Having the opportunity to live a long life is nothing short of a blessing, but things change as we start to get older. Our skin becomes less taut and our hair can start to become more sparse — but not just the hair on our heads.
"As we age, our eyelashes begin to thin," explains ophthalmologist Dr. Diane Hilal-Campo. "Our eyelashes, like the hair on our head, have hair follicles and go through stages of continued regrowth throughout our lives. As we age, the eyelash follicles slow the cycle of new lash formation, or can even stop altogether, leading to natural thinning of our eyelashes."
As hormones begin to shift, a more noticeable change in your lashes can occur.
"Women over the age of 40 go through menopause, [and they experience] a reduction of estrogen production, which is vital for collagen production and healthy thick hair, eyebrows, and eyelashes," the MD continues. "Our eyelashes also gray with age. Like the hair on your head and your eyebrows, melanin production in the lash follicles slows and can stop with age."
There are a number of lash serums on the market to help nourish the hairs, but if you're looking for an immediate solution to help with volume and color, a mascara is the way to go.
Lancôme's Definicils Mascara, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary, is makeup artist Genvieve Herr's (full disclosure: she is a Lancôme ambassador) go-tos from the beauty brand's entire collection of mascaras, and loves using it on her client and Oscar-winning actress Julia Roberts.
"When Julia prefers a subtle, pretty look, this is my absolute favorite mascara choice," she says. "I always start by curling the lashes and then I apply Definicils at the root, working my way to the tips. I love the look it creates."
Sixty-eight-year-old actress Isabella Rossellini agrees.
"Definicils' supple texture and the new brush allows the lashes to be coated one by one," she shares. "It results in a more natural, yet enhanced, look."
To shop: $28; ulta.com
Dr. Hilal-Campo also notes that on top of graying, lashes become shorter and straighter as we get older. To give them more shape, Herr recommends using Lancôme's Cils Booster XL as a primer immediately after curling.
"This product helps keep the curl intact before mascara application," she says.
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While mascaras are a great temporary solution for lashes, Dr. Hilal-Campo shares that it's vital to remove all makeup before bed with a gentle cleanser. In terms of treatment products, she's a fan of Rodin and Fields Lash Boost to help promote growth, but warns that it's important to be consistent in order to see results.
"These prostaglandin analog growth serums only work while they are being used," explains the ophthalmologist. "Once stopped, the lash cycle is no longer altered, and the thinned lashes will return."
Revitalash's Advanced Eyelash Conditioner is another great option.
"Just like a good skincare routine, a good lash care routine can help combat the signs of aging by giving lashes the nutrients they need to flourish and thrive at any age," says Audrianna Mora, global education manager at Revitalash. "[Just] remember that not all are created equally. It's important to look for a reputable brand – one that is ophthalmologist developed, clinically tested and dermatologist reviewed."
Thankfully, the brand checks off all those boxes, which would explain why it has such a cult-following.
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