Most contact lens wearers aren’t aware of some of the potential hazards that make-up and hair products pose for their contact lenses and ultimately, their eyes.
Wearing colored contact lenses can help people achieve the look they want as well as improve their vision, but there are a number of safety precautions that wearers should take if they want to keep their eyes healthy. Failing to observe basic hygiene practices can introduce bacteria into the eyes, trap dangerous pollutants and otherwise cause pain or infection. This is particularly important when it comes to wearing makeup.
Countless people begin their morning by putting in their contact lenses and doing their hair and makeup. It is their way to get ready for the day and leave the house feeling stylish. What some people might not realize, however, is the potential hazard that make-up and hair styling products can pose for contact lens wearers. Here are a few safety tips that all people should follow when they wear contact lenses and makeup to ensure that they protect their eyes.
At the beginning of the day
When a person first gets out of the shower, they are generally better off putting back on their glasses for the beginning of their morning routine. That is because any hair products, such as hair spray, should be applied before the contacts go in. The spray can damage the lens and can hurt the eyes. Many contacts wearers will find that doing their hair first helps to eliminate these problems with their contacts.
After the contact lenses are in, then is the time to apply eye makeup. Keep eye makeup away from contact lenses, as it can damage or stain the lenses. It is generally best to avoid products, such as waterproof mascara, that cannot easily be removed with water because they can further damage the lenses. Make sure that any eyeliners or mascara are used only on the lashes that are far away from the eye to minimize the risk of getting any into the eye and the contact lens.
Remember that contact lens wearers will have to go further than regular makeup wearers when it comes to avoiding contact between their eye and makeup. This means avoiding powder products whenever possible. If it is not possible, then lightly brush the eye or face after application, with the eyes closed, to get rid of any extra powder.
It is also best to apply any hand lotions or other moisturizers after the contacts are in. Similar to the hairspray, these materials can damage the lens. If the lotion is already on the hands when the person puts in the contact lens, then it can degrade the contact and potentially irritate the eye. If possible, contact lens wearers should avoid oil-based moisturizers and foundations. Water-based foundations tend to be more lens friendly than cream-based foundations. These selections can help minimize the film that can be left behind on the lens.
At the end of the day
Do not remove any makeup until after the contact lenses have been removed. Using makeup removal tools can easily cause some of it to get into the eye, which can irritate the eye and the lens itself.
Remember also to replace the makeup regularly, generally about every 3 months, to prevent a buildup of bacteria. Using makeup for too long will make it easy for the eye to become infected, potentially causing vision problems.
For many people who wear contact lenses, the value in being able to wear comfortable, invisible corrective lenses is immense. It is important that all patients, no matter how long they have been wearing their contacts, take care of them properly to protect the lens and their eyes. This includes when putting on or taking off makeup. By following the above tips, patients will help protect their eyes and help their lenses last even longer.