Why Do Eyelashes Fall? Do They Grow Back?
Back in the day, a fallen eyelash would be the cause of excitement for a group of friends to gather around and nudge the other to make a wish. However, growing up, randomly fallen lashes became causes of serious concern. For such a tiny part of the human body, eyelashes can have a pretty massive impact on our self-confidence.
Finding a fallen eyelash once in a blue moon is no cause of concern but what happens when, over time, you start losing more? The fear of whether you will lose all your eyelashes by the age of 20 starts to set in. Why are your lashes falling out? Will they ever grow back? The hair on your body usually grows back in a month. Does this mean that after 4-weeks, you will have a brand-new set of thick, long lashes?
Why Eyelashes Fall Out
Accelerated lash loss can reveal important information about our health. While eyelashes may be the windows of the soul, they can sometimes point to more severe conditions such as thyroid, autoimmune, inflammatory, and even oncological. Here are some common reasons why lashes fall:
1. Bad Beauty Habits
While your makeup routine is probably not hurting your lashes, forgetting to take it off before bed is what can cause them to shed. Makeup wipes are terrible to remove eye makeup. Instead, turn to mild milk cleansers that will gently remove all traces of makeup while combating lash loss.
According to a study by a woman for the American Academy of Ophthalmology, massaging your eyelashes every night with a mild cleanser helps keep the surface clean and bacteria-free. Maintaining the health of your eyelash follicle is important for thick, long, and full lashes.
Despite what your favorite celebrities or makeup bloggers say, stay away from hot eyelash curlers. This also includes the kind that you warm up with your hairdryer. As a rule of thumb, never use anything hot near your eye as it is the most sensitive area of your body. Hot substances can damage the lash follicle and cause potential burns (yikes!).
Did you know that stress causes hair loss? This does not only apply to the hair on your scalp, but it can also apply to your lashes or eyebrows. The physical stress of rubbing or pulling your eyelashes out of nervousness or anxiety can cause the eyelashes to fall out.
Moreover, emotional stress or psychological distress can also cause eyelashes to fall out in volumes.
Thyroid is a gland in the neck that is responsible for controlling the body's hormones. However, sometimes, thyroid levels can go a little cray cray. Conditions like hyperthyroidism (an overload of hormones) and hypothyroidism (very few hormones) list lash loss as one of their symptoms. Other symptoms include fluctuations in weight, heart rate, and blood pressure. If you feel any of these symptoms, alongside your lashes falling, make an appointment with your healthcare provider,
4. Irritation From Falsies
Irritation from false eyelashes or lash extensions is not too common. However, if you apply loads of glue on your sensitive lash line over and over again, you might notice your eyelashes start to fall. To avoid this, ensure that you are cleaning your lashes properly each night and getting rid of the excess glue that causes irritation.
Alopecia is an autoimmune condition that can present itself in multiple ways. This condition hinders hair growth on the body, head, or face. Research argues that this disease causes the body to turn against its own hair follicles, leading to full, partial, or episodic hair loss.
Unfortunately, there is no long-term cure for alopecia. However, doctors are now able to prescribe sound medications and treatments to help hair regrow faster.
Some chronic inflammatory diseases, like alopecia, can turn the body on itself. Conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, target healthy cells and tissues present in the joints, organs, and blood vessels.
Some internal diseases are hard to catch because they do not have external symptoms. However, this is why paying attention to small changes in the body, like hair or eyelash loss, can help detect an underlying condition before it worsens.
Trichotillomania is a disorder where people face the irresistible urge to pull out their hair. This can be from the scalp, eyebrows, and even the lashes.
While there are many triggers for trichotillomania, stress and anxiety are underlying factors.
The Real Question: Do Eyelashes Grow Back?
Health professionals explain that eyelash growth depends on each individual case. If the lid skin is not overly damaged or sensitive, there are chances for the eyelashes to grow back over time. However, if it faces too much trauma in terms of rubbing or irritation, your eyelash rim can be permanently scarred.
If the hair follicles on your lashes are compromised by scars or burns, the lashes will not be able to grow back, despite the number of serums and organic hair growth remedies you may be using.
How to Grow Back Eyelashes?
The best thing you can do is get yourself checked for underlying conditions or visit a dermatologist. Treatment or topical steroids might be necessary to heal ailments. However, if you are sure that you do not have any illnesses but still seem to be losing lashes left, right, and center, here's what you can do:
1. Cleanliness is Your New Best Friend
We get it- all you want to do is crash when you come home late from a party or from work. Removing your mascara and eyeliner seems the least of your worries. Sleep > everything, right?
Wrong. Leaving mascara on overnight irritates the eyelid, causing eye loss. If you are wearing eyelash extensions, make sure to gently clean them to get rid of any gunk or buildup.
2. Say Goodbye to Physical Stress
Stress sucks. It can cause you to itch yourself till you bleed or rub your eyes till all your lashes fall out. Rubbing your lashes with your palms, fingertips, and makeup remover should be avoided at all costs.
If cotton rounds do not suit you, try a gentle milk cleanser to get rid of all traces of mascara and eyeliner. Moreover, be gentle with the eyelash curler! We promise, even if you don't use a death-grip, your lashes will curl just fine.
3. Invest in a Lash Serum
Look for lash serums that have nourishing ingredients, such as castor oil, honey, and vitamin E. These ingredients will not only promote the growth of fine hair, they will also prevent and protect future hair loss.
Fun fact: You can make your own eyelash serum at home! All you need is some castor oil, vitamin E capsules, and some gold ol' vaseline. Dig up an old mascara tube, clean it, and put the mixture inside. Simply dab on some of the mixture each night before bed. Notice a fuller, thicker, and longer growth within two weeks!
4. Switch Up Your Eye Makeup
Understanding the underlying cause of lash fall can be complicated. If you have exhausted all options and still continue to find stray lashes here and there, it's time to change your makeup.
Look for hypoallergenic eye makeup that comes with soft, feathery flutters that don't overly irritate your eyelid. Make sure to throw away your mascara if you have used it during an eye infection. Needless to say, NEVER share your eye makeup with anyone (best friend included).
So, here you have it, folks. The good news is that proper care, refraining from rubbing, ditching irritating products, and being more careful can ensure eyelash growth. However, if you scar your eyelid or damage it through heat, you might have a harder time growing back those long, heavy lashes.