Eyelash envy is real

Many of us spend time on our eyes each day shaping our eyebrows, applying eyeliner, eyeshadow and mascara. Despite best efforts, there is often a desire for thicker, fuller lashes to accentuate our eyes. The good news is there are options to help with this common concern. Two of the most popular are Latisse® and eyelash extensions. We’ve considered cost, time, risks and other factors related to each.


Latisse®, which is available from Kamloops Skin Solutions, comes in a small dropper bottle, (3mL or 5mL), with individually packaged applicator brushes. The cost can be from $120 – $140 for 3mL, and between $200 – $240 for 5mL. The better value is in the 5mL, so for easy math we’ll use this one in our comparison. If recommended use instructions of one drop per eye, per day, are followed, a 5mL bottle should last about 10 weeks. That said, maintaining eyelashes for one year with Latisse® would cost about $1,200. Because Latisse® is prescribed, there may also be some extended health plans that cover the cost of a portion or all of the prescription. Additional savings may be found through applying every other day once desired results are achieved. Our professional staff at Kamloops Skin Solutions consult with clients about benefits, use and application prior to purchase.

Eyelash extensions can be done by home practitioners, local hair salons, spas and specialized lash and brow bars. Our cost comparison references posted costs from brow and lash specialists. Options are varied, from a “natural” set for subtle enhancement for about $130 to “loaded” lashes for about $190. Recommended maintenance includes “filling” every three to four weeks at an estimated cost of $65 – $105 depending on desired fullness. Options in the middle of that range plus estimated maintenance for a year would cost approximately $1370 (including a 15% gratuity for services).


Latisse® takes between 2-5 minutes a day to use. When incorporated into a night-time routine, it goes on after make-up is removed.

Eyelash extensions take between 60 – 180 minutes for an initial set application and between 45 – 90 minutes for a fill every three to four weeks.

Potential risks

Latisse® is Health Canada and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved and has a long history, with very few reports of adverse reactions. With more than two million prescriptions filled, there have been no confirmed reports of pigmentation change of the iris. The most common side effects are itching in the eyes and eyelid redness, which were reported in about 4% of clinical-trial patients. All issues were resolved after discontinuation of use of the product.

Although there are no clinical studies or statistical data on adverse reactions to eyelash extensions, they have been reported to cause irritation to the conjunctiva and/or cornea. The adhesives and the solvents to remove them have also been linked to allergic reactions. In addition, these enhancements carry a risk of bacterial and/or fungal infections. Eyelash extensions have also been linked to lash loss. The College of Optometrists in England has said, “repeated use of eyelash extensions can cause traction alopecia”. This could be the result of excessive tension placed on the hair shaft causing damage to the follicle to the point of slow or no lash production.

To summarize pros and cons of each:


  • Latisse®, which takes up to four weeks to show results, creates fuller, natural looking and feeling eyelashes
  • It is prescribed treatment that may be covered by extended health coverage and is non-damaging to eyelashes
  • Users may still apply mascara
  • It may also be used to promote growth on sparse eyebrows
  • It may cause darkening or irritation to the lash line

Eyelash Extensions

  • Extensions provide instant results, are removable and customizable based on client preference
  • Application, maintenance and removal can be very time consuming
  • They may cause allergic reaction, may damage or thin natural lashes
  • They can be more expensive to maintain
  • They can appear obviously unnatural

When the above considerations are made, we recommend Latisse® as a good fit for individuals who may suffer from thinning brows and eyelashes and are looking for a solution to improve the natural look and feel of them.

Before Latisse®

After Latisse®

Receive a free gift, while supplies last, with your purchase of a Latisse® product — Free Glo Minerals Mascara!

Contact us today or visit us at #114 – 436 Lorne Street in Kamloops, BC.