6 Ways You Are Damaging Your Eyelashes
Eyelashes are very delicate, and we sometimes take them for granted which is unfortunate as when we get older and they start to appear a little more than lack-lustre and start to thin out naturally, we wish we had taken care of them and miss what we had. So, if you have started to notice your lashes are looking a little different lately, or require extra care, you need to be sure that what you are doing daily isn’t damaging them further.
It can be an uphill battle to repair your eyelashes fully, which is why a lot of people rely on extensions or false eyelashes to get the appearance of a fully natural, beautiful set of lashes once again. There are some really easy things you can do to help fix them up though, but if you are unknowingly causing the damage in the first place, it is important to know what exactly you are doing and why it is bad for your lashes.
There are plenty of ways that your eyelashes could be feeling a little left out, especially as part of your daily care routines, but here are six of the reasons why you may be damaging your eyelashes. Let’s learn form these mistakes and get them looking beautiful once more!
LEAVING MAKEUP ON WHILE YOU SLEEP
We’ve all had those days when you get in a little later than planned, you’re exhausted, and all you can think about is getting some well needed shut eye. You flop on the bed, and before you know it you’re waking up again to the sound of your alarm, trying to figure out why your eyes feel like they are glued shut. It’s a really horrible feeling, but unfortunately something a lot of us are familiar with after a few too many!
Sleeping with makeup on just makes you feel less refreshed the next day, your skin can feel horrible, and your eyelashes can be left in a weirdly sticky, but dry state that you now have to work on cleansing. It’s not a good look, but it happens to the best of us. The problem is that leaving your makeup on while you sleep is not just aesthetically displeasing but damaging to your eyelashes too.
Makeup just isn’t designed to be worn constantly, even when it says “long-wearing” on the packaging, it still needs to be taken off at the end of the day. Eyelashes, like your skin, need to breathe, and their natural oils need to be able to come through without barriers as build up below the lash line of these oils can cause horrible irritation and worst case, infection. Now trust me, you don’t want to get a nasty infection on or around the eye so the best thing to do is clean that makeup off before you put your head down to rest.
The other way you can damage your eyelashes by leaving makeup on while you sleep is from mascara. You know those really deep sleeps where it feels like you’ve been out for more than a decade, and you wake up with creases all over your cheeks, well you may tend to notice that your eyelashes have also ended up in weird positions! This can be from sleeping awkwardly on your pillow and allowing the mascara to press your lashes into angles they shouldn’t sit and then fix them into place overnight. It can be slightly painful to have eyelashes facing the wrong direction, as well as cause them to become loose or fall out easily. Do yourself a huge favour when it comes to your makeup and get rid of all traces before sleeping.
NOT CLEANSING PROPERLY
So, this goes hand in hand with the whole sleeping in makeup thing, and although cleaning your face at night might make you feel more refreshed in the morning, leaving small traces of makeup can still be damaging to your eyelashes. Again, the build up in the follicle and lash line is just a horrible infection waiting for its chance to show up, and when you end up piling makeup on over the top, this build up just gets bigger and bigger and can even start to stunt healthy eyelash growth.
Facial cleansers are fantastic, but they are designed to target grease and grime as part of the natural daily build up from just being awake or going outside, but they don’t necessarily grab onto makeup the way a makeup remover can. There are specific makeup removers that focus on the eyes that work really well from breaking down the tough particles in mascara, but they can also leave eyelashes feeling dry and brittle with overuse, so it may just require a hydrating makeup remover such as micellar water and a facial cleanser to remove build up and dead skin cells.
The other issue with improper cleansing is rubbing the eyelashes too abrasively with cotton pads or cloths, and unknowingly causing damage to the eyelashes, making them come loss from their follicle too early in the cycle and fall out prematurely. Cleaning the eyes should be done with plenty of cleanser on the cotton pad so it isn’t causing friction through dry applications and rubbing away from the eyes in the direction of the eyelash growth. Firm pressure can be used to remove stubborn eyeliner, but you should be careful when moving around in circles as this is what causes the damage. Be kind to your eyes in the cleansing and makeup removing process by changing up your routine to stop them from becoming damaged, and you will start to notice the different pretty quickly.
NOT USING A SERUM
As you get older, it’s inevitable that your eyelashes are going to need a little extra help, and the best way is to keep them moisturised and hydrated without heavy makeup coating them all day and night. Eyelash serums are on the rise right now because of their fantastic ability to promote faster and longer growing eyelashes, but they can also be used as part of your nightly beauty ritual to give your lashes a boost in appearance and some healthy nourishment that helps keep damage at bay.
If you are going to be cleansing your eyelashes anyway, then adding an eyelash serum to the mix is worthwhile as it takes barely any extra time and doesn’t leave your lashes feeling sticky or coated while you go to sleep. The easy application process makes this such a good thing you can do to prevent damage and assist your follicles with their growing abilities, leaving you with a fantastic set of eyelashes in the long run.
Just use the small applicator brush and apply a small amount of serum over the lash line, being careful not to poke yourself in the eye, and then go get that well-earned rest you crave, and the job is done. It’s that easy. So ok, not using a serum isn’t necessarily going to cause damage to your eyelashes, but it certainly isn’t going to hurt to use one, so I say better safe than sorry!
RUBBING YOUR EYES
We all do it, we all wish we hadn’t afterward (especially when we’ve done a full face of makeup!) and we all know that we shouldn’t but rubbing your eyes can be a big relief to those with hay fever, tired eyes or even simply when something gets into them. The problem is this can be really damaging to the eyelashes, and just like cleaning incorrectly it can cause them to come loose and fall out pretty easily.
Also with all the care we have to take these days to not touch our faces, it is important not to rub your eyes as they are a clear portal for viruses and infections to brew, which is the absolute last thing you want. If you suffer from dry eyes, consider eye drops to alleviate itching and when you are tired, take a drink of water and maybe splash some of that good stuff over your face to keep your eyes moist and hydrated.
USING OLD MAKEUP
All makeup has an expiry date on it, and if it doesn’t, it will definitely have a length of use number on it next to a little icon of an open pot. The number indicates how many months that makeup is good for once it has been opened, and this is not to be treated as a rule of thumb. The chances are if you wear the same sort of makeup regularly you will be getting through it a lot faster than that use by date anyway, but often there are a lot of half used eyeshadow palettes and mascaras that get left at the bottom of makeup kits and eventually find their way back onto the eyes once you remember you have it.
This is where the problems can start. Makeup for the eyes and eyelashes is largely made up of oils and chemicals that begin to separate once they are exposed to the air which can not only make them less effective, but clumpy and funny smelling. When it comes to mascara, you need to remember that the wand is constantly going in and out of the tube, to and from the eyelashes. So it collects dead cells, dust and other particles that may build up on the eyelashes. Then when you go to use it again, you are depositing that bad stuff back onto your eyelashes… Doesn’t sound so nice when we put it that way, does it!
Get rid of that old makeup that you promised yourself you would use again and haven’t, and don’t risk the chance of giving your eyelashes a bad time or causing infection. This is the best way to prevent damage to your eyelashes when it comes to old makeup.
USING TOO MUCH WATERPROOF MASCARA
There are too many instances where waterproof mascara comes in handy – weddings, pool parties, the sunny beach – but these are all events that should happen once in a while, in which case waterproof mascara could be your saviour. Wearing it every day, however, can prove to be quite damaging to your eyelashes and if possible you should avoid it regularly so that you keep them looking fresh, hydrated and smooth.
The compounds of waterproof mascara are such that they do exactly what they say on the tube – stop water from penetrating – so if you’ve never worn it before, you can imagine just how hard it is to get it off. It takes a lot of cleansing and rubbing which you want to avoid anyways, but it also coats your lashes so much that any chance of hydration or moisture is prevented from accessing the eyelashes causing them to become dry and brittle. They can easily start to break through frequent use too, so I say just stick to your favourite normal mascara and always come prepared with a pack of tissues for those emotional moments!
OTHER DAMAGING ACTIVITIES
Of course, there are plenty of other ways you could be causing damage, such as overusing your eyelash curler, or even not using it properly, and overdoing it with the false lashes and aggressively ripping them off at the end of the night. Curlers are fantastic tools when used correctly, they should not be dragged through the eyelashes but rather pumped down the length of the eyelashes before applying mascara so as not to maximise damage. False lashes are great because they stay put for so long, but sometimes that glue can be a bit tricky to remove, so do yourself a favour and keep it gentle with a softener or cleanser specifically for false eyelashes and look after your natural ones in the process.
Eyelashes are fantastic when you look after them with care, so look at your own routine and make sure that you aren’t doing the things on this list, for a beautiful set of eyelashes of your own!