Red eyes after getting lash extensions?

July 12, 2023 4 min read

Red eyes after getting lash extensions?

Lash extensions are supposed to make you look gorgeous. They’re not supposed to make you look like an extra from The Walking Dead. So, if you’ve just returned from the salon and looked into the mirror only to find two red eyes staring back at you, you’re right to be a little freaked out.

That’s why we’ve put together this blog which tells you everything you need to know about the relationship between red eyes and lash extensions plus, most importantly, how to treat them.

Are you wondering:

  • Why are my eyes red?
  • What was wrong with my lash extensions?
  • Are there any other possible causes?
  • How can I treat red eyes?
  • Is there a better way to get longer lashes?

If so, then read on!

Why are my eyes red?

Your eye has three main sections. In the very middle is the pupil (the little black dot), around the pupil is the iris (the colored bit) and finally, surrounding the iris is what is known as the sclera (the white bit). Red eye occurs when small blood vessels in this white section become enlarged, usually due to eye irritation or an allergic reaction.

Pupil. Iris. Sclera

You may also find your eyes start to water, which is your body’s way of trying to flush out whatever is causing the irritation or allergic reaction.

Although it’s probably not the look you were after, red eye is normally nothing to worry about and will eventually clear up on its own. But there are also some other causes that you’ll want to watch out for.

What was wrong with my lash extensions?

While lash extensions do look good, they can also harm your eyes if not applied correctly.

1) The Glue

If you notice your eyes becoming red after having a lash extension, the first place to look is the glue. Lash extensions require fairly strong glues to cement the extensions onto your natural lashes and these aren’t always kind to your eyes or skin.

It is therefore possible that the irritation you are seeing in the form of redness is an allergic reaction to some of the ingredients contained in the glue. We always recommend that you ask your beautician about these ingredients before having your treatment. Common irritants that are best avoided include formaldehyde (often a cause of conjunctivitis inflammation of the cornea and conjunctiva), lead, and benzoic acid.

2) The Extension

Sometimes, part of the lash extension might splinter during the application process and this loose fibre can then become stuck in your eye, causing irritation to the eye and often making your eyes water.

So, if you want to add extensions to your natural lashes, make sure you go to a trained therapist and don’t try to do them at home.

Are there any other possible causes?

Whilst lash extensions are a common cause of red eye, there are also several other possible explanations.

Conjunctivitis – the name given to an inflammation of the top layer of cells in your eye. Most commonly caused by a virus or bacteria, but can also be brought on by irritation or an allergic reaction.

Blepharitis – often characterised by swollen or itchy eyelids, Blepharitis is an infection that develops when oil glands near the base of the lashes become blocked.

Burst blood vessel – if you notice a specific concentration of redness in a given area of the eye, then you might have burst a blood vessel.

Dry eye – a malfunction in the way your tear film (the watery liquid that protects your eye) functions. Dry eye is considered to be a disease - but don’t worry, it is relatively common and easily treatable – an estimated 16 million people in the USA alone have dry eye.

How can I treat red eyes?

If you do have red eyes, don’t worry. There are plenty of simple remedies that you can try:

Cold Flannel

Take a standard bathroom flannel and dip it in cool water, then hold it against your eyes for a few minutes (you can also try the same technique with lukewarm water, depending on which you prefer).

Regular Cleaning

Boil water (to make sure it is clear of bacteria), then dab a clean cotton wool pad in it, and gently wipe your eyes clean.


There is some research to suggest that foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation. Omega-3 is commonly found in fish, seeds, and nuts, and you can also buy omega-3 tablets in most pharmacies.

See A Specialist

If after a few days your red eyes are still bothering you, you should consider seeing a specialist. If the irritation was brought on by an allergic reaction, they will be able to recommend a course of antihistamine eyedrops which should calm the inflammation.

Lastly, remember to try not to touch or rub your eye whilst it is healing, and avoid wearing contact lenses (which might cause further irritation).

But, of course, they say prevention is always better than cure, so you might also want to consider swapping those lash extensions for some easier alternatives.

Is there a better way to get longer lashes?

Yes! Save the time, money and possible irritation of lash extensions, and treat yourself to a gorgeous set of false lashes instead. Our false lashes can be applied and removed in seconds, giving you instant extra length with none of the fuss. Our revolutionary LinerBond™ application system is free of toxins and latex, and it has even been specially designed for sensitive skin, so you can rest assured that your eyes are in good hands.

Get our award-winning lashes and LinerBond combo for less by taking home a starter kit today.

Try Starter Kit