As beauty professionals – eyelash artists, we pride ourselves on working efficiently, often spending countless hours caring for our clients. But it cannot be ignored that this work also has some “dangers”. While it’s a relatively safe career path, it’s still a physically demanding job, so taking care of yourself is just as important.
In this article, we are going to talk a little bit about common injuries for eyelash artists and ways to relieve or avoid them, hoping to help you after reading it.
Pain In Fingers And Hands
If you overdo it with your fingers or hands, you may start to feel finger and hand pain, which can lead to problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome, tendon pain, de Kerwin’s disease, thumb trigger/trigger, and repetitive motion syndrome triggers.
It’s a good idea to buy good tweezers that have a loose grip so you don’t have to put too much pressure on them when holding/applying for the eyelash extensions. At GOLLEE we manually test each pair of tweezers before we ship them so our customers can rest assured that we want you to avoid unnecessary hand fatigue!
Not only do you ensure that the tools you use while working are as comfortable as possible for your hands and fingers, but also that you have a firm grip. While grip strength naturally declines with age, you can do arm exercises such as squeezing a stress ball to ensure your arm remains as strong as possible.
To help keep your wrists free from pain, try this exercise:
Eye strain can be annoying and a common problem for eyelash artists. Symptoms of eye strain include pain, tiredness, burning and/or itching eyes, blurred or double vision, headache, and increased sensitivity to light. There are a number of common causes of eye strain, including activities that require prolonged concentration, exposure to bright light or glare, and trying to see in dim light.
The reason many of us eyelash artists suffer from eye strain is that our work requires prolonged focus on relatively small objects (e.g. isolating natural eyelashes when applying for eyelash extensions).
1. Try not to forget to follow the 20-20-20 rule. Set a timer to remind you to look at an object about 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
2. Make sure your eyelash studio is well lit! Try to place a light source behind you and direct the light where you are working. Ring lights are a great choice for using lights during assembly!
3. Visit your optometrist! If you need glasses, it’s better to get them sooner rather than later.
4. To make sure your eyes are well-rested, try these eye exercises with the palms of your hands:
- Sit at the table and keep your elbows in front of the table
- Press your eyes into each palm
- Inhale and exhale slowly while keeping your eyes open
- Do this for 30 seconds at a time, then release and start again
- Repeat for 2 minutes
Or you can follow the video below for training.
Respiratory infection is one of the many health concerns that lash and brow technicians face every day. A recent report by Women’s Voices for the Earth, a Missoula, Montana-based environmental health advocacy group, found that breathing problems such as asthma, coughing, and nasal symptoms are the second most common type of health concern among salon workers (the most common concern is skin conditions). “According to material safety data sheets (MSDS), exposure to large amounts of the cyanoacrylate in adhesive affects mucous membranes and the respiratory system,” says Courtney Buhler, CEO and owner of SugarLash in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
In addition, professionals who work in salons, especially those who work with chemicals like nail polish, remover, and adhesives, can suffer from lung irritation.
To improve air quality, the aforementioned report recommends ensuring adequate ventilation by opening doors and windows whenever possible; installing a ventilation system with external exhaust and the ability to make multiple air changes per hour; installing a built-in local exhaust fan near work stations; stocking less toxic products; and using respirators with organic carbon chemical cartridges, or N95 respirator dust masks. You can also use products designed to absorb adhesive vapors and fumes.
In addition, be sure to use a suite of adhesives and primers that are as lung-friendly as possible so that is a great place to start. Also, to be proactive about your health, see your primary care physician at least twice a year to check for respiratory irritation.
Back And Neck Pain
A 2009 study found neck pain to be the most common musculoskeletal complaint among cosmetologists, followed by hand/wrist and low back pain. Self-reported risk factors included prolonged sitting, reaching far, and awkward body postures.
Let’s be honest: many of us probably have bad attitudes not only at work but also in everyday life. When it comes to being a full-time eyelash artist, you can tie up clients back-to-back 6 to 10 hours a day. Our necks are always tight when we tie because of the way our heads bend, so it’s important to treat these muscles first.
If you don’t have a supportive chair, or if your client isn’t positioned optimally, no matter how much we try to set up an ideal lashing station, just the fact that we have to bend our heads to do our job correctly is going to make our necks and backs hurt. It’s inevitable, but there are ways to exercise your neck to strengthen it and ease the pain.
The American Chiropractic Association also offers these posture pointers: Keep your feet on the floor or on a footrest if they don’t reach the floor; don’t cross your legs; keep a small gap between the back of your knees and the front of your seat; adjust the backrest of your chair to support your back or use back support, relax your shoulders and keep forearms parallel to the ground. Finally, avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time.
Some Way To Deal With Back Pain
- Invest in a quality lash bed Choose something your client is comfortable with because that way you will put them in the right position, reducing the amount of bending and back stretching you have to do. Your eyelash bed should be flexible enough that you can adjust the height depending on the client.
- Choose a chair with back support In many eyelash salons, you can see standard stools without a backrest. Some say it’s cheaper and takes up less space, but that’s not true at all! You can definitely find chairs with backrests for about the same price and you will definitely notice a huge difference when you use them. A chair with a backrest will allow you to lean back when you feel the pressure build up in your back area. This way you can immediately relieve your back when you need it.
- GET A BACK MASSAGE Back massage is not a luxury but a necessity for an eyelash artist. Eyelash extensions can of course be stressful for some clients in general, and a back massage can be a very relaxing option to relieve your stress.
- The back brace gently pulls your shoulders back and tightens under your arms and across your chest as you hug them. Use clamps when tying so it doesn’t bend. There are smaller back massagers that you can easily take anywhere and we would recommend these too. Using this once or twice a week will definitely help relieve pain and protect your back from pain.
- Many eyelash specialists admire back braces and claim that they make their bodies feel much better when lashing.
- Make some stretching before you work As mentioned earlier, lashing takes so much focus and effort. Leaning and keeping your posture still in order to apply the lashes perfectly would totally take your muscles into some serious work! To prepare your muscles for a long day of lashing (especially your back), warm up your muscles with a few stretches. This not only prepares your muscles for work but also helps you maintain proper posture.
- Strengthen your core by working out This is the most important thing you can do to prevent back pain. Exercise strengthens your muscles allowing them to endure long hours of stress. Do exercises that focus on strengthening your core, such as planks and knee raises. Such exercises also help improve your posture, thereby reducing stress on your back. This is a very effective method with long-lasting results that protects your back from strain.
Lash artist injuries are NOT inevitable. To run a successful business, good health is essential. If you cancel too many appointments because of pains, your clientele may end up going elsewhere for their lashes. Your mental energy should be focused on creating amazing eyelashes for your clients,
Fortunately, while injuries are relatively common, they do not have to be inevitable. So, get some stretches and we hope you can lash painlessly for life!