You’ve been scratching. Incessantly. It’s been weeks since you’ve gotten your fake eyelash extensions. Maybe it’s the glue that’s giving you an allergic reaction. Maybe.
So, why are your eyelashes so itchy?
You could have lice on your eyelashes. A number of healthcare providers are telling fake eyelash wearers that the nits may be confused with lash debris.
“Over time, dirt and debris can accumulate,” said Dr. Gary Keoleian from the Michigan Eye Institute told ABC 12. “When it accumulates, that’s when you start getting into irritation. [Lice] can infest, bacteria can take root, then you have irritation and you’re picking at your lashes and it’s a whole cycle.”
Imagine, pesky little creepy crawlies burrowing and laying nits on your lashes.
But why? How does someone get eyelash lice?
According to Dr. Sanusi Umar from Dr. Umar Hair and Skin Clinic in Manhattan Beach, Calif., the hair texture has something to do with it. Turns out, according to Dr. Umar, eyelash hair has the same texture as pubic hair, which is why pubic or crab lice love eyelashes, too.
Women wear fake eyelashes in hopes of fuller and longer eyelashes. But improper eyelash hygiene leads to bacteria buildup and eventually lice. Itching is just one symptom. Other symptoms include lid irritation, scabbing, redness, tearing and swelling.
What are my alternatives?
Some experts are saying that taking an occasional break from eyelash extensions can be beneficial for eye health. But according to Dr. Keoleian the irritation leads to picking at the eyelashes. Dr. Umar also added that the constant pulling of the eyelashes can cause traction alopecia in the long term. The best alternative is to go natural.
May be consider an eyelash transplant. At least with an eyelash transplant you’re growing your own eyelashes and not a home for lice.