With so much focus on good hygiene around coronavirus, the message is even more prevalent when it comes to our eyes, which are sensitive to both touch and beauty products.

In addition to key guidelines such as ensuring your hands have been sanitised before touching your face, here are a few basic tips for eye makeup safety:

  1. Eye infections such as conjunctivitis can be caused by bacteria so it’s important not to share eye makeup. Products such as mascara and eyeliner have a short shelf-life. Note when you opened your products and then allow three months for mascara and up to four months for liquid eyeliner. Pencil products such as brow liner and eyeliner can last up to a year. Keep an eye on your eye-shadow, it lasts 3-6 months.
  2. The safe use of eye makeup applies to both contact lenses and glasses. Make sure you put your contact lenses in before applying makeup to prevent the lenses getting dirty. The process is reversed when you’re removing your makeup so as not to get makeup on your lenses. If you wear glasses, remove them when applying makeup and use a small mirror if you need clearer vision.
  3. Don’t sleep on it! As with all types of makeup, eye makeup should be removed before going to bed. Cleansing oil is an option to remove waterproof eye makeup but the key is to be gentle with your eyes to avoid damage to the cornea. If your skin is sensitive, it’s wise to invest in a makeup remover specifically for sensitive skin, which you can simply apply with a cotton pad.
  4. Storage is an important factor when it comes to eye makeup safety. Avoid keeping products in damp places like the bathroom. Leaving them in the glovebox is a no-no – as a rule they should be kept out of direct sunlight. If they’re tucked away in your handbag, remember to wash your hands with soap and water before handling them.
  5. To minimise touching your eyes, take advantage of the myriad of eyeshadow brushes on the market, from natural to synthetic. The choice is yours but you should clean them at least once a week. A fuss-free way to clean brushes is with liquid brush cleaners.
  6. Finally, if you do get an eye infection stop wearing eye makeup and use glasses instead of contact lenses until it clears up. But as with any eye issue, it’s best to consult a professional.


While everyone is taking precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, it’s important to check out any concerns you have about your eyes. At George Street Eye Centre, we have stringent measures in place and your safety is paramount.  Send us a message via our online form or call us on (02) 9230 0010 to book an appointment with one of our eye specialists. Telehealth is also available. We’re located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD, at Level 11, 501 George Street, Sydney.

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