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Going Lash-Tastic with LashDip

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Beauty is in the eyes of the best-lash-holder. Image via Skin Camp

As you may have noticed, we're a little bit obsessed with long, lustrous lashes over here at Racked. Game to try anything that will give us those cartoon-style eyelids that, when batted accordingly, will make the fellas come a-runnin', we knew we had to give the new LashDip service offered at LA's Skin Camp a go.

LashDip is a semi-permanent, velvet-black gel coating of pharmaceutical grade, 100% hypo-allergenic mascara. According to Skin Camp's Christy Camp, a lot of her clients have built up allergic reactions to the glue that's used in lash extensions, so they have converted to the much gentler LashDip. It lasts six weeks with a complimentary touch-up about two to three weeks after the initial application. The treatment originated in Chicago before branching out to New York and making its way to LA, where Christy attended the very first training session offered in early January. (So if you pride yourself for being on the cutting edge of beauty, this definitely ranks as brand spanking new.)

The application was quite simple, painless, and lasted about 40 minutes. First, our upper lashes were curled back with an eyelash curler, because however the lashes are dipped is how they'll stay. Then a full swipe of the Dip was applied with a comb, followed by the individual painting and separating of each lash. It was also applied to our lower lashes (which we've always been afraid of painting with mascara due to the run factor) in the same way. Here and there during the process, a small air dryer - which provides a little tickle - was applied to help dry and set the Dip. In the end, our lashes appeared longer, darker, thicker, and well-sculpted, not entirely unlike we'd had a date with a top-quality mascara. Christy typically applies just enough coats to keep the lashes feathery and separated, but if you prefer to go more drag queen, she's happy to oblige.

For all its ease of initial application, LashDip is not without its rules. For the first four hours, no water can come into contact with the eyes at all. You should avoid hot water for 48 hours after, and LashDip doesn't like steam in general, so ventilated showers are always best and you should probably forego the steam room at the spa. Otherwise, it tends to clump - and anyone who's ever applied one-too-many coats of cheap mascara knows how sexy that look is, even worse if it's semi-permanent. Also, oils on our fingers break down the Dip - but you can use a microfiber brush (which Christy provides as part of the service) to guide the lashes back into shape, and the application of a sealer (also provided) once a week will keep them looking polished.

On the plus side, after 24 hours, the Dip is completely sealed and waterproof, so you can go ahead and work out, swim, and watch "The Notebook" without anything but sweat, chlorine and tears running down your face. Eye shadow, eyeliner and even more mascara are all okay to use, as long as they're not waterproof and you wash them off with an oil-free make-up remover. There's no issue at all for contact lens wearers, and lash enhancement addicts (you Latisse users know who you are) can resume usage 72 hours after application. And, as Christy notes, LashDip is popular among stunt women (we love living in LA), which goes to show that it can handle a certain amount of hard living.

Now, we'll admit, it took a little getting used to: we're not accustomed to having the "weight" and slight stickiness of mascara on our lashes all the time, and there were moments when we didn't plan to wear make-up but almost thought we should since our eyes looked ready for a night out. But, once we settled in, we liked looking doe-eyed in the mirror first thing in the morning, and several of our girlfriends (yes, it's our girlfriends who could tell why we looked so different) gushed, unprovoked, about how our eyes really popped.

In summary, LashDip is for you if:

· you have a serious lash inferiority complex (guilty as charged)
· you're a clutz around mascara
· you're afraid of using an eyelash curler
· you're going on vacation (lounge on the beach all day with no smudges? yes!)
· you like looking pulled together without putting forth much effort, especially when hitting the gym or running errands
· you're too lazy to apply make-up and/or remove it before bed
· you don't mind spending $120 for a beauty treatment due to any/all of the above

And, most importantly, if you don't want to worry about leaving behind a dirty pillowcase or waking up with raccoon eyes in the event that you get lucky after rocking your newly lush lashes, LashDip is definitely for you. (Which, of course, we're only freely admitting in the interest of science.)

· LashDip [Official Site]
· Skin Camp [Official Site]