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Can You Wear Makeup to an Eye Exam?

Blog, Eye Exam, Eye Information, Eyeglasses

The average person needs one eye exam per year so that the optometrist can evaluate your eyes and look for health conditions, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Preparing for your eye appointment is necessary to ensure you bring everything you need.


You may already know the answers to questions such as:


  • Should I rest my eyes before the eye exam? (Yes.)
  • Will I need my insurance card? (Yes.)
  • Should I have someone drive me if I’m getting my eyes dilated? (Yes.)


But what about getting ready in the morning before the appointment? Can you wear makeup to an eye exam? Let’s discuss. 

Can you wear makeup to an eye exam?

Wearing makeup to an eye exam is okay, as long as you don’t overdo it. We recommend going light on the eye makeup and steering clear of waterproof or lash-lengthening mascara. This is important if you wear contact lenses to your appointment or if you end up having a contact lens exam or fitting. 


Mascara that expands your eyelashes contains thick strands of material that can cause eye irritation. And it can also be challenging to take off waterproof mascara in a hurry at your eye doctor appointment if the optometrist requests it. It can leave marks or discolorations on your contacts, too. 


So, yes, you can wear makeup to an eye exam. However, be cautious about how much eye makeup you put on. If you have something going on after your appointment and feel the urge to wear a lot of eye makeup, we suggest bringing your makeup bag in the car and applying the rest of your makeup in there before you drive away. (But remember: you should never drive and put on makeup at the same time.)


The American Optometric Association (AOA) also offers these tips for contacts and makeup:


  • Insert soft contacts before your makeup and hard contacts afterward. 
  • Take off your contact lenses before your makeup. 
  • Opt for a liquid foundation vs. a cream foundation to avoid getting the product on your contacts. 
  • Wash your hands before touching your contacts. Never use lotion first since it can transfer to your eyewear

Can you wear fake eyelashes to the eye doctor?

False eyelashes can create a fun, new look. There are different ways to apply them, but the result is the same: long lashes that begin at your lash line. Since this is a delicate part of the eye, we recommend wearing fake eyelashes if you have an event to go to but putting them on your list of “what not to do before an eye exam.”


If you’re wondering, ‘Why can’t I wear fake eyelashes to the eye doctor?’, know that you can, but they can make it harder for the eye doctor to inspect your eyes during the eye exam. Not to mention, the glue used to put the false eyelashes in place can affect the material your contact lenses are made from. 


Summary: Is it safe to wear makeup during an eye exam?

Most of us love eye makeup, and you’ll be happy to know you can wear makeup to an eye exam. But go easy on it. Too much mascara (or the wrong foundation) can transfer to your contact lenses, which can impact your eyes or vision. 


As for fake eyelashes, we suggest taking them off before your eye appointment. Going without false eyelashes can make it easier for your eye doctor to evaluate your eyes and can decrease the chances your lashes will come into contact with your lenses, which is important since the glued used to insert the false lashes can tamper with the material for your contacts. 


Are you ready to arrange an eye appointment? The For Eyes team would love to see you. 

Come by your local office today to book an exam.

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