Cosmetic and Makeup Dangers

Reviewed by Debra Jaliman, MD on September 22, 2021
photo of makeup

To avoid dangers associated with using makeup and other cosmetics, follow these tips:

  • Never drive and put on makeup. Not only does this make driving a danger, hitting a bump in the road can cause serious eye injury.
  • Never share makeup. Always use a new sponge when trying products at a store. Insist that salespersons clean container openings with alcohol before applying to your skin.
  • Keep makeup containers closed tightly when not in use.
  • Keep makeup out of the sun and heat. Light and heat can kill the preservatives that help to fight bacteria. Don't keep cosmetics in a hot car for a long time.
  • Don't use cosmetics if you have an eye infection, such as pinkeye, or eyelash irritation. Throw away any makeup you were using when you first found the problem.
  • Never add liquid to a product unless the label tells you to do so.
  • Throw away any make-up if the color changes, or it starts to smell.
  • Never use aerosol sprays near heat or while smoking, because they can catch on fire.
  • Don't deeply inhale hairsprays or powders. This can cause lung damage.
  • Avoid color additives that are not approved for use in the eye area, such as "permanent" eyelash tints and kohl (color additive that contains lead salts and is still used in eye cosmetics in other countries). Be sure to keep kohl away from children. It may cause lead poisoning.
  • Report any reactions or problems with cosmetics to the FDA.