I‘ve written about eyelash conditioners since they hit the scene back in 2008 when Talika Lipocils and Jan Marini were the only brands on the market. Then came Latisse and every cosmetics brand jumped on the eyelash growth serum trend. The original formulas that used the same prostaglandins in Latisse are now reformulated and no longer work as well.
After more than 20 hours of research, trawling across the internet, and reading over 2000 customer reviews, it’s clear that in 2014 that the best eyelash conditioners that actually work (but don’t require an expensive prescription) rely on a combination of hormone mimics commonly called "polypeptides". There’s a whole list of these compounds, but the fastest way to tell if a lash serum contains any polypeptides is to look for ingredients that end in "-peptide".
For example, Rapidlash contains:
- Myristoyl Pentapeptide-17
- Copper Tripeptide-1
Keep in mind that polypeptide formulas will cause irritation just like Latisse and bimatoprost (the prescription eye drops that contain the active ingredient in Latisse). So use a very light hand when you apply these serums. Only apply them once a day – preferably at night – and only apply a thin line to your top eyelid where your eyelashes grow out. Try not to get any of the serum in your eyes because it will sting like heck. Also try not to get any of the serum on any other part of your eye area as it can cause your skin to darken and give you raccoon eyes.
What are the best eyelash growth serums in 2014 & 2015?
So what did I find after spending way too much time obsessing about this topic?
I found that most of the lash serums that are sold over the counter don’t contain active peptides. They are no more than moisturizing and conditioning formulas.
There’s a short list of lash serums that do contain growth promoting polypeptides. Most of these serums cost upwards of $100 for a tiny tube which is insane. Two of the most popular brands however are reasonably priced at less than $40 and for that reason I’ve included them on my best-rated list for 2014.
The top two formulas are RapidLash and NutraLuxe MD. These two serums actually contain polypeptides that will change the growth cycle of your eyelashes so they grow longer before naturally falling out. I chose these 2 serums over all the other brands because these were the only two brands that were reasonably priced at less than $40.
As a concession I’ve also included Ardell’s Lash Growth Accelerator in the list for those of you who don’t want any irritating peptides or prostaglandins in their lash conditioner. Keep in mind that Ardell does not contain anything that will make your lashes grow longer.
Ardell’s serum is a lash conditioner in the strictest sense. It will coat your eyelashes and moisturize them so they’re less prone to breakage. There are B vitamins so your lashes will look healthier and shinier after using Ardell for a couple weeks.
Other lash conditioners will do the same job and moisturize your lashes with "natural ingredients". They’ll try to charge you $30+ for their products too! It’s mostly just marketing woo though.
If all you want is to moisturize and protect your lashes, then just stick to Ardell and save yourself a bunch of money!
Here’s my short list of the 3 best-rated and best-selling lash serums in 2014 and 2015
|I want...||The best lash serum||Why I like it|
|The most affordable eyelash conditioner with active ingredients that actually make your eyelashes grow longer. Rapidlash contains a cocktail of 4 different polypeptides to extend the growth cycle of your eyelash hairs.||Rapidlash Eyelash Enhancing Serum|
|The active ingredients are Myristoyl Pentapeptide-17, Octapeptide-2, Copper Tripeptide-1, sh-Polypeptide-1.
This formula relies on multiple polypeptides so it's more likely to work over single polypeptide formulas.
The peptide formula is gentler than Latisse and doesn't cause symptoms like darkened eyes or red irritated eyes unless you apply too much. Only apply a tiny bit to your top lash line once a day and try not to get any of the serum in your eyes.
|An eyelash conditioner that combines active growth promoting polypeptides with moisturizing ingredients that protect and thicken my eyelashes.||NutraLuxe MD BeautyLash|
|Two active peptides Hexipeptide-11 and Palmitoyl Pentapeptide-4 work together.
Moisturizing ingredients in the formula like vitamin B, honey extract, and sodium hyaluronate plump up your lashes and make them more flexible and resistant to breaking.
There's less active ingredients in Nutraluxe so you should give it a try if some of the other peptides in RapidLash irritate your eyes.
|An affordable lash conditioner that I can use everyday to protect my eyelashes. I want a lash serum that will help my brittle lashes become stronger so they don't break when I use my eyelash curler.||Ardell Lash and Brow Growth Accelerator|
|Okay, so there's not much in Ardell's lash serum that will make your lashes grow, but it's cheap!
Use this as a clear mascara on your "no makeup" days. It's bad for your lashes to use (and remove) mascara everyday. A coat or two of this lash conditioner will add a hint of darkness and thickness to your lashes.
Ardell is a great way to protect your lashes from breakage caused by your lash curlers.
*At the time of publication. Current prices may differ.
Here’s a list of the best-selling eyelash conditioners sorted by price
$25 to $50 – (Lash Allure MD also falls under this category)
$100 to $200 – (Includes LiLash)
You can also browse current eyelash growth products on sale at Amazon