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Latisse®: Does it Work And Is It Safe?

Latisse®: Does it Work And Is It Safe?

LATISSE® is a prescription treatment approved by Health Canada to enhance lashes. Yes, it is safe, and it does work. Unlike over-the-counter products that condition and moisturize lashes, LATISSE® has been clinically proven to actually grow lashes longer, fuller and darker. In clinical trials, lashes were 25% longer, 106% fuller, 18% darker, and 78% of users experienced a significant improvement in overall eyelash prominence. LATISSE® serum is believed to prolong the active growth phase of your lashes, and to slow the natural falling-out stage. It is applied to the upper eyelid along the base of the eyelashes with a special applicator. It is not intended for use on the lower eyelashes or the eyelids. Find out whether you are a potential candidate for LATISSE®, and how to use it safely. 


What Is LATISSE® And Does It Work?

LATISSE® is a solution composed of bimatoprost(0.03%), which occurs naturally in the body, and is a hormone-like compound involved in signaling hair growth. It is used to increase eyelash growth, and affects length, thickness, and darkness. 

Eyelash hairs protect our eyes from injury and irritation caused by particles of allergens, dust, and lint. However, your current eyelashes are continually renewing, and are not the same lashes you have always had. Eyelash follicles pass through phases of active growth (called ‘anagen’) and rest, followed by eventual loss. The entire regeneration process lasts between 4 and 11 months before it begins again.

While the biochemical processes involved are not fully understood, LATISSE® is believed to prolong the growth phase while increasing the number of simultaneously growing follicles to thicken your lashes. Patients usually see results after 8 weeks of routine use. Full results are seen around 16 weeks of use, and doctors may recommend reducing application to every few days. However, if you discontinue use, it is expected that your eyelash growth will return to a pre-treatment state. 

Is LATISSE® Safe To Use?

Bimatoprost was originally developed and approved to treat eye conditions that increase internal pressure, as a medicated eye-drop to treat glaucoma. It has been FDA-approved for use for more than 20 years, over which time eye doctors and patients discovered a side benefit of longer, fuller eyelash growth. 

Generally, most healthy people can safely use LATISSE®, however, as it is a pharmaceutical drug, rather than a cosmetic, it is only available by prescription. Your doctor will want to ensure that you are in good health, and a suitable candidate for the safe use of LATISSE® before prescribing the treatment.

Is LATISSE® Right For You?

In order to be assessed as a suitable candidate for LATISSE® treatment, you will need to provide the following information:

  • Are you at risk for, or under treatment for glaucoma, or macular edema?
  • Are you on an intraocular pressure-lowering medication?
  • Do you have an active eye condition such as blepharitis, infection, a stye, or conjunctivitis?
  • Are you nursing or pregnant?
  • Have you had shingles near your eyes, an allergic reaction to bimatoprost, or any of the inactive ingredients (i.e. benzalkonium chloride) in LATISSE®?
  • Are you over the age of 16? (It is not advisable to use for pediatric patients due to the potential for increased pigmentation following long-term use.)

You may need to consider alternative therapies, or delay treatment if you responded with ‘yes’ to any of the questions above. 


LATISSE® At Okanagan Skin Care Centre

At Okanagan Skin Care Centre, we are committed to offering our patients safe and professional services to enhance their appearance. If you have any questions or concerns regarding LATISSE®, our expert practitioners can inform you of any potential side effects and assess your individual suitability. Book a consultation with one of our skin care experts in Kelowna by calling (250) 868-9290 or by submitting a message through our contact form.



Q: How do I use LATISSE® serum?
A: LATISSE® is easily applied - once per day - to the base of your upper eyelashes. It is not intended for use on your bottom lashes. It is applied in a thin line with a sterile applicator that is disposed of, and replaced with a fresh one for the other eye. It is important to use the LATISSE® serum as instructed by your medical practitioner. It is advised that you avoid exposing your eyelids or surrounding skin to the bimatoprost. If used incorrectly, it could cause harmful or unwanted side effects. 

Q: How soon will I see results?
A: LATISSE® solution is a treatment that works gradually. You may see longer, darker lashes after 4 weeks, however, full results are achieved after 16 weeks of daily use. After the 16 weeks, your medical practitioner will advise you whether or not to continue use. Individual results may vary.

Q: What are the risks associated with using LATISSE®?
A: The most frequently reported adverse side effects are irritation or itching, conjunctivitis (‘pink eye’), dry or irritated eyes, eyelid swelling, and skin hyperpigmentation. LATISSE® may lower the pressure inside your eye, but not to a level that will cause harm. In some patients, the iris and skin can darken temporarily, and, if the serum is incorrectly applied, it could stimulate hair growth where it was not wiped off.

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Donna McAteer

Donna McAteer

Donna is the general manager and has been with the Okana­gan Skin Care Cen­tre for over 14 years. She is a certified Es­theti­cian and previous business owner with over 20 years enjoying the skin care industry. Her passion for knowledge, integral client care and maintaining a syn­er­gis­tic team that represents professional excellence in skin care remains her focus.

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