Have you ever wondered why your eyes water after putting on makeup? It’s a common problem faced by many individuals, but the reason behind it might surprise you.

When it comes to eye makeup, there are certain ingredients that can cause irritation and lead to excessive tearing. One such ingredient is formaldehyde, which is commonly used in products like mascara and eyeliner. This chemical can disrupt the tear film on the surface of your eyes, causing them to become watery. Additionally, certain makeup application techniques like tightlining or using heavy eyeliner on the waterline can also trigger tear production. So, if you find yourself with watery eyes after applying makeup, it’s likely due to the ingredients or techniques you’re using.

why do my eyes water after i put on makeup

The Irritation Behind Watery Eyes After Makeup Application

Have you ever been excited to put on a full face of makeup, only to find your eyes watering uncontrollably after application? It can be frustrating and leave you wondering why this happens. Well, there are several reasons why your eyes may water after you put on makeup. In this article, we will explore the common causes of watery eyes after makeup application and provide helpful tips to prevent this issue. Let’s dive in!

1. Allergic Reactions to Makeup Products

One possible reason for watery eyes after applying makeup is an allergic reaction to the products you are using. Certain ingredients in makeup, such as fragrances, preservatives, and dyes, can trigger allergic reactions in some individuals. These reactions can manifest as watery eyes, itching, redness, and swelling.

If you suspect that you may be experiencing an allergic reaction to your makeup, you should try to identify the specific product causing the issue. Start by eliminating one product at a time from your routine and observe if the symptoms improve. You may also consider consulting with a dermatologist or allergist for further evaluation and professional advice.

Additionally, it is advisable to check the ingredient list of your makeup products before purchasing or using them. Look out for common allergens and irritants that you may be sensitive to. Opt for hypoallergenic or fragrance-free products if you have a history of allergic reactions.

2. Irritation from Harsh Ingredients

Sometimes, the watery eyes after makeup application may be due to irritation caused by harsh ingredients. Certain makeup products, such as waterproof mascaras and eyeliners, may contain ingredients like formaldehyde, parabens, and sulfates, which can be irritating to the eyes.

To minimize the risk of eye irritation, consider opting for gentle and ophthalmologist-tested makeup products specifically formulated for sensitive eyes. These products are typically free from harsh chemicals and are designed to be less likely to cause irritation or discomfort.

It is also essential to properly remove your makeup at the end of the day to prevent any residue from lingering on your eyelids or lashes. Use a gentle, oil-based makeup remover to effectively dissolve and remove the makeup without excessive rubbing or tugging.

3. Improper Application Techniques

Improper application techniques can also lead to watery eyes after putting on makeup. For example, if you apply mascara or eyeliner too close to the lash line or get makeup particles into your eyes, it can cause irritation and trigger excessive tearing.

To avoid this issue, be mindful of your application techniques. Apply mascara starting from the roots of your lashes and wiggle the wand gently as you move upward to achieve length and volume without getting excessive product near your eyes. When applying eyeliner, create a thin and precise line away from the waterline to minimize the risk of irritation.

4. Contact Lens Discomfort

If you wear contact lenses, they may contribute to the watery eyes after makeup application. The combination of wearing contacts and applying makeup can sometimes lead to dryness, discomfort, or irritation in the eyes. This can result in excessive tearing as the eyes try to self-lubricate.

To manage this issue, consider inserting your contact lenses before applying makeup to avoid any contact between your eyes and the products. Make sure to follow proper contact lens hygiene, including cleaning and disinfecting them regularly, to maintain eye comfort throughout the day.

5. Preexisting Eye Conditions

In some cases, watery eyes after makeup application may be a symptom of preexisting eye conditions. Conditions such as dry eyes, blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids), or conjunctivitis (pink eye) can cause increased tear production and sensitivity.

If you have a known eye condition or experience chronic eye discomfort, it is essential to consult with an eye care professional. They can evaluate your condition, provide appropriate treatment, and offer guidance on makeup application techniques that are compatible with your eye health.

Tips to Prevent Watery Eyes After Makeup Application

Now that we have discussed the possible causes of watery eyes after putting on makeup, let’s explore some helpful tips to prevent this issue:

1. Patch Test New Products

Before incorporating new makeup products into your routine, perform a patch test on a small area of your skin. This will help you identify any potential allergic reactions or irritation before applying the product near your eyes.

2. Choose Ophthalmologist-Tested Products

Opt for makeup products that are ophthalmologist-tested or specifically formulated for sensitive eyes. These products are designed to be gentle and less likely to cause irritation or discomfort.

3. Clean Your Makeup Brushes Regularly

Makeup brushes and sponges can harbor bacteria and irritants that may contribute to watery eyes. Clean your brushes regularly to prevent buildup and minimize the risk of eye irritation. Use a mild brush cleanser or baby shampoo to cleanse the bristles thoroughly, and let them dry completely before using them again.

4. Use a Light Hand

When applying makeup near the eyes, make sure to use a light hand and avoid pressing too hard. Applying excessive pressure can cause irritation and trigger tearing.

5. Remove Makeup Gently

At the end of the day, remove your makeup gently to avoid any unnecessary rubbing or tugging on the delicate eye area. Use a gentle, oil-based makeup remover to dissolve the makeup and wipe it away without causing further irritation.


Watery eyes after applying makeup can be annoying and discomforting. By understanding the common causes and implementing the preventive tips mentioned above, you can minimize the likelihood of experiencing this issue. Remember to choose makeup products that are compatible with your skin and eye health, and always prioritize your comfort and well-being.

Key Takeaways

  1. Makeup products can sometimes irritate the eyes, leading to watery eyes.
  2. Certain ingredients in cosmetics, such as fragrances or preservatives, can trigger an allergic reaction.
  3. Inadequate eye hygiene, such as not properly removing makeup residue, can cause eye irritation and tearing.
  4. Poorly applied or expired makeup can also lead to eye watering.
  5. If your eyes consistently water after applying makeup, it’s important to consult with a dermatologist or optometrist for proper diagnosis and advice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Have you ever experienced your eyes watering after putting on makeup? It can be frustrating and interfere with the overall look you’re trying to achieve. In this section, we will address some common questions about why your eyes may water after applying makeup and provide helpful insights to prevent this issue.

1. What causes my eyes to water when I put on makeup?

There can be several reasons why your eyes water after applying makeup. One common cause is an allergic reaction to certain ingredients in makeup products. If you have sensitive eyes or are allergic to specific components, such as fragrances or preservatives, they can trigger tears and irritation. Additionally, applying makeup too close to the waterline or using expired products can also cause your eyes to water.

To prevent this issue, opt for hypoallergenic makeup products that are specifically designed for sensitive eyes. It’s also important to check the expiration dates on your makeup items and avoid applying them directly to the waterline.

2. How can I prevent my eyes from watering when I wear makeup?

If your eyes tend to water after applying makeup, there are steps you can take to minimize this occurrence. Firstly, make sure to cleanse your face thoroughly before applying any products. This helps remove any potential irritants that can trigger watering. Secondly, apply eye drops or artificial tears to moisturize and soothe your eyes before applying makeup.

Furthermore, use waterproof or smudge-proof makeup products, as they are less likely to smear and irritate your eyes. Avoid applying mascara to the lower lashes, as this can increase the risk of makeup transferring to the waterline. Lastly, ensure that your brushes and applicators are clean to avoid any bacterial contamination that could lead to eye irritation.

3. Can certain makeup techniques or products cause my eyes to water?

Yes, certain makeup techniques or products can contribute to watery eyes. Applying excessive amounts of eye shadow, eyeliner, or mascara can lead to irritation and watering. Additionally, using products with a high fragrance content or heavy oils can also cause discomfort and tears.

For a more comfortable experience, apply makeup in moderation and avoid excessive layering. Choose fragrance-free and lightweight products, especially for areas close to the eyes. It’s also advisable to opt for oil-free and water-based formulas to reduce the chances of eye irritation.

4. Is there any way to soothe my eyes if they start watering after makeup application?

If your eyes start watering after applying makeup, there are a few things you can do to alleviate the discomfort. First, remove any excess makeup near the waterline using a gentle makeup remover or cleanser. Then, rinse your eyes with cool water to ease any irritation. Applying a cold compress or cucumber slices over your closed eyes can also provide relief. If the watering persists or becomes severe, it’s advisable to consult an eye care professional.

Additionally, it’s important to avoid rubbing your eyes, as this can further irritate them. Instead, gently pat around the eyes to remove any excess tears or makeup.

5. Should I see a doctor if my eyes continue to water after makeup application?

If your eyes consistently water after applying makeup and the issue persists, it may be wise to seek medical advice. An eye care professional can evaluate your specific situation, identify any underlying causes, and provide appropriate treatment or recommend alternative makeup products.

Remember, everyone’s eyes are unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. It’s essential to listen to your body and take steps to ensure the comfort and health of your eyes while enjoying the beauty of makeup.

When your eyes water after putting on makeup, it may be due to several reasons.

One possible cause is an allergic reaction to the makeup products. Certain ingredients in cosmetics can irritate the eyes and make them tear up. It is essential to choose hypoallergenic and fragrance-free products to minimize this risk.

Another reason could be dry eyes. Some makeup products, such as eyeliners and mascaras, can contribute to the dryness of eyes, leading to excessive tearing. Using eye drops before applying makeup can help alleviate the dryness.

Poor application technique can also be a factor. If you’re applying makeup too close to your eyes or using expired products, it can cause eye irritation and lead to watery eyes. Ensure proper hygiene and avoid direct contact of makeup with the eyes.

If the problem persists, it is best to consult with an eye care professional who can provide personalized advice and determine the underlying cause of your watery eyes.


  • Maria J. Morrison

    Maria is a professional Beautician and his hobby is beauty & Personal care. she has been for the last 5 years and he loves makeup while on outings as well. Based on his experience with the different types of makeup. She is sharing his opinion about various makeup so that a beginner can get started the right way. Find him onTwitter here. Happy reading.