Many women have perfected the art of creating beautiful and dramatic eyes through the skillful use of eye makeup. But perfecting your eye makeup safety habits is just as crucial to your beauty routine. Careless habits can increase the chance of your eyes becoming irritated or even of developing a serious infection. Check your own habits against this list of eye makeup tips and make the needed changes to protect your eyes.
1. Replace liquid and cream eye makeup regularly. Cream eye shadow will have a shelf life of about 12-18 months, mascara lasts 2-3 months, and liquid eyeliner should be replaced every 2 months. Bacteria can grow in liquid makeup as time passes and cause infection.
2. Do not share eye makeup. Bacteria from other women’s eyes can get into your makeup and give you an infection, even if it doesn’t cause an infection in your friend’s eyes.
3. Remove makeup every night before bed. Using an oil-free makeup remover, gently wipe or dab—do not rub—makeup from your eyelids and surrounding the eye. If not properly removed, trace amounts of makeup can remain in your eyes and cause irritation, especially if you wear contact lenses.
4. Do not use products made with lead or kohl. Kohl, often used in eye makeup from other countries, can contain lead. Any contact with lead should be avoided to prevent lead poisoning.
5. Avoid products with glitter, especially if you have dry, easily irritated eyes or contact lenses. The glitter can flake off into your eyes and cause irritation.
6. Don’t use eye makeup on other parts of your face, and vice versa, to keep from introducing different bacteria to your eyes.
7. Never put makeup on in the car. A sudden stop can cause injury if your makeup brush or eye pencil hits your eye.
8. Avoid eye makeup after you have had eye surgery, or while you have an irritated or infected eye. Your eye doctor can let you know when it is safe to apply eye makeup after a surgery. If you develop an infection in your eyes, replace all your eye makeup to prevent it from coming back due to contaminated makeup.
9. Clean your applicators regularly. Wash brushes off with warm soapy water and replace sponge applicators often.
10. Do not use eye makeup on the inner rim of your eyelids. Residue from eyeliner or eyeshadow can deposit into your eyes and cause irritation.