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11 Makeup Eye Care Tips for the New Year

by Caroline Cauchi, OD

Cosmetics are an important part of many of our lives. Eye makeup, when applied properly makes our eyes sparkle and pop. However, your eyes aren’t going to look so fabulous if you get an injury or infection from your cosmetics. Read on to learn the 11 eye care tips your eye doctor in La Mesa, CA recommends for keeping your eyes safe in the New Year.


  • Mascara rarely contains preservatives, so the brush can grow bacteria and fungus after a few months. The take home point is to replace your tube every 4 months to keep those germs out of your eyes.
  • We share everything with our friends. However, we each have unique germs. Germs in your friend’s mascara tube may not bother her, but if you use her product those germs may cause an ugly infection.
  • Don’t apply your mascara while driving. You could swerve or hit a bump and scratch yourself…injecting bacteria into your eye – really bad news. The bacteria found on a wand is known as pseudomonas. This is a very nasty one. This bug can actually penetrate inside your eye. Interior infections are much more difficult to cure. The result can be a loss of vision, white scarred eye surface or even the loss of the eye. So don’t rush applying your mascara; if you are out of time, bring your tube to work.
  • Don’t use a pin to separate your lashes because it is way too risky. One slip and you have a painful abrasion or even a puncture wound.


  • Do not apply the liner on rim of your lid next to your eye. That can plug the tiny glands the lubricate your lashes, causing a stye. While the rim effect looks very sexy, a stye is very unattractive and uncomfortable.
  • Don’t use a Sharpie in place of a cosmetic liner pencil. Sharpie liquid is toxic and can burn your cornea. More importantly, it is permanent and if your line wasn’t quite straight, you’re are going to live with that mistake for several months.


  • Eye shadows contain glitter and even ground minerals. If that dust gets in your eye, it can scratch the cornea or even embed causing a very red painful eye.
  • When applying shadow, tap the brush twice to get the loose particles off, apply with your eye closed and then use a larger fresh brush to gently remove any loose flakes. Several companies sell a setting spray to keep your make up in place.

Make up Remover:

  • We recommend selecting a gentle hypoallergenic remover. If a little bit gets in your eye, it won’t cause such a bad reaction. After cleansing, keep your eyes closed and then rinse and pat dry your face before opening your eyes.
  • Do avoid slapping a load of Vasoline on your lids to remove your makeup. It can plug your glands, causing a stye.

Lash Curlers:

  • Most of us weren’t born with long curly lashes, so we resort to the prehistoric lash curler. Some of you even heat the device to get the curl to last longer. Heated metal that close to the eye is risky. A metal burn to the cornea is unbelievably painful and will damage your vision.

We love our make up but we need to use caution to protect one of our most valuable assets. If you have additional questions or want to learn more about eye care, contact your eye doctor in La Mesa today by calling (619) 461-4913 or request an appointment here on our website.


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We are well-practiced at keeping you safe.