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How Old is Your Makeup? Nine Tips for Healthy Eyes

Your makeup may be overdue for some tender loving care. Taking care of your makeup means taking care of your eyes. That’s right. There’s a direct connection between gnarly eye infections and old cosmetics spreading bacteria. Think pink eye and styes.

“I’m all for fun, sparkly makeup, but the real function of our eyelashes and eyelids is protection,” says Marissa Larochelle, MD, an ophthalmologist at John A. Moran Eye Center .

Together eyelashes and eyelids help lubricate your eyes and keep foreign particles out—as much as possible. But eye makeup has a way of migrating into your eyes.

“Eyelashes naturally have bacteria on them,” says Larochelle. “As soon as you use a makeup brush on the eyelashes or lid, the brush is contaminated. Over time, that dirty brush leads to a buildup of bacteria in the container. This multiplies the chance for an eye infection every time you use the product.”

While the FDA does not require cosmetics to offer specific shelf lives or list expiration dates on their labels, Rochelle offers a few tips to keep your eyes healthy and enjoy your favorite look.

Makeup eye safety tips