Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Purple Liner Disaster

Hey Guys,

As you may or may not recall, I mentioned my suffering from a horrid allergic reaction some weeks ago in a previous post. I recently purchased Rimmel London’s Exaggerate Waterproof Eyeliner, and through the completion of thorough research and added trials, I’ve concluded that my reaction was related to my use of this specific product. For those of you unfamiliar with the product, Rimmel Exaggerate Waterproof Eyeliner is a waterproof, as the name suggests, self-sharpening eyeliner that comes in about six different shades. The shade I had picked up was Purple Shock – a darkened red-based purple. It came with a smudging tip on the opposite end (this I thought was awesome!). Having used the product, I must say I consider the formula to be fairly good. Despite taking a little longer than what I consider to be the norm to dry, the liner itself is creamy, smooth, pigmented, feels extremely soft along the lash line and does not tug at my skin during application. Oh, and for a product promising to be both smudge proof and waterproof, it’s cost effective and gets the job done.

The opportunity had presented itself for me to go out one evening. After getting dressed, I felt real sassy and cute and proceeded to add the final touches to my overall look – my makeup of course! *twirls*

I decided to test the Purple Shocker as I figured it would complement my outfit very well, by helping to make it pop. I must say this led to a shocker indeed! In all my years of attempting makeup artistry, I have never encountered any problem with a product I’ve used per se. So how could I have possibly known that one was brewing right around the corner? Within two (2) hours of applying the purple liner, I found that my vision became blurred, and my eyes felt sore. They appeared bloodshot red, became extremely swollen, and gave off symptoms of an allergic conjunctivitis. Can you imagine my reactions of dismay and fury at that point in time? I was not only confused, but upset because I was unable to determine what it is that could have possibly contributed to such a horrible reaction. I mean I’ve had my fair share of allergic reactions throughout my lifetime, but none quite like this.

After the incident, I laid off the whole makeup bit for some time. When I thought that my eyes were better, having tried several home remedies, I tried the Purple Shocker once more for yet another occasion. Of course, it was just my luck to have history repeat itself. I experienced the same symptoms all over again that lasted for days. At this point it became very evident that it had to have been the purple eyeliner. I just couldn’t understand why it all came on through the application of the purple liner. So what could possibly be contributing to all these symptoms? By conducting research, I not only found that I wasn’t the only person to ever experience such symptoms, but realised that my allergic reaction may have been triggered by one of the dyes used in the production of the purple eyeliner. As for which one, I’m unable to say. It goes without saying, that ingredients vary in different coloured makeups, and regardless of them being fairly similar, one may be allergic to a specific mineral or metal used by the manufacturers of the purple eyeliner. My research also led to me finding out that the reaction did not come about through use of the brand, Rimmel London, but the purple coloured pencil instead. Many persons have made mention of having the same encounter with the use of the same colour, in multiple brands.

I must say I tried several tactics in an attempt to correct the problem I was having with my eyes. Home remedies employed include: flushing my eyes with water, and then with warm water and salt. I also tried using some “get the red out” eye drops. This combination seemingly worked, and in an effort to ensure that same does not recur, I have done a comparison, and have written down those ingredients found in the purple eyeliner not matching those in the other liners I own. This list I shall keep in my purse, so that I may have access to same once the decision has been made to purchase new liners for my makeup collection. In closing, this was a horrifying and painful experience that I wish on no one. My advice is that you become familiar with the products that you are using and try your utmost best to avoid the ones that may lead to potential harm. I know for me, purple eyeliners regardless of the brand, are a definite no no!

Please don't forget to comment and/or click that like button. Until next time guys, thanks for reading!!



  1. I just had this experience with a purple eyeliner myself. I'm sure the ingredient is Carmine -- which I just confirmed was in the Chanel purple eyeliner I purchased. I had used it only 2 times a month apart - and had a severe reaction both times. the first time I was convinced it was mascara - so, I threw that away -- but, for the second time I used the same purple eyeliner and my eyelids are swollen, my eyes are red and itchy and awful. I went to a minute clinic today and they are treating it like pink eye -- but, I think it was a reaction to the red dye used in purple liners. Ouch!!

    1. Thanks so much for sharing! I never had an allergic reaction like this one! I used the RIMMEL EXXAGERATE Waterproof Deep Ocean color #230. I love the color but my eyes look miserably read and swollen. I used it twice but both times my eyes had the same reaction! Great color but painful results!!

  2. I had this reaction from the black waterproof!!!

  3. I have a reaction every time I use a purple eyeliner. It had been months since I tried it and yesterday I tried again with a brand new one. Today I am off work with conjuctivitis in both eyes so it must be the purple eyeliner. Bummer, as it looks great but not worth this hassle.

  4. I have had an allergic reaction to just the plain black liquid eyeliner it was horrible me eyes swell up, but have used the brand for two years and never had a problem and out of no where just started happening looks like I need to get the ingredients list and stay away from those eyeliners that have the same elements

  5. I had months of conjunctivitis symptoms not nothing what on earth was happening to me or why. I threw all my makeup away and started again thinking it was contaminated. I had some relief for 2 weeks and then it was back. I finally realised it was everytime I used my Rimmel purple eyeliner. I have stopped using there purple eyeliner and suffered no more. I have since tried Bonjour brand purple eyeliner thinking it was just Rimmel and have sadly had the same reaction. So lesson learnt for me, I cant wear purple eyeliner as my eyes are super allergic to something in the ingredient for that colour.

  6. Omg moment finding this blog! The same thing has happened to me repeatedly with Physicians formula and as well as another brand's purple eyeliner and i wondered if i was the only person with such a weird issue. Pity..since purple is my fav colour

  7. Same thing happened to me with several different purple eyeliners. Love the color - not the allergic reaction!

  8. I have had intermittent conjunctivitis and I could not figure out the culprit. It happened again yesterday after using an Urban Decay 24/7 eyeliner in a purple color. This makes perfect sense. Is carmine only in purple colors? I definitely want to avoid those ones. My eyes do not approve :-))

  9. A good friend of mine is a chemist for one of the big-brand name department store make up counter chains; and I told him that any time I wear brown or purple eyeliner or mascara; I get the equivalent of conjunctivitis. He said that there is a red-based compound that goes into these colors that people are particularly sensitive to, and it is very common that people have these reactions. I am sticking to basic black and olive for my eyeliners these days.

  10. Same. It's the CARMINE, which can even be in some BLACK eyeliner (why?!?!). I get the swollen, sore, red-purple, drippy eyes with all purples I've tried from Colourpop, Urban Decay, Physician's Formula. I'm on the hunt for carmine-free purple shades.

  11. Thank you for sharing! I thought it was just me!


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