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.
Backed by many scientific and clinical studies, it’s a safe, effective option if you have eyelash hypotrichosis or just don’t feel satisfied with the way your eyelashes look.
However, Latisse isn’t the only option that’s available for enhancing your lashes.
Other products include Lash Boost®, a popular eyelash growth serum made by Rodan + Fields, as well as others such as neuLash®, RevitaLash® and LASHFOOD®.
While some of these products make realistic, accurate claims about the type of results they can produce, others make less accurate statements and contain active ingredients that often aren’t backed by any real science.
Below, we’ve compared these eyelash growth serums and enhancement products on a range of factors, from effectiveness to ease of use and safety, all with the goal of helping you get the best results and value for money.
Latisse is the only FDA-approved treatment for growing longer, thicker and darker eyelashes.
It contains the active ingredient bimatoprost and is backed up by several studies confirming it has real, measurable benefits as an eyelash growth treatment.
Bimatoprost, the active ingredient in Latisse, is believed to cause your eyelashes to spend more time in the anagen — or growth — phase of the hair growth cycle.
This means your lashes will grow longer, thicker and darker in color after using the medication than they would naturally.
Here are some frequently asked questions about Latisse:
Unlike most serums and other products sold as eyelash enhancers, Latisse is a real medication that’s been tested in many clinical trials.
Because of this, there are several scientific studies proving that it works:
In clinical trials, researchers found that 79 percent of people who used Latisse experienced an increase in eyelash prominence, measured using the Global Eyelash Assessment (GEA) scale, after using the medication daily for 20 weeks.
In a 2010 scientific study, researchers treated participants using either normal saline or a solution that contained bimatoprost, the active ingredient in Latisse. Eyelashes that were treated with the bimatoprost grew an average of 2mm, versus 1.1mm for the saline gel.
Our Latisse 101 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 — they’re real, proven results that are backed up by studies.
For 79 percent of people, Latisse produces real, noticeable improvements to the eyelashes that don’t occur naturally.
Latisse is an easy medication to use. Each bottle of Latisse comes with a sealed pack of sterile applicators.
To apply the medication, all you need to do is apply one drop of Latisse to the brush of the applicator, then carefully apply it to your upper eyelid.
After you’ve applied Latisse to one eyelid, dispose of the applicator and use a new applicator to repeat the process for the other eyelid.
Our guide to Latisse (linked above) also has full step-by-step instructions to help you properly apply the Latisse solution.
When you’re not using Latisse, you can safely store it in your medicine cabinet. All in all, Latisse is a very easy medication to apply.
Latisse is a prescription medication, meaning you’ll need to talk to a doctor before you can buy and use it.
We offer Latisse online, subject to doctor approval and an online consultation, with discreet delivery to your door.
Latisse comes in two different sizes — a small 3 ml bottle that’s designed to last for one month, plus a larger 5 ml bottle that lasts for approximately 10 weeks.
Both sizes come with a complete set of sterile applicators, giving you enough applicators to use the entire bottle of Latisse solution without having to purchase more.
Latisse is a safe, effective medication that’s undergone a considerable amount of testing. Like other medications, Latisse can occasionally cause side effects.
However, these are generally uncommon and only affect a small percentage of people who use Latisse.
Although Latisse is not linked to any major birth defects in humans, it’s not considered safe to use if you’re pregnant or nursing.
You can learn more about the potential side effects of Latisse in our complete guide to Latisse (bimatoprost) side effects.
Latisse is currently the only FDA-approved medication for enhancing the length, thickness and color of your eyelashes.
It’s been proven to work in several studies and has undergone clinical testing to verify that it’s safe.
If you’re not satisfied with the appearance of your eyelashes and want a proven treatment that can help them to grow longer and thicker, Latisse is currently the best option available.
Want to know more? We've answered your Latisse FAQs in this handy guide.
Lash Boost is an eyelash enhancement product sold by Rodan + Fields, a multi-level marketing company that was launched in 2007.
Unlike Latisse, which is approved by the FDA, Lash Boost is not approved by the FDA and is marketed as a serum, rather than as a medication.
There are several key ingredients in Lash Boost. The serum contains biotin and keratin, as well as sodium hyaluronate and isopropyl cloprostenate.
The last ingredient, isopropyl cloprostenate, is of particular interest — we’ve talked about it in a little more detail below.
Lash Boost is a non-medicated serum, meaning it isn’t subject to the same clinical testing as an FDA-approved medication like Latisse.
There’s some evidence that the active ingredients in Lash Boost might help to promote healthy hair growth.
For example, biotin is associated with improvements in hair growth, albeit mainly in people with an existing biotin deficiency.
Despite biotin’s general benefits for your hair, it isn’t specifically linked to improvements in the growth of your eyelashes.
Keratin, another Lash Boost ingredient, is an important protein for the growth of hair.
However, there’s no evidence showing that topical keratin has any noticeable effects on the thickness or length of your eyelashes.
In general, there’s no real scientific evidence that Lash Boost works effectively as an eyelash growth serum.
Rodan + Fields often references “studies” of Lash Boost, but these studies are consumer studies (rather than scientific studies), and none appear in any scientific journals.
Overall, there’s no credible scientific evidence that Lash Boost will cause you to grow longer or thicker eyelashes, although some of its ingredients might help to promote healthy hair growth in general.
Lash Boost is easy to use. The serum comes with an applicator wand that you use along your lash line. It takes around 90 seconds for the liquid solution to dry after you’ve applied it to your upper eyelids.
Lash Boost is not a prescription medication, meaning you can purchase it without having to see a doctor.
It’s available from the Rodan + Fields store, as well as from the company’s network of consultants.
Rodan + Fields sells Lash Boost for $155, with the 5 ml container designed to last for about two months.
Lash Boost does not come with sterile applicators. Instead, an applicator brush is part of the packaging, similar to the brush that’s built into a tube of mascara.
Because Lash Boost isn’t approved by the FDA, it isn’t subject to the same regulatory scrutiny as FDA-approved medications.
This means that it hasn’t undergone the thorough safety testing that’s carried out before medications like Latisse make their way onto the market.
Most people who use Lash Boost do not appear to have allergic reactions or other side effects from the product.
However, some people have reported that an ingredient in Lash Boost called isopropyl cloprostenate is linked to several potentially serious side effects.
These include the potential to change the color of the irises, or colored part of your eyes.
While this side effect is uncommon and can also happen with eyelash growth medications that contain bimatoprost, it’s important to be aware of it before you consider using Lash Boost.
Although Lash Boost’s marketing makes ambitious claims about its effectiveness, these claims aren’t backed up by any large-scale, peer-reviewed studies.
While this product might work, the evidence that it does isn’t very strong.
Lash Boost contains several ingredients.
While most of these ingredients are safe, it’s important to be aware of the potential side effects of isopropyl cloprostenate before you use Lash Boost or any other eyelash enhancement products with a similar formula.
neuLash is a non-medicated serum made by Skin Research Laboratories. Like Lash Boost, it isn’t an FDA-approved medication and does not require a prescription.
Instead, you can buy it over the counter in certain beauty stores, or from online retailers and department stores like Amazon or Walmart.
Like other over-the-counter eyelash enhancement products, neuLash contains a combination of ingredients linked to general hair health.
You can find biotin, sea water, panthenol and a variety of extracts on the ingredients label.
neuLash also contains isopropyl cloprostenate, which is linked to improvements in growth of the eyelashes but may also cause certain side effects, such as irritation and changes in the color of the iris.
Overall, there’s no credible scientific evidence that the ingredients in neuLash will help you grow longer, thicker lashes.
Despite this, some of its ingredients, such as biotin, might help to improve your general hair health.
neuLash is available offline from a variety of retailers. It’s also available online from Amazon and Walmart.
As a non-prescription product, you don’t need to see your doctor before you can order neuLash.
Pricing for neuLash can vary depending on where you purchase this product. In high-end retail stores, it can cost as much as $150.
From Amazon or Walmart, it’s typically available for $50 to $60 per 6 ml bottle.
Like Lash Boost, neuLash does not come with sterile applicators. Instead, there’s an applicator brush built into the product’s packaging.
neuLash contains isopropyl cloprostenate, which is also the main ingredient in Lash Boost. This ingredient is linked to several side effects, including irritation of the eyelids and darkening of the color of the iris.
While most people who use neuLash and other products with similar ingredients have a positive experience, it’s important to be aware of the potential side effects before using this product.
Like Lash Boost, neuLash contains isopropyl cloprostenate, as well as several ingredients that can contribute to improvements in hair health.
However, there’s no credible scientific evidence that these products will cause your eyelashes to become longer, thicker or darker in color.
In addition to the options we’ve covered above, there are also countless other eyelash growth serums on the market. Other well-known brands include RevitaLash, LASHFOOD and several others.
For the most part, these products contain a mix of natural ingredients, including B-complex vitamins such as biotin and other non-medicated ingredients.
They’re often backed up by data from consumer studies, although these studies generally don’t appear in peer-reviewed journals.
Because there are so many eyelash growth products on the market, it isn’t possible to provide a detailed analysis of every product. If you’re considering one of these products, it’s best to look at consumer feedback and review the product’s list of ingredients before making a decision.
For expert advice on improving your eyelashes, it’s best to consult your doctor. They’ll be able to recommend a safe, effective treatment that improves your eyelash length and thickness without affecting your health. Looking for more information on how to grow longer eyelashes, treatments, tips, and more eyelash growth help? Check out this article for more details.
Right now, Latisse is the only FDA-approved treatment available for improving the length and thickness of your eyelashes. Our guide to Latisse explains how it works in more detail, as well as how you can use it to grow longer, thicker and more prominent eyelashes.
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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