No one wants to develop an allergy—especially not one that affects the sensitive area around the eyes. Fortunately, throughout my years as a lash artist, I've found allergies to lash glue relatively rare; however, I have noticed a worrying link between clients who become sensitized. This week, I'm sharing everything you need to know about eyelash extension allergies and how to protect yourself.
Understanding the Role of Clean Lash Extensions
First things first, let's uncover why clean lash extensions are vital for both your eye health and the longevity of your lashes. When lash extensions are applied, a strong adhesive is used to bond them to your natural lashes. This adhesive contains cyanoacrylate and is generally safe and well-tolerated. However, if not properly cleansed, this can pose a risk to developing an allergy! Over time, natural oils, dust, debris, and even makeup residue can accumulate on your lashes, compromising lash cleanliness and potentially leading to broken skin in the delicate eye area. Exposure to cyanoacrylate in this way can lead to the development of an allergy to lash extension glue.
What is eyelash extension glue allergy?
If our body mistakes cyanoacrylate as harmful, our immune system can overreact to its presence by producing cells called 'antibodies' to fight the allergen. This can cause redness, swelling, and skin irritation. The more you expose your body to an allergen, the more it will react. Unfortunately, it is not known why some people's bodies respond to certain substances; however, broken and irritated skin significantly increases your chances of developing an allergy to lash extension glue.
Preventing Allergies: The Importance of Cleanliness
Allergic reactions to lash extensions are typically caused by an adhesive allergen. Symptoms can range from mild irritation, redness, and itchiness to more severe reactions, such as swollen eyelids and discomfort. To avoid these unwanted consequences, it's essential to prioritize lash cleanliness as part of your regular beauty routine.
Top Tips for Keeping Your Lash Extensions Clean
- Gentle Cleansing: Use an oil-free, lash-safe cleanser, such as Avari Beauty's All-In-One Bamboo Charcoal Cleanser or Avari Beauty's Eyelash Foam Cleanser to remove makeup, dirt, and oil from your lashes twice a day. Apply a small amount of cleanser to a soft, lint-free brush or a clean spoolie brush and gently brush through your lashes. Rinse with lukewarm water and pat dry with a clean towel.
- Regular Brushing: Brush your lashes daily with a clean spoolie brush to prevent tangling and keep them looking neat. This gentle brushing motion also helps to remove any loose debris or particles that may have accumulated.
- Sleep on Your Back: Sleeping on your back reduces friction and prevents your lashes from rubbing against your pillow, which can cause lash breakage and loss. If you're a side or stomach sleeper, consider investing in a silk or satin pillowcase to minimize friction.
- Avoid Excessive Water Exposure: For the first 24 hours after your lash extension application, it's essential to avoid excessive water exposure. This allows the adhesive to set. Afterward, be mindful of excessive exposure to water, such as swimming or prolonged hot showers, as it can weaken the lash bond and irritate lashes.
- Professional Maintenance: Regularly scheduled maintenance appointments with your lash technician are crucial for keeping your lash extensions clean and in optimal condition. They will remove any outgrown lashes and replace them with fresh extensions, ensuring a beautiful, clean lash line. If you develop redness, soreness, or swelling after your lash appointment, be sure to contact your lash tech immediately.
The Flonase Trend To Prevent Lash Extension Allergies
If you are on TikTok, you may have seen the new viral videos that talk about a way to prevent lash extension glue allergies! Clients are using flonase on their eyelids before and after having eyelash extensions done. Some clients are taking benadryl the first day, too! We have experimented with this trend on one allergic employee here in the salon and have seen success. While some medical professionals are not a fan about this with safety precautions, some have said this may be okay as long as there is limited exposure to this method as flonase is known to thin the skin and the eye area is already pretty thin to begin with. Here at the salon we are not offering or promoting this method for liability and safety reasons, but it's something we wanted to be educated on and will pay attention to this trend as it continues.|
It's important to note that eyelash glue containing cyanoacrylate is very safe when used properly by a trained lash professional. While a small number of people may develop an allergy to lash extension glue, keeping your lashes clean can help reduce the likelihood of this happening. By prioritizing the cleanliness of your lash extensions, you not only enhance their longevity and appearance but also protect your eyes from potential allergies. Put simply—Clean lashes mean happy, healthy eyes! So, make it a part of your beauty routine to gently cleanse your lashes daily, avoid oil-based products, and brush them regularly.