long-lashesThe half-used tubes of DiorShow, Benefit BADgal and Maybelline Great Lash that litter our makeup bags are evidence enough: The majority of womankind still hasn't found a fool-proof method to achieve thick, sky-high eyelashes. Last week, when Maureen blogged about her $700 lash extensions, and readers were quick to weigh in with their own experiences trying to reach eyelash nirvana. So how do you get full, luscious lashes -- without the $700 pricetag?

1. Go Maureen's route and head to a salon for lash extensions.

Eyelash extensions are expensive, but they certainly don't always cost $700. Says Sarah Comunale, "I paid $65. A professional did them and they looked amazing. I wanted to mention this so people knew that it was an affordable treat that will last for a while and can totally be worth the cost.

phan-lash-galPhan, a 25-year-old lash stylist in Toronto, says, "I charge between $150-$250 for the initial set, plus $50 for half hour re-lashes. What you paid was a bit outrageous. As a stylist with a lot of experience and a large clientèle, I could charge more, but I don't believe beautiful lashes should cost as much as a mortgage payment. You should be able to maintain your 'bambi lashes' for about what it costs to get a mani-pedi every month.

"Also, just so readers know, your natural lashes should not suffer any damage after a proper eyelash extension procedure. They may appear more sparse compared to the fab set you just had on, but when all the lashes fall out there should be ZERO damage to the natural lashes."

2. Try one of the many lash boosting products on the market.


At a fraction of the cost is Latisse, an FDA-approved prescription treatment for people who have "inadequate lashes." Sat413 is a fan: "Latisse really works. I work in a dermatologist office and it's way cheaper than extensions! About 90-120 a box will last you about 3 months and once you get the length you want you dont have to apply it every night -- you can just maintain what you have."

It may not be for everyone, though -- Jill warns, "Latisse can cause redness of the eyes, darkening of the iris and darkening of the lid ... It takes at least two years for the side effects to be known." Emily points out that it's a prescription drug for a reason -- not everyone can use it. "In fact, the way it was 'discovered' is because people using glaucoma eye drops noticed the side effect of their lashes growing," she says. If you plan on trying it, make sure you consult a medical professional.

Other readers threw out suggestions like L'Oreal Lash Boosting Serum (about $15) or Lilash (about $120).

3. Head over to the closest Rite Aid or CVS and pick up some falsies!

If you've got neither cash or a willingness to try chemical products, go for old-fashioned, glue-on false eyelashes. You can find them at most drugstores that sell beauty products as well as Sephora and Ulta. Emily says, "They range in price from $1 a set to $15 a set. And yeah you get what you pay for -- the $1 ones are good for about four wears, the $15, upwards of 20 wears. Once you learn to glue them on they only take about 30 seconds an eye to apply, and they peel right off at night. And they come in various styles ranging for a natural look for everyday to outrageous for edgier looks. If you find they still look unnatural consider getting brown instead of black for a subtle appearance."

Mary A
suggests Sally's for individual lashes, adhesive and remover -- priced at less than $15. When attaching lashes, start in the middle and work out to the corners. They last about two weeks, and you replace the lashes more than the adhesive or remover. If you want them darker, take the adhesive (dark) and coat the lashes until desired darkness. It's a good alternative for gals on a budget."

Tell us! What are your experiences with lash extensions? Have you tried any of the products mentioned? What are your favorite lash-lengthening solutions?