Have you long been jealous of your friend with camel-like lashes? So lengthy they can’t pay their bus fare without being accused of flirting with the driver? Well, those who bat their long lashes have it harder than the rest of us, as science now confirms.
Apart from doubling up as a pretty effective tool in the art of sex and seduction, we’ve always thought our lashes were there purely to keep debris from entering our eyes, but this new study suggests that the length of your lashes are all about keeping your peepers moisturised. As The Cut describe it, you can basically consider them the air traffic controllers of your precious, all-seeing eyeballs. Its quite the sophisticated system too.
David Hu, of the Georgia Institute of Technology, gathered together graduate students from his biomechanics lab and colleagues to explore, in depth, the role of our eyelashes. According to The New York Times who first reported this study, they measured the lashes of various different mammals, most of which have them. From here, they made an artificial eye, complete with fluttering lashes, so that they could put it in a wind tunnel and study how it reacts to air being blown directly at it.
If eyelashes are too long – more than one third as long as the eye is wide, which is the effective norm across all mammals – it has a counter-productive effect of driving more, unwanted air into the eye. Bad news for your flirty friends, eh?
So, would increased air to the eye put you off your favourite falsies? If it doesn’t bother Kim Kardashian, who’s never without her spidery eyes, we’ll do just fine.