Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

News

Those Colored Contacts For Your Halloween Costume Could Make You Blind

LAist relies on your reader support, not paywalls.
Freely accessible local news is vital. Please power our reporters and help keep us independent with a donation today.

If you were planning on sporting a pair of cosmetic, colored contact lenses as part of your Halloween costume this year, you might want to....not do it.

A Department of Justice statement says that some of these colored, cosmetic contact lenses were "contaminated with dangerous pathogens that can cause eye injury, blindness and loss of the eye." Not only that, but non-prescribed lenses can also cause scratched corneas and conjunctivitis. Yikes.

The L.A. Times reports that on Friday, prosecutors with the U.S attorney's office in Los Angeles charged 10 Southern California vendors with misdemeanor offenses related to the illegal selling of cosmetic contact lenses, without requiring a prescription. The crack down is part of an investigation dubbed "Operation Fright Night."

"These products pose a serious danger to unsuspecting Halloween shoppers, and those who have already purchased these products should not use them," U.S. Atty. Eileen M. Decker said in a statement. "As required by the law, contact lenses should be used only when they are prescribed by a knowledgeable medical professional."

Support for LAist comes from

The vendors charged included beauty supply stores and other shops inside mini-malls. An official told NBC L.A that one of the offenders was a shoe store. "You shouldn't be buying contact lenses in a shoe store," she said.

As Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney in Los Angeles told the Times, "People are looking to come up with the ultimate costume—to accessorize their outfit—but they are really putting themselves in danger by using these products."

A British woman had quite the mishap recently when she wore colored contact lenses—they became glued to her eyeballs (warning: do not click if you're squeamish about eye stuff).