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How Your Makeup Affects Your Eye Health


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Putting on makeup is a daily routine for many people. But do you ever wonder if mascara, eyeshadow, fake lashes, and other eye cosmetics are affecting your eye health? They are.

Tips for Keeping Your Eyes Healthy

Eye makeup can damage the roots of your lashes, cause allergies, and even create breeding grounds for bacteria that cause eye infections. To keep your eyes beautiful AND healthy, it’s important to follow a few cosmetic tips.

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  1. Throw away old makeup: Optometrists recommend following the three month rule. Makeup older than three months is more likely to grow infection-causing bacteria. This is especially true for liquid eye makeup. Additionally old eyeliner tips stiffen over time, increasing the risk of injuring your cornea. If you are currently recovering from an eye infection, such as pink eye, throw out any and all makeup that could have come in contact with your eye during the infection.

  2. Do NOT share makeup: Your eyes contain personalized bacteria. Sharing eye makeup, especially eyeliner and eyeshadow, can cause eye infections. People who wear contact lenses should be extra cautious since bacteria can get stuck behind your lenses. When sampling makeup, do not use the same sample bottle as everyone else. Ask for an individual sample to apply in store or take home with you.

  3. Practice Good Hygiene: Hands are a major carrier of bacteria. Wash your hands before applying anything to your eyes. This includes contacts, makeup, and eye drops. Be sure to remove all makeup before going to bed. Using a clean cotton swab, brush along your eyelashes to remove all cosmetic flakes. If you have sensitive skin, only introduce one new cosmetic at a time.



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Avoid Dangerous Products In addition to proper application, make sure you’re checking the chemicals in your makeup. Many brands contain harmful ingredients that can cause serious eye damage. These include: Aluminum powder: This substance has been linked to organ system toxicity. Labels may also call this “pigment metal,” “aluminum,” or “LB Pigment.” Prime yellow carnauba wax: The wax in this chemical can clog your eyes’ oil glands, leading to Dry Eye Disease. Carbon black: This substances has been linked to organ system toxicity as well as some forms of cancer. This can also be labeled as “D & C Black No. 2,” “acetylene black,” “channel black,” “furnace black,” “lamp black”, and “thermal black.”

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Optometrists recommend finding eye cosmetics with natural ingredients to avoid any exposure to dangerous toxins.

Speak With Your Doctor Today

Proper use of eye cosmetics can make your eyes sparkle, glow, or smolder. Improper application of eye makeup can lead to infection or injury.

Schedule an appointment to speak with Dr. Oker. She can answer any questions regarding eye makeup, eye health, or diagnose any complications that might stem from improper application of cosmetics.

Call the Eden Prairie Eye Care at (952)944-2792 or contact us via our online form today.

And remember: healthy eyes are the most beautiful!