Chemical Burn from Eyeliner- 6 Reasons and Treatments

Eyeliner is always a better choice for a fantastic makeup look. However, this can cause a burning feeling in your eyelids, which can be unpleasant. Sore eyelids can sometimes be caused by the chemical burn from eyeliner.

Chemical burn from eyeliner.

There are many dangerous elements in eyeliner that might damage your delicate eyelids. Kohl, formaldehyde, paraben, lead, and BAK are some of the toxic ingredients in eyeliner. Try not to buy these eyeliners as they may give you chemical burns. If you get chemical burns from eyeliner, go for medication.

Get all of the details by reading the entire article.

Reasons Behind Chemical Burn from Eyeliner

We all love sharp wing eyeliner looks! It’s always better to check ingredients before buying eyeliner.

Toxic ingredients in eyeliner can be harmful to your delicate eyelid skin. There is information about substances that may cause chemical burns to the skin. Check these out for once!


Eyeliner, especially if it is made with kohl, can cause issues as well. Allergen properties on kohl can cause chemical burns on eyelids.


Eyeliner typically contains formaldehyde as a preservative. Skin, eyes, and other senses can be irritated by it. Methylene glycol, formalin, and formic aldehyde are some of the more common names.


What exactly is a paraben? In skincare and hair products, it’s a common preservative, although it can also be found in eyeliner. With this component, items can be kept fresh for longer periods of time.

Propylparaben, methylparaben, isobutylparaben, isopropylparaben, and any chemical ending in “paraben” are some of the more common names.

Paraben tends to clog eyelids. The microscopic residue of paraben in your eyelid causes a chemical burn from the eyeliner.


Eyeliners with lead in them? You can bet on it. There is a legal limit to the quantity of lead that can be found in cosmetics. Despite the fact that it is illegal to include lead or lead byproducts (10ppm).

For products with lead levels that surpass the threshold, product recalls are typical. Due to its natural abundance, lead is used for better colour pigmentation in eyeliners.

Lead can cause skin cancer for a long period of usage. This is also one of the reasons for chemical burns. 

BAK (Benzalkonium chloride)

Eyeliner containing benzalkonium chloride as a cosmetic element. When used in mascara and eyeliner, benzalkonium chloride acts as a preservative to keep bacteria and mould.

Alkyldimethylbenzylammonium chloride (Zephiran) is another name for this compound. Human skin allergen and human immune toxicants are the reason behind the burning sensation in your eyelids.

Carnauba Wax

Carnauba wax is used to harden and waterproof items. Isn’t it harmless? I mean, seriously, what can wax do that’s so awful?

If you have dry eye illness, styes, or other diseases in your eyes, you may want to avoid using carnauba wax. Copernicia cerifera wax is also known as Palm wax.

Signs and Symptoms of Chemical Eye Burns

If a chemical burns your eyelids, you may experience the following symptoms:

  • Stinging
  • A scorching sensation
  • Redness
  • Pain and swelling
  • Puffiness of the eyelids
  • Vision is hazy
  • Eyes get constantly wet.

Recommendations on How to Treat Chemical Eye Burns from Eyeliner

Chemical burns from eyeliner, whether liquid or gel, can cause serious eye damage. In many circumstances, the danger of injury and long-term damage can be reduced significantly and promptly.

Also thoroughly cleaning the eye (with saline or freshwater) can help with that. 

Here are how to treat chemical burn on eyelid among the first-aid recommendations are:

  • For 15 to 20 minutes, hold your face under flowing water. Let the water stream fill your eyes. 
  • Make sure to keep your eyelids apart with your fingers. Make sure there is no trace of the chemical on your fingers.
  • Remove your contact lenses as soon as you can if you wear them.
  • Use antibiotic eye drops for chemical burn with the concern of doctors.

Medical attention should be sought as soon as possible. The type of chemical in a liquid or a gel eyeliner will be important for medical personnel. The same medication goes on how to treat chemical burn on face.

For first aid of the chemical burns from eyeliner, you can use these products for primary treatment-

The severity of your eye damage should not be based solely on how painful it is. While some chemicals normally don’t cause noticeable symptoms, they’re capable of causing considerable harm to the eyes. 

Tips for Protecting Your Eyes from Harmful Chemicals in Eyeliner

The following are effective methods for lowering your risk:

Tip 1: Check the label

When you buy eyeliner from any drugstore or beauty shop, give a quick look at the ingredients. Avoid buying eyeliners that have the following ingredients mentioned before. Always follow the directions provided by the manufacturer.

Tip 2: Check the Product Review

Don’t forget to read the product reviews. When you are going to buy a new brand product or haven’t used it before,check the review. Reviews will direct you to choose a safer option. 

Tip 3: Avoid Contact Lenses

Avoid using contact lenses, as they may absorb the chemical. Lenses intensify the burn on the eye’s surface if you have sensitive eyes. 

Tip 4: Check the Manufacturing Date

When you are buying eyeliners or makeup products, always check the manufacturing date and expiration date. Expired eyeliner can also cause irritation in the eyelids.

A burning feeling when applying eyeliner to your face is a sure sign that it should be thrown out. Your skin may already be irritated by anything else. The eyeliner is producing an additional irritant by causing an allergic reaction.

Is the reaction caused by the same products? If not, it’s most likely the eyeliner and you should throw it out! I sincerely hope that this has been of use. Chemical burn eye healing time is 8 to 20 days if it gets proper medication.


Is there a way to reduce the irritation caused by eyeliner?

About  20 minutes before wearing makeup, lubricating eye drops should be inserted into the eye. Each style of makeup should be applied with a different applicator. Never put on eye makeup inside your eyelashes; always do it outside of them.

Do cosmetics have the potential to cause skin irritation?

When it comes to purchasing cosmetics and beauty items, there is little regulation. It is because of this that so many of these items are laced with harmful ingredients that might cause major health complications.

Is it possible that eyeliner could cause an allergic reaction in me?

Yes. Among the most common cosmetic chemicals are waxes, oils, detergents, colours and fragrances, preservatives, and lanolin. The sensitive skin surrounding your eyes can be allergic to any of them. Try to avoid brands that contain such ingredients that you might face an allergic reaction.

Final Words

We’ve covered all you need to know about why you get chemical burns from eyeliner. To put it another way, applying eyeliner too close to your eyes can cause injury.

Keep your eyeliner in a cooler place and away from sunlight. Don’t hesitate to throw your eyeliner if it causes irritation. If you get chemical burns from eyeliner, then don’t delay visiting a dermatologist for treatment.

Have a good makeup day!


My name is Maria and I am a beauty blogger and writer. I am passionate about all things beauty, from skincare to makeup. On my blog, I share product reviews, tips, and tricks to help others feel confident and beautiful in their own skin. I strive to create a positive and inclusive space for everyone. Join me on my journey as I discover my unique beauty brand and share it with you.