Ophthalmologist says don't share your kajal

By Swedha Radhakrishnan Published on Jul 16, 2018 02:49 PM IST


Chennai: "Youngsters should strictly avoid sharing their cosmetics among friends," said Dr Radhi Malar Anand, the ophthalmologist of Fortis Malar Hospital, talking about the ill-effects of kajal (mai / kohl).

Eyes are the most delicate and sensitive organs of the body and it is important to protect them from harmful external factors.

Kajal has been used by women and men since ancient times. There has also been a long-standing belief that kajal protects the eyes from aliments and sun's harmful rays. Though kajal or any other eye make-up adds beauty to the eye, there are ill-effects attached to kajal which can harm one's eyes.

"When it comes to kajal, both chemical and organic are not good, but, comparatively, chemical is more harmful. A lot of people apply on the inner corner of the eyes. Prolonged exposure of the inner lids to kajal, whether it is chemical or natural, is not good," said Radhi.

Here are the excerpts from the interview:

 How does kajal affect the eye?

While you apply kajal, particles get into the glands. You find a lot of oil glands present in the lids, so when they are not removed properly or when old product is used or shared among friends, the bacteria gets deposited on the eyes and that is where you will start getting infections like allergies, ulcers.

Everybody should be careful about how to apply and remove kajal and how long it stays. Youngsters nowadays share their kajal and leave it overnight. Girls are unaware of the ill-effects of what is going to happen to them next. So, over the night these bacteria get into the oil glands and blocks it, which causes inflammation. This leads to lids swelling and sometimes boils. People who use contact lens don't clean it. So it enters the lens and causes infections. It becomes a threat to the eyes.

Can kajal be used while wearing contact lens?

It depends on how they use their contact lens. If they use it in a hygienic way, and wear kajal, it is okay. But if they don't follow this, then they are asking for trouble. Always double wash your hands, make sure when you apply kajal on the lower lids and not touch the upper lid, because more than the lower one the upper lid touches the inner corner.

How can we protect our eyes?

Always use a branded kajal. If it suits you, continue with that and keep an eye on the expiry date. Never share your cosmetics with your friends. To remove the kajal, avoid using cotton or towel which is a rough material.Since the eye is a sensitive part, we should not put too much pressure on it. Try to use baby buds. Dip in warm water or baby oil and remove the kajal completely out of the eye including the lashes. This is because usually people don't clean them and the particles get deposited which is not good for the eyes.