There are a lot of beauty myths out there. Some people believe that you will get wrinkles if you don't sleep on your back.
Others think that using a certain type of moisturizer will keep them looking young forever. And one of the most common myths is that warm compresses cause wrinkles.
There is a lot of debate surrounding the topic of warm compresses and wrinkles. Some people swear that this beauty treatment causes premature skin aging, while others maintain that it is an effective way to reduce puffiness and dark circles for maximum effect.
So, what is the truth? In this blog post, we will take a closer look at the science behind this myth and help you decide whether or not warm compresses are right for you!
What is an Eye Compress?
An eye compress is a small, soft pad soaked in warm water and placed over the eye lids. An eye compress aims to reduce inflammation and help with conditions like dry eyes, pink eye, and sinus infections.
Warm compresses are also sometimes used to relieve pain in the eye area from headaches or migraines.
They also help reduce puffiness and dark circles when used for normal beauty purposes.
In some cases, people (no matter what age group) and especially dry eye sufferers also use cold compresses with massage to help with inflammation of the eye lids.
How Do Eye Compresses Work?
Eye compresses work by increasing blood flow to the area and reducing inflammation.
The light, warm temperature of the compress helps to dilate blood vessels, soothe the intra ocular pressure, and increase circulation.
This can help to reduce the appearance of puffiness, dark circles and other eye conditions.
Additionally, the moist heat accompanied with massage can help to relieve normal pain, tension headaches and other eye problems.
Eye compress can also:
1. Add moisture.
Cold compress can help to relieve the gritty sensation that accompanies dry closed eyes when there's no enough tears.
When used with a sterile saline solution, a compress can also help to flush out irritants, watery tears, and reduce swelling and inflammation risk, especially when your eyes feel really sensitive.
2. Keep natural oils from clogging.
Oil is made in the glands in your eyelids. It may get thick or clumpy, and it might block them up from time to time.
A stye or chalazion, for example, is a form of blocked oil (blepharitis) that can cause your eyelid to swell. Oil might be thinned by heat from a compress, making it easier to drain.
3. Relieve pain.
An eye compress might provide fast relief for you if you have redness or discomfort from pinkeye or another exposure or eye condition.
Additionally, warm compresses applied on the head can help soothe pain from headaches or migraines. If you constantly experience other sensitive eye problems, eye compresses work as well!
4. Ease other strains.
The cold wetness might help to ease the strain in your eyes and blood vessels. You might also see some benefits if you have any hot pain in your neck or head. It works even if the affected eye is sensitive!
What's The Difference Between a Cold and Warm Compress?
A cold compress will not increase the temperature of the area as much as a warm compress will.
Cold compresses can be used to help with swelling, inflammation, and pain relief. They can also help to reduce puffiness and redness.
Meanwhile, warm compresses can help to increase blood flow and provide relief from swelling and tension headache exposure.
When used with a sterile saline solution, warm compresses in the tear ducts can also help to flush out irritants and stop swelling and inflammation.
Are There Any Risks Associated with Using an Eye Compress?
There are some risks associated with using an eye compress, especially if you have certain medical conditions, eye injury, or eye disease.
According to a 2013 study by eye doctors, eye massage using a warm compress can raise the risk of sensitive corneal damage.
"Lid and corneal temperatures were significantly elevated during the application of warm compresses and minimal pressure. The mean maximum outer upper lid and central corneal temperatures were 42.2°C and 39.4°C, respectively, and were reached at 6 and 8 minutes; both temperatures were significantly higher than respective mean baseline temperatures of 35.4°C and 35.9°C (P < .0001)."
"There were no significant lid or corneal surface temperature changes from baseline observed in control eyes, and baseline temperature values did not differ significantly between test eyes and control eyes."
This study showed that applying a warm compress to the affected eye can cause significant heat transfer. The pressure applied does not have to be very high for this to happen.
If you use warm heating methods to keep the heat of the compress going, the temperature can reach high levels more quickly.
This can cause thermal damage to the cornea and tear duct plugs.
Additionally, people with diabetes or meibomian gland dysfunction should avoid using warm compresses. These conditions can make it difficult for the body to regulate its temperature.
Warm compresses can also cause burns if they are too hot. Make sure to test the temperature of the compress before applying it to your eyes.
So Can Warm Eye Compresses Cause Wrinkles?
Since no clinical trials have been conducted on this topic, the verdict is still out on whether or not warm eye compresses cause wrinkles.
Most people believe that warm compresses do no such thing and instead do the opposite: the moist heat generated from warm compresses help increase blood circulation, which can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles.
One can also argue that some popular beauty treatments use heat for anti-aging purposes.
The treatments typically entail heating the tissue with radio-frequency or ultrasound waves. They stimulate the growth of collagen, a fibrous protein that is essential in maintaining youthfulness and elasticity in the skin.
But while there is no concrete evidence that warm eye compresses can cause wrinkles, there are some risks associated with using them.
It is best to err on the side of caution and avoid using them if you have any medical conditions that could be exacerbated by heat or pressure applied to the eyes. Same goes with cold compresses.
You can consult your eye doctor to be sure.
How to Make a Warm Eye Compress
When making your own warm compress, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
You will need:
A clean, soft wash cloth
A bowl or cup
Step 1: First, wet the wash cloth with hot water.
Make sure that the water is not too hot – it should be comfortable to the touch. Use a bowl or cup to wet the wash cloth if you are having trouble controlling the temperature of the water.
Step 2: Next, wring out the cloth.
Make sure the wash cloth is damp but not dripping wet. You don't want the compress to be dripping all over your eyes.
Step 3: Fold the cloth into a square or rectangle and place it over your eyes.
Lie down so that your head is resting on a pillow, and the cloth can completely cover both of your eyes.
Step 4: Close your eyes and relax for a maximum of ten minutes.
You can also try massaging your temples with your fingers while the compress is in place. If the cloth starts to cool off, you can re-wet it with hot water.
Step 5: Repeat this process once or twice a day, as needed.
Remember to clean the cloth after each use and never reuse a hot compress that has already been used.
Warm Eye Compress FAQs
Can I use a warm compress if I have dry eyes?
While there is no evidence that suggests warm compresses can cause wrinkles, it is best to avoid using them if you have dry eyes.
This is because the heat from the compress can further evaporate the tears on your cornea, leading to increased discomfort and irritation.
How often should I use a warm compress?
If you decide to use a warm compress, you should only use it once or twice a day.
Never reuse a compress that has already been used, and make sure to clean the cloth after each use.
What are some alternative treatments for wrinkles?
If you are looking for alternative treatments for wrinkles, you may want to try one of the following:
Using a retinol cream
Getting Botox injections
Using an at-home microdermabrasion kit
Using an at-home LED light therapy device
These are just a few of the many options that are available to you. Talk to your doctor or dermatologist to find out which treatment is right for you.
The Bottom Line
Using a warm compress for the eyes has long been a popular beauty treatment, but there is no evidence to suggest that it can cause wrinkles. This beauty myth is baseless at best!
While there are some risks associated with using a warm compress, such as increased irritation for those with dry eyes, the benefits of using one outweigh the risks.
Just remember to test the temperature of the water before wetting the cloth, and never leave the compress on for more than ten minutes.
So there you have it! It's time to put those worries to bed and enjoy the benefits of a relaxing warm compress.