Social media, reality TV, and our selfie culture is fueling a global obsession with long and thick eyelashes – but are they safe for the eyes?
Our doctors are seeing more patients who use eyelash serums, eyelash extensions, eyelash perms, and even falsies! While this beauty trend has taken hold around the globe, many patients with eyelash extensions report various symptoms from red, itchy, scratchy, and irritated eyes to inflamed and itchy lids. Optometrists are also seeing increased signs of ocular surface disease, blepharitis, eyelash mites, conjunctivitis, keratitis, ocular dermatitis, and dry eye disease.
Every person has 225-300 eyelashes per eye (150-200 upper eyelid, 75-100 lower lid. The natural eyelash growth has 3 phases:
- ANAGEN (active growth) PHASE: lasts 4-6 weeks
- CATAGEN (transition) PHASE: lasts 2-3 weeks. During this phase, the eyelash stops growing once it reaches its maximum length and volume.
- TELOGEN (resting) PHASE: lasts ~~100 days before the eyelash eventually falls out.
Each individual eyelash undergoes each phase at different times.
CURRENT BEAUTY TRENDS AND THEIR OCULAR SIDE EFFECTS