Makeup

Why do my eyes water when I wear makeup? How to stop it?

Updated: September 25, 2021

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When people wear makeup, they often notice that their eyes water. The reasons for this are numerous and in some cases can be quite serious.

In fact, the medical term for it is “makeup-induced lacrimation.”

Why do my eyes water when I wear makeup?

Eyes can water as a result of allergies, dry eyes, eye makeup, makeup remover, weather, sore eyes, skin conditions, etc. One can avoid so by gently removing makeup at night, using eye drops for dry eyes, and wearing makeup for a lesser time.

Reasons for watery eyes while wearing makeup

1. Allergies

People who wear makeup and also have allergies may experience watery eyes due to the allergy. This is because dust, pollen, pet dander, or other allergens can get trapped in the eye area while wearing makeup which will cause an allergic reaction that leads to watering of the eyes.

2. Dry Eyes

This is a condition that can lead to watery eyes. Dry eye syndrome or DES is when the tear film on the surface of your eye begins to wear out and evaporate more quickly than it should.

This depletion in tears leads the eyes to produce excess oil which will irritate the outer layer making them even drier leading to this vicious cycle.

3. The eye makeup itself

Some people find that the chemicals in some types of mascara or eyeliner cause watery eyes.

This is because these products can contain artificial dyes, preservatives, and fragrances which are all possible irritants to the sensitive surface of the eye area leading to watering.

In addition, if you have recently applied eye makeup, the moisturizer in it can act as an irritant to your eyes.

4. Eye makeup remover

Like most beauty products, there are many types of eye makeup removers on the market that people use to take off their eye makeup at night.

If you wear waterproof mascara or eyeliner and then wash them off with a strong remover, the chemicals in it can be an irritant to your eyes leading them to water.

5. The weather

If you’re wearing eye makeup and feeling hot or humid outside or if the temperature drops at night, this cold air may cause excess watering which is often linked to dryness of the skin.

It also may lead to a cold coming on.

6. Eye irritation

There are many causes of eye irritation that may not be directly related to makeup but they can still cause your eyes to water when wearing it.

These include allergies, viral illnesses such as the common cold or pink eye, excessive dryness due to overuse of contact lenses, and more.

7. Sore eyes

This is a condition that can lead to watery eyes.

If you have sore, red, or swollen eyelids and then put on eye makeup, this irritation may also result in the sensation of an increased tear flow from your irritated surface which will lead to excessive watering.

8. The mascara

Some people find that the chemicals in some types of mascara can lead to eye-watering which is usually due to sensitivity, allergic reaction, irritation and more.

The specific ingredients in your makeup will determine how likely you are to experience eye-watering when wearing it so be sure to read the labels and avoid any that are a possible irritant.

9. Eyeglasses

If you wear glasses, it’s important to make sure they fit properly as this can lead to eye irritation which often results in watery eyes when wearing makeup.

This is because if your eyeglass frames don’t sit well on your face, they can cause pressure on your eyelids which will lead to this irritating swelling and then an increased tear flow.

10. Skin conditions

There are many skin conditions that may not necessarily be caused by makeup but can lead to watery eyes when wearing it.

These include rosacea, atopic dermatitis, and seborrhea (a type of eczema).

11. Sunlight

If you’re sensitive to sunlight or have had a recent eye injury, you may experience watery eyes on a bright day.

This is because the sun’s ultraviolet rays can be harmful to the delicate surface of the eye and cause an allergic reaction which will lead to watering.

 

Ways of preventing watery eyes while wearing makeup

1. Be sure to use eye drops that are specifically for dry eyes. If you suffer from allergies, this will help relieve your suffering with a lower chance of watery eyes.

2. When washing off your makeup at night, be gentle and consider using an oil-free remover if possible as these can irritate the surface less than other types.

3. If you want to wear eye makeup, consider a type that is more likely not to cause watery eyes such as oil-based makeup or cream products which may be less irritating for most people’s eyes.

4. As mentioned before, it can sometimes help to avoid wearing any type of eye makeup if the weather conditions are hot, humid, or cold.

5. If you’re experiencing watery eyes from allergy symptoms, make sure to take your medication and avoid contact with potential irritants such as pollen, dust mites, and so on.

6. Try wearing contact lenses less often if not necessary as this can lead to dryness that may result in excessive watering when wearing makeup.

7. The amount of time you wear your makeup is also something to consider. If you’re constantly wearing it for long periods, this can cause irritation which may lead to watery eyes when wearing make-up as well.

If the problem becomes chronic or severe, there are other medications that provide dry eye relief such as artificial tears and ointments for dry eye relief.

Why do the eyes water?

When the eye is irritated it will produce an excess of tears to try and flush away any foreign irritant.

The eyes may water if you have a cold, allergies, or are merely tired. Other reasons for watering can be due to skin conditions such as rosacea, atopic dermatitis, and seborrhea (type of eczema).

It’s also common to experience watery eyes when you haven’t slept well or if you’re constantly wearing contact lenses which can lead to dryness.

This is a condition that can lead to watery eyes. If you have sore, red, or swollen eyelids and then put on eye makeup, this can lead to an increase in tear flow and a feeling of burning or stinging.

The best thing you can do is avoid makeup on days when your eyes are inflamed or swollen, but if it’s unavoidable then try using eye drops that are specifically for dry eyes which help reduce the inflammation.

If this problem becomes chronic or severe, there are other medications that provide dry eye relief such as artificial tears and ointments for dry eye relief.

 

Which ingredients of makeup products are harmful to the eyes?

Several ingredients in makeup products are not good for the eyes. These include formaldehyde, methylparaben, and Diazolidinyl urea which can all lead to irritated or inflamed eyelids.

Thus, they may cause watery eyes when wearing eye makeup because of this irritation that leads to more tear flow or dryness from the additional use of artificial tears for relief.

For those who have sensitive skin, it’s best to avoid any type of eye makeup as the ingredients may not be compatible with your personal needs and cause more irritation.

This can lead to watery eyes when wearing make-up or just a general feeling of discomfort which will result in tear flow from the eyes.

If you need to wear eye makeup, try using a gentler type that is less likely to cause watery eyes such as oil-based makeup or cream products which may be less irritating for most people’s eyes.

 

Video –  How you can apply makeup while preventing watery eyes?

 

Final words

These are some of the things to consider when wearing makeup and experiencing watery eyes. If you’re always wearing eye makeup, it’s important to take steps such as washing your face gently at night time or trying a type of less irritating makeup that is more likely not to cause watery eyes like oil-based products or cream of certain types.

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