Latisse vs. Lash Boost & Other Growth Serums

Kristin Hall

Reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP

Written by Rachel Sacks

Published 07/10/2019

Updated 09/08/2023

One thing that never seems to go out of style is full, long lashes. You see them everywhere — magazines, models, ads — so wanting to enhance your eyelashes is understandable.

But while a good mascara or a set of fake eyelashes can work wonders for an immediate boost, neither provides a more permanent solution.

Several options can improve your eyelashes’ appearance. There’s Latisse, a well-known treatment for enhancing the length, thickness and darkness of your eyelashes.

But the cost of Latisse might send some looking for a Latisse dupe that provides just as good results. Popular Latisse alternatives include Lash Boost®, neuLASH®, RapidLash® and Show Lash®.

So, which is the best for lash growth? How does Latisse versus Lash Boost compare — and what about Show Lash versus Latisse?

We’ll break down the science behind all these eyelash-growth products so you can get the lashes of your dreams. Whether you end up going with a Latisse dupe or the real deal, this guide will help you choose.

Latisse is currently the only FDA-approved treatment for eyelash growth. The liquid solution is applied twice a day to the base of your upper eyelid for thicker and longer lashes.

Latisse is available in a 0.03% solution to treat hypotrichosis of the eyelashes, a disorder characterized by a less-than-normal amount of eyelashes.

Latisse comes in two sizes:

  • The 3-milliliter bottle contains enough liquid solution for about one month of use and comes with 70 single-use applicators.

  • The larger 5-milliliter bottle comes with 140 applicator brushes and is designed to last for roughly two months.

The 3-milliliter bottle of Latisse and sterile applicators runs about $110, while the 5-milliliter bottle is around $160.

Each bottle comes with a sealed pack of sterile applicators. To use the medication, all you need to do is apply one drop of Latisse to the applicator brush, then carefully apply it to your upper lash line (similar to how eyeliner is applied).

After you’ve applied Latisse to one eyelid, repeat the process on the other lash line, then dispose of the applicator.

The active ingredient in Latisse is bimatoprost, which belongs to a class of drugs called prostaglandin analogues. First used to treat glaucoma, bimatoprost was inadvertently found to stimulate hair follicles and encourage lash growth.

While researchers aren’t entirely sure how this drug works, bimatoprost is believed to cause eyelashes to spend more time in the anagen phase (or growth phase) of the hair growth cycle.

But don’t let the scientific words or exact mechanism of bimatoprost set you back — the effectiveness speaks for itself.

In clinical trials, 79 percent of people who used Latisse daily for 16 weeks experienced an increase in eyelash prominence. Their results were measured with the Global Eyelash Assessment (GEA) scale.

In a small 2010 scientific study of just 19 people, researchers treated participants using either normal saline or a solution containing bimatoprost. Eyelashes treated with bimatoprost grew an average of 2 millimeters versus just 1.1 millimeters with the saline gel.

Our Latisse FAQ guide includes results from several other studies, all of which found that regular use of Latisse is associated with increased eyelash length and thickness. 

In short, the claims made about Latisse aren’t just marketing — real, proven results are backed up by studies and clinical trials.

But with every medication comes the possibility of side effects — and Latisse is no exception.

The most common side effects of Latisse include itching, irritation of the eye, redness, darkening of the eyelids, hair growth outside the treatment area and eye infection.

How do over-the-counter Latisse alternatives stack up? Are there huge differences in quality or efficacy between RapidLash versus Latisse? What about NeuLASH versus Latisse?

Keep reading to learn more about these eyelash growth treatment alternatives, and find out which one might be best for your needs and goals.

Lash Boost is an eyelash-enhancing serum sold by Rodan + Fields, a multi-level marketing company that launched in 2007.

Here’s what to know:

  • There are several key ingredients in Lash Boost, including sodium hyaluronate, isopropyl cloprostenate, biotin and keratin. Biotin and keratin are two popular hair growth ingredients believed to improve lash appearance and help reduce hair loss — albeit in those with existing deficiencies.

  • In general, there’s no real scientific evidence that Lash Boost works effectively as an eyelash-growth serum. Rodan + Fields often references “studies” on Lash Boost, but these are consumer studies (rather than scientific studies), and none appear in any scientific journals.

  • While Latisse is a prescription medication, you can buy Lash Boost from Rodan + Fields stores or through the brand’s consultants. Rodan + Fields sells Lash Boost for $155 a tube, just slightly less than Latisse’s 5-milliliter bottle. Each Lash Boost tube contains 5 milliliters of the serum, which is supposed to last about two months.

  • Unlike Latisse, Lash Boost isn’t approved by the FDA and is marketed as a serum rather than a medication. This means it hasn’t undergone the same safety testing other medicated hair and skincare products like Latisse have.

Overall, there’s no credible evidence that Lash Boost will cause you to grow longer or thicker eyelashes. So in the case of Latisse versus Lash Boost, the evidence (or lack thereof) points to Latisse being a safer and more effective option.

neuLASH is another non-medicated lash-enhancing serum made by Skin Research Laboratories.

How do NeuLASH versus Latisse compare? Here’s what we can tell you:

  • Biotin, peptides, panthenol, sodium hyaluronate and various extracts like pumpkin seed extract are listed on the neuLASH ingredients label.

  • neuLASH doesn’t require a prescription and can be bought over the counter at certain beauty stores, department stores, big-box stores like Walmart and from online retailers like Amazon.

  • Pricing for neuLASH ranges from around $60 to as much as $150 per 6-milliliter bottle at high-end retail stores.

  • While the listed ingredients likely plump the lashes to give the appearance of fuller lashes, there’s no evidence that neuLASH actually helps you grow longer eyelashes or enhances hair growth in any way.

  • Unlike Latisse, neuLASH doesn’t come with sterile applicators. Instead, there’s an applicator brush built into the product’s packaging, which could pose a risk of eye infection from potential bacteria growth.

Like Lash Boost, neuLASH doesn’t require a prescription. Its wider availability and lower cost from some retailers may make it a favorable Latisse dupe.

However, neuLASH isn’t approved by the FDA and doesn’t have any credible scientific studies on its effectiveness.

Another common Latisse alternative is RapidLash, an eyelash-enhancing serum formulated to strengthen thin or weak lashes.

Here’s what to know about RapidLash:

  • You can buy RapidLash at several drugstores and online retailers, as well as directly through the company’s website.

  • The six main ingredients listed on the product site include amino acids, biotin, pumpkin seed extract, soybean oil, panthenol and polypeptides. The formulation claims to hydrate, condition and strengthen eyelashes.

  • RapidLash is applied the same way as most other eyelash-growth products. But similar to neuLASH and Lash Boost, this product comes with an applicator brush built into the packaging.

  • Though customer testimonials give the product high ratings on the site, there aren’t any medical studies reviewing whether RapidLash works for growth.

Made by a company called LeVaye’ Cosmetics, Show Lash is an eyelash serum that promises noticeably longer lashes in a few weeks, with full results around two to three months.

Here are the basics of Show Lash:

  • Sold mostly through the LeVaye’ site, Show Lash appears to also be available on Amazon and at Walmart for upwards of $90 per 3-milliliter tube, which is said to last three months.

  • The ingredients are similar to those in other eyelash serums, including sodium hyaluronate, pumpkin seed oil and peptides, along with collagen and the amino acid arginine.

  • Like RapidLash, there are only customer reviews and no medical studies or evidence of whether Show Lash is an effective eyelash-regrowth treatment.

eyelash growth serum

longer, thicker, darker lashes. yes to that.

With so many eyelash-growth products on the market, trying to decide which is best can be overwhelming.

  • Latisse is an eyelash-growth serum that’s applied twice a day with a sterile applicator. Studies have shown its active ingredient, bimatoprost, is effective at growing stronger, fuller eyelashes.

  • Several Latisse alternatives are available to buy without a prescription, either through various drugstores and retailers or directly from the company. Some of the most common are Lash Boost, neuLASH, RapidLash and Show Lash.

  • While the price and availability make these alternatives seem appealing, there aren’t any studies on the effectiveness of their ingredients.

  • Latisse is also the only FDA-approved eyelash growth treatment currently available, meaning these other products haven’t been tested for safety.

We offer Latisse online, subject to an online consultation and approval from a healthcare provider, with discreet delivery to your door.

For expert advice on improving your eyelashes, it’s best to consult your healthcare provider for a safe, effective treatment that improves your eyelash length and thickness without affecting your health.

This guide on how to grow longer eyelashes has more information on treatments, tips and eyelash growth help. You can also browse other hair loss treatments if your lashes aren’t the only hairs affected.

8 Sources

Hims & Hers has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references.

  1. Latisse (bimatoprost ophthalmic) solution label. (n.d.). Accessdata.fda.gov. Retrieved from https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2012/022369s005lbl.pdf
  2. Law S. K. (2010). Bimatoprost in the treatment of eyelash hypotrichosis. Clinical ophthalmology (Auckland, N.Z.), 4, 349–358. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2861943/
  3. Huang, A.S., Meyer, J.J. Bimatoprost Ophthalmic Solution. [Updated 2022 Nov 14]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK576421/
  4. Wester, S. T., Lee, W. W., & Shi, W. (2010). Eyelash growth from application of bimatoprost in gel suspension to the base of the eyelashes. Ophthalmology, 117(5), 1024–1031. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2864326/
  5. Patel, D. P., Swink, S. M., & Castelo-Soccio, L. (2017). A Review of the Use of Biotin for Hair Loss. Skin appendage disorders, 3(3), 166–169. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5582478/
  6. Berkowitz, C. (n.d.). neuLASH® lash enhancing serum – Skin Research Laboratories. Skin Research Laboratories. Retrieved from https://skinresearchlabs.com/products/neulash-lash-enhancing-serum
  7. RapidLash® Eyelash Enhancing Serum | RapidLash® Eyelash Enhancement. (n.d.). rapidlash. Retrieved from https://rapidlash.com/products/rapidlash-eyelash-serum
  8. Show Lash Eyelash Serum. (n.d.). LeVaye’ Cosmetics. Retrieved from https://levaye.com/products/show-lash

This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Learn more about our editorial standards here.

Kristin Hall, FNP

Kristin Hall is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner with decades of experience in clinical practice and leadership. 

She has an extensive background in Family Medicine as both a front-line healthcare provider and clinical leader through her work as a primary care provider, retail health clinician and as Principal Investigator with the NIH

Certified through the American Nurses Credentialing Center, she brings her expertise in Family Medicine into your home by helping people improve their health and actively participate in their own healthcare. 

Kristin is a St. Louis native and earned her master’s degree in Nursing from St. Louis University, and is also a member of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. You can find Kristin on LinkedIn for more information.

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