Blepharitis the enemy of eyelash extensions!!More and more our stylists are telling us that they are seeing new clients with Blepharitis, so we thought we best get you some information about it and what you can do to prevent it!
What is Blepharitis? Well it is basically an infected eyelash follicle that has become blocked. The sebum (oil), dead skin cells and bacteria on the eyelid block up the natural lash follicle. Over time the mouth of the follicle (at skin level) becomes inflamed and red. The natural lashes become thinner and sparse causing big gaps between the natural lashes.
What does it look like? The easiest way to recognise Blepharitis is that the the eyelash follicles become itchy (between the extensions/natural lashes). Also there are tiny small white flakes between the lashes that look a bit like dandruff. Pull the eyelid and stretch the skin out to the side (like your drawing eyeliner on it) and have a good look at the follicles. The skin around the lashes will look raised, bumpy and white.
Below is a picture that gives you an idea of what Blepharitis actually looks like:
What is the difference between Bleph and an Allergy? Allergies present themself within 48 hours after the application of eyelash extensions. The client will either be allergic to the Acrylic or the Formaldehyde that ALL eyelash extension glues contain. Bleph can be an existing condition or a new one, that gets worse with eyelash extensions - especially if the personal hygiene is not maintained.
How do I prevent it? MANY clients go out and get a full set of lashes and pay a lot of money for them. They figure "If I don't touch them, wet them, or wash them, they will last longer"....Wrong!!!...Its quite the opposite. Your clients should be washing their eyes with a soapy based cleanser at least 2-3 times a week. Baby Shampoo (no more tears) is a cheap alternative or else you could suggest my favorite - Neutrogena Fresh Foaming cleanser. I tell ALL my clients to wash their eyes in the shower with their fingertips to prevent getting Blepharitis at least TWICE a week. Its primarily a HYGIENE requirement, not just a way to remove makeup.
Do eyelash extensions cause Bleph? Only if they don't wash their eyes or the condition was pre existing Before they had their first full-set. Many people have Bleph for years and don't even know they have it. Putting Eyelash extensions on a client with an existing Blepharitis infection, will only enhance the condition and make it worse.