They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. Clementina Richardson likes to make that window pop.
Two decades ago, she was a nail tech on Long Island. Today, she provides lash extensions for the likes of Mary J. Blige, Naomi Campbell, Kate Capshaw and hundreds of New York City dwellers at her Manhattan salon, Envious Lashes.
This spring, Richardson is returning to her roots as she begins to build out a Long Island salon in Commack. Richardson spilled on her plans for the salon, spring trends and tips for finding the perfect extensions.
Tell me a bit about your background.
I started as a nail technician in the Commack area. I did that for about 13 years. In 2007, I decided I wanted to do something different, something more fun that would beautify the face area. The owner of the spa I was working at was speaking to one of the girls doing hair extensions. He mentioned to her that lash extensions were booming in New York City and that it was something she could get into. I just jumped on the opportunity and spoke with him about it. I did a little research on it, trained myself and ended up loving it. I thought it would be something I’d do in between nails but it completely took off. Within the first six months or so, I had to completely quit doing nails and I’ve been lashing ever since.
What was it specifically about lashes that excited you?
I love how after you apply the extensions clients look in the mirror and see changes to their face, there’s minimal makeup needed. When you have lash extensions with no makeup on your face just pops. You wake up beautiful. It really enhances the eyes.
What lash trends can people look out for this spring?
A forever trend is the cat-eye. Most people want their eye cat-eye or a more almond shape. Bottom lashes are going to be huge. It really compliments the top and creates balance…and makes the eyes appear larger and bigger.
What’s a beauty trend you’d like to see never come back in style?
Really bold eyebrows. It’s an eyesore. It’s very distracting.
When a client wants a natural look, what do you recommend?
We usually give clients looking for a natural look our [set that] is 80 strands per eye. It’s a good starting point where a client can go in and add more or less.
How about for someone who wants drama?
Unlike the traditional application where we apply one strand per lash, we apply anywhere between three to six strands per lash. It’s a volumizing technique, and lash extensions that are finer than normal are applied to create a soft, dark, feathery, mink-like appearance. This method is the ultimate option to give you that bombshell appearance without causing strain on the natural lash.
What are some things to consider when choosing your lashes?
Your skin tone, the health of your natural lash, the length, the curvature and your specific lifestyle needs. Not choosing the correct type of lash or style can exaggerate an already existing flaw. For example, using a lash that is too heavy can weigh down the eyes. This will make the eyes appear smaller and sleepy.
You’re opening a place on Long Island on the corner of Commack Road and Jericho Turnpike. What can people expect?
I’m aiming to open in June or July. The décor will be sophisticated, modern and chic. Nothing is set in stone yet, but we are working…to design a clean, modern concept space with our signature blue, grey and white accents. It will have an upscale spa vibe that will be warm and inviting to our clientele.