Press Release

I've never wanted plastic surgery. In fact, the only thing I would change about my looks is my eyelashes.

Being blonde, my natural set needs constant tending (tinting, curling, lots of volumising mascara) for them to have any impact.  And judging by the number of women who cite mascara as their 'can't live without' beauty product, I'm clearly not alone in my lash lust. So when I hear about Xtreme Lashes - the new eyelash extensions from America proving a hit with stars such as Lucy Liu and Gwen Stefani - I know this is one treatment I have to try.

Created from specially formulated synthetic hair, the individually bonded extensions takes two hours to apply.  The manufacturers claim they will last around six weeks, then the extensions will fall out with my own lashes when they naturally regenerate.  Considering they cost £250 (not including the £50 fill-ins, which are recommended every 2 - 4 weeks) they had better look spectacular.

I go in the treatment room with Gina, a petite brunette with lashes you could swat a fly with (yes she's had hers 'done'), and she talks me through the procedure.  First, my lids will be pulled taut with strips of tape so she can see the area clearly. Then the Xtreme Lashes will be bonded to my own lashes using high-performance glue.

The fact that Gina is poking around my eyes with needle-sharp tweezers makes it hard to relax - one flinch from me and it could all go horribly wrong.  But the gentle sensation of my lashes being stroked soon becomes strangely hypnotic.

Two hours later, Gina hands me a mirror and I'm very impressed. Thick, black, and framing my eyes in a perfect fan, the lashes look surprisingly natural.

I'm so pleased. I can't wipe the grin off my face. I'm given a comb to brush them and am warned to keep them dry for 24 hours. Reactions to my new lashes range from indifference to admiration and pure envy. My husband, who usually only notices my appearance if it involves a short skirt, asks whether I've had my hair done. 'Sort of', I say batting my lashes in his direction.

Even though they say you can swim and shower in them, I become a bit obsessive about not getting my new accoutrements wet. I even take to wearing goggles when I wash my face, just to be on the safe side.

Three weeks later, I notice a few lashes falling out, so I go back to Gina for fill-ins.

Unfortunately they don't look so great, partly due to a two-tone effect where fresh, un-dyed lashes are growing through.

But having experienced life with Xtreme Lashes and seen what a huge difference they can make, I wish someone would invent lash implants - they're definitely something I would go under the knife for.

Xtreme Lashes cost £250 at Richard Ward Hair and Metro Spa. London. Enq. (020)7730 1222