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Paper eyelashes turn every-day material into beauty magic

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Say what you will, people are inventive.

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A recession comes along, lingers a while, and we begin to use the cheapest of materials--paper--to make ourselves beautiful.

First came a slew of paper dresses, the revival of a mid-'60s craze. Think paper dresses are just pulp fiction? You can check out for directions on how to sew your own newspaper party dress.

Lashing out

The latest craze is paper eyelashes.

Inspired by the Chinese art of paper cutting, these falsies--created by London-based designer Chunwei Liao and sold on the Paperself (/site) site-- are incredibly intricate.

Whether you glue them to the corners of your eyes for subtly pretty peepers ($17.25) or go whole hog with a full set ($20.54), paper eyelashes are both a fashion statement and a conversation piece.

You can choose between an array of lash enhancers. There's "Deer and Butterfly," which looks like butterflies fluttering on deer antlers; "Peacock" (which has a distinctly '60s vibe); the harlequin-esque "Clown"; and "Under the Sea", a disign featureing angel-fish, seahorses and starfish teeming amid a bed of coral.

There's also a couple of flowery choices, "Peach Blossoms" and Peonies and--for the horsey set-a fabulous fabrication called "Horses."

Liao says his aim with these prettiest of paper products was "to take paper--a mundane, ubiquitous, and utilitarian material--and turn it into an unexpected treasure." (Liao's treasures also include paper lamp shades and paper coffee tables.)

Other than their unusal material and level of decorativeness, paper eyelashes are much like any false eyelashes. You can reuse them a number of times if you treat them with care and you can stick them on with goold old eyelash glue.

Like what you see? The next time someone says, "Paper or plastic?" say, "Paper, please!"