Eyelash Growth Products

Monday, 20 April 2009 | Tags: , , , ,

Who doesn't want long, full, fluttery lashes? Unfortunately for most of us, we can't get that look without the help of lash extensions or falsies. But some relatively new products on the market claim to stimulate lash growth. We put some to the A&K test to see if they live up to their promises.


The main ingredient in the first eyelash growth products was discovered as a side effect resulting from treating patients with the eye condition glaucoma. Patients showed remarkable growth in long, thick, dark lashes as a result of using the glaucoma medicine, which includes prostaglandin.

Now that the discovery is a few years old, there are many eyelash growth products on the market, both derived from ingredients in the medicine described above, and using other active ingredients. 

Eyelash growth products are typically marketed to women as a cosmetic enhancement, however, they can be used by men as well, and may help stimulate hair growth after loss of hair due to illnesses, cancer treatment with chemotherapy, and other hair loss causes.


The products are applied daily to the base of your eyelashes. Most have a brush or wand applicator similar to mascara. Apply the product before bed above the lash line, as you would an eyeliner. Most people apply only on the upper lash line.

Once your lashes have reached a length and thickness you like, you can reduce application frequency to 2-3 times per week.

Side Effects

Products derived from the glaucoma medicine may darken the colour of your iris slightly. If you have green eyes, there’s a 15% chance they may turn to brown. If you have brown our hazel eyes, they may darken.

Skin on top of lash line may redden. Some products may sting if they get into your eyes.

How it Works

The idea behind lash growth products is that they increase the length of time that the lashes are in the growth phase, and also increase the number of hairs that appear during the growth phase.


Most lash products we looked at said that results take anywhere from 3 weeks to 8 weeks or more to start showing. 


While there are many products on the market, we looked at three of the most popular ones in varying price ranges. Two contain the prostaglandin (an ingredient in the glaucoma medicine) derivative, and one contains other conditioners and natural ingredients.


  • Latisse by Allergan: $120 for 1 month
    • Results within 2 months, full results in 4 months 
    • Active ingredient: Bimatoprost (a prostaglandin derivative)
    • Find a doctor at Latisse.com (USA) or Latisse.ca (Canada)
. .

Prescription only

  • Revitalash: $150 for a 6 month supply
    • Results within 3-10 weeks
    • Active ingredient: Trifluoromethyl Dechloro
      Ethylprostenolamide (a prostaglandin derivative)
. . Revitalash.com
  • CARGO LashActivator: $35
    • Results within 30 days
    • Active ingredient: marine algae extracts, etc.
. . Sears.ca

(Note: prices listed above are approximate and in Canadian dollars)

Lash Growth Test

We recruited some testers and went to an ophthalmologist to have our “before” lashes measured. Then after 30 days of using the products, we went back for an updated measurement.

  • Both of our Revitalash testers experienced a 0.4mm growth in length, and a definite noticeable increase in fullness.

  • Our Cargo LashActivator testers experienced no growth. Our ophthalmologist said the difference was negligible.

  • With Latisse, our testers experienced the most growth, from 1mm in length to Kristina’s tremendous 1.5mm, and that was after only one month of the recommended 2-4 months of application.


Latisse, the most expensive of our products and the one you need a prescription for, gets the A&K Stamp of Approval.



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