Can You Sleep with Fake Eyelashes on?

Can You Sleep with Fake Eyelashes on?

If you wear false eyelashes, you may think you have to sacrifice sleeping in them for the sake of your natural lashes.

Can You Sleep with Fake Eyelashes on?

You shouldn’t sleep with fake eyelashes on, because it can cause the skin around your eyelids to get dry and irritated. In fact, glues used in most false eyelashes contain formaldehyde, which is known for causing keratoconjunctivitis, a type of eye infection.

Keratoconjunctivitis is an inflammation of the cornea and conjunctiva, the thin mucous membrane that lines the inside of your eyelids and covers the whites of your eyes. Symptoms include itchy and dry eyes, redness, and blurred vision.

So if you want to keep your natural lashes healthy and avoid irritating your eyes, it’s best to take your false eyelashes off before bed. However, if you really can’t go without them for a night or two, try using a formaldehyde-free adhesive, and make sure to remove them as soon as you wake up.

It’s safe to say that it’s never a good idea to sleep with any makeup or temporary enhancements on your face such as false lashes.

For one, makeup can destroy your skin when you sleep with it on. It doesn’t allow your skin to breathe and can clog pores and cause a breakdown of collagen, which in turn leads to fine lines and wrinkles according to Dr. Eric Schweiger, Dermatologist, and founder of the Clear Clinic acne treatment center in New York.

Btw. you know what happens when pores clog, right? Breakouts!

That’s even worse than letting a new romantic prospect see you without makeup in the first place. Not to mention when you wake up, you’ll look smudgy and messy.

What if you’re wearing those little stick-on jewels near your eyes too? That will add to the mix of mess. You’ll be lucky if they don’t get in your eyes or mouth.

The same goes for false eyelashes. All that adhesive that binds them to your delicate lash line is just sitting on there. With every roll your head makes across that pillow, you’re tugging at them and rubbing them which doesn’t bode well for the health of your lashes.

While one night probably won’t do any harm, especially if you pass out drunk or from sheer exhaustion, it’s best to take the extra minutes to remove them before turning in for the night.

A quick cat nap before going out probably won’t harm your real lashes either. Though it’s fully best to not sleep with any makeup or false enhancements and that includes false eyelashes.

See, one day when you’re older, you’ll come to regret the damages you do now. As mentioned, a one-off of falling asleep with false eyelashes still adhered probably won’t make an impact.

But if this is a daily occurrence for you, you’d better curb the habit or you could wind up with a very sparse lash line while you’re still young.

In the short term though, regular sleeping with false eyelashes on can lead to infections and sties which will hurt. Plus, they’ll make your eye look wonky on top of it which you definitely want to avoid.

Because infections and sties can become worse with makeup application (and even spread…eek!), you can’t wear makeup while you have them so really, it’s best to heed this advice and not sleep with your false eyelashes on.

Need more incentive to take them off every night? Keep reading!

Why you shouldn’t sleep with false eyelashes on

There are many reasons why sleeping with false eyelashes on is a bad idea. From short term to long term damage, they can ruin your lash line. There’s no good that can come from sleeping with false eyelashes on. Here’s why!

– False lashes contain chemicals

For starters, false eyelashes are made from chemicals. Lots of makeup is too, especially if you’re not investing in quality. And even if you are, it’s still a horrible idea to go to sleep with a full face of makeup. Especially when that face includes false eyelashes.

False eyelashes adhere with a form of sticker or adhesive, depending on the type. It’s generally not good stuff but when you wear it for a few hours to amp up your lash line and then properly remove it, you’ll generally be fine.

Repeated use of this can definitely wear down the hair follicles your lashes come from though, so bear that in mind because aging eventually takes its toll and so too will false eyelashes.

If you leave these adhered to your eyes as you sleep nightly though, the mascara you may have coated them in plus the adhesive glue can get into your eyes and cause irritation.

It can also irritate the skin around your eyes. Again, the things you do now will haunt you as you age and if you want to appear ageless, you want to baby that under-eye area now so it will always look youthful and retain its contour.

Inflamed, red, infected eyes aren’t a good look to have. This is especially true if you work in an industry where having an approachable appearance matters. People will shy away from you if you look like you have pink eye.

You really want to take care of your windows to your soul and nurture your lash line by removing false eyelashes (and the rest of your makeup too) before going to sleep.

Try applying topical vitamin D, olive oil, or castor oil to your lashes after cleansing. These natural items can nourish the lashes and help bolster their growth. You can also use an eyelash serum (more on that further down).

Keep in mind that when you buy false eyelashes, don’t be tempted to grab those cheap ones you see in the drugstore beauty aisle or online. Formaldehyde is a common ingredient in the adhesives that come with the cheap fake eyelashes. It’s hardly a bargain.

If you remember science class, formaldehyde is a nasty chemical preservative (and it smells horrible too). You definitely don’t want that near your eyes (or any part of your body for that matter) because it could cause severe irritation and even cancer.

They can increase the risk of an eye infection

As mentioned, the use of false eyelashes, especially when you neglect to properly remove them and care for your natural face, can lead to greater risk for eye infections. Your real eyelashes aren’t there to add that seductiveness to your eyes, though that is a side bonus to them.

Their intended purpose though is to keep dust, debris, foreign objects, and sweat out of your eyes. Your eyes are delicate little wonders on your body and your body instinctively protects them. This is why your eyes slam shut when a gust of air blows past your face or something comes toward you.

Unfortunately though, fake eyelashes don’t enhance this protection. Their ultimate purpose is just to make your lashes look fuller and more voluminous. It’s a great trick for getting that dramatic look for a special occasion. But for daily wear, it puts you in danger with a higher than usual risk for infections.

The reason for this is because the glue that adheres them to your lashes is something bacteria wants to stick to. This leads to fungal or viral infections that will have you running to your doctor for relief.

If you’re going to apply false eyelashes yourself, you should always use high-quality products. Never choose cheap lashes. You can also go to a licensed professional to have quality false lashes applied for a special occasion, like your wedding day for example.

The less often you wear false eyelashes, the better off your real eyelashes will be, but if you’re going to wear them, choose quality and be sure to take them off each and every night without fail!

False eyelashes can damage your natural lashes

If you’ve ever worn fake nails, you know the kind of damage those can do to your real fingernails. Fake eyelashes are much the same. They put more pressure on those tender hair follicles from which your real eyelashes grow. This causes breakage and stops proper hair growth cycles.

So, if you’re going to use false eyelashes, you need to use high-quality ones, which will utilize better materials. And regardless of how high the quality, make sure you remove them every time. You shouldn’t be wearing them every single day either.

If you want a full lash look every day, you should consider eyelash extensions from a reputable professional. Going to one that isn’t revered or doesn’t use the best practices can be just as damaging as wearing cheap false eyelashes every day so do your homework.

They won’t look good in the morning anyway

Really and truly, your false eyelashes will look gross in the morning. You don’t want to leave them on. They can loosen from the glue and hang off, giving you a busted look rather than a beautiful one.

Even a quick nap can be a problem with false eyelashes if you sleep on them wrong. You could bend them out of shape and wind up with a very asymmetric look that won’t flatter you one bit.

What can you do to obtain a glamorous eyelash without worries?

Fortunately, there are a couple of ways to get those gloriously gorgeous eyelashes you want without the hassles or risks of false eyelashes.

– Use eyelash enhancers

One of the best ways to get the kind of lush lashes you want is to take care of and nurture your real lash line. Eyelash-enhancing products are ideal for this. They can bring in more length and volume, plus they can repair the texture.

There are many brands that have rave reviews but from what I can tell, LiLash (Amazon link) is by far the best, which is suitable for sensitive eyes and will give you fuller and longer lashes, unlike other brands which can only give you one or the other, it nourishes the follicles to restore your lash line to fullness and boost their length.

However, like with every eyelash enhancer, remember that the effect is not permanent, and your eyelashes will go back to their normal state once you stop using it.

LiLash Purified Eyelash Physician
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Lash enhancers do have some possible side effects to be aware of. Some are said to change the color of your eyes while others can cause your eyes to burn, though it’s usually because of a sensitivity you may have to a certain ingredient so check what’s in it first.

Most should cause you little to no irritation though. The ingredients are combined to help improve your natural lashes by conditioning and strengthening them. This makes them less likely to break off or fall out.

The vitamins included in them nourish the lashes while protecting from external elements that could make them weak or fall out. Using a lash enhancer can add shine and strength to your lash line that will make it look great all on its own.

The key is to choose quality here too though. Cheap products are often filled with chemicals that won’t bolster your lash line but rather, will serve to harm it so buyer beware.

Consider an eyelash extension

If you really want a fuller look like false eyelashes give but you don’t want the hassle of applying them every day, you should consider lash extensions. These are great for those of you that are busy because it can cut your routine time in half.

With eyelash extensions, these are a more semi-permanent solution, plus they look natural. It must be done by a professional though. You can’t do it yourself.

The good news is that you can sleep with these on and live your best life. You must take care of them though. Cleansing your face properly and following the instructions of the professional for the care of your eyelash extensions is critical to making them last.

And last they will, but not forever. They will last for 6 to 8 weeks depending on how you handle the care of them. They naturally fall out like your regular lashes do so you’ll need to go in for fills every now and then if you want to keep up this look.

It’s certainly a safer and better alternative to false eyelashes, though it isn’t cheap. But if you do the math, it might be more effective overall.

If you seldom wear false eyelashes though, you may just want to invest in quality fake eyelashes and be diligent about removing them promptly as soon as you get home. But if this is a look you want to have daily, eyelash extensions could surely be your solution to a fuller lash line.


It’s never a good idea to sleep with your makeup on, especially when you’ve been wearing false eyelashes all night. You should make sure to remove them before sleeping.

If not, you could wind up with an infection plus you can cause long term damage to your real lash line.

There are better solutions to using false eyelashes like lash-enhancing serums or even eyelash extensions, but if you must insist on wearing fake eyelashes, always buy quality and always remove them before going to bed.


My name is Hajer and welcome to my site. This is my little haven, my outlet, where I can express myself, and show you everything I've learned about makeup, skincare, hair tips, and so much more, as well as the different beauty mistakes I've made so that you can avoid them.

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