Is Your Beauty Routine Irritating Your Eyes?

Posted By Key-Whitman Eye Center || 27-Nov-2013

routineEye makeup should make you feel more beautiful, not irritate your eyes. However, many women suffer from symptoms caused by cosmetic products and, in extreme cases, have experienced serious infections and even blindness.

Cosmetics can irritate the eyes in a variety of ways. Redness, itching, and swelling can result from allergies or infection produced by bacteria or fungi growing in the product or on the applicator. These safety tips, provided by the Food and Drug Administration, can help ensure your beauty routine keeps your eyes safe.

Keep it clean! Bacteria can accumulate in makeup quickly, leading to nasty eye infections.When you first purchase cosmetics, they are wrapped and sealed to keep them germ-free. But misuse of applicators and product can cause bacteria to grow. Be careful not to place mascara wands or eye shadow applicators on a dirty countertop, and keep products closed tightly when not in use. Do not use old makeup or attempt to "freshen up" product that has dried out. For maximum safety, manufacturers recommend tossing your mascara after two to four months of use.

Don’t share or swap eye makeup. Sharing eye makeup with another person, even your sister or best friend, significantly increases your chances of eye infection or irritation. Avoid using tester products at the makeup counter at the mall. If you go to a salon for a professional makeup job, ask for single-use applicators and request that all products are sanitized before use.

Keep still while applying eye makeup. Avoid the temptation to apply eye makeup while driving or in transit. A sudden bump in the road could result in scratching or seriously injuring your eye. One small scratch can turn into a serious infection.

Pay attention to what’s in your makeup. Any retail cosmetic product is required to have a declaration of ingredients on the label. Before you buy, read what’s in your makeup, especially if you have allergies to specific ingredients. Check any additives in the product against the FDA’s list of color additives approved for use in cosmetics. If you can’t find out what’s in the product you’re about to buy, think twice before purchasing it.

If your eyes are easily irritated by eye makeup, look for mineral-based or “non-irritating” products that may be gentler on your eyes. Even non-irritating products, however, may cause problems; the performance of these products truly varies from person to person. Physicians Formula is one brand of dermatologist approved, hypoallergenic cosmetic products that might be worth a try.

If you continually experience eye irritation, contact the experts at Key-Whitman Eye Center for an eye exam to rule out any serious conditions that may be causing your symptoms.

Categories: Eye Health
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