Latisse Undeniably Works - Don't Let Others Scare You From Using it!
About 4 and a half years ago I started Latisse (bimatoprost ophthalmic solution) after being encouraged by my friend to give it a try when she started using it. I was a little hesitant because I had just seen a commercial about it from Allergan. The commercial mentioned the possibility of darkening your iris (the color part of your eye) and my bright green eyes are probably one of my best features. Brown pigmentation of my iris was going to be a huge problem, but as you'll see later, became less of a concern to me.
According to some research I did back when I first started Latisse, I found that it was originally used as a glaucoma (eye pressure problems) medication. However, during clinical studies the makers of the medication started to realize that patients were getting longer, fuller, darker lashes. It's believed that the active ingredient keeps your lashes in the growth phase so that they continue to grow and grow!
How I apply it:
I was taught differently on how to use the medication than what is instructed on the box, so take my application 'style' for what it's worth (essentially nothing without talking to your provider).
Before bed when I first started using it, I would open the little eye dropper-like bottle and hold the cap with the opposite hand.
I would put one drop of the medication onto the upper eyelid lash line (like I was painting on eyeliner) with one of the sterile applicators. Then with the same applicator, I would apply the remaining portion of the same drop to the opposite lash line.
You do not have to apply it to your lower eyelid because the natural blinking action/closing your eyes transfers the medication to the lower lid.
I like to apply the medication from the outer edge of my eye lash line inward. I was told to do that so that it could potentially make my outer lashes longer - I think it works, but it may be in my head!
Note: According to the instructions in the box from what I remember, it is advised to use a new applicator and a new drop for each application to avoid risk of skin infection or other side effects.
Common Side Effects:
In the first couple of weeks of use, I was warned about several side effects that seemed pretty simple to deal with: red eyes, itchy eyes that feels like allergies, very mild dry eyes.
I had all of the common symptoms, but it wasn't until using the treatment for a while that I
Eyelid skin darkening is apparently common, and I'm one of those who "suffers" from it. At this point, however, I've gotten so used to it I don't notice. I can wear some light eye shadow and it covers it easily. I do have a friend, however, that is asian and she got hyperpigmentation of her upper lid and lower lid, even though she only applied it to the upper lid as prescribed. She had to stop using it because she couldn't cover up the darkness of the undereyes, but it did go away on its own shortly after she stopped.
If you reuse the same applicator stick you're cautioned on the risk of eye infections like conjunctivitis,
The FDA says that you can get a darker iris, but before I committed to starting the treatment (from what I researched it seemed as though you were only at risk of getting brown eyes (if they were blue or green, or lighter brown) if you dropped the medication right into your cornea.
Other reactions to the medication include vision problems, headache, severe allergies or allergic reactions, macular edema, and other possible eye problems.
I would definitely recommend anyone considering starting this prescription treatment to consult with their eye doctor first, especially if you have any current vision problems, wear contact lenses, or have any other issues.
Summing it up:
A side note: I know a lot of people that would wish Latisse would for hair growth when they have hair loss, but unfortunately my father can't use it for his bald spot - it didn't work in their studies!
The diligent, nightly use of the medication slowly started to work (I recommend you take before, during, and after photos to see the difference). After about 3 or 4 weeks I started to see my lashes grown and seem more full.
After a full 16 weeks of treatment (the time at which I was told I had to reach to see "maximum lash effect") I was shocked at the change. I have blond-tipped/light brown lashes naturally and they were now all almost entirely dark brown - finally visible without constant mascara! I had longer lashes AND more eyelash hairs than I've ever seen. The results were so dramatic that I had to go out and get a new eyelash curler and fancy, $50 mascara to show them off! I felt like I could blink and create a light breeze (well, almost).
I now apply the medication less frequently than every night (usually 3-5 times per week) to maintain my lashes. There are times that if I'm really lazy about applying it for a few nights in a row, and I can see some missing areas of eye lashes, so be careful! You have to keep applying Latisse to maintain your results after the first 16 weeks, but I can tell you as someone who has paid for multiple rounds of eyelash extensions, this is so much easier, less expensive, and safer on your current lashes.
Each 5mL eye drop bottle and the applicators that go with it (in a neat white box) costs me $180 and lasts around 4 months or more in my "maintenance" phase. When I first started using it, the Latisse cost seemed a bit steep, as the 5mL bottle would only last me about 12 weeks - not enough to get the "maximum lash effect" - but then the need for constant nightly use subsided and the cost became more manageable. Also, I joined the Allergan Brilliant Distinctions program so that I could get points from each purchase of the medication that I could eventually use as a big discount to buy more in the future.
Finally, if you're wondering if Latisse works, don't. I can undeniably vouch it worked for me (and for the 4 other friends that started using it after me), and still gives me the fuller, longer, and disney-like lashes to this day.