The Mystery of Eyelash Mites: What They Are and How to Deal with Them

Woman cleaning eyes to prevent Eyelash Extension Mites

As a lash enthusiast, you may have come across the term “lash mites” while researching the best practices for eyelash care. This blog post will delve into the world of lash mites, explaining what they are, their causes, how to tell if you have them, and how to prevent and get rid of them. Let’s begin our journey to uncover the truth about these tiny creatures.

What are Eyelash Mites?

Lash mites, also known as Demodex, are tiny parasitic mites that live in the hair follicles and sebaceous glands of humans, particularly around the eyelashes. There are two types of Demodex mites: Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis. These microscopic creatures feed on dead skin cells and oils, and while they may sound alarming, they are usually harmless in small numbers.

Causes of Eyelash Mites:

The presence of lash mites is often attributed to various factors, including:

  • Poor hygiene: Not cleaning your eyelashes and the surrounding area regularly can lead to a buildup of debris, dead skin cells, and oils, creating a perfect environment for lash mites to thrive.
  • Overuse of makeup: Heavy makeup use, especially without proper removal, can contribute to an increased risk of lash mites.
  • Weakened immune system: Individuals with weakened immune systems may be more susceptible to lash mite infestations.

Signs You May Have Lash Mites:

If you’re concerned that you may have lash mites, look out for the following symptoms:

  • Itchy, irritated, or red eyes
  • Swollen or crusty eyelids
  • Eyelash loss
  • Discomfort when wearing contact lenses

Preventing Lash Mites:

To prevent lash mites, follow these simple steps:

  • Maintain good eyelash hygiene by cleaning your eyelashes and surrounding area daily with a gentle cleanser.
  • Remove makeup thoroughly before going to bed.
  • Replace your eye makeup, such as mascara and eyeliner, every three months.
  • Avoid sharing eye makeup or makeup tools with others.

Getting Rid of Lash Mites:

If you suspect you have lash mites, consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment. In most cases, a prescription ointment or cream containing tea tree oil will be recommended to eliminate the mites and alleviate symptoms.


Are lash mites contagious?

Lash mites can be spread through direct contact, such as sharing makeup, brushes, or pillowcases. However, they are not highly contagious, and good hygiene practices can minimize the risk of transmission.

Are eyelash mites harmful?

In most cases, eyelash mites are harmless and do not cause any issues. However, if their population increases, they can lead to various problems, including itching, redness, and inflammation.

Are lash mites normal?

Yes, lash mites are a natural part of the human body’s ecosystem and are found on most individuals.

Are lash mites bugs?

Yes, lash mites are microscopic parasites that belong to the arachnid family.

How common are lash mites?

Lash mites are quite common, with studies suggesting that they are present on nearly 50% of the adult population.

Can eyelash mites cause styes?

Eyelash mites can potentially cause styes by blocking the oil glands at the base of the eyelashes, leading to inflammation and infection.

Can eyelash mites live in your hair?

Yes, eyelash mites can also live in other hair follicles on the face, such as the eyebrows and sometimes the scalp. However, they are most commonly found on the eyelashes.

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