How does eyelash tinting work? In order to make lashes look darker and fuller, a dye is brushed on to the lashes. This dye leaves your lashes with a natural texture, so it doesn’t clump like mascara. It also lasts for about a month. This makes it seem like an appealing alternative to normal mascara—it doesn’t smudge, it doesn’t have to be applied every day, and you can wake up with lush lashes every morning. Some people also opt for additional eyebrow tinting, which works similarly: dye is painted on to the eyebrows, and it gives you that bold brow look for the next month. You can go to a salon for these services, or you can purchase a DIY tinting kit to do it at home.
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However, there are a few downsides to eyelash and eyebrow tinting. It’s important to note that neither of these procedures have been technically approved by the FDA. This is because experts still have some concerns about how the dye could affect one’s skin and eyes. The skin on our faces is especially sensitive compared to the rest of our bodies, so it’s good to be exceptionally careful about any products intended for facial use.
What’s the problem with the dye used for eyelash tinting, and how could it affect your skin? Some salons use vegetable dyes, others use cosmetic colorants, and some might even use coal-tar dyes. However, none of these dyes have been approved by the FDA, and the FDA specifically warns that all of them can be harmful to the fragile skin around the eyes and have the potential to cause serious eye irritation or damage.
Dermatologist Nava Greenfield says that the skin on your eyelids is thinner than anywhere else on your body, so it’s not an area where you want to use risky cosmetic ingredients. She says that some people can have allergic reactions to these dyes, and because the dyes are semi-permanent, the adverse effects can last for days. In severe cases, people can even end up with chemical burns around their eyes.
Perhaps a simple mascara and an eyelash curler is still the way to go. Tinted lashes might look great, but it seems like the risk isn’t worth the reward.