Healthy Lids, Happy You

Obrien.HealthyEyeMakeup3They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul, so why is it that we don’t take proper care of them? While we are busy trying to look our best every day, we tend to ignore the health issues that come from using beauty products.

It’s important to make healthier choices with all of our makeup.  Sensitive eyes tend to have a bad reaction to many ingredients common in everyday makeup. If you have sensitive eyes or contact lenses, stick to hypoallergenic brands such as Neutrogena or Almay.

Using a cream shadow rather than a powder shadow, such as Almay Intense I-Color Liquid Shadow and Color Primer, $7.99 from CVS, is highly effective because powder often travels into the eyes. Though it’s tempting, stay away from glitter, sparkles and metallics – these pigments are more likely to itch and irritate. 

When looking at ingredients, steer clear of aluminum powder. This metallic element made of finely divided parts of aluminum is known to cause itching, redness and pain. Avoid anything that has parabens, BHA, Talc, Dimethicone or Kohl listed in the ingredients.

To avoid any and all smudging, an eye shadow primer is the perfect quick-fix. Simply apply it on the lid at the base, and your makeup won’t budge. Investing in an eyelash curler is also a great alternative to mascara. Though waterproof mascara can be great for the pool or a day at the beach, don’t use it on a daily basis. The process of trying to remove it at the end of the day can be too irritating to the eyes.

Although you may share your secrets, hopes and dreams with your friends- never share your makeup.  Simply put, all kinds of bacteria can grow in those pretty little cosmetic packages. Beauty products tend to come in frequent contact with more easily infected areas of the body, specifically the eyes. We’ve all been shopping in a department store when a sales representative stops us to try out a new shadow or liner. It may seem harmless, but chances are, you’re one of many to come into contact with that little foam applicator. If you can’t resist, ask for fresh applicators and a newly opened product every time.

A simple task like cleaning your makeup bag can avoid a major makeup mishap. Toss any makeup older than three months, and make sure your brushes and applicators are cleaned weekly. Mascara tends to last anywhere from two to four months, and avoid using any tube that is dried out. Keep in mind that liquid eye makeup ages faster than powder.

While you’re washing your brushes, don’t forget the clean the canvas. We know the last thing you want to do after a night out is take off your makeup (because kicking off your heels is the first priority), but washing your face before going to bed is key to having healthy lids, as it significantly decreases the chance of infection.

When all else fails, Valley offers no greater advice than going au natural for a couple of days out of the week.

Photo by Alex O’Brien