Mascara, eyeliner and even shadow do wonders to make the eyes more dramatic. However, if this is part of your daily ritual it is great to be aware of some possible pitfalls.
Follow these key rules to avoid eye infections, cross-contamination and unsightly red, irritated eyes:
- Removing your make-up at night is more important than putting it on in the morning.
- Don’t hold onto your old makeup no matter how much you paid for it — throw it away after a few months.
- Replace mascara every two to four months, or sooner if it’s dried. Don’ attempt to re-moisten it with water or especially with saliva. Mark the date you open a new tube of mascara, so you won’t use it past its shelf-life.
- Keep eye cosmetics cool — always at 85° F or below. This means not storing it in your car.
- Don’t mix and match cosmetics. Use what’s intended for your eyes on your eyes only — don’t use the same pencil for both lips and eyes which introduce different types of bacteria to different parts of your face.
- Avoid permanent coloring and dyes for eyelashes which can cause permanent eye damage if not used correctly.
- Never share your cosmetics with a friend. Her bacteria will contaminate your eye cosmetics, and vice versa.
- Be careful when drawing lines near your eye to avoid injury. This definitely means DO NOT apply eye cosmetics while you are driving. I’ve seen many corneal injuries (painful) due to the mascara wand hitting the eye. Anything can happen on the road.
- Use common sense: if your eye is painful or irritated, don’t use eye cosmetics. This also means keeping cosmetics away from the surface of the eye. Don’t get to close to your lid margin.
- Be very wary of eye cosmetics which may contain glitter or are iridescent – they can flake off into your eyes.
- Insure cosmetic applicators are clean before you use them — it’s a good idea to wash or replace all brushes and sponges frequently.
- Contact lens wearers: Cosmetics can leave deposits on your lenses, affecting your vision and the comfort of your lenses. So it’s important to carefully and gently wash off your eye makeup each night before bed. Place your contacts on your eyes in the morning before you apply makeup.
- Be gentle when you remove your eye cosmetics. The skin surrounding your eyes is very sensitive. And take the same care using removal products as you do with eye makeup — always wash your hands thoroughly before you remove eye makeup.
- Let’s not forget the bag you’ve been carrying around your make-up in for the last 5 years. It is certainly teaming with more bacteria than a pubic bathroom. Either wash it in hot, soapy water or replace it.
If your eyes continue to bother you, are chronically red or are painful – please don’t hesitate to come see me in Boulder. I only want to keep you are beautiful as possible!