CAN MAKEUP DAMAGE YOUR EYES?
Makeup today contains preservatives, antioxidants, humectants, fragrances, ultra-violet absorbers, emollients, emulsifiers, acrylates, and dyes – all of which can cause reactions or trigger longer-term health risks with your eyes.
Our eyes and the area around the eyes (known as the periorbital region) are more susceptible to these issues because of their anatomy and complex physiology.
Long-term or excessive use of eye makeup can inflame your eyes, affecting the quality of your tears and leading to or making dry eyes worse.
“Your old makeup is a petri dish for bacteria - make sure you change it every few months”
Your Risk Increases With Age
Three types of damage and injury could be caused by eye makeup.
- Pathogenic (infections)
The risk of these increases with age. Perimenopause and menopause make women more susceptible, as they are more likely to suffer from dry eyes and poor-quality tear production. Read on to understand the risks and, most importantly, how to protect your eyes.
“Good quality tears and a healthy tear film provide a natural barrier against infections”
Our Drops, Spray and Vitamins strengthen your tears and maintain a healthy tear film.
Physical injury. Good quality tears and a healthy tear film can help your eyes recover after physical trauma or injury.
Infections. Good quality tears and a healthy tear film provide a natural barrier against infections (pathogenic damage).
Chemical Damage. Our Eye Drops and Spray are preservative-free, provide relief and help wash out your eyes when exposed to hazardous chemicals.
“Be careful when you fix your makeup in a car or train… there've been some nasty accidents”
Physical injuries are caused by a direct impact to the eye - ranging from mild to severe. Some common examples:
• Removing makeup with excessive force can damage your lashes. (Commonly seen with waterproof makeup.)
• Eyeliner can block your meibomian glands (which run along the edge of your eyelids next to your eyelashes).
• Scratching your eyes with a sharp pencil eyeliner.
• Poking your eye while applying mascara.
• Spilling eyeshadow over your eyes, affects your tears and disrupts your tear film.
• Artificial lashes affects your lashes' natural ability to repel dust and maintain tear film stability.
• Eyelash extensions can cause your eyelashes to fall off.
Eye makeup increases the risk of infections (especially if you suffer from dry eyes). What to watch out for:
• Poor personal hygiene. Make sure you’ve got clean hands, surfaces, and applicators.
• Don’t share makeup.
• Old makeup is a breeding grounds for bacteria. Make sure you update your makeup every few months.
• Don’t modify your makeup. Not even adding water to your mascara.
• As we age, we all get Demodex mites on our eyes. (Demodex is a parasite that blocks ducts in your eyelashes – making them itchy and producing dandruff.) Oil-based eye makeup and people with dry eyes show higher rates of Demodex mites.
• Applying makeup to open wounds is an infection risk.
Some chemicals in your makeup can cause inflammation. Some chemicals (including parabens, phenoxyethanol, and chlorphenesin) can damage your meibomian glands - which lie along the edge of the eyelids next to your eyelashes. This can lead to dry eyes and dry eye disease.
Like the skin across the body, your eyelids can develop contact allergies when exposed to allergens (preservatives, fragrances, additives, and colour pigments). Over time this leads to rashes, blisters, and itchy, burning skin.
Preservatives in eye makeup can cause inflammation.