Classic eyelash extensions vs hybrid vs volume lash extensions, what’s the difference? Each lash type is unique and varies depending on the materials and volume of lashes used in the process.
- Classic eyelash extensions look the most natural and are good for everyday wear.
- Hybrid lashes combine classic and volume extensions for a thicker everyday look.
- Volume extensions are extremely dense and are popular for special occasions.
I’ve tried all three eyelash extension types multiple times, so I have a good grasp of the differences to guide you in selecting the best lash for you. I’ll compare the three different kinds and when to use each one. And I’ll also answer some questions I had when I was an extension newbie.
What are classic lash extensions?
Common diameters: 0.15 mm, 0.18 mm, and 0.20 mm
Classic eyelash extensions are perfect for everyday wear because they look natural and aren’t overly dramatic or distracting.
If you already have a lot of lashes but just need more length, classic lashes can help. They can also replace regular mascara.
For each natural eyelash you have, one false eyelash is applied. Because of this 1:1 ratio, they are thicker than the ones used for volume.
What are hybrid lash extensions?
Ratio: 1:2 to 1:10
Common diameters: 0.06mm & 0.07mm
Hybrid eyelash extensions combine classic and volume techniques into one. This type of lash extension is helpful if you have sparse lashes and need extra volume to fill in the gaps. It provides the length of classic lashes with the volume of volume lashes.
The extensions are more texturized and more dense in hybrid lashes vs classic lashes. However, they have a less uniform look than volume extensions.
Hybrid extensions include 30% classic lash extensions and 70% volume lash extensions. The ratio for volume lashes is between 1:2 and 1:10.
What are volume lash extensions?
Ratio: up to 6:1
Common diameters: 0.03mm, 0.05mm, and 0.07mm
Volume lashes are all about creating lush, full lashes. While they don’t increase length as much as classic lashes, they work great for creating a fuller look if you have sparse lashes.
These are dramatic out-on-the-town or I’ve-got-a-hot-date lashes. If you don’t normally have sparse lashes, they may be a bit much for an everyday look.
At 0.03mm, 0.05mm, and 0.07mm, the diameter is smaller than classic lashes because the volume comes from lash quantity. The lash artist will place 2-6 volume lash extensions on top of each natural lash for a ratio of up to 6:1. You’ll hear them called 2d, 3d, 4d, 5d, or 6d extensions based on the number of lashes.
Individual lash materials & textures
- Silk lashes are soft and slightly glossy.
- Faux mink lashes are finer than silk, so it’s necessary to apply a few more lashes. The extra fluff is nice for special occasions.
- Flat lashes are great for a classic look with a bit more drama since their flatter bottom provides an illusion of more fullness.
Which is better, classic, hybrid, or volume lashes?
The best type of lash for you depends on your lash goals.
Pick classic lashes if:
- You want a natural everyday look for home and office
- You want light lashes
- You want longer lashes
- You want a lash that’s easy to apply
Pick hybrid lashes if:
- You want more texture and volume than classic lashes but less than volume lashes
- You want a lusher everyday look for work or home
- You want a fuller look than classic lashes to fill in empty gaps
- If you want a less uniform, more lifelike look than volume lashes
Pick volume lashes if:
- You want a dramatic look for a wedding, a date, a music festival, or a night out
- You want more voluminous lashes
- You have lashes that are naturally sparse or thin
Are volume lashes the same as cluster lashes?
In a word, no.
Cluster lashes are pre-made fans known as clusters. Volume lashes are very light individual faux mink lash hairs that get placed on each lash.
Cluster lashes are often heavier, and they aren’t as customization-friendly as volume sets. Additionally, cluster lashes can cause you to lose your natural lash if you get them too frequently because of the heavy amounts of glue used.
Having clusters instead of individual lashes also prevents your natural lash from growing out as it should.
I once had a bad experience getting cluster lashes when I thought I was getting volume lashes. They ended up pulling my natural lashes off when they fell off, which left me with shorter and fewer lashes.
How long do classic eyelash extensions last?
Classic eyelash extensions last about 4-6 weeks. The actual amount of time depends on each person’s natural growth cycle. Extensions will fall out with your natural lashes as they grow out as well.
Hybrid and volume extensions last the same amount of time as classic extensions.
How to make extensions last longer
Some ways to extend the life of your extensions include:
- Staying away from water for the first 48 hours
- Brushing out your lashes
- Using a lash sealant to extend the life of your lashes
- Keep your eyelash extensions clean by regularly shampooing them with an extension safe cleanser
- Scheduling maintenance appointments
How much do classic, hybrid, and volume lashes cost?
As tempting as it may seem, don’t cheap out when it comes to eyelash extensions! You pay for what you get. If you want well-done and pretty lashes, expect to pay a bit more.
Volume and hybrid lashes often cost more than a classic set of lashes due to the number of materials used.
In the past, I have spent about $200 per classic eyelash extension set, with a touch-up fee of about $50-$70.
You can read more detail about cost here -> How much do lash extensions cost?
Cost varies from city to city and studio to studio. Cost is dependent upon the materials used, the lash artists’ experience, and the use of their time. Check the prices in your area when you research salons for lash extensions.
Do I have to get a new set every time?
New, full sets of eyelash extensions are often only applied once unless you let your eyelash extensions grow out and do not go back for a touch-up. If you let them grow out, you will need to get a new full set.
If you enjoy the way that your eyelash extensions look, a touch-up every 4-6 weeks will cost you less and will keep your eyelash extensions looking nice and full.
Do I need to wear mascara if I have lash extensions?
No! That is one of the best parts of having lash extensions. Classic lashes are the closest thing to natural lashes, but you still do not need mascara with them. The darkness and lift you get from mascara is the result you get from classic lashes.
While you can use mascara on classic lash extensions, it’s best to skip the mascara altogether. If you have hybrid or volume extensions, definitely avoid mascara. Not only will mascara harden delicate extensions, removing it will break down the adhesive or pull out the lash extensions and your natural lash.
Can I go from classic eyelash extensions to volume eyelash extensions at my next session?
Yes, you can go up from classic lash extensions to volume lashes. It will take more time and money to go backward.
If you are not sure if you want the lash fullness of volume or hybrid lashes, start with a classic set. Once you know that you want more volume, go in to increase the fullness at your next appointment!
Get ready to enjoy lash extensions!
Classic eyelash extensions can be a wise first extension choice since they’re lighter on your eyes. You can see how you like how they look and feel to determine if you want to go for a little more volume with a hybrid lash or a lot more volume with a volume lash.
Lash extensions may look intimidating, but now you know the difference between classic vs hybrid lashes and hybrid vs volume lashes and what to expect from them. Make the first move toward having the eyelashes you’ve always wanted by setting up an appointment with a lash stylist today.
Want to learn more about lash extensions before taking the plunge?
Read our guide: Everything You Need to Know About Getting Lash Extensions
Laura is a beauty expert with 5 years prior experience working in cosmetics and lash salons. When not writing you can find her experimenting with the trending makeup looks, or reading a good book snuggled up with her French Bulldog Max. Laura is currently a contributing writer and Beauty Editor at BeatyStack.