Do Colored Contacts Pose a Health Risk?

A recent article in The New York Times examines the popularity of using colored contacts and the possible health risks involved with wearing them. With the bright doe-eyed makeup look becoming widespread these days, colored contacts have become more than just a beauty fad. For many, it’s become a form of expression, akin to a fashion statement. Using colored contacts is particularly popular among Asians, as YouTube makeup artists like Michelle Phan and Holly Ann-AeRee often film their makeup tutorials using colored contacts. And, we’re not just talking about turning brown eyes blue; some of the other best-selling colors include a sheer-colored pink and violet, which gives off that vampy look.

Though colored contacts may be purely cosmetic, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t any risks involved. If they don’t fit properly, they can lead to scratches on your cornea. In serious cases, they can cause a bacterial infection and even blindness. It’s illegal in the U.S. to sell any contact lenses, whether they’re corrective or not, without a prescription. Yet there are many online vendors which sell colored contact lenses between $20-30, and cater to the Asian demographic as they feature Asian models wearing the different colored contacts on their sites. Though many people have bought and worn colored contacts online without a problem, it’s still best to have an eye exam and consult with your doctor before purchasing them. [via The New York Times]