A recent study has found that how we apply eyeliner can affect the health of our eyes, particularly if they’re sensitive or if we wear contact lenses.

Preventing the risk of contamination

To safeguard the health of our eyes, it’s important to prevent eyeliner particles from migrating into the tear film, the thin coating that protects the surface of the eye. 

Dr. Morggan Debaets recommends applying eyeliner below the lower lashes and above the upper lashes:

“If eyeliner is applied along the lash line to make the eyes look bigger, it risks blocking the small openings found along the lash line. These are the openings for the tear ducts. This means that with every blink or when a tear flows towards the white of the eye, the makeup goes along with it. This can produce an uncomfortable sensation and increase the risk of styes, conjunctivitis or dry eye,” explains the optometrist.

The correct application of eyeliner

The following video offers a few easy steps for applying eyeliner.

Additional Advice

The art of makeup removal

Makeup often contains particles that can trigger allergic reactions. For this reason, Dr. Debaets recommends using makeup removers designed specifically for the eyes, notably those known as “dual phase,” because they are effective on both oil and water-based products. Afterwards, be sure to thoroughly rinse off the makeup remover with clear water.

Select your products carefully

Most major makeup brands offer hyper allergenic products for more sensitive eyes. However, “the right product for some individuals may not be right for others,” cautions Dr. Debaets.

Because there’s always the risk of a reaction, it’s wise to test different products. At the first sign of eye irritation, play it safe and change products immediately.

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