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Red and irritated eyes after eyelash extensions


Red eyes after eyelash extensions are generally nothing to worry about and are common - but things are different with swollen eyelids. In this blog post we will tell you why you should pay close attention and how to recognize an allergic reaction after eyelash extensions.


Eyes red from eyelash extensions


There are a variety of reasons for red eyes after eyelash extensions, but it is almost always necessary for the client and lash stylist to work together to find out what the cause could be.

In case you are not a lash stylist and think that this information is not important for you, keep in mind that once you're home and have to wait for the next day to let your lash tech have a look at it, you're going to want to know whether this is a reason to worry or not.

Why do some people have red eyes after eyelash extensions?

1. Glue

Almost every common glue in the world of eyelash extensions contains cyanoacrylate. When this dries, formaldehyde is created.

Formaldehyde is not listed as an ingredient in eyelash glue, but is a byproduct that is created when the glue evaporates.

This gas irritates the eyes. This means that eyelash glue with less cyanocrylate also produces less formaldehyde, which also reduces irritation.

Other adhesives rely on alkoxyester cyanoacrylates, which are characterized by less outgassing and odor formation.

Adhesives that are produced very cheaply and usually of poor quality often have strong bonding performance - but they produce extremely strong fumes.

These not only cause the client's eyes to be red but are also very irritating and harmful to the stylist's respiratory system. It is therefore essential to use high-quality materials.


Redness caused by glue is probably the most common cause of irritated eyes after lash extensions. Therefore, it should be the first thing a lash stylist considers to switch to a different adhesive if necessary.

Lovely's Victoria adhesive goes through a special filtering process and, according to the manufacturer, has fewer fumes while maintaining the same adhesive strength.

You can find the adhesive Victoria here


2. Allergic reaction

Disclaimer: This blog does NOT give medical advice and you should always get a doctors opinion to be certain!

It's important to know: An allergy is neither the client's fault nor the stylist's fault.

Nevertheless, it is important to recognize symptoms of an allergic reaction to eyelash extensions immediately and to act quickly.

If there is swelling around the eye area or eyelid, there is a high chance that it is an allergy.

Swelling, redness and rashes on the skin can also indicate this!

two allergic reactions to eyelash extensions

Allergic reactions are usually accompanied by swelling or redness!


In this case, the eyelash extensions must be removed in order to quickly remedy the situation. If there is no improvement even after hours or if further complications arise, you must definitely see a doctor.

Allergic reactions come in many different facets and are therefore always assessed differently.

For example, there are clients who have a mild allergic reaction to the hydrogel of disposable eye pads or adhesive tape while others have severe symptoms such as itching or pain from the adhesive.

For clients who have never had eyelash extensions done - especially those who also have other allergies - it is recommended to analyze all materials in advance with a patch test and observe whether there are any complications.


What is a patch test?

Use small amounts on a selected area of ​​skin and check whether your customers experience any problems.


You can find out more about allergic reactions to eyelash extensions here:


3. Dry eyes

Another very common reason for red eyes can be that the eyes simply become too dry during treatment.

This may be due to the eyelash glue, which removes moisture from the environment as it hardens.

Isolation of the lower eyelid can also be responsible for dry eyes. This insulation prevents the eyes from closing completely and then moistening properly.


In most cases, eye drops or eye gel can help. Before, after and during treatment - depending on need and severity of the symptom. Eyelash stylists should best advise their customers who tend to have dry eyes to bring eye drops with them to their lash extensions appointment.


Of course, eye drops can only be used during the treatment in consultation with the lash stylist and extreme caution is also required when applying drops after the treatment, as freshly extended eyelashes must not be wet immediately after.


4. Poor insulation of eyelashes

Lash stylists in particular who have not been practicing their craft for very long often make the mistake of not attaching the isolation pads and tapes correctly.

What a lash artist must ensure is that no insulation touches the mucous membrane or the sclera itself. This leads to eye irritation and maximum discomfort for the client.

There are also clients with a genetic predisposition to red eyes. Despite all the factors taken into account, it is difficult to pinpoint the exact causes.

Silicone pads are ideal for these clients - see here.


5. Poor hygiene

What every lash stylist should know, but is often neglected in practice: cleaning, disinfection and sterilization of all instruments and tools is an absolute must!

To ensure that bacteria and other contaminants are not passed on from one client to the next, it is a must to clean, disinfect and, if necessary, sterilize tweezers, reusable eye pads, cosmetic tables and of course hands properly after each client.

If these points are not taken into account, inflammation may occur after eyelash extensions, which then needs to be treated.

sterilization and disinfection of eyelash tweezers

For clients: To avoid eye inflammation after eyelash extensions, make sure your lash stylist has clean instruments and ask how exactly they are cleaned. It's about your eyes, so caution has priority!

6. Red eyes due to careless work

Incorrect or very careless handling of tools such as tweezers can damage the eyes definitely be red. For example, if a stylist touches the eye with sharp tweezers and injures it.

Of course, professional lash stylists are well trained in using their instruments.

If such an experience nevertheless occurs, an ophthalmologist should be contacted to be on the safe side.


7. Contact lenses

It is a popular belief that contact lenses protect the eyes from glue fumes. This opinion is certainly justified.

However, there is also something called “Contact Lense Acute Red Eye”.

This phenomenon describes the drying out of eyes when the eyes are closed for too long while wearing contact lenses.


So for some clients it may make sense to leave the contact lenses in their eyes - while others would benefit from removing them before treatment.

Lash stylists should inform their customers about this so that they come to the appointment without lenses.


8. Speaking during eyelash extensions


While some beauty procedures can be accompanied by a little small talk, things are a little different with lash extensions.

The movement of the facial muscles increases the duration of the treatment as it becomes more difficult for the stylist to work .

This movement causes the eyes to open ever so slightly, increasing exposure to fumes and isolation. The longer duration of treatment also exposes the eyes to the fumes for longer .

Isolation eyelash extension eye open

Here in the picture you can see a slightly opened eyelid. Presumably there was some talking during the treatment

9. Poor job by the stylist

The quality of service offered varies dramatically from stylist to stylist. Unfortunately, many clients do not yet have the know-how to distinguish bad work from good work. This often leads to negative experiences.

Poorly made eyelash extensions too close to the eyelid

What is bad eyelash extensions?

There are a lot of things you can do wrong when it comes to eyelash extensions. But in the context of red eyes, it should be mentioned that it can be that far too much glue is used and that the eyelashes are then attached directly to the eyelid in large clumps.

This leads to itching and irritation of the eye. Which can cause redness or cause the client to touch the area themselves, which in turn irritates the eyes.


How long do eyes stay red after eyelash extensions?

Of course, this varies from person to person and is very difficult to give a general answer. In addition, the cause plays a major role in the duration of the symptom.

For example, eye irritation due to the adhesive should subside after a few hours, but in some cases it may take a little longer.

If the eye has been injured in any way, it will of course depend on the severity of the injury.


The general rule:

If your eyes remain red for an unusually long time, you should see a doctor to rule out all eventualities.


If necessary, the eyelashes must also be removed.



What else can you do to avoid red eyes?


Some clients take an antihistamine before their treatment or use cortisone creams to avoid mild allergic reactions. Under no circumstances should something like this be done without medical advice !


There are also stylists who do not pre-treat their clients' eyes with primer, but instead use saline solution if the client has sensitive and easily irritable eyes.


Since we have no medical training, we cannot advise or make a recommendation on either of the above tips!

This requires consultation with trained medical professionals.


Regularly ventilating the workplace with a fan can also provide great relief when it comes to red and irritated eyes when eyelash extensions are applied.



What can stylists do to prevent redness and irritation on their clients?

1. Use high quality eyelash glue

2. Test materials on clients

3. Eye drops for customers with dry eyes

4. Insulate properly

5. Work hygienically

6. Handle tweezers carefully

7. Point out contact lenses

8. Don't have conversations

9. Apply good and clean lash extensions


Bonus: If a client complains of long-lasting red eyes, she should definitely come in for a follow-up treatment so that an allergy can be ruled out and the likelihood of conjunctivitis can be weighed up.

In conclusion, there are many different reasons why eyelash extensions cause watery, irritated or red eyes.

Fortunately, allergic reactions are rarely the case.

Slight redness usually disappears within a few hours and is relatively harmless.

With the tips mentioned, this symptom can perhaps be avoided or at least reduced for one or two clients.



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