by Mary Valterria
Riverside City College students are lashing out!
Eyelash extensions are the newest trending fashion movement to become increasingly popular amongst students at RCC. The beauty ritual consists of individual synthetic lashes being carefully applied to enhance natural lashes that produce a fuller, curlier look. A growing number of establishments now offer the service, however Johnny’s Lashes is the company that most RCC students prefer.
Johnny’s Lashes’ Riverside Plaza location was quaint and accommodating. Receptionist Cynthia Felix greeted all customers as they walked in the door and she explained in detail all of the options for choosing the lashes that were right for each individual person.
There were two separate sign in sheets for appointments and walk-ins; appointments were honored accordingly and walk-ins were provided service in a fairly timely manner.
Once in the application chair, natural lashes were handled with a gentle touch. There was a small amount of discomfort as glue was applied however, the sensation was quick to disappear.
Lash Technician Carly Malic made friendly small talk and continuously made sure that her customers were comfortable during the application process.
Mascara was applied and followed by sealant, which allows for a longer life span of the lashes.
Time spent in the chair was approximately 30 minutes and the average cost of the lashes was less than $25. Patrons were offered a punch card if they paid with cash, which offered discounts for returning customers.
The entire process was timely and pleasant. The end result was longer, thicker lashes that open the eyes up, giving them a burst of radiance.
At the time of departure, there was a new group of clients in the lobby eagerly awaiting services.
According to Felix, customers of all ages and backgrounds visit the store for a variety of reasons. Special occasions such as weddings and quinceaneras seem to be popular motivators, but there are as many clients, including RCC students, who receive eyelash extensions for everyday use.
There are a number of reasons why Johnny’s Lashes is popular among eyelash enthusiasts. There are multiple styles to choose from; all unique creations designed by owner Johnny Pham himself. The staff is accommodating, knowledgeable and will really listen to your needs. And most of all, it’s affordable.
Pham opened his first store in San Bernardino in 2009 with only four technicians. Now there are 35 employees spread out through six different stores.
RCC student Maria Rodriguez was drawn to the idea of enhancing her lashes because she admired the lashes of a friend.
“They just looked pretty and so natural,” said Rodriguez, who has visited Johnny’s Lashes locations in both Riverside and Chino Hills. “I had them done … and wore them for about four months off and on.”
Rodriguez created a domino effect among her fellow students and created a wave of interest in the lash craze.
RCC student Patricia Uematsu was one of many who thought very highly of Rodriguez’s eyelash extensions and sought services at Johnny’s Lashes Riverside Plaza store.
“They save me time in the morning because I don’t have to apply mascara,” said Uematsu. “I love the way they look and I get so many compliments.”
Mascara does not need to be reapplied daily thanks to the sealant that was added in the last step of the lash process. This is convenient, especially for busy students. Convenience is most likely the main the reason why the eyelash trend is growing so fast.
“Business has definitely climbed since the store has opened,” said Felix about the Riverside location. “On a busy day we … see about 90 clients.”
Lash technicians are certified cosmetologists and must undergo comprehensive training in order to provide the lash service. Technique and effective application is the focus of the guided instruction.
The hard work paid off because students had nothing but praise for all of the lash technicians.
“All of the girls that have done my lashes are really great,” said Uematsu.
Rodriguez said she prefers to make her appointments with Malic, even though “all the girls are pretty good.”
Malic has worked as a Lash Technician at Johnny’s Lashes for over two years and says that her favorite part of the job is “making people feel beautiful.”
“I believe the eyelash extension trend is here to stay,” said Malic. “It’s something that makes women feel … good about themselves.”
Felix also said she foresees the popularity of the store continuing to rise as more and more clients give word-of-mouth recommendations for those who seek glamorous lashes.
Rodriguez said she definitely recommends that other students get eyelash extensions, especially those who work and go to school because they save so much time.
Although convenient and aesthetically pleasing, frequent users run the risk of their natural lashes thinning out. Malic suggests a “break” for the lashes every once in a while.
“It will help them breathe and grow,” she said.
Rodriguez, who is currently not wearing eyelash extensions but plans to get them redone soon, said that after a few months her eyes began to experience irritation.
“I would … just be cautious,” she said.
Uematsu added that regular maintenance of the lashes can become somewhat expensive with overuse, but they are “worth it,” and plans to continue receiving the service.
The service is indeed worth it, as the lashes have remained strong and in place.
Maintenance is suggested every two weeks and appointments are recommended, but not necessary.
Johnny’s Lashes provides eyelash service locally at the Riverside Plaza and at any of their other locations including San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Chino Hills and Loma Linda. A Fontana store is scheduled to open in the near future.
With so many locations to serve students, it looks as though the eye of the RCC Tiger will continue to have lashes full and voluptuous!
5 out of 5 stars