Adding lavender oil to your mascara has become a thing, on the basis that it will make your eyelashes longer and thicker, and also that it will deter eyelash mites. About half of us have tiny eyelash mites, but they don’t affect at least 95% of those who have them. They do not make your eyelashes thinner or shorter, though an infestation can make eyelashes fall out. Some argue that eyelash mites perform a useful function, by eating dead cells and debris. If the mites do indeed proliferate, the condition is known as demodicosis. This can happen in people with a severely deficient immune system, and there are significant associations between demodicosis and certain inflammatory skin conditions, especially some types of rosacea.
Demodicosis is treatable with tea tree products (ointment, shampoo, washes), in fact this is one of the most effective treatments known. For daily use, there is a product based on terpinen-4-ol, the major constituent of tea tree oil. This used to be only available to dermatologists. By all means use this or tea tree products for daily hygiene, but unless you have demodicosis, trying to totally eliminate eyelash mites that you can’t see may be pointless.
As for lavender mascara, there’s no evidence that lavender oil has any effect on eyelash mites, eyelash length, or eyelash thickness. Adding lavender oil to your mascara is not necessarily dangerous, but it could be if it’s not evenly distributed. How do you mix the lavender oil in the mascara? The packaging and consistency of the product make even distribution of an essential oil challenging. And why are you doing it? Even if you add tea tree oil instead of lavender to your mascara, it’s not likely to have much effect on eyelash mites (which you might not have anyway). Maybe it will keep them off your lashes, but it won’t get to them where they spend most of their time – inside your hair follicles. So my advice is, don’t mess with your mascara, but maybe look out for tea tree face washes.
A word of warning – do not apply undiluted tea tree oil, or any other essential oil, to your eyes – very bad things can happen! (In one of the above links you will see “apply a couple of drops of tea tree oil to the lashes”. Don’t!)
Im so grateful to you for all your knowledge and willingness to share. Its very helpful to those of us that want to learn from a trustworthy source!
I am new to EO’s and have recently purchased your essential oil safety book. I’m amazed at how people don’t research what they are doing and how or why it could affect them. I also am very grateful for your knowledge. Recently a co-worker’s mom wanted her to start ingesting a synergy blend (from an MLM company) to prevent colds and flu, saying it will work to keep her healthy as this is what the mom does.
I looked up a few things in your book as my co-worker has only one kidney. What I found was not frightening but could be. I gently took her aside and told her what I had read and to check with her physician before she ingested any essential oils (I knew her mom meant no harm but is just untrained.) she took my advice and found that it could be harmful to her.
Like I said I’m new the use of EO’s but I’m nobodies fool and like to do my own research and currently saving money to become a certified then registered aromatherapist. Your book (while still very technical to me) is used often while I’m learning and researching essential oils.
Thank you again!!!!
What if the essential oil was diluted with a carrier oil? Or is that still not a good idea?
Hi Tati, so long as the lavender oil is properly dispersed in the mascara it’s fine, you don’t need to dilute it first.
Robert you are such a blessing. Everytime I get on your site, I have to smile at the awesomeness of your willingness to share your knowledge through your blog, articles and newsletters. Thank you, thank you, thank you.