Have you ever wondered why humans have evolved to still have eyebrows and eyelashes? Aside from being expressive, our eyebrows and eyelashes serve an essential purpose of naturally defending our eyes from airborne debris and other hazards that could damage our sight.
Why do we have eyebrows?
Eyebrows might be positioned far away from the delicate eye tissue, but they still play a critical role in protecting your eyes from damage.
Next time you feel sweat running down your forehead, notice that your eyebrows direct the droplets away from your eye sockets, sending them down the side of your face. It does the same thing with rain drops and steam from a hot shower, keeping irritants out of your sight.
Given this role, think twice before you decide to shape your eyebrows for cosmetic reasons. The currently on-trend bold and bushy brow is hopefully here to stay because it’s far more healthy for your eyes than a thin, over-plucked brow that will struggle to push liquids away.
Why do we have eyelashes?
Eyelashes extend from the very tip of our eyelids, creating a very dramatic effect, but they aren’t there for beauty. While some people have shorter lashes and others longer, more full lash lines, the purpose remains the same. Your eyelashes serve to capture debris and keep them away from your sensitive eye tissue.
While your eyes are open, eyelashes do an okay job or capturing lint and other things that are flying through the air. When your eyes are closed, they provide a nice seal that keeps debris from resting on your eyelids and falling into your eyes when you open them.
What’s more, eyelashes are extremely sensitive. They’re almost like an animal’s whiskers. If you touch the very tip, you’ll sense it immediately. Hundreds of times a day, your eyelashes sense when they come into contact with tiny debris in the air and it induces the blinking reflex, preventing them from making it into your eyes.
Is it safe to change your brows and eyelashes?
It’s not uncommon to change the shape of your eyebrows through waxing and plucking. You can even thicken your eyebrows by weaving in extensions and lengthen your eyelashes in a similar manner, but do those things affect eye health?
Generally speaking, changing up your brows and lashes won’t get in the way of their functions, unless the procedures you do end up thinning them out. For instance, repeatedly getting lash extensions and not properly caring for them can cause you to lose eyelashes, which can dampen their efficacy.
Lash perms and extensions can also be dangerous because of the chemicals they contain. If you’re wondering how to protect your eyes, ask your eye doctor for more information.