How To Treat Chemical Burn From Lash Extensions

Reading Time: Three minutes

As lash artists, we all know that feeling of dread when a client texts after their lash extension appointment with complaints like, "My eyes are burning!" or "I think I'm allergic to my extensions." It's one of our worst nightmares, and the last thing we want is to cause harm to our clients.


Unfortunately, chemical burns can happen. In this blog, we will discuss how to treat a chemical burn from lash extensions and, most importantly, how to prevent it in the first place.

Chemical Burn vs. Allergic Reaction

How do you tell the difference between a chemical burn and an allergic reaction?

Chemical burns typically affect the inside of the eye. With a chemical burn, you'll notice that the eyeball appears red and bloodshot.

On the other hand, allergic reactions primarily affect the outside of the eye. You might observe that the eyelids swell up, resulting in discomfort and an itchy sensation.

Symptoms of Chemical Burns in the Eye

Symptoms of a chemical burn from lash extensions may include:

  • Redness and swelling in the eye area
  • Burning or stinging sensation
  • Blurred vision
  • Eye pain or discomfort

What Is the Cause of Chemical Burn From Eyelash Extensions?

The most common culprit of chemical burns is eyelash adhesive. These adhesives contain cyanoacrylate, a strong bonding agent that releases formaldehyde fumes when cured. The fumes can irritate the sensitive tissues of the eyes, and prolonged exposure may cause a burn.

For more information on lash adhesive, read our Professional Lash Glue Guide.

Who Can Get Chemical Burns?

They can happen to anyone if the eyes open accidentally.

There are many reasons why this can happen, such as checking a phone mid-appointment, excessive caffeine consumption causing eye flickering, or being engaged in a conversation. 

It's also possible for a lash technician to cause burns by pressing too hard on the eye patch with isolation tweezers, pushing the lower eyelid down. People with bulbous eyes that don't fully close are at higher risk.

Tips To Help Avoid Chemical Burns

Lash artists can take some preventive measures to minimize the risk of adverse reactions. Here are some things you can do:

  • Clients should avoid caffeine one hour before their appointment to prevent eyelid flickering and promote relaxation. 
  • To keep the top eyelid from moving or inadvertently opening, weigh it down with foam tape.
  • Opt for foam tape instead of under-eye pads, especially for clients with more prominent eyes. The extra thickness of foam tape creates a more secure barrier against lash glue fumes entering the eyes.
  • Make sure that eye pads or tape are not placed too high, as this can cause discomfort and may lead your client to open their eyes inadvertently.
  • Regularly use a lash mirror during treatment to check that the client’s eyes are fully closed.
  • Practice using gentle pressure on the eye pad with isolation tweezers to avoid opening the eye.
  • Before starting, remind clients to turn off their alarms and phones , so they can enjoy a relaxing time without sudden interruptions.

Treating Chemical Burns in the Eye

Sometimes, even when precautions are taken, accidents happen. If your client experiences a chemical burn, here are some steps to follow:

  • Remove the eye pads or tape.
  • Rinse the affected eye immediately with cool water for at least 15 minutes to rinse any remaining glue fumes.
  • Apply a cool compress to alleviate discomfort and reduce swelling.
  • Do not recommend home remedies or even over-the-counter products. We are not doctors!
  • Seek medical advice from a healthcare professional if the symptoms persist or worsen.

If they experience a severe reaction, such as blurred vision, intense pain, or signs of a severe allergic reaction, seek medical advice promptly. Healthcare professionals can provide the appropriate treatments and remedies.

Level Up Your Lash Game With Lashin Out Academy

As lash artists, it's our responsibility to be aware of the potential risks that our clients may face, such as chemical burns. By understanding the causes of these burns, recognizing their symptoms, and knowing how to prevent and treat them, we can provide a safer and more pleasant experience for our clients.

At Lashin Out Academy, we are passionate about empowering lash technicians with the knowledge and skills they need to excel in this growing industry. Our comprehensive curriculum focuses on the artistry of lash extensions but also places a strong emphasis on lash health and safety.

Whether you're dreaming of becoming a lash artist or are already one, we have a program for you. If you are looking for a lash extension course in Calgary, let's chat

Frequently Asked Questions

If someone has a chemical burn, can they get eyelash extensions again?

Yes, they can. But you'll need to make sure they keep their eyes closed to prevent it from happening again.

How long do chemical burns from lash glue take to heal?

It should only take a few days for the burn to heal. However, this may vary depending on the severity of the burn and how well it's taken care of. To promote healing, avoid rubbing or touching the affected area and follow your doctor’s instructions for treatment.