False Eyelashes, the Good the Bad and the Ugly

I may be an eye doctor, but I am also female, so I can “see” false eye lashes from many different angles.

OK, first the “Good”; today’s false lashes are natural looking and give a longer, thicker & more voluminous eyelash look.
Today’s false lashes are perfect for enhancing your eyes for an everyday look. … Or for those that don’t normally use false lashes they are good for a special event.
Ok, the “Bad”; woman wearing ornate false lashes may appear beautiful one year and absurd the next, depending on the whims of fashion.

Now the “Ugly”: Singer, actress Kristen Chenoweth was on the “Late Show with David Letterman” last year while wearing large dark sunglasses, and visibly drowsy on Benadryl. “Here’s the problem: The glue has formaldehyde in it, and I’m allergic,” Chenoweth said,
“I swelled up and I’m sneezing…..it looks like I have lips on my eyelids.”

The quest for beauty can come at a price. Eyelash extensions have been reported to cause irritation to the conjunctiva (conjunctivitis) or cornea (keratitis). The irritation can be caused by direct contact from the lashes themselves or hypersensitivity to the substances used to attach them. Among beauty treatments, eyelash extensions account for the greatest number of eye-clinic consultations in Japan, where they have been very widely used.

Women are also learning that eyelash extensions can cause hair loss resulting in eyelashes so thin that women feel they have no choice but to continue the cycle. Indeed, the College of Optometrists in England has warned that “repeated use of eyelash extensions can cause traction alopecia, a condition where the hair falls out due to excessive tension placed on the hair shaft. As a result, this can damage the hair follicle, which can slow down and even cease production of hair.”

Even temporary false eyelashes can cause trouble. Pulling false eyelashes off can also remove natural lashes if those hairs get in the way, the traction alopecia similar to that caused by extensions. False lashes can also trap dirt and bacteria, creating irritation and infection, and a reaction to the glue can cause allergic swelling of the eyelids much like the reaction Chenoweth reported. There was no puzzle to solve when mystery writer Janet Evanovich experienced problems after attending the premier of “One for the Money” last January. “They put false eyelashes on me,” Evanovich blogged, “and I had an allergic reaction to the glue. On the plus side, my eyes didn’t swell up and break out until after I saw the movie.”

Ok, so my take on false eye lashes is about the same for acrylic nails, they are OK for a special occasion,( as long as you’re not allergic to the glue) ,but I wouldn’t recommend them for everyday use. Used on an everyday basis, they will, in the long run, weaken your own natural lashes.


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