No More Sticky Situations. How to Prepare For and Prevent the Most Common Glue Issues Lash Techs Face in the Summer

😍 What we love about the summer: longer days stretching into sweet, warm evenings with friends. 

😒 What we DON’T love about the summer: the way our lash glue starts acting. 

If you’re having issues with the way your lash extensions glue performs during the summer, you’re in exactly the right place – we’ve been perfecting our advice about how to set yourself up for lashing success in the summer for years now! Before you throw in the towel completely, check out the following tips, and keep in mind that pretty much everyone has had issues with lash retention at one time or another, but there is plenty that you can do to fix or even prevent eyelash extension retention problems! 

First Things First…

If you haven’t read the first part of this series, go check it out! It’s all about why you need to put some pretty heavy emphasis on your lash extension prep if you want any kind of lash retention – that’s a good place to start if you’re having retention issues at any time, but if you’re already a lash prep pro, read on.

Temperature and Humidity

Eyelash extension glue is temperamental. Each lash glue has its own preference when it comes to temperature and humidity, and as a result, the temperature and humidity in your work space will have a huge effect on the performance of your glue.

⚡️MUST-HAVE⚡️ if you don’t already have one, we can’t recommend getting a hygrometer enough. It’s a really simple way to keep track of your temperature and humidity all through the day. Knowing what your conditions are means that you can easily adapt to them and ensure good behavior from your glue, and great lash retention as a result.

a photo of a digital hygrometer – London Lash Canada

How Does Heat Affect Lash Extension Glue?

Generally speaking, as your temperature increases, your glue will cure faster – there are some exceptions to this which we'll get into later. 

By and large, lash adhesive prefers temperatures between 18-22°C (64.4-71.6°F), which is about what the vast majority of people prefer too, so that’s pretty easy to A. control and B. notice if it’s higher than it’s supposed to be. If your temperature is higher than 22°C and you’re not able to lower it, try instead to reduce your humidity level to balance out the effects of the heat.

How Does Humidity Affect Lash Extension Glue?

Humidity is the biggest atmospheric factor in determining how quickly your glue dries, and can vary quite a bit from glue to glue with regards to the ideal humidity range. Let’s take a look at why that is.

Lash extension glue is cyanoacrylate based, which means that it's  is cured by moisture, which is why we need to be really careful that our workspace has the correct humidity level for the glue we’re using, or that we’re using the right glue for our humidity level.

If you'd like to know more about low or no cyanoacrylate lash glue, take a quick look at this blog post.

The higher your humidity, the faster your adhesive will cure. It’s really that simple, but it’s something so many get wrong, or just don't pay attention to! 

a photo of an assortment London Lash glues alongside some jade stones | London Lash Canada

What's in Lash Glue?

Another key component of lash extension glue is stabilizers, which help the glue to cure a little more slowly than if it was pure cyanoacrylate. The ratio of cyanoacrylate to stabilizers, and also the stabilizers used, will determine the glue’s drying time in the optimal range. As an example, let’s take a look at  Lady Bond.

Lady Bond has a 1-2 second drying time which is why we recommend it for lash techs of all levels. Lady Bond prefers a humidity level between 45-60%, within which it will work exactly as you expect. Higher humidity will have it curing faster, and lower humidity will see it curing more slowly, which is why you need to know what your room conditions are – trying to use lash glue in the wrong conditions will only spell disaster for your retention, and potentially for your reputation.


But Fast Drying Lash Glue is the Best, Right?

Well sure, if you can keep up with it. If you place lash extensions in half a second, then by all means choose Power Bond or Royal Bond. If you’re used to placing extensions in 1.5 seconds, Power Bond and Royal Bond will be your worst nightmare. But why?

Put simply, if you're using glue that's too fast for you, the glue on the base of the extension will have begun to cure on the way to the natural lash, and therefore won’t be able to form a strong bond.

The same thing will happen if your humidity and/or temperature are sky high, as the glue will be curing much faster than you are used to. If you’ve ever brushed through a set of lashes at the end only to watch in horror as they all slide off, that’s more than likely the reason why. 

a photo of a set of classic lashes taken from the lash tech's point of view where a mirror is being held under the lashes to show what the lashes will look like with eyes open

So, What Can Go Wrong, and How Can You Fix It?

Well, clearly retention can go wrong if your levels are off. Temperatures too high will cause your glue to speed up, as will high humidity. But very low humidity will cause your glue to slow down. While this won’t cause retention issues in the same way, what it will do is lead to more stickies, will cause your extensions to lean (and/or fans to close) resulting in a messy set, and will mean that your glue fumes hang around for longer, increasing the chances of respiratory discomfort, chemical burns, and even allergic reactions. 

To fix it, you need to know what your levels are typically, and what they fluctuate between. Then you have a choice of either balancing your room conditions to suit your glue (which is easier said than done, in some cases!), or having more than one glue on hand so that you can switch between them when those fluctuations happen. If you don’t have fluctuations so much as your humidity and/or temperature just skyrocket and stay high, you could swap to a different glue for those high-humidity seasons. Remember that it’s not a ‘step back’ to swap to a slower glue when you’ve moved on to a faster adhesive, you’re actually showing a really good knowledge of lash glue science! 

Circling Back to an Earlier Point...

Lastly, we mentioned that there were some exceptions to higher temperatures making glue cure faster. While it’s certainly true in the salon, very high temperatures (above 40°C/104°F) can actually cause cured glue to soften. If your client is someone who loves a sauna session, be sure to warn them not to stay in there for too long, and to not touch their lashes whilst they’re in there or for a while after they leave. Softened glue might not be so obvious but one thing that can happen is that they can end up with a chemical burn in their eyes as the softened glue releases more fumes. 

And that’s (pretty much) all you need to know about lash extension glue in the summer! Being a Lash Tech in the summer is no joke, but if you keep on top of your lash extension prep and your room conditions, you’ll truly have the last laugh!