Doctors are warning of a dangerous new TikTok trend that sees people apply lip balm to their eyelids to ‘get high’ or pull an all night study session.
‘Beezin’, which first emerged in the 2010s, involves people putting Burt’s Bees lip balm around their eyes to imitate and intensify the feeling of being high or drunk, as well as make them feel more alert.
While the trend last decade was short-lived, it is enjoying a renaissance in recent months after videos racked up millions of views on TikTok.
Doctors warned that promoting this idea was ‘dangerous’ because it could cause skin conditions such as eyelid dermatitis and possible infections, which could be ‘sight-threatening’.
A man applies Burt’s Bees Beeswax Lip Balm to his eyelids in a nightclub in a TikTok video that garnered eight million views
A Burt’s Bees representative told Fox News Digital that while the product may be 100 percent natural, ‘that doesn’t mean it can go on eyes’
Cosmetic scientist Carly Musleh said: ‘The skin on the eyes is super sensitive so doing something like [applying Burt’s Bees there] could cause contact dermatitis’
Burt’s Bees Beeswax Lip Balm, the classic flavor of which contains peppermint, can leave users’ lips feeling cold and tingly.
The same effect can be felt on the eyelids when applied there, as the peppermint oil causes a burning sensation that reportedly leaves people’s eyes feeling alert.
Videos show people rubbing the lip balm around their eyes and then passing it onto their friends.
Burt’s Bees Beeswax Lip Balm has ingredients including peppermint oil. The brand’s Medicated Moisturizing Lip Balm also contains menthol.
Both of these substances will give a cooling effect where applied, which can also make people feel more alert.
Dr Mike Balgemann, an optometrist in Illinois, told DailyMail.com: ‘The menthol gives eyes a cooling effect from its alcohol nature. However, that is only a temporary effect that pinches blood vessels and also dries the eyes out with repeated use.
‘Getting menthol into the eyes will generally just irritate the eyes, leaving a person with the mistaken impression that they’re more awake from the discomfort. This will make the eyes water to flush the foreign agent.’
He added that the ‘eyelids is thinnest of any skin on our body—it’s highly sensitive and very delicate’.
If the substance gets into the eyes, it could increase the risk of glaucoma, cataracts, and infection, Dr Balgemann said.
He added: ‘Applying menthol-based balm to the eyelids is taking a risk. Using someone else’s lip balm, used on the lips, then on the eyes, is a vector for infection. Any infection on the surface of the eye is potentially sight-threatening.
‘Using a lip balm on an eyelid that may have come into contact with a viral infection such as a cold sore on the lip can increase the risk for a herpes infection of the eye which can do significant damage to the window of your eye, the cornea.’
Professor Bernard Chang, consultant ophthalmologist at Newmedica, told DailyMail.com: ‘This is a potentially dangerous trend which we would advise anyone against doing. Lip balm contains many types of natural oils which are likely to act as an irritant if accidently applied to the surface of the eye.
‘Eyelids are vascular so there can be some skin absorption. Eyelid skin is also very thin and easily irritated and this could cause pain, redness, and potentially surface abrasions.’
Cosmetic scientist Carly Musleh also warned against the trend on TikTok. She said that applying lip balm to the eyelids ‘could cause contact dermatitis’.
Eyelid dermatitis is a common condition that leads the skin on or around the eyelid to get dry, itchy, and sore.
A representative for Burt’s Bees told Fox News Digital that while the product may be 100 percent natural, ‘that doesn’t mean it can go on eyes’.
They said: ‘Burt’s Bees tests all of its products, including the Beeswax Lip Balm to ensure they are safe for their intended use. We recommend that people use our products as directed.’
Optometry Times’ Editorial Advisory Board member Milton Hom said the trend could result in ‘a full-blown inflammatory response requiring treatment’.