Opticians have warned that a TikTok trend that involves smearing Vaseline into the corners of the eyes could cause styes, spots and blurry vision.
The ‘hack’, which emerged amid recent freezing temperatures, is supposed to stop eyes from watering in the cold weather and keep make-up intact.
Videos of the trick has amassed millions of views on the social media app under the hashtags #wateryeyehack and #vaselinehacks.
But opticians say this trend could cause infections, skin conditions and difficulties seeing and urged people to keep the petroleum jelly away from their eyes.
A video on TikTok posted by @yazmooremakeup (pictured) who has 70,000 followers, shows her using a cotton bud to smear Vaseline into the corners of her eyes. In the video with more than 200,000 views she claims it is ‘the best life hack’ ‘if you struggle with watery eyes or your eyes stream a lot’
One video on TikTok posted by @yazmooremakeup, who has 70,000 followers, shows her using a cotton bud to smear Vaseline into the corners of her eyes.
In the video, which has more than 200,000 views, she claims it is ‘the best life hack’ for ‘if you struggle with watery eyes or your eyes stream a lot’.
‘My makeup used to actually run really badly because my eyes wouldn’t stop watering,’ she says.
Another video, shared by @danicolexx, who has 467,000 followers, shows her dipping a cotton bud into Vaseline and putting it the corner of her eyes during her make-up routine. She claims it ‘is the best tip’ she has ‘ever learnt’.
But a clip posted by @michaelgrullon_, an aesthetician with 130,000 followers, warns against the trend, which he says is ‘the best hack to get milia and stye’.
A video posted by @danicolexx (pictured) who has 467,000 followers, shows her dipping a cotton bud into Vaseline and putting it the corner of her eyes during her make-up routine. she claims it ‘is the best tip’ she has ‘ever learnt’
Tina Patel, an optician at Feel Good Contacts, agrees that the ‘hack’ raises the risk of developing milia and styes, so should be ‘approached with caution’.
‘It is better to stay clear of Vaseline,’ she adds.
Milia are tiny cysts on the skin, which are usually milky-white or yellow. They are filled with a keratin — the protein found in skin, hair and nails — and appear when clusters of dead skin form a ball under the skin. They usually go away within a few weeks.
While UV exposure, tobacco and alcohol increase the risk of developing milia, using Vaseline around the eyes or on the nose also encourages them to develop.
A stye is a small but painful lump on or inside the eyelid. It causes the eye to become red, watery and sore.
They’re often caused by bacteria infecting an eyelash follicle or eyelid gland, which Vaseline can encourage, according to Mark Shelton, an optometrist at Bayfields Opticians and Audiologists.
He says: ‘Although smearing Vaseline on the eye lids may be effective to stop them watering it is not something that I would recommend.
‘The eye lids contain meibomian glands which help to regulate the quality of the tears and blocking these glands can cause complications like styes and cysts or even infections.’
A video posted by @michaelgrullon_ an esthetician with more than 130,000 followers warns against the trend and says applying Vaseline to the eyes is ‘the best hack to get milia and stye’. many opticians agree with his warning and advise against following the trend
As the eyes are highly sensitive, smearing Vaseline close to them can cause irritation and inflammation, which could lead to blurred vision, warns Ms Patel.
However, if your eyes are watering excessively it could be a sign you are suffering from dry eye syndrome.
Mr Shelton warns excessively watery eyes could be a sign of dry eye syndrome, which can also cause blurred vision, itchy eyes and sensitivity to light.
‘I would recommend seeing your local optometrist who will be able to do a few tests to check why the eyes are watering and give appropriate advice,’ he adds.
There are much safer ways to protect the eyes during cold weather than using Vaseline, according to Malcolm Maciver, an optometrist at Leightons Opticians.
He suggests wearing sunglasses to help shield the eyes from harsh winds and cold temperatures and staying hydrated to help maintain the natural moisture balance of the eyes, reducing the tendency for excessive tearing.