What Should I Know Before Starting Eyelash Lengthening Medication?

Written by Adrian Blackwell, MD

Find out if eyelash lengthening medicine is right for you!

Who should use this medicine?

“Hypotrichosis” is a term we use to describe poor hair growth. Those who have thin, short, and lightly colored eyelashes will do the best on this medication - they are said to have hypotrichosis of the eyelashes.This medicine has been approved by the FDA and found to be safe and effective to help create longer, thicker, and darker eyelashes.

Who needs to see their doctor in person for this medicine?

It is safer for some people to see their personal doctor for this kind of medicine. Anyone who is being treated for or has a history of the following needs to see a doctor face-to-face for this medicine: glaucoma (increased pressure inside the eyeball), aphakia (when someone has had surgery on their eye and is missing a certain part of their eyeball called “the lens”), or other medical problems inside their eye should be evaluated and monitored in person if taking this medication to improve their eyelashes.

Side effects

The good news here is that there really are not a lot of side effects and they are pretty uncommon; less than 5% of people who take this medicine to improve their eyelashes will experience side effects.

This medicine can cause any or all of the following:

Common side effects

  • Eye itching - this is the most common side effect. A sense of irritation and itchiness can sometimes affect those using this medication
  • Eye irritation and redness - some people will have a reaction to the medicine that causes slight discomfort and/or redness in their eyes
  • Dry eyes - this medicine can dry up your eyes
  • Redness of the eyelid - the medicine can also cause the skin of the eyelid to become irritated and red
  • Eyelid discoloration - if this medicine comes into contact with the skin of the eyelid it can cause the color of the skin to become darker. This typically goes away if someone stops using this medicine but can take several weeks or months for someone’s natural skin color to return

More serious side effects

  • Eye discoloration - for some people, this medicine has caused their natural eye color to darken towards a brownish color. If this happens, it is likely permanent.
  • Hair growth - this medicine obviously improves the hair growth of the eyelashes. If the medicine comes into repeated contact with skin elsewhere then it can cause hair growth in those areas. This is not permanent and goes away if the medicine is no longer used.
  • Macular edema - this is a serious condition of swelling inside the eyeball. This is only known to happen in people with prior eye surgeries and certain eye conditions. Anyone with an eye condition needs to see their doctor in person for this medicine
  • Bacterial infection of the eyeball or eyelid - this medicine comes with clean applicators that are only meant to use for one eyelid at a time. If someone is using the applicators for both eyeballs or using them over and over again then you can cause an infection of your eyelid or eyeball or both which can be quite serious.

Accurate Information

In order for us to assess your visit and determine if eyelash lengthening medicine makes sense for you - it is very important that you provide full and accurate health information. If you have any questions about what something means, or how to get certain information just message us in the secure chat or call us and we can help.

The views expressed in this article intend to highlight alternative studies and induce conversation. They are the views of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of HeyDoctor, and are for informational purposes only, even if and to the extent that this article features the advice of physicians and medical practitioners. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.

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