ratio 1:1). This procedure is repeated until you have thick, long lashes. It could be time-consuming but it’s worth it eventually. Lashes installed via this method are good for everyday wear.

Moreover, they help cut out the step where you apply mascara. However, if not applicable with appropriate tools and lashes, things might go wrong. Classic lashes maintenance requires periodic infills based on an individual’s natural growth cycle. Generally, classic lashes will last up to 6 weeks.

SEE: How to Take Care of Eyelash Extensions to Keep Them Looking Glamorous

Volume eyelash extensions

Volume eyelash extensions follow a technique that uses a ratio of 1:3 or 1:5. It involves applying a fan of lash extensions to one natural lash to create a voluminous, fluttery, and glamorous effect. This eyelash application technique is a recent invention by the Russians for fluffier and dramatic effects.

Each fan of ultralight lashes has a label of either 2D, 3D, or 5D depending on how many lashes are in a fan. This method requires the utmost care and it is best you do it in a bright and quiet environment to avoid mistakes.

Hybrid eyelash extensions

As the name implies, hybrid eyelash extensions are a mixture of both classic and volume lashes for a more dramatic and celebrity-like look. The lashes are well-defined, fuller, and have a fluttery effect. The ratio of classic lashes to volume lashes is usually 30 to 70 but you can always modify it.

If you want a classy combination, you can ask your technician to use more individual classic lashes. Similarly, for a dramatic and voluminous look, ask for more volume lashes. Hybrid lashes application is good for people with thin natural lashes who are looking to get thicker lashes.

3. Based on Length

Eyelash extensions vary with length. They usually fall within a range of 5mm to 16mm but there are some extensions of over 16mm in length. The length you apply depends on how bold and flattering you want your falsies to look.

Short lashes are usually about 5mm to 8mm. They are a perfect choice for people who want to retain a very natural look with fake eyelashes. Short lashes are also used for the inner eye area which cannot take long lashes.

Medium lashes are about 9mm to 12 mm in length. This length is perfect for people who wear glasses to avoid brushing the lashes against the lens. Moreover, it creates a balance for people who want fluttery lashes but don’t want them too short or too long.

Long lashes give more drama with 13mm to 16mm and sometimes over for extra-long lashes. Because of their length, they are usually heavier and may damage your natural lashes.

Generally, most sets of lash extensions come in different sizes for different areas of the eyes, different lengths of natural lashes, and personal preferences.

SEE: How to Remove Eyelash Extension at Home- The Guide You Need

4. Based on Thickness

Falsies range in thickness from 0.03mm to 0.30mm depending on the volume and thickness you want to create. The higher the lashes go in thickness, the heavier they are likely to become.

Heavier lashes are more likely to cause damage to your natural lashes. Thinner lashes are great for people with thin natural lashes and a classic look.

Most importantly, talk to the technician if you have concerns about the weight of eyelash extensions on your natural lashes.

5. Based on Curls

J curls

J curls are wispy and perfect for people who want length and volume but also want to retain a natural look. More so, they are straight with a slight curve at the end to help add curl to naturally straight lashes.

B curls

B curls look like J curls but are curlier at the tips. This helps to give your natural lashes a lift while it gives you a natural look.

SEE: Is Eyelash Serum Good? A Guide to the Fluttery Lashes Magic

C curls

C curls are for people who want more open lashes to help balance naturally straight lashes. They make the eyes open, giving you a natural yet flattering effect.

D curls

D curls lashes are curvier than C curls and are more dramatic. Anyone can spot the curls and they help to open downward lashes. D curls open your eyes more and give your natural lashes more lift, making them look longer and fuller.

L curls

L curls start with straight roots before they curl midway to the tips. They are very bold and make the eyes look bigger as they open. You’ll also find that L curls are C or D curls with little modifications.


Are classic or volume eyelashes better for you?

What you choose depends on what you’re looking to get. Volume lashes are good for people with fine and few natural lashes. Classic lashes, on the other hand, create a more natural effect as each lash looks thicker and longer.

In addition, classic lashes are done in less time when compared with volume eyelash extensions.

Can you mix two types of eyelash extensions at a time?

Yes, you can. A mix of two different eyelash extensions will give hybrid lashes. There are hybrid lashes available in stores and some experienced lash technicians or MUAs know their way about creating hybrids.

Moreover, you can mix different curls to achieve more textured eyelash extensions with a dramatic effect.

Are silk eyelash extensions better than mink eyelash extensions?

If you love a dramatic effect with your lashes, silk and mink can give you that. Each eyelash extension is made from materials that suit different preferences. However, mink eyelash extensions are gotten from animal fur. So, if you have a history of allergies to animal fur, you should stick with silk.

In addition, while mink lashes are much lighter and could be more comfortable than silk lashes, silk lasts longer, is low-maintenance, and is cheaper.


It’s so good to know what you’re getting into before you do. The same applies to everything that goes onto your face as beauty products. All eyelash extensions are not the same; they have differences that make them unique.

Your choice of eyelash extensions will depend on the effect you want to achieve, how long you want to wear them, and your lifestyle. The most important thing is that you consult an expert whenever you gr confused. Also, care for your falsies as you care for your natural lashes.

Thanks for reading.

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