Doctors Issue Warning Over Dangerous New TikTok Trend Involving Putting Vaseline Inside Your Eye

By: Alec Donaldson | Published: Jan 29, 2024

A worrying TikTok trend, which has influenced Americans to apply Vaseline directly to their eyes, has forced opticians to speak out about the dangers associated with the “hack.” 

TikTokers claim it stops eyes from watering. However, opticians hit back, arguing that it may lead to serious problems for an individual’s eyes. 

Stop Eyes from Watering in Colder Conditions

Hundreds of videos centered on the trend that involves smearing Vaseline on the corners of an individual’s eye have appeared on TikTok in recent months. 

A small tub of Vaseline pictured on a wooden table

Source: Gado/Getty Images

According to TikTokers, the hack stops eyes from watering during freezing conditions and even ensures makeup remains intact.

Opticians Speak out Against Hack

The hack appears to have caught on across America, with some of the videos bolstering millions of views.

An optician uses specific tools to test the strength of a patient's eye

Source: Freepik

Opticians have now been forced to speak out about the potential dangers of placing Vaseline directly on the eyes.

Eye Specialists Warn of Trend’s Consequences

Opticians have argued people should think about the long-term health effects that are associated with the recent hack.

A man wearing a blue shirt compares two styles of glasses

Source: Freepik

According to the experts, the trend may lead to infections, difficulties seeing, and skin conditions.

TikToker Shows Off the Hack

One TikToker, @danicolexx, who has a respectful 467,000 followers, posted a video of the trend.

TikToker uses a cotton bud to apply Vaseline to her eyes

Source: @danicolexx/X

In the video, she is seen inserting a small cotton bud into a tub of Vaseline before applying it to the corners of both her eyes.

Vaseline Smeared into the Eyes Corners

Another TikToker, @yazmooremakeup, shared a video that shows her applying Vaseline directly to her eyes.

TikToker @yazmooremakeup pictured in a white sleeveless sweater

Source: @yazmooremakeup/TikTok

“The best life hack for if you struggle with watery eyes or your eyes stream a lot,” she said.


One TikToker Speaks Out Against Hack

Not all TikTokers are on board with the dangerous trend, however.

A man rubs his eye after it gives him a level of discomfort

Source: Freepik

According to @michaelgrullon_, he claims it’s, “The best hack to get milia and stye.”


Optician Expresses Concern

An optician at Feel Good Contacts, Tina Patel, has expressed concern about the recent online trend.

An optician uses a tool to test the quality of vision a patient has

Source: Freepik

She claims the hack should be “approached with caution” as it increases the chances of contracting milia.


The Chance of Developing Milia

Health experts define milia as tiny crystal-like cysts that appear on the skin. They’re filled with keratin, a protein typically found in hair, skin, and nails, and appear milky-white in color. 

Doctor smiles as he examines the eyes of a patient at his practice

Source: Freepik

Excessive UV exposure, as well as alcohol, are typical causes of milia. However, experts note that Vaseline can also lead to the development of the cysts. 


Vaseline Can Lead to Styes

Health experts also surmise that applying Vaseline to one’s eyes may result in styes

Vaseline tub pictured as it sits on a reflective surface

Source: Bill Tompkins/Getty Images

These typically appear as a painful lump on the inside of an individual’s eyelid. Often, it will result in the eye becoming slightly inflamed and watery.


Optician Advises Against the Trend

Another optician who’s spoken out against the recent trend is Mark Shelton, who works at Bayfields Opticians and Audiologists.

An optician dressed in a white coat stands in the middle of his office

Source: Freepik

“Although smearing Vaseline on the eyelids may be effective to stop them watering, it is not something that I would recommend,” he said.


Complications Arising from Vaseline Hack

Shelton explained the various complications that may arise from applying Vaseline to the eyes.

Male optician uses a large electric tool to test his patient's eyesight

Source: Freepik

“The eyelids contain meibomian glands which help to regulate the quality of the tears, and blocking these glands can cause complications like styes and cysts or even infections,” he said.