Dr Nishan Pressley, an optometrist who specialises in eye health and vision care across the pond in Orlando tells us that putting lenses in after you’ve applied your makeup could be seriously detrimental to your eyes.
‘Putting your contacts in after applying makeup increases your risk for getting makeup particles on the contact lens during insertion,’ she explains. ‘The chemicals from the make-up can cause discomfort with contact lens wear, red eyes and irritation.’
Like us, you probably take your vision for granted. To name a few, you probably pay a lot more attention to your skin, your fitness and your digestion than your sight, but your eyes are one of the most important organs of your body, and careless habits you don’t even realise you have could be seriously harmful. What we’re talking about here is the process in which you put contact lenses in.
She adds that if makeup or bacteria does get into your eyes, it can cause ‘red eyes, extreme irritation and even conjunctivitis (or an eye infection)’, and advises that if you do feel the sensation of something in your eye that shouldn’t be, you should ‘remove the lens (and consider removing your make-up), rinse the lens off with solution and re-insert’.
Here’s the exact process she recommends for inserting contact lenses.
- First, wash your hands! ‘This is an important step that some people miss. Anything that’s on your fingers can transfer to your contact lens during insertion.’
- Then, make sure your hands are 100% dry. ‘Tap water can host parasites, a common one called acanthomoeba. This is a sight-threatening parasite that can cause extreme damage to your eye.’
- Now, ‘it’s safe to insert the contact lens before applying makeup’.
When it comes to cleaning your lenses, Dr Pressley punts for the ‘rub-rinse method’.
‘After removal of your contacts (with clean hands), place them in your palm and rinse it off with your disinfectant solution,’ she says. ‘Use a finger from your other hand and gently rub the contact lens back-and-forth. This removes any protein build-up, bacteria or other particles that may have accumulated on your contact. After rubbing, place your contact in the correct basin of your lens case with NEW SOLUTION and repeat with the other contact.’
Whatever you do, keep an eye out (see what we did there?) for bacteria/makeup particles.