Can You Swim With Eyelash Extensions? [Eyelash Extensions vs. Fake Eyelashes]

We love those long, gorgeous, natural lashes. Unfortunately, nature didn’t choose to create all lashes equally. Thanks to this modern day we live in, those of us not naturally blessed with long, sultry lashes can still get that look with eyelash extensions or fake lashes.

With warmer weather around the corner, we are looking forward to getting out to the sun at the pool, and the beach. How can we avoid losing our lashes to the waves? Is it safe to go all in… or do we need to keep our heads above water?

While it is true that both chlorine and saltwater can affect your lash extensions, the good news is, yes, you can swim with eyelashes extensions! For best results, use goggles while in the water, and also practice lash care after swimming.

To prevent becoming the victim of lash fall-out, you will need to plan ahead. Let us show you how your lashes can last as long as possible if you plan to take them swimming. While it is true that prolonged exposure to water can decrease your lash life, it is good news that water and lashes don’t have to be mutually exclusive! Here are some things you need to know:

Swimming After Getting Eyelash Extensions

Make sure to wait at least 48 hours after getting your lashes done. This allows the adhesive to make a strong bond and keeps the lashes where they need to be. Plan your appointment well in advance of any water dates to make sure your extensions are getting a secure st.

Swimming In Chlorine With Extensions

Chlorinated water is great for keeping bacteria out of the water. Unfortunately, chlorine can also work against the adhesive on your extensions. It is a great plan to use goggles or to gently wash your eyes after exposure to chlorine to lessen the effects of the chlorine on your eyelash adhesive.

Swimming In The Ocean With Extensions

Many people believe that since saltwater is more natural, than chlorine, it will not affect lash extensions in the same way. Unfortunately, this is not true. Salt, like chlorine, has corrosive properties and can break down the bond of your lash glue. Also, if you are swimming in the ocean, make sure you are not going to be face-slapped by a rolling wave! You can swim in chlorine or saltwater with eyelash extensions and fakes, by taking a few precautionary measures. Let us show you some tips on how to best protect your lashes.Eyelash Extensions

Eyelash Extensions vs. Fake Eyelashes

It is possible to wear your eyelash extensions or fake lashes to water, but all lashes are not created equal! You will need to use the appropriate treatment for your lash choice.

Eyelash extensions and fake eyelashes are made with different purposes in mind and it is important to remember this when introducing them to water. Their most notable differences are in their application process and length of wear.


Eyelash extensions are the more expensive option but last longer than their fake eyelash friends.  Typically for 2-3 weeks, you shouldn’t have to worry about your lash look. (Some extensions can even last up to 8 weeks!)

Extensions are great for the businesswoman or the busy mom who still wants to look great, but doesn’t have time to mess with mascara and eyeliner every day. Extensions are applied lash by lash to give you that full, natural look. 

For eyelash extensions, you just need one hour a month for the application, and then you are looking great without needing to go through an everyday mascara routine

Pros: Eyelash extensions are made with durability in mind, so these are more likely to resist water for a longer amount of time.

Cons: Extensions are more of an investment, so it can be a bigger loss if the adhesive bond is weakened as a result of exposure to water.


You can also get a great look with false lashes if you have a steady hand! False lashes are easy to buy at your local drugstore and are a much cheaper option. They are made for that YOLO, short-term (but fabulous!) look.

You can get “wispies” for a more natural look or go bold with full, glam-style lashes. These fakes take about 5 minutes to apply (once you get the hang of it!). False lashes adhere to the eyelid using lash adhesive.

If you treat them right and take them off carefully, you can even extend fakes to 2-3 uses.

Pros: Fake eyelashes are made to be only a temporary arrangement. For these, you don’t have to worry so much about the long-term effects of water on your lashes. You are mainly just want to keep them looking great for the day.

Cons: Fakes are not as durable as extensions because they are applied in strips to the lid instead of lash by lash. This puts them at a disadvantage for water resistance and exposure.fake eyelashes

Waterproofing Eyelash Extensions

Since extensions are applied over your natural lashes, there is not much waterproofing to do, you are mainly just going to want to use preventative measures.

The Dos:

  1.       Do ask your lash stylist if the adhesive they use to apply your extensions is water-friendly.
  2.       Do use goggles while in the water if possible. This is a great way to enjoy swimming without worrying about the effects it may have on your extensions. Make sure that your goggles seal correctly (and that they don’t rub against your lashes!).

The Don’ts:

  1.       Don’t use waterproof mascara on lash extensions. Waterproof mascara contains chemicals that can materially damage your extensions and the adhesive that keeps them attached!
  2.       Don’t go underwater with your extensions within 48 hours after they have been applied. The adhesive needs time to cure!
  3.       Don’t use waterproof mascara even on your natural bottom lashes. The effects of the waterproof mascara on your lowers, rubbing against your top extensions, can cause lash loss, as well.
  4.       Don’t rub water out of your eyes. You can wipe under your eyes, or gently dab with a towel.
  5.       Don’t apply sunscreen, tanning oil, or lotion near your lashes as this is a sure way to soften the adhesive. (These products usually come with a warning to not use near your eyes period, as they can also cause your eyes to burn and water.)

Waterproofing Fake Eyelashes

There are some ways you can make fake lashes more likely to stay glued and looking great! Here are our tips for waterproofing fake eyelashes:

  1.       Use waterproof adhesive when applying false eyelashes.

Tip: Using black glue can serve a dual purpose by acting as a liner and giving your lashes that extra pop!

  1. Use brush-on adhesive to mesh your real lashes with the fake. This can keep the fake lashes sealed in.

Tip: After applying adhesive, use your thumb and forefinger to press your natural lashes into the fake lashes to make sure they bond together. This will help the lashes to stay in while you swim!

  1. Use waterproof mascara to cover your lashes. Since fake eyelashes are not waterproof, waterproof mascara can help the lashes stay put.

  Tip: It may be a good idea to do a test run in the shower to make sure the waterproof mascara is quality and won’t run! This way you can enjoy your day in the sun feeling secure in your lashes!

 So, those are our tips to make sure you are protecting your extensions or fakes adequately before hitting the water. But, to get as much life out of your extensions or fakes as possible, it is also important to also keep up general lash care.

Lash Care

All good things don’t last forever and neither do applied lashes. Over time, no matter how much you protect them, eyelash extensions and fake eyelashes will wear down. Excessive exposure to chlorine or saltwater can shorten their lifespan. It is important to protect your lashes before you get to the water but after-care is just as important!

  • After going for a swim at the pool, ocean, or lake, it is important to rinse your lashes with fresh water. This helps to stop the corrosion effect of salt or chlorine on your eyelashes and adhesives.
  • After washing your lashes gingerly, you can comb through them with a lash wand or pat them dry to remove the excess water. Just remember not to rub your lashes while drying them or you may undo all your efforts!
  • For lash extensions, you will want to avoid oil-based face cleansers or oil-based make-up removal.
  • For fake lashes, don’t forget to give your natural lashes some love after you take out the fakes! You can use Vaseline at night on your natural lashes to give them some hydration.

Basic care for your eyelashes will help to keep your lashes long, long-lived, and looking fine.

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Eyelash extensions or fakes are a way to add some pop to your eyes and boost your confidence. As warmer days appear on the horizon, we want to enjoy our fun in the sun and stay looking great! No one wants to head to the pool and end up with mascara running down their face, or find half of their lashes floating in the pool!

We hope that our tips will help you make the best choice of eyelashes for your needs! Whether you are the careful planner or the YOLO type of lash-wearer, these tips can help you get out in the sun and get the most out of your lashes! Have fun and stay safe!

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