Can You Wear Makeup When You Have Dry Eye?

You can absolutely wear makeup when you suffer with Dry Eye. Dry Eye Disease shouldn’t stop you doing the things that you love. If you do wish to wear makeup, we can help you work around your condition with some handy tips and tricks.

Eye makeup can clog the meibomian glands in your eyelids, aggravating your Dry Eye symptoms. But, using the right makeup for Dry Eye can make a huge difference when done correctly.[1]


Eyeshadow for Dry Eyes

The tiny particles in glitter and powdery eyeshadows can easily get into your eyes, which can cause aggravation. Instead, you should use a cream based eyeshadow.[2]


Eyeliner for Dry Eyes

It is suggested that you shouldn’t use eyeliner if you suffer from Dry Eyes as it can irritate your eyelids and harm the production of tears. However, if eyeliner is a must in your makeup bag, it’s better to apply it on the outside of your lash line, instead of the inside. This prevents the makeup particles from making their way into the tear film and harming your eyes.[3] You should also sharpen your eyeliner before every use for this reason.[4]


eyeliner and dry eye


Mascara for Dry Eyes
Did you know all eye makeup should be discarded after 3 months? Old mascara can go crumbly, allowing big clumps to fall off into your eyes. It’s also best to use thickening mascara, as it flakes much less than the standard bottle.[4]

Ideally, it would be better not to use mascara at all. Instead, use an eyelash curler, which can be bought cheaply at your local supermarket. Plastic curlers are better than metal as the metal ones can cause irritation around your eye.[2]


Foundation and Highlighter

Although foundation and highlighters aren’t necessarily eye makeup items, the glitter and powder from these can find their way to your eyes when you apply them. As with eyeshadow, use a thicker cream based version.[2]


Permanent makeup for Dry Eye

When it comes to eyelashes, natural is the best option! Eyelash extensions and fake eyelashes should be completely avoided, as these can aggravate blepharitis. Many eyelash tubes of glue also contain formaldehyde, which can dry out the surface of your eyes.[4]


dry eye eyelashes


Wash your makeup brushes

Makeup brushes can hold dirt, oil and bacteria that can get into the eyes. So, it’s important that they’re washed regularly.[5] It’s recommended to wash your brushes every seven to 10 days, but there is no harm in cleaning them more often.[6]


Taking off your makeup with Dry Eye

You should always take your makeup off before you go to bed, to avoid it leaking into your eyes in your sleep or rubbing it in. You should also steer clear of makeup removers that include oil or parabens as these can be irritating.[4]


We hope that we have enlightened you with our makeup tips. To find out more about Dry Eye, follow our social channels.


In most cases, the best way to treat dry eyes, Also known as dry eye syndrome, is to use eye gel or eye drops.

VisuXL Gel® is a preservative-free smart gel lubricant for dry eye syndrome. It provides comfort in a bottle with it’s long-lasting lubrication properties giving 12-hour dosing with just one drop and is suitable for both day and night use.

VisuXL® is a preservative-free eye drop lubricant for dry eye syndrome. Due to its unique ingredients, VisuXL® will help you recover from eye surgery, an injury or persistent damaging dry eye.

VisuEvo® is a preservative-free eye drop that prevents excessive evaporation of the tear film. Its unique formula contains omega-3 essential fatty acids, Vitamins A and D and ultra-filtered phospholipids that facilitate tear film presentation and control evaporation.

All three products are contact lens-friendly and can be used for 180 days after opening.

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  1. Holliman, Nicole. ‘Makeup Tips for Dry Eye’, Web MD, 08/07/20, Accessed October 2022
  2. Petrosyan, Tamara. ‘Impact of Makeup on Dry Eye Disease’, EyeCare.Org, 11/01/16, Accessed October 2022
  3. Alison, Ng et al. ‘Migration of Cosmetic Products into the Tear Film’, Eye and Contact Lens Science and Clinical Practice, 09/15, 41:5, pp.304-309, Accessed October 2022
  4. HealthLine, ‘Eye Makeup and Dry Eyes: The Inside Scoop’, 07/09/21, Accessed October 2022.
  5. Miller, Korin. ‘How to Clean Your Makeup Brushes – and Why You Need to Do It’, Health, 18/05/21, Accessed October 2022.
  6. American Academy of Dermatology Association, ‘How to Clean Your Makeup Brushes’, Accessed October 2022
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