Blepharitis and lash extensions?

Posted , 26 users are following.

I have been wearing lash extensions for four years. About six months ago, my eyes started bothering me. I didn't think too much of it until I saw my opthamologist yesterday. She said the pours in my eyelids were clogged and she diagnosed me with blepharitis. I asked if I should have my lashes removed and she said yes, it's a start. Has anyone else developed blepharitis after wearing lash extensions? The woman who does my lashes is extremely professional and is considered the best in my area. I'm hoping I can remove my lashes for a month or so, develop a regime that clears things up, then go back to having lashes. I appreciate any feedback.

2 likes, 83 replies

83 Replies

  • Posted

    That is the exact same thing that happened to me.  I've been continuously wearing lash extensions for 5 years.  This past year, I got blepharitis.  I took my lashes off.  However, I tried a few times to get them put back on but my bleph flares up really bad.  I can't even wear eye makeup now without it flaring up.  I'm so bummed

    • Posted

      I'm nervous the same thing will happen to me. I keep reading it's a chronic condition. Can't figure out where/why it started. I'll let you know how it goes. Curious if anyone else has had a similar experience.


  • Posted

    I don’t know about eyelash extensions but as a Blepharitis sufferer I know that you need to keep your eyelids completely clean and shouldn’t even wear makeup or contacts until you get it under control. I know it’s hard enough without feeling like you don’t look your best. 
    • Posted

      How long did yours take to get under control? I'm sure there's no hard and fast rule... Just curious if it's days/weeks/months? Thank you!


    • Posted

      After 7 months I’m still under a doctor's care. Started taking Xiidra which has been out for about two years. Also doxycycline to stop eyelid swelling . My biggest problem was constant tearing and that has stopped. It is a long process and I think everyone’s situation is different. I think my ocular rosacea started my problems. 

  • Posted

    well i have one question, why place yourself in harms way. i am almost certain no one wold notice a difference if you were just yourself... seems logical to me. why suffer.
  • Posted

    Dear Susan,

    I think my Bleph was caused by using old mascara. I now buy a new one each month. I was able to kill it by using Wet Ones from the US. I have said before the ones in the Red Box but the formula seems to have changed so I looked and the yellow box is the one that is similar to the original that  used.

    Mine was a itching on the eyelashes.  It seems to be a Staph infection. The wipes killed it for me but it did take over 3 months. The last two months it was only 2 times a day. 

    Jill, who has posted on this site, used the wipes and her lashes grew back. She had Bleph for 20 years. 

    Someone who does lashes can transfer Bleph from one person to another if not careful.

    I did use mascara and makeup but it involved throw away wands and new makeup. If you want that info let me know.

    Hope this helps,


    • Posted

      My understanding is that bleph is a condition and not infectious. Mine started after a makeover and took 18 months to control. Who told you it can be transferred?

      Susan,  regarding wearing lash extensions causing bleph, I imagine the glue has blocked the pores over time impairing their function? I hope you get your condition under control in time. Bleph is different for each one of us. I rarely wear eye makeup now and I miss it especially in the winter. Hygiene is the key and I have a rigid regime which I cannot deviate from without bleph quickly kicking off. Heat treatment twice a day, tea tree eye wipes (wet ones worked for a while then irritated my eyes) and eye drops for dry eyes. I also take fexofenedine once a day. Recently I think my eyes swelled and we’re unc because we had some walls skimmed in our house, were decorating and I think my eyes reacted to the dust. Windy weather can affect my eyes too. I can also be sensitive to light. All the reactions are indiscriminate so I’ve just learned to live with it.

      as for not looking my best....perspective changes. I’m grateful to be walking around with normal looking eyes and feel good when I am. When I see women and girls wearing very heavy make up and false eyelashes/extensions I can only imagine the difficulty their eyes are having trying to fight the foreigners bodies and bacteria. Good luck Susan with your bleph. I hope your condition eases very soon.

    • Posted

      Thank you for the tips. Question: I have fairly expensive eye shadows. Is there a way of cleaning them (they're powder). I'll also use disposable eyelash wands with mascara. All great ideas and greatly appreciated. If I must delete everything I have now, I'll do it. Thank you and I'd appreciate learning more about how you used makeup.

    • Posted

      Where do you find disposable eyelash wands?  I haven’t seen any. I live in New Jersey. 
    • Posted

      I spray isopropyl alcohol on my eyelash curler, my liner pencil, my powder eyeshadow when I have a flare-ups. It seems to help me get over an episode without tossing my make-up.
    • Posted

      Dear Pamela,

      I know it can be transferred as I did it. I had it in one eye and then put it in the other. I then used 1 wash cloth for each eye to clean them. I read, later, on the internet a Dr. said to do that too. 

      I killed my Bepharitis but it did take over 3 months. I found it to be a Staph infection. My husband had the little white dots on his eyes and he thought it was an allergy. He was told it was Bleph and he used the wipes and killed his too.

      Tea Tree Oil kills Staph too.

      I never use any makeup at the store counters on my eyes. I put it on my hand or arm to see the color. Some people could have Blepharitis and not even know it and try makeup on.

      I am sorry I missed this question. 



    • Posted

      Hi Lynda,

      It seems the Wet Ones are not working for me now.  I use the ones in the red box.  I noticed your comment about the yellow box and will certainly try them. I was so happy to have this under control and am dismayed for it to be back again.



    • Posted

      Hi Sandra,

      You probably got it again. Did you kill it the first time and stopped using the wipes for several years?

      If I touch my eyes and realize I had something on my hands like Dog hands I use a wipe just in case. 

      You can get it from trying on makeup at stores or eyelash extensions. People will wear gloves but may not change in between customers. 

      Dry eyes can't flush out things as when we were young. Even some young ones get dry eyes too.

      The yellow Wet Ones are the same as the Red except for the fragrance. 

      If you are starting over it might be 3 months again. 

      Please let me know what is happening.

      Hope this helps,



    • Posted

      Hi Lynda,

      Think this started up again when I got a sinus infection.  Will keep using the Wipes and hopefully get it under control again.



    • Posted

      My blepharitis comes back from time to time... I use the Wet Wipes only once daily before bedtime unless I can see it is flaring up. Then I will use the wipes 3-4 times a day along with extra liquid tears and nighttime dry eye ointment. I will clean my lids extra carefully and keep doing all this until the condition calms down again. When it calms down, I use eye makeup again. I do not use lash extensions because you can't remove them every nighttime to clean the lash area as well as without them. Good luck. Flare ups are definitely frustrating.

    • Posted

      Dear Sandra,

      Thought of this late at night. Did you go back to using mascara the old way? I buy new mascara every 4-6 weeks and never double dip even though my Bleph is gone. I use 1 throw away wand and use it on both eyes but never put it back into the mascara. I feel that is where I got the Bleph as used old mascara. 

      You need to start over but never miss a day. People often feel better then quit for a few days or a week and it comes back. Rather like an antibiotic if you stop too soon. 

      Remember to use 3 or 4 times a day for a little bit then when feeling better just do 2 times a day. 

      When I quit I had a spot that itched so I went at it for another couple of days then a week or so later it happened again so went at it for a few days again. Then it was gone. 

      Hope this helps you,


    • Posted


      I am from Belgium and I have MGD almost for 4 years. You once said buy Wet ones but I don't think it worked for me.Things I tried:every eye drop-hot flanel-Blephasteam and goggles-all sorts off eye lotions-tea tree oil-coconut-manuka honey etc...can you please give me some advice?

      I am starting to blink often and I have even more problems when I watch tv-sit in the car or train. My life is getting very difficult!

      Thanks for any info!!!

    • Posted

      Hi Lynda,

      No I have not used mascara or any eye make for a long time for fear of it returning. I did stop using the Wet Ones every day.  I had a bad sinus infection and that is when this got started again...itchy, teary, red.  Seems worse than before now that I know what it was like to be free of it. Have started back with the Wet Ones 4 X a day.  Hopefully it will be brought under control soon. Thank you for responding.  I will keep you posted. Never again will I take for granted that it will not come back with a vengeance.



    • Posted

      You should try not to wear any make-up.It is difficult but try it. However it does not heal all of your eye-problems...only a little bit.

      Also sunglasses are very helpful.

      I had blepharitis (MGD) for 4 years and tried almost everything.

      The only thing that helped a bit is Blephaclean and gel-lots of water-omega 3 fish oil and punctual plugs...

      But I still have a lot of problems every day.

      Computer-tv and airco is a NO for me...

      Coffee and alcohol and sun makes it worse...


    • Posted

      Hi thank you for your reply and suggestions could you tell me what gel you are talking about? Your quote is below as you can see, are punctual plugs???

      gel-lots of water and

      punctual plugs

    • Posted

      Dear Sandra,

      The 4 times a day use is just for a little over a week. I went down to 3 times a day for a little bit then 2 times until all was good. It bothered me in one spot so went after that area for a couple of more days and then one more time and then it was gone. I use the wipes if I touch my eyes and know they were dirty like after petting the dog. 

      Let me know how you are doing in a couple of weeks. Some have killed it by doing it 2 times a day. I imagine it may have taken a little longer.

      Hope you are successful again.


    • Posted

      Dear Sandramgd,

      When I looked up MGD it seems to be connected to the eyelash area. I found my Blepharitis was a Staph infection and the wipes kill that. It will not hurt to give it a try if you are not allergic to detergents or fabric softeners or aloe or lanolin. 

      Not all wipes are the same. The ones I used are from the US. They come in a red or yellow box and have .3% Benzethonium Chloride in them. The UK wipes have Benzalkonium Chloride in them and people say they are harsher. 

      You can order these online if you cannot find them in your local area. The last ingredient is: Barbadensis Leaf Juice. It is not an overnight cure. It took over 3 months but the last couple was just 2 times a day.

      I am wondering if Blepharitis comes back because people have these glands that are plugged and like Sandra a Sinus problem can plug them. 

      I hope this information will help you, 


    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply. I already bought lots of wet wipes and they help a little bit.

      I have punctual plugs and that is even better BUT no a cure also.

      As I said before:I lost my job because of this-can not read-watch tv-use computer and can not sit in a train-bus-airplane because of the airco and heating.

      My life really sucks at this moment and I do not understand that docters can't help me...

      At the moment I am trying Manuka honey, hope this helps me...

      I am thinking that it could be a yeast problem...or a vain problem.My biggest love was make-up and I can't use that anymore, it is frustrating.

      But I am hoping for a cure and a lot of people are more sick than I so I should be grateful for that...thanks for the info!


    • Posted

      I use Blephaclean and Blephagel...

      Puntual plugs...your eyes are less dry if you take this...

      Drink a lot of water and take omega 3 fish oil.

      Sunglasses-stay out of the sun-use of heat packs-Blephasteam-eyedrops-and what helped me the most:STEAM your face every day or a few times a week for 10 minutes and the -toothpaste meibomian solution inflammation stuff-comes out of it...

      But here is the problem:the next day I have to do this all again.

      The inflammation NEVER goes away...


    • Posted

      Dear sandramgd,

      Honjon, on this site, could not watch TV very long and had similar problems. He did use the UK wipes. You might want to read his thoughts on his problems. 

      The problem is deep in the lashes and that is why it takes a long time to kill it. Ask your Dr if he thinks it is a Staph infection in the glands and see if he can test for it. Did you rub into the lashes as you went across? 

      There are Doctors, online, who mentioned using antibiotics on the eyelashes. 

      I talked to a Dr and mentioned how Doxycycline in a liquid form is used in Dental applications. They mentioned that it had a long lasting effect on Staph. They didn't know what that meant. I saw it as a possible use on the lashes for Blepharitis. He told me if I got it again he would write me the prescription for it. I would be willing to try it I am sure if it got me again. 

      I talked to one doctor and asked why put the antibiotics in the eye when the problem was on the lashes and he said some gets on them. 

      If you have glands that are plugged or infected you have going to have to rub whatever you use into that area. 

      Don't forget to try a drop of Tea Tree Oil and a drop of baby shampoo to clean your lashes. Tea Tree Oil kills Staph too. 

      Not sure if this info will help but hope so.


    • Posted

      Thanks for all this info.I went to several docters and they just said to me:

      it is probably MGD because I have a very thick lash line,always inflammation...

      I tried EVERYTHING mentioned on this forum and nothing really helped 100%.

      Doxycycline was very good BUT then I could not sit in the sun because it causes burning.

      Lots of side effects that were terrible. As I said before when I steam my face a lot

      debris is coming out but then the day after the inflammation is back again and also the pain etc...

      I have to mention something:my dog has a skin condition (demodex mites) and I have to wash him a lot with special medicine and shampoo (he has had this condition for 2 years already) and he is not getting well either...could this be related?

      But my dermatologist said I do not have mites...(she did not check for them either...)

      Could it be a skin-acne problem?

      Or a vain problem?

      Because if I squeeze my eyelid (after steaming), toothpaste comes out of it...

      Thanks for the reply and please if you have any advice...let us know...

      The vet-doctor said humans (demodex) can not get this from there dog...

      I am trying to find what I can do to cure MGD-blepharitis.

      Almost all docters don't care about blepharitis-mgd,they just send you home with stupid things to try...that is my opinion.

      I use tea tree oil and bbshampoo also...

    • Posted

      Hi Lynda,

      My eyes are getting better, but I am still using the wipes 4 X Day.  The itching has stopped but they are still teary.  I will cut back to 3 X  Day and see if they keep improving. 

      I do have question about Tea Tree Oil. Several people have mentioned mixing it with baby shampoo and washing the lashes. I have not tried this because Tea Tree Oil seems so harsh.  Does it burn?

      I have tried honey and it burns, but did not seem to help.  Seems the only cure for me has been the wipes. I regret I did not recognize what was happening when I got the severe sinusitis and let the Bleph get a head start.

      Thank you for your advice.


    • Posted

      I think sinuses-mgd-blepharitis go together...probably the hair follicles in the nose and eyelashes have the same demodex or other bacteria...

      What do you think?

      You can use a Rhino horn-nose wash...


    • Posted

      Dear Sandra,

      I would use the Tea Tree Oil drop and shampoo as anything to speed the recovery up. You can mix that with a little water to wash your lashes and eye area. 

      There is a person who posted about using 50% Tea Tree Oil and 50% olive oil for the Demodex problem. I saw the ratio as good to know. His name was Tintin. If you need it I will look it up.

      I have not used it but would if this came back. I have heard from several people who use the wipes and the Tea Tree Oil to wash their face. 

      Keep up the good schedule and never miss a day. Let me know how you are doing. I am sorry this has happened a second time for you. This may explain why so many people have it come back if it is in the glands. I had mine for only 6 months so maybe not as severe but boy, did it itch.

      Are those glands connected to the lashes. It looked that way in the picture I saw. What did the doctor tell you?

      Hope you feel better soon.


    • Posted

      Dear Sandramgd,

      I was talking about putting the liquid Doxycycline on my lashes if I got it again. It has a long lasting effect on Staph. I would be willing to try it. 

      You can try the wipes on the dog's eyelashes too. I know they work on Demodex and kill some of them off. I use them on my dog when she has goop in her eyes. It worked. The wipes clean the lashes too of the deposits made by the mites. Is your dog old? 

      Nothing is going to be a quick cure. It takes months to get it under control or kill it. 

      If I had this I would be rubbing the lash line several times with different sections of the wipes. I did mine twice on each lash each time I used the wipes. I tore the wipes into 8 sections.

      Hope this helps,



    • Posted

      hi, I totally agree, normal doctors don't care (very often) some do, but are like gems, hard to find. Also because they are linked with the pharma, and they need to "sell their product". So natural remedies doesen't benefit them.

      But personally find the natural stuff much more suitable, as I have very sensitive skin. And considering we are talking about our eye area.

      I'm now making my own organic soap, I use goat milk organic soap base, nayem oil, lemongrass oil, tea trea oil, castor oil and oatmeal extract. (This type of soap would be really good even for your dog!) I make it into a bar, and when I have a steamy shower in the evening/morning, I first allow the watter soak up my whole face for few minutes, then I soap up my hands and gently go over my face and eye are (lashes), and then let the water run down my face again. (I actually use it for my whole body, face and hair too). Look up online thete is lot's of different recipes.

    • Posted

      Thanks for the info-I will check it up and try it!
    • Posted

      Hi again!

      I have some question:

      How long after Wet ones did you get better? 

      About the tea tree oil and olive you mean like put 10 drops tea tree oil and 10 drops olive oil together and rub that on the eyelashes? Because I once tried pure tea tree oil (1 drop) in a lot of water and it burned a lot...will not do that anymore...

      So please tell me how you would apply it and thanks for all the information...

      I do have some more info about get worse not alone from eye make-up but also from all face make-up...

      Also when I put parfum on me or hairspray then I am totally getting nuts, why?

      Probably the particles gets in to the eyelashes. If I am typing mistakes forgive me because I am from Belgium.

      As I said before heating and airco-tv-computers and strong daylight are my enemies...

      We need to gather information so we can beat this illness.

    • Posted

      never put essential oils directly into your eyes!!!
    • Posted

      ..also. I had the infection on my eyes, but I beat it with the method I used!

      You can get a soap bar from ebay, that has teatree and nayem oil!! Might sting slightly in the beginning, but keep on going for a week and you will see difference. Now I do only every 3 days. Plus because soap has castor oil, it has helpped my own lashes to grow naturally. No need for extensions anymore.

      Going actual regular Sauna once a week too helps to maintain, body and face skin.

    • Posted

      plus whiles doing that, chuck all your old make up away as you will just re infect your eyes. By new mascara every tghree months, chuck the old ones away.
    • Posted

      I do have this condition already over 4 years and went to several docters and tried almost EVERYTHING...but I will try what you are saying.


    • Posted

      Dear Sandramgd,

      Sorry took so long to get back but my first grandchild got married. Busy weekend. 

      To answer your question about time. It took over 3 months to kill it with using the Wet Ones, antibacterial hand wipes. I started using it 4 times a day for just over a week then went down to 3 times a day then the last couple of months 2 times a day.

      Your infection could be worse as in those glands. As for the Tea Tree Oil and Olive Oil I was interested because of the Ratio in what was safe to use for the eyes. 

      He was tintin25 and he  posted to oliver8. He said "We diluted 50/50 with basic olive oil for the once a week treatment and 10/90 for the twice-daily treatment." 

      This was for the Demodex problem (Mites) but the ratio is good to know what is safe to use.

      I used the wipes on someone with Demodex and they worked too in cutting the amount down.

      I have not looked up info on the mgd problem. I just looked where it was located. From your info and Sandra telling about her Sinus and getting Blepharitis again it sounds like those glands bothering you with hairspray it seems to all be connected.

      I can only tell you what I used for my situation and the wipes did kill it. You can only experiment and see if they do it for you. I did not miss a day even after they felt so much better after a few weeks of using the wipes. 

      Someone mentioned, on this site, that a Dr. said the infection was deep in the lashes. That was what I felt when trying to kill it.

      Dena, on this site, mentioned using Tea Tree Oil and baby shampoo to clean the lash area. Tea Tree Oil does kill Staph too from what I read. You can dilute it down to start with too. 

      The one thing you need to do is not to re-infect your one eye if it is getting a little better than the other eye. Make sure and use 2 wash cloths. One for each eye. That way no cross contamination.

      You may have to order the Wet Ones online to get the Benzethonium Chloride .3%

      I bought all new makeup and used throw away mascara wands and makeup applicators. 

      If you can't wear regular makeup you can put eye shadow in the crease of your eye. That way not close to the eye lash line.

      You have to be really determined to work at this. Read other posts and research your problem online too. People have used a variety of things that help. Some are meds from the doctor too that eases the symptoms. Some can be bought over the counter too.

      I hope this helps and let me know if I can answer anything else.



    • Posted


      I went back to the Dr today for thyroid but I did ask him about your problem. He is interested in the posts.

      He said it would take a lot longer to get better than 3 months. Just don't give up and keep trying for 6 months and see how you feel.

      Hope this info is encouraging.


    • Posted


      I appreciate you thinking of me. Some days I think my eyes are over it then the next day I know it is still a battle. Will keep on trying. This was encouraging.


    • Posted

      If I put a Q-tip on my eyelid it gets even worse (my eyes get very dry),the wet wipes are a lot safer for the eyes. Will try the wipes for 12 weeks and then I am going to try the tea tree mixture with olive oil and also the Manuka honey.

      After the use of the wipes I think people should put a moisturizer on their skin around the eye area. ( without fragrance and conservation )

      You are helping a lot of people on this forum with your tips so thank you again.

      And congrats with the wedding!

      I am 47,I only have 1 son but he is not married yet...

      As I said before already,I have meibomian gland dysfunction-blepharitis for almost 4 years and I have not been able to cure it yet.

      It only gets a little bit better with no make-up,drinking water a lot,avoid coffee and alcohol,go outside a lot,ask for punctal eye plugs,no heating or sitting in the sun,avoid also airco and shopping centers. ( to much airo-heating and strong lights)

      And buy a good pair of sunglasses.

      I also take flax seed oil and omega 3 fish oil.

      Be careful with eyedrops because a lot of them make the eyes more dry!!!

      And parfum and hairspray is a no for me...

    • Posted

      Hi Lynda,

      I have added Tea Tree Oil and baby shampoo to my schedule. I wash my face first thing in the morning, then use the Wipes. I also use the Tea Tre Oil and shampoo at night and continue to use the wipes during the day. A couple times a week I am shampooing my hair with it and it seems to be helping. The itching is not as bad and the redness is better, but I still have a lot of tearing. My ears were itching a lot especially at night and the shampoo has helped that too. Will keep reading and trying to find what works for me. Thank goodness for this site.


    • Posted

      Do you mix the tea tree oil with shampoo?

      How many drops of tea tree oil in a little cup?

      Do you use this every day or more then once a day?

      Some people use Manuka honey on eyelid...did you ever use this before?

      I think you should only put it on eyelid and lashes and do not rinse to much around your eyes because then it gets all dry and you get more problems.

      Also use a moisturizer around the eyes,that is very important!

      Greetings and good luck!


    • Posted

      Hi Sandra,

      I bought a travel size plastic bottle (4 oz) and filled with baby shampoo then added several drops of Tea Tree Oil. I wash my face with it in the morning and shampoo my hair and wash my face with it at night. My ears have been itching and and I wash them too. Just started this weekend but it seems to be helping. I am still using the wipes as well.

      I tried honey, then Manuka honey but it did not seem to help me. Others have had success with it.

      I had mine under control, then got a bad case if sinusitis. Had to take antibioitcs and a shot of steroids. That is when mine flared up again.

      I just keep coming to this site and reading others attempts and try what works.

      Good Luck!


    • Posted

      Dear Sandra,

      When I first had Blepharitis a doctor mentioned using a wet wash cloth that had been put in the micro wave to heat up and put on eyes to get things going he said.

      This is what I would use on my glands as can put the wash cloths in the sink with soap and water and bleach to kill the Staph before putting in the wash. The heat may push some of the gunk in the clogged glands out. Then using the wipes rubbing good to get it into the lashes may help.

      This is just what I would do if I had it.

      If you use something that cannot be cleaned well enough to kill Staph you could be reinfecting yourself each time you use it.

      Not sure if you can try this or even want to.

      Hope it helps,


    • Posted

      Dear Sandra,

      I was thinking the other night how when we went to the beach when young the salt water would clear our skin up. It seemed to pull everything out.

      I had an itch on my eyelashes so I thought I could experiment. I used sea salt and put it in water and then mixed it up and washed my eyelids with it. I rubbed it in. l left it on for about 5-6 minutes then got in the shower.

      No ill effects but it did seem strong so I thought I would let you know. Perhaps, it could pull some gunk out or have some other effect on it. Can't hurt to try.

      Something else I came upon was in researching Manuka honey was that on Amazon.UK they sell a nasal spray made from that honey. If used at the same time as say when a Dr. gave you an antibiotic for your sinus it could help. Wouldn't be something to use all the time, though.

      Perhaps, you could research this info.

      Hope this helps,


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