You are considering getting cat-eye eyelash extensions. You have heard great things about them, but you’re not sure if they’re right for you or if the results are worth the price tag.
In this article, we will give you a complete guide to cat-eye lash extensions. We will discuss what they are, how they are applied, the benefits and drawbacks, and whether or not they would look good on you.
Let’s jump right into it!
What Are Cat-Eye Eyelash Extensions?
Cat-eye is a specific eyelash extension style that uses longer extensions towards the outer corner of the eye and shorter ones in the inner corner. As a result, it creates a winged or feline-eye look.
Did you know: Cleopatra used malachite and copper ores in her cosmetic products to make her eyes resemble a cat’s. Plus, according to Pliny the Elder, eyelashes were a symbol of youth in ancient Rome.1
So what’s so special about the cat-eye lash style?
For one, it can help make your eyes appear wider and more open. Also, cat-eye styling can give you a sultry, sexy, and alluring look. They are perfect for special occasions or everyday wear if you want to feel confident and beautiful.
Of all the various eyelash extension styles offered in my lash studio, cat-eye is the most requested one by far. Clients love this style for good reasons.
Check out this great video from Yegi Beauty where she gives a crash tutorial on this highly requested style.
Lash Mapping For A Cat-Eye Lash Style
Whether a client has thin or short lashes, an experienced lash technician can personalize the set of eyelash extensions to make it work. And the most crucial solution to personalizing cat-eye lash style is a good lash map.
So what’s a lash map in the first place?
A lash map is simply a drawing of the eye that indicates where each type and length of extension should go.
Here is an example of a cat-eye lash map:
As you can see, the lash map takes into account the direction of the natural lashes, the shape of the eye, and the desired look.
Creating a lash map is not difficult, but it does require some practice. If you’re just starting out, I recommend that you use a lash map template.
Here are the steps I take to create a cat-eye lash map for my clients:
- Divide the total area of the lash line into 4 to 6 parts sections using dotted lines. You can draw directly on the under-eye pad with a fine-tipped. The sections should be equally spaced out. Pro tip: More parts you divide the lash line into, the more striking or precise styles you can create!
- Pick 7 to 8 different lengths of lash extensions. This is typically between 8 to 15 mm lengths based on different lengths of natural lashes per section. Side note – It helps to make a big and bold sweep that adds definition to your lashes. So, add 2 mm minimum length to the client’s lashes.
- Start from the inner corner of the eye to the middle with shorter lengths. The inner corner will typically use 8 mm and go up to 10 or 11 mm for the middle portion.
- Move to the middle portion of the eye towards the outer corner with longer lengths. You will typically use 10-11 mm in the middle and progressively increase the length towards 14-15 mm for the outer corner of the eye.
- Reduce the lengths in the very outer corner section to add a dramatic winged look. This is an optional step, but I sometimes like to use 10 or 1 mm in the outermost section.
- When choosing a curl, everything from straight J curls to DD curls and others in between can be used for the cat-eye style.
How to Do Cat-Eye Eyelash Extensions
Cat-eye lash extensions are applied the same way as regular lashes, but with a few tweaks to create the desired shape. The secret lies in the mapping more than anything else.
Step 1: Secure the Bottom Eyelashes
Use under-eye patches to secure the bottom lashes. This prevents the bottom lashes from getting in the way and makes it easier to apply the extensions to the top lashes.
Step 2: Choose Your Lash Style
The next step is to choose the length, thickness, and curl of your lash extensions. For a cat-eye look, you will want to choose longer lashes for the outer corners of the eye and shorter ones for the inner corner.
Also, are you going for a classic or volume cat-eye?
If you go volume, I generally recommend a maximum of 6D (6 lash extensions per natural lash). Anything more than that might look too heavy.
Step 3: Apply the Lash Extensions
Using tweezers, dip the end of the lash extension into the adhesive and then apply it to your natural lash.
When doing this style, I like to begin with the shorter extensions in the inner corner of the eye and progressively work my way towards the outer corner where I’ll apply the longer lashes.
Step 4: Final Touches
Once your done applying the extensions, you should brush them gently. Then, you should cure the adhesive. There are a few methods you can use, but I like to simply cleanse them since moisture will force the curing process.
Remove the eye pads and voila! You’re all done!
Classic Vs. Hybrid Vs. Volume Cat-Eye
The cat-eye style is not one size fits all. There are actually three main types of techniques that can be used with this style: classic, hybrid, and volume.
The main difference between the three is the number of lash extensions used per natural lash.
- Classic cat-eye lash extensions use 1 extension for every 1 natural lash. This is the simplest and most natural-looking of the three styles.
- Volume cat-eye lash extensions use 2-6 extensions for every 1 natural lash. This is the fullest and most dramatic of the three styles. You could technically use more than 6D, say op to 15D, but I that’s called mega-volume and is generally not a look you want to pull off for everyday wear.
- Hybrid cat-eye lash extensions are a mix of classic and volume. This style creates “spikes” with the classic lashes and adds fluffiness with the volume fans.
In my eyelash studio, the volume cat-eye is the most popular style. I’ve found that most women want a little extra oomph in their lash game and the volume technique delivers just that.
Will Cat-Eyelashes Suit Me? Who Is It For?
Choosing the appropriate style for your given eye shape and facial characteristic is crucial.
Simply because not every style looks good on everyone.
For instance, a long and wispy cat-eye look is perfect for round eyes because they add shape to round eyes. But this look may not look great on small eyes. For downturned eyes, cat-eyes make you look brighter.
Here’s a table to decide whether or not the cat-eye style is suitable for you.
|Recommended For||Not Recommended For|
|Almond Eyes||Hooded Eyes|
|Round Eyes||Small Eyes|
|Upturned Eyes||Downturned Eyes|
|Wide-Set Eyes||Deep Set|
Pro Tip: For a complete list of lash styles and eye shapes, check out my article on eyelash extension styles for different eye shapes.
Difference Between Doll Eye And Cat-Eye Styles
The main difference between the two styles is in the mapping.
For a cat-eye, the length of the lash extensions is gradually increased from the inner corner toward the outer corner of the eye. This gives the eye a more feline look.
The doll eye style on the other hand uses the longest lengths in the middle portion of the eye. This is ideal for those who want to achieve a more doll-like or anime look.
While the doll eye looks prominent, the cat-eye lash style looks more natural. However, the doll eye suits many eye shapes such as hooded, monolid, and deep-set.
Do Cat-Eye Lashes Make Your Eyes Look Bigger?
Yes, the cat-eye style will make your eyes look bigger if the length of the lash extension is increased from the inner corner to the outer corner. This will give the illusion of a bigger eye.
What Are Kitten Eyelash Extensions?
The kitten style is a variation of the cat-eye style. The main difference is that the kitten style uses shorter lash extensions to create a more subtle cat-eye look. Also, a kitten style will have a shorter range of lengths. While a cat-eye will use 8 mm to 14 mm, the kitten style might use 9 mm to 12 mm lengths.
What Is Extreme Cat-Eye Eyelash Extensions?
The extreme cat-eye style is a more dramatic take on the cat-eye style. This style uses even longer lash extensions in the outer corner (12 to 13 mm) and even shorter ones for the inner corner of the eye (6 to 7 mm).
The Bottom Line
From wearing eyeliners to ward off evil eyes to personalized eyelash extension fibers, cat-eye has been a prominent look through the ages.
In my experience as a lash artist, this style is a trending choice because it tapers the eyes into a finer almond shape with a dash of drama.
I think it adds a sensual or sultry vibe to most eye shapes. The truth is variation in lengths of lash extensions towards the outer corner of the eye slims down the face and elongates the eye when you wear this style.
What about you? What’s your favorite style? Let me know in the comments below!
- Khaoula Ghanem (2018). Tracing the History of the Cat-Eye. Retrieved from https://en.vogue.me/beauty/the-history-of-the-cat-eye/ (Accessed on June 20, 2022)