Texas to start licensing eyelash stylists

February 22, 2012 5:09:33 PM PST
It's one of the most popular beauty trends around -- eyelash extensions. But the dramatic look could lead to problems. We talked to the woman, who not only helped design eyelash extensions, but is making it safer for women to get the fashionable look.

Judy wears those long, luxurious, lash extensions that you seen on the stars. Xtreme Lash has provided lashes for actresses Daryl Hannah and Ashley Green from Twilight and many more. "You can take a round eye and make it more oval; you can take a droopy eye and make it more lifted," said Jo Mouselli, president of Xtreme Lashes. But before getting Xtreme Lashes, Pilar McNear had to answer a lot of medical questions. McNear wanted longer lashes, but before getting them, she had to answer a lot of medical questions first.

What about infections, allergies? If the extensions are not done right, and that means in a sanitary way, you can end up with an eye infection and other problems.

"Eyelashes that are too long and too thick for their natural lashes, leading to premature natural lash loss," Mouselli said.

Mouselli started Xtreme Lashes 8 years ago. She's a former ICU nurse who took care of tiny babies. It bothered her when she saw stylists doing things that weren't hygienic or that put people at risk for problems.

"If you apply one extension to two natural lashes and you stick them together, now you've got a unit -- and if one grows faster than the other it will pull and tug on that other lash," Mouselli said.

When the state of Texas decided to start licensing eyelash stylists, they went to Mouselli to help write the guidelines. Beginning in April, Texas will require a specialty eyelash extension license and stylists must take 320 hours of training and a test to be sure they know what they're doing.

They never have to use scissors near your eyes because the lashes come in so many sizes: 12 Lengths, four curvatures and three types of thickness and dozens of colors.

When McNear's extensions on her left eye were finished she took her first look.

"Looks gorgeous. Wow, that's great," she said. "I don't have to wear mascara and they're longer."

The eyelash extensions run about $325 for a set. They require touch-ups every two to four weeks.