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Can Colored Contacts Damage Your Eyes? Common Mistakes Revealed

Colored contacts are a popular fashion accessory that can dramatically change your look. But the question, “Can colored contacts damage eyes?” is a concern many users share. To ensure eye safety, it’s essential to understand proper colored contact use.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Colored contacts, prescription or otherwise, are classified as medical devices. As such, purchasing colored contacts should always involve a valid prescription. Even with perfect vision, colored contacts should never be taken lightly.

Ignoring guidelines on colored contact usage can potentially lead to severe ocular infections and permanent vision damage. Every year, ophthalmologists report injuries related to improper colored contact use, especially around festive occasions like Halloween.

Here are some common mistakes to avoid in order to answer the question, “Are colored contacts bad for your eyes?” and ensure safe usage.

can colored contacts damage your eyes

Don’t Share Your Colored Contacts

Just as you wouldn’t share personal items like underwear or a toothbrush, you should never share your colored contacts. Colored contacts adapt to the shape of your eyeball once worn, which means swapping them with friends can cause discomfort and itching. The base curve that might be perfect for your friend could be too tight or too loose for you.

Avoid Napping in Your Colored Contacts

Most vigilant colored contact users occasionally nap with their lenses in, believing it to be harmless. However, this practice can increase the risk of microbial keratitis – an infection that could lead to permanent vision impairment.

Sleeping with colored contacts hampers the oxygen flow to your cornea, encouraging microbial germs to infiltrate your ocular tissues. This could lead to light sensitivity, unusual itching or burning, inflammation, and a gross discharge.


Keep Your Colored Contacts Away from Water

Answering the question, “Can colored contacts damage your eyes?” involves addressing another common mistake – exposing colored contacts to water.

Contact with water can introduce a microorganism named Acanthamoeba keratitis to your colored contacts. This parasite feeds on the human cornea and could cause severe eye damage or vision loss.

Always store your colored contacts away from water supplies and only rinse them with a suitable disinfectant. The same applies to contact lens cases.

Avoid Topping Solution

It may be tempting to top off your solution instead of replacing it entirely, but this practice can render your disinfectant ineffective. After 24 hours, your contact lens case can become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria.

Always disinfect your contacts after each use and ensure they are stored in a fresh solution. Consider daily disposable colored contacts if maintaining regular cleaning routines is a challenge.

Don’t Use Colored Contacts Past Their Expiry Date

Even if your colored contacts appear perfectly fine past their expiry date, it doesn’t mean they’re safe. Bacteria could have accumulated, and a stubborn protein or fat film can cloud your vision. Always respect the expiry date of your colored contacts and replace them as needed.


In conclusion, are colored contacts bad for your eyes? No, as long as they are used properly and responsibly. Enjoy your colored contacts and remember – eye health always comes first.

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