Best Makeup After Eyelid Surgery & Eye Makeup Tips After Eyelid Surgery


The first time you wear eye makeup after eyelid surgery is exhilarating. For years, wrinkles and creases have made it difficult to apply eyeshadow and mascara. After eyelid surgery, you have a smoother, more youthful palette to work with. Applying eye makeup is easier than it was before cosmetic surgery, and your makeup application looks better than ever. Our eyelid surgery patients are understandably excited to resume makeup use after their procedures. 

Enjoy the best makeup after eyelid surgery tips from the board-certified Charlotte plastic surgeons at H/K/B, located in Charlotte and Huntersville, NC. 

Give It Time – How Long After Eyelid Surgery Can I Wear Makeup?

Waiting is a challenge, but it’s so important for a safe recovery. You’ll need to wait several weeks before resuming eye makeup use after blepharoplasty. For the first couple of weeks, your eyes will be sensitive and makeup use isn’t ideal. Generally, patients can start wearing eye makeup two to three weeks after surgery. We’ll let you know when you’ve healed sufficiently to resume using cosmetics. 

Why should you wait to wear makeup after an eyelid lift? There are a few important reasons for waiting before applying eye shadow and mascara after blepharoplasty. 

  • Bacteria – You can’t see them, but lurking in your cosmetics are hordes of bacteria. When you’re properly applying and removing makeup, these bacteria don’t generally harm you, but right after surgery, they can. The bacteria in your eye makeup can cause infections in the sites of your incisions. This slows healing and can lead to less than satisfactory results. 
  • Pressure – Applying, and especially removing, makeup places pressure on the skin. When you have new incisions, this pressure can cause them to open up or may delay healing. 
  • Irritation – Cosmetics may be irritating to incisions and the skin around the eyes. After surgery, your skin is temporarily more sensitive and prone to discomfort and irritation. 

How long should you wait? Most patients can safely resume makeup use in two to three weeks after eyelid surgery. 

Start with Water-Based Cosmetics

Your skin may be more sensitive than usual immediately after eyelid surgery. Start off using non-comedogenic, water-based cosmetics and skincare products created for sensitive skin. When you can successfully use these products without irritation, you can slowly add in other cosmetics, including oil-based makeup products. 

Since eye makeup can harbor bacteria, you may want to swap out old cosmetics and start fresh when you do resume makeup use after blepharoplasty. Don’t forget to give your brushes a good cleaning too. 

You May Need to Change Techniques

If you’ve done your makeup the same way for decades, you may need to switch up your application techniques after surgery. Your eyelids will be smoother, lifted, and reshaped. Experiment, play around with different products and colors and try new techniques until you discover your best looks. Hopefully, this will be a fun process that you can look forward to after your surgery.

Remove with Care

It’s always a good idea to thoroughly remove eye makeup before bed, but after eyelid surgery, this step becomes even more important. While your incisions are fresh and sensitive, removing makeup can be difficult. We find that water-based products are easier to remove and recommend using them exclusively for the first several weeks. To aid in makeup removal, invest in a gentle makeup remover.  

Beautiful eye makeup can enhance your results after eyelid surgery. Browse eyelid surgery before and after photos to see real client results.

If you have questions about using eye makeup after blepharoplasty surgery or you’re considering eyelid surgery, call our office at 704-659-9000 or book a consultation.

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