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Eye Makeup Safety- Essential Tips for Protecting Your Eyes

Eye Makeup Safety- Essential Tips for Protecting Your Eyes Eye makeup can accent and bring out the natural beauty of your eyes. If not used properly makeup can cause infection, irritation and even eye damage including blindness. Understanding how makeup can damage the eye and knowing how to protect yourself will allow you to beautify without putting your eye health at risk.

What Problems Can Makeup Cause?

Anyone that wears makeup can experience adverse effects from wearing it, although problems are very rare. Those that wear contacts are more likely to have makeup related irritation than those that do not. Additionally people with allergies and with sensitive skin are more prone to eye makeup problems. If you wear makeup it is important to follow basic guidelines for protecting your eyes.

Several different problems can come about as a result of wearing eye makeup. The most common problem is injury to the cornea which usually occurs when the makeup is being applied. For example it is very easy to scratch the cornea with your fingernails or with a mascara wand when putting makeup on. These scratches might seem small, but they can become infected and lead to more serious problems down the road. Bacteria can also grow in eye makeup and can lead to pink eye (conjunctivitis) and other eye infections. Allergies to cosmetics are also common.

Tips for Protecting Your Eyes

Although there is always an element of risk when wearing makeup, many problems and infections can be avoided if proper eye makeup safety is practiced. Here are a few essential tips that will help you to avoid makeup related eye infection and irritation.

  • Don’t Share Makeup- Makeup brushes, wands and applicators can easily gather bacteria from your skin. When you share makeup these bacteria can be passed to others and since everyone carries different bacteria, problems can arise. Avoid sharing cosmetics and cosmetic applicators. If you are having your makeup professionally applied make sure that the makeup artist always uses a clean disposable applicator when anything will come in direct contact with your eyes.

  • Always Wash Your Hands Before Applying Makeup- Since hands carry bacteria it is important to wash them thoroughly before applying makeup or the bacteria on your hands can get into your eyes and cause infection.

  • Stop Using Products that Cause Irritation- Eye makeup can contain ingredients that cause irritation and allergies in some users. Do not continue to use products that cause irritation. Some common irritants include fragrances, nickel and lanolin. If you have allergies try using hypoallergenic products as these tend to cause less irritation.

  • Replace Makeup Regularly- Most eye makeup products have preservatives in them to hinder and slow bacteria growth, however it is still important to replace eye makeup products every 4-6 months. Contact lens users need to replace their cosmetics more frequently. In addition make sure that you maintain your makeup products. Sharpen your eye liner regularly. Discard any products as soon as you notice a change in smell or texture.

  • Take Makeup Off Before Bed- Mascara and other eye makeup can easily get into the eye during sleep. This can result in itching, irritation, eye redness and even eye scratches. Thoroughly remove any eye makeup products before bed using a gentle eye makeup remover.

  • Be Careful When Applying Makeup- One of the most common cosmetic related eye problems is injury or damage to the cornea. This frequently occurs during makeup application. Be very careful when applying makeup. Never apply makeup in a moving vehicle since unexpected bumps and jolts can result in eye scratches. Make sure that you only use makeup applicators. Don’t improvise and use other implements for makeup application. Regularly clean your makeup brushes and sponges. Only eye approved products should be used in the delicate eye area. Never use lipsticks or lip liners around the eye.

  • Store Makeup Properly- High temperatures can create an environment where bacteria can grow more quickly. Store your makeup in a cool, dry place.

  • Follow Directions- Make sure that you read and follow any directions listed on an eye makeup product. Using products for uses other than their intended use can cause eye damage.

Tips for Contact Lens Users

Wearing makeup with contact lenses requires a little extra care and diligence. Here are some eye makeup safety tips just for those that wear contacts.

  • Put Contacts in Before Applying Makeup- Contact lenses should always be inserted into the eye before makeup is applied. Make sure that you remove your contacts before removing any makeup. It is important to wash your hands before and after touching contact lenses.

  • Apply Products Carefully Near the Eye- Even when using approved cosmetics contact lens users should be careful and not apply too much makeup near the eye. Try to apply mascara to the tip of the eyelashes only as this will lessen the chances of makeup getting into the eye.

  • Avoid Certain Products- Thickening mascaras and metallic eye shadows can easily get into the eye. If these products get trapped between a contact lens and the cornea they can result in severe damage. Avoiding these products is the best way to protect your eyes when wearing contacts.

Learning to apply makeup properly will help you to protect your eyes even when wearing cosmetics. Remember that any cosmetics user can experience problems, so contact your eye doctor quickly if any problems arise. If you do accidently scratch the eye while applying makeup it is a good idea to see your eye doctor immediately. They may want to see the product you were using and your applicator so bring those in with you. Proper safety practices are essential when wearing eye makeup to protect your eye health and vision.

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