Faux mink lashes are made from a synthetic material and produced to imitate real mink eyelash extensions. Genuine mink lashes are farmed mink hair/fur which has been washed and treated. Both genuine and faux mink lashes are applied the exact same way.
An insight into the process of genuine Mink extensions.
Mink are semiaquatic (spend over half their time in water) animals that come from the same family as otters, weasels and ferrets. They are slightly aggressive creatures who are independent and territorial in the wild.
How they are treated
Most (if not all) lash suppliers who stock real Mink lashes claim that their Mink lashes are cruelty free. The suppliers maintain the lashes are humanely obtained by gently brushing the mink and collecting the fur during shedding seasons. These same suppliers also refuse to give much more information than just that. There is a lot of controversy on this topic. Because although it may be true that the Mink farmers don’t kill the animals, the state in which they are kept for the duration of their lives most of the time do not adhere to the Animal Rights Act.
Minks are kept in cages only slightly larger than themselves. They are not let out to roam, despite what many suppliers may say, because they are aggressive and territorial. It would not be practical to let them mix in fear of losing many to fights. They have no stimulation other than being fed. And remember when we explained that they are semiaquatic animals and naturally spend more than half their time in water? They are kept from water, other than a small handful of drinking water a day to keep them alive. They are literally psychologically broken and start to develop repetitive behaviours that could be compared to a human rocking back and forth in the foetal position when living under these stressful conditions.
The meaning the suppliers of genuine mink lashes have put to the term cruelty-free is at very least “we don’t kill them”. Which is far below the standard of many first world beauty salons.
The mink lashes are washed/sterilised and treated with a chemical to curl the hair after they are “humanely” obtained. Once these lashes are exposed to water, that chemical is neutralised and the lashes go back to their original state (so basically, they un-curl). This means you will need to use an eyelash curler regularly. Faux-Mink lashes do not have this problem and are permanently curled. They look almost identical.