This Korean lash hack is a unique way to curl eyelashes without an eyelash curler—but should it be avoided or not?

Is the Korean lash fire hack to curl eyelashes without an eyelash curler best avoided?

close up of woman lying down showing her lashes with mascara on
(Image credit: Getty)

We're all for a TikTok beauty hack, but this latest Korean lash fire hack to curl eyelashes without an eyelash curler is leaving us questioning...

We've been here for deinfluencing, the Clean Girl, Vanilla Girl and Balletcore aesthetics, and even the NSFW mascara trend, but Tiktok's newest beauty trend currently doing the rounds, involves using actual fire to curl your lashes for a fluttery and wide-eyed look. Videos of the hack have raked up billions of views from beauty enthusiasts wondering how the method works, whether it really does lift your lashes and, of course, whether it's actually safe to do.

So here's the lowdown on everything you need to know about the dubious trick...

The 411 on the Korean lash fire hack

Although this lash trick may be new to many of us, it's actually an old-school method used by people in Korea, but has now gained traction on social media.

"Korean women tend to have sparse and straight lashes that can have difficulty holding a curl," says Lash Expert Jennifer Johnson from ARDELL lashes. "Using literal fire isn't the only trick they use, but it's a popular one because of how quick, natural-looking and long-lasting it is, at first glance."


what do you think of this latest korean eyelash trend? is it cute or nah?


How to do the Korean lash fire hack

It takes a few steps more than just a sweep of mascara to curl eyelashes without an eyelash curler...

  1. Use an eyelash curler to curl lashes in three steps—at the base of the lashes, in the middle of length, and at the tips of the lashes
  2. Apply mascara like normal
  3. Hold mascara wand vertically and run the tip of the brush along the tips of the lashes OR use tweezers to clump together sections of lash tips
  4. Now comes the 🔥! Run a flame along the length of a wooden stick (like a toothpick), allow to cool slightly, and then use the slightly heated stick to push lashes and back for a wide-eyed look

So how does the trick work? Well, "in most cases with this trick, you can't really tell the difference until mascara is applied," says Johnson.

"After this step lashes will remain upright, curled, and perky—like an invisible force keeping them in shape."

Is the Korean lash fire hack safe?

As with any at-home procedures using, ahem, fire, safety is always cautioned. Not only is it risky creating a flame near your hoard of (usually quite flammable) beauty products, but there are risks when it comes to burning the wooden stick too—like dropping it if it too hot or the stick catching fire.

And then, of course, there's the damage it can do to your lashes...

"If you are attempting this trick, I cannot stress enough how important it is to let the stick cool before using it to curl your lashes, otherwise, you risk burning off your eyelashes," advises Johnson. "Intense heat can also break down your lash hairs and weaken them from the root. After the stick is cooled down then run it along the lashes, from root to end."

This beauty editor goes another root, by heating an eyelash curler with a hairdryer and letting it cool until it's comfortable enough to touch the thin and delicate skin on the wrists. This can be done before applying mascara and then used again to complete the final step of the above hack. Not only does this feel a little safe, eliminating the need for actual fire, but it also cuts a tiny bit of wastage by not using a new stick every time. Every little thing helps!

Aleesha Badkar
Former Deputy Editor at My Imperfect Life

Aleesha was Deputy Editor and Beauty & Fashion Editor for My Imperfect Life, where she headed up the beauty, fashion and eCommerce pages. Previously she was Shopping Writer at woman&home and gained an AOP awards nomination after working on their news team. She earned an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London in 2017 and has since worked with a number of brands including, Women's Health, Stylist and Goodto. When she’s not testing all the new beauty & lifestyle products on the market, Aleesha spends her time soaking up the newest bestsellers and Netflix releases, watching everything Marvel, learning about different wines, attempting new languages and traveling as much as she can.