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Photo: All About Vision

A condition that seems to get associated with lash extensions is Blepharitis. Now, is it a result of eyelash extensions? Not exactly. Blepharitis is a condition that causes inflammation, oily buildup and redness in the eyes. This is a condition that can be caused by a variety of reasons and yes, some people have experienced this condition while having eyelash extensions on, BUT it's absolutely not a direct result of extensions.

Some of the reasons it manifests itself is that there is an overgrowth of bacteria in the eyes, maybe your oil glands aren't working as they should, maybe you have chronic dry eyes or an infestation of Demodex mites (lash mites).

One reason that some clients end up having this condition is because they are not cleansing their lashes properly. It's extremely important and I know I sound like a broken record, but imagine having hair extensions in and not cleansing your hair, because you don't want to mess with them and in turn, you end up with an inflamed scalp because there's buildup and bacteria forming there. Same idea! Cleansing with a proper cleanser is crucial. When you just use baby shampoo or face cleanser or ....water.... you are NOT cleansing correctly. You need to use a specific cleanser that not only is going to cleanse your lashes but moisturize them too. You can get blepharitis even when cleansing with something like baby shampoo that strips the skin of oil and if it's frequent, you're continuing to dry the lid out and as we mentioned earlier, can cause dry eyes and the condition will present itself.

Lash cleansers aren't expensive and they last 2-4 months or so when cleansing daily, depending on the size of bottle you get and how often it's used, as well as the type of formula it is (gel, foam, etc). When you don't clean, you're allowing oil to build up and lash mites LOVE that oily residue left on your lashes and it gives them the means to continue to eat that up and it dries your lid and they start to irritate your eyes. Point is......cleanse your lashes. If you do end up getting Blepharitis, don't fret! Use a specific cleanser to help cleanse and moisturize and it should clear up after a few days to a few weeks. If it doesn't, consider seeing your doctor to get it treated professionally. There are a few over the counter eyelid scrubs you can use, such as: SteriLid, OcuSoft, Systane. Use a qtip to cleanse and scrub your lashes, you can even use a disposable mascara wand on each eye to really scrub those crusts off. Limit your makeup use on the eye area and if you are using a mascara, stop and don't use it. Preferably, wait until it's cleared up and then purchase a new one to use.

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