Makeup is all fun and games, until someone loses an eye. Just kidding—but your makeup might give you a nasty eye infection. Improper use of your favorite eyeliner or mascara could leave you with a scratched cornea, conjunctivitis (pink eye) or an allergic reaction. The best way to safeguard against infection is to speak with your eye doctor at Bayview Optometrics in Cape Cod, MA about your makeup habits. In the meantime, here are eight ways to prevent eye injuries and infections:
- Put your contact lenses in first: Cosmetic products may contaminate your contact lenses if you aren’t careful. Wash your hands and be sure to insert contact lenses before applying makeup, not after. If you wear contacts, you may want to avoid heavy eye makeup that could flake. You should also avoid applying eyeliner on the inside of your lash line, and don’t get mascara too close to the inside of your eyes.
- Check the expiration dates on your makeup: Don’t use expired products, and replace your mascara and eyeliner every three to four months. You can preserve your cosmetics and ensure that they’re safe for use by keeping them out of the heat, including the car and steamy bathrooms.
- Wash your brushes: Brushes are susceptible to gathering bacteria and dirt. To avoid spreading bacteria onto your eyelashes and eyelids, and possibly onto your cornea, make sure that your brushes are cleaned frequently.
- No sharing: You should never share your brushes. Sharing your brushes could lead to cross-infections. We know you and your friends share everything, but makeup brushes, like toothbrushes, are off limits.
- Don’t primp and drive: Makeup should never be applied in a moving vehicle. Never. It’s not worth scratching your cornea and potentially causing a corneal abrasion. These abrasions are painful and can cause bacterial infections.
- Don’t use false eyelashes: Adhesives used to apply false eyelashes can rub against the surface of your eye, leading to abrasions and infections. The resulting scars can cause vision damage that could require laser surgery to restore. Long lashes may also force more air particles containing dirt into your eyes, increasing your risk for bacterial infections.
- Wash it off at night: Washing off eye makeup after a late night may sound exhausting, but it’s necessary for your eye health. Use the proper antiseptic wipe to avoid oil buildup and inflammation. The proper cleanser will keep you from forcing bacteria into your eye or having to use forceful rubbing to remove makeup.
- Test products first: Many makeup products contain chemicals and other ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction. Check to make sure that you aren’t allergic to certain products by testing them on a small part of your skin that is less sensitive than your eyes.
By taking advantage of these simple tips, you can look great and protect your eyes from damage and infections. For more information about makeup use and eye health, contact Bayview Optometrics in Cape Cod, MA today.