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Am I Allergic to Eyelash Extensions?

If You're reading this you're probably experiencing some level of discomfort around your eyes after receiving eyelash extension and you might be wondering if you have an infection or perhaps an allergy to the glue.

There are a few ways that you can get to the bottom of this. First, you must know the difference between an irritation and an allergic reaction.


An allergy is an oversensitivity of the immune system to something that many people have normal interactions with daily. Allergic reactions can worsen with repeated exposure. According to Medical News Today, an allergic reaction is "similar to other contact allergies also known as contact dermatitis" (Eyelash extension allergic reactions: What to know 2018). Symptoms often appear within a few hours to a few days and can happen in one or in both eyes. Some of the symptoms include redness, itchiness, and swelling of the eye or eyelid. Allergies develop over time with repeated exposure so it isn't unusual to have a reaction after having extensions for many years. Those who have developed a more severe allergy may have to consult with their doctor if they wish to keep their extensions.


An irritation can mirror many of the same symptoms as an allergic reaction so it may be hard to determine which of the two you are experiencing. Irritations are typically caused by the adhesive fumes produced during the curing process. The individual gas molecules of the cyanoacrylate in the adhesive may cause red puffy eyes and redness/itchiness of the sclera (the white portion of the eye). With an irritation symptoms don't last longer than 24 hours and get much better as time passes.

If your client has seasonal allergies their eyes may be more sensitive to the tapes and adhesives during this time.


Mild allergies can be treated with antihistamines. You may also ask your GP about a medication called dexamethasone. For more severe allergic reactions we recommend consulting with a doctor. According to Medical News Today, mild allergic reactions can be treated with the following:

  1. Eye drops

  2. Cold compress

  3. Antihistamines

  4. Hydrocortisone Cream or ointment

Limiting Irritations

Irritations and some minor cases of allergic reactions can be limited by doing the following:

  1. By keeping the adhesive contact away from the skin and using a small amount of adhesive

  2. Make sure the room is well ventilated

  3. Regular fanning and nano-misting throughout the procedure- The nano mister helps dry (cure) the adhesive. The sooner the adhesive is cured the better as less fumes are given off.

  4. Closed Eyes: By keeping a tight close on the eyes, fumes are less likely to get into the eyes and cause irritation. Excessive talking and caffeine use can cause fluttery eyes and lead to irritation.

MediLexicon International. (2018, January 15). Eyelash extension allergic reactions: What to know. Medical News Today.

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