Eyelash Hair Loss Causes and Remedies: Milphosis

Milphosois – Why Do Eyelashes Fall Out?

With the growth of eyelash manipulation techniques, false lashes have been in, and natural lashes have been falling out. Leaving many left to wonder, do eyelashes grow back?

Although fake eyelashes enhance the allure of the face, it’s essential to maintain your natural wisps.

Having natural eyelashes is more than a sign of good health. It protects your eye from environmental factors without being a potential irritant, which is the case for some false eyelashes and eye products.

You may notice itching, stinging, burning, and brittle wisps. These are symptoms that you do not want in such a sensitive area. Excess rubbing from the attempt to soothe discomfort can lead to a loss of lashes.

The first step to consider when questioning, “do eyelashes grow back” is to figure out the cause of hair loss. Understanding the cause of lash loss can prevent eyelash shed.

Milphosis, the loss of eyelashes, happens due to several factors such as wearing eye makeup, the installation of fake lashesalopeciabacterial infections, and Trichotillomania

Through examining different Milphosis conditions, lash cleaning techniques, and the effectiveness of lash growth treatments, we explore, “do eyelashes grow back?“.

Milphosois – Why Do Eyelashes Fall Out?

Long-term use of mascara

Before eyelash extensions became popular, mascara was the hot product for elongating short lashes and enhancing the curl.

 A study in the Journal of Cosmetic Science revealed a “positive correlation between the frequency of mascara use and the rank of cracking in cuticle, the thickness of cuticle, or the porosity in cortex.”

This study indicates long-term mascara use can cause swollen cuticles with porous lashes that do not retain moisture for long. In turn, the lashes are susceptible to breakage and falling.

Additionally, the degree of breaking in the lash cuticles intensifies with hard-to-remove water-proof mascara that contains petroleum distillates, which are potential irritants when applied daily.

Application and removal of false eyelashes

Recently, I went to a lash technician to get individual lashes installed. The adhesive used smelled similar to superglue, which made me question what the aftermath would be after installing and removing the lashes.

During the installation, I experienced itching that shortly resided. The end look was stunning! However, my lashes started to feel brittle, and my lids felt sore as the week went on.

If the slightest amount of water got on the lashes, it would cause the area to itch and teary eyes.

Although everyone may not experience a similar reaction to glued false lashes, extensions require manipulation of the eye cuticle using sealants, such as methacrylate-based adhesives that can irritate the area.

Individually glued synthetic lashes are linked to contact dermatitis and ocular irritants. The vapors of the adhesives and removing agents alone can stir up a reaction, according to Aumond S, Bitton E. The eyelash follicle features and anomalies.

Alopecia Areata, which is alopecia of the eyelashes

In some cases, sparse eyelashes can result from internal conditions that have nothing to do with manipulation of the eyelashes. Alopecia of the eyelashes can occur due to stress that activates an immune attack.

A 12-week study in the Journal Of the American Academy of Dermatology suggested corticosteroids injections in the eyebrow regrow eyelashes in patients with alopecia areata. The study used Triamcinolone acetonide injections.

Blepharitis caused by Demodex parasite overgrowth.

Demodex mites naturally live on the lids; however, an overgrowth can offset the natural processes and lead to Blepharitis inflammation.

The mites disrupt the eyelash follicles by laying eggs and secreting byproducts that agitate the skin cells. In turn, this can result in a loss of lashes and affect the growth pattern of the lashes.

A sign of Demodex overgrowth is a whitish crust on the edge of the upper lid called collarettes. The white crust consists of a buildup of eggs, cells, and waste. It takes on the appearance of dandruff.

*Below is a link to a highly rated product to aid in mild cases of Blepharitis. We are Amazon Associates; we earn for qualifying purchases, with no added cost to you. Thank you for purchases through our affiliate links.*

Special eye wipes called Blephclean treat mild cases of the condition, removing stubborn biofilm.

Trichotillomania, a compulsive hair pulling disorder

This condition is a form of OCD; the unsymmetrical growth of the hair can lead to plucking, while anxiety is an additional factor. Sufferers may be oblivious to the prognosis, in which a dermatologist will refer them to a trichologist.

Luckily, eyelashes pulled out from the root are likely to return with a slowed regeneration rate and potentially poorer hair quality. However, the accumulation of years of plucking eyelashes from the root can cause permanent damage to the cuticle, which stops lash growth.

How often do eyelashes regrow? – Do eyelashes grow back?

Like hair anywhere else on the body, eyelashes go through a growth cycle, shrinkage, rest, and falling out.

The usual growth stage of lashes is 4 to 10 weeks, with approximately .13mm daily growth. Unless a topical solution like prostaglandin and other eyelash growth treatments are applied, it is unlikely to grow beyond 12mm.

How To Clean Eyelashes

Often there isn’t much thought put into cleaning eyelashes. Unless eye crud or makeup covers the lashes, it typically goes hand in hand with washing the face.

The eyelash can contain oil, Demodex mites, and skin cell buildups.

Use a cleansing balm or oil to remove your makeup, then wash the area with a gentle cleanser. Alternatively, you can start by saturating a cotton pad with the product and holding it to your eye area for a few seconds. The breakdown process is smoother.

Using water to remove water-proof mascara can lead to aggressive cleansing and the product remaining on the lashes for more extended periods.

Products you can use to remove water-proof mascara and diminish lash damage are:

  1. Clinique Makeup Remover- Doesn’t leave an oily film on the eye
  2. Coconut Oil- Natural product & antibacterial
  3. Albolene Cleansing Balm– Removes tough makeup residue
  4. Baby Shampoo- Made for sensitive skin and usually tear-free

Oil-based products help dissolve the mascara on the skin since like molecules attract. Pull down the eyelid and run a cotton swab with a removing agent over the eye-line for a detailed clean.

Check out information about oil cleansing.

What can help eyelashes grow back?

Bimatoprost is an FDA-approved synthetic prostaglandin approved for the regrowth of lashes. Prostagladins are lipids naturally produced when infection or damage occurs at the tissue site to aid in the healing process.

In a study, the use of Bimatoprost resulted in long, thick, and dark natural eyelashes, deemed tolerable and safe to use. Latisse is the product’s brand name and requires a prescription.

Below is a list of over-the-counter eyelash regrowth products that contain lipids and proprietary blends that supply nutrients and fight bacteria. These products are not FDA-approved and require further scientific research to determine their efficacy.

*We are Amazon Associates; we earn for qualifying purchases, with no added cost to you. Thank you for purchases through our affiliate links below.*




When do eyelashes not grow back?

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, “if the eyelashes get singed but the hair follicles are still intact, the lashes will usually grow back in 6 weeks.” Your eyelashes have a higher regrowth rate after lash extensions and lash tints, as long as the hair follicles are healthy.

Things to consider are limiting the use of water-proof mascara and adhesive bound lash products to special occasions. Opt for products that nourish the lashes, promote growth, or are easily removed for daily use.

Magnetic lashes are a great alternative to adhesive bound lashes and are generally easy to remove.

Ultimately, there are many options to consider when attempting to regrow your eyelashes. A dermatologist can help determine the cause of sparse wisps and the best route to take for regrowth.

Sources: Aumond S, Bitton E. The eyelash follicle features and anomalies: A review. J Optom. 2018;11(4):211-222. doi:10.1016/j.optom.2018.05.003
Kadri R, Achar A, Tantry TP, Parameshwar D, Kudva A, Hegde S. Mascara induced milphosis, an etiological evaluation. Int J Trichology. 2013;5(3):144-147. doi:10.4103/0974-7753.125611
Jones D. Enhanced eyelashes: prescription and over-the-counter options. Aesthetic Plast Surg. 2011;35(1):116-121. doi:10.1007/s00266-010-9561-3
You and your Hormones an education resource from the Society of Endocrinology: Prostagladins, Accessed April 2021
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