How should contact lens wearers remove eye cosmetics?

December 12, 2016

It is important to completely remove eye cosmetics before going to bed as the cosmetics can cause eyelash issues. The cosmetics can plug the follicular ostia of the eyelashes causing increased demodex problems and worsening ocular rosacea.

Zoe Diana Draelos, MD

It is important to completely remove eye cosmetics before going to bed as the cosmetics can cause eyelash issues. The cosmetics can plug the follicular ostia of the eyelashes causing increased demodex problems and worsening ocular rosacea. Eye cosmetics can also contribute to problems associated with inner eyelid sebaceous glands resulting in styes. Always remove eye cosmetics before removing contact lenses. The eye cosmetics are best removed with a low foaming cleanser (Cetaphil for normal to dry skin, Galderma; CeraVe cleanser, Valeant) on a cotton pad. Saturate the pad with the cleanser and stroke across the closed eyelids. Keep eyes closed and rinse thoroughly by splashing warm water across the eyes. Pat the eyes dry with a soft towel gently stroking across the eyes to remove any additional cosmetics. Then, wash the fingertips with baby shampoo to remove any oily cosmetic debris prior to removing the contacts. The baby shampoo will prevent the cosmetics from being transferred from the fingertips to the lenses resulting in clouding.

More conundrums:

How should you apply cosmetics to avoid problems with extended-wear soft contact lenses?

Can contact lens wearers safely use mascara?

Can contact lens wearers apply wetting solution while wearing cosmetics?