Allergic Reaction to Eye Makeup Symptoms

Cosmetics such as eye makeup contain a variety of preservatives, perfumes and other components that may cause an allergic reaction. Eye makeup may consist of products such as eye shadow, eyeliner and mascara, but other products such as eye cream, concealer or a base foundation may also come in contact with the skin around your eyes. Knowing the signs of an allergic reaction to eye makeup will help you identify a problem early so that you can prevent further complications.


A rash will commonly occur with a skin reaction to cosmetics. The rash may vary from red bumps to small, elevated hives. You may not notice a rash initially if you have product covering your skin. Some reactions may cause itching, and this may appear as your first indicator if your makeup hides the rash.


You may experience inflammation as a result of the reaction. This swelling could occur alone or may accompany a rash. You may have mild to severe swelling of your eyelids, but the reaction could extend outward in any direction to include your eyebrows or cheeks, for example.

Eye Surface

If eye makeup such as eyeliner or mascara came in contact with the surface of your eyes, you may have a reaction called allergic conjunctivitis. Your symptoms may include itching, redness, tearing or a thick discharge. You may also have some sensitivity to light.


Once you notice symptoms of a possible reaction, wash off the eye makeup carefully. Do not scrub since this may cause further irritation. You should contact your doctor to discuss the reaction and determine if you require medication to help ease your symptoms. Your doctor may recommend eye drops or oral medications to help relieve inflammation. In some instances, your doctor may recommend a topical medication to help resolve your rash. If you have a rash close to your eyes, your doctor may not recommend a topical cream or ointment. Instead, she will most likely recommend avoiding cosmetics and allowing the rash to resolve on its own.