What does itchy eyebrows mean? What are some of the Itchy eyebrow superstition? Does eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis, eyebrow threading, plucking, waxing or lice cause eyebrows to become itchy? Discover more on causes, meaning, superstitions and treatments of itchy eyebrows that might be dry, red, bumpy or flaky.
Itchy eyebrows is a condition where your eyebrows, eyebrow area, areas near your eyebrow develop the sensation or desire to scratch it i.e. an irritating, prickling, or tingling sensation.
- 1 Where? Itchy Eyebrows and forehead, eyelids, scalp, ears, eyelashes
- 2 Symptoms expected
- 3 What causes itchy eyebrow?
- 3.1 1. Eyebrows itching after wax, threading, plucking and other brow beauty services
- 3.2 2. Seborrheic dermatitis on eyebrows
- 3.3 3. Eczema on eyebrows
- 3.4 4. Eyebrow fungus like ring worms
- 3.5 5. Itchy eyebrow dandruff
- 3.6 6. Psoriasis on eyebrows
- 3.7 7. Rosacea and eyebrows
- 3.8 8. Itchy eyebrow piercing
- 3.9 9. Eyebrow makeup use
- 3.10 10. Diabetes
- 3.11 11. Itchy eyebrows due to blepharitis
- 3.12 12. Eyebrow itching due parasite
- 3.13 13. Shingles
- 4 Other possible causes of itchy eyebrows
- 5 Dry itchy eyebrows
- 6 Red itchy eyebrows
- 7 Itchy flaky eyebrows
- 8 Itchy eyebrows hair loss or falling out
- 9 Itchy eyebrow superstition and what does itchy eyebrows mean
- 10 Itchy eyebrow treatment and cures
Where? Itchy Eyebrows and forehead, eyelids, scalp, ears, eyelashes
Depending on what causes it and if the cause has affected other areas, it is possible to have itchy eyebrow bone area only or itchy eyebrow and scalp, eyelashes, head, neck, cheeks, forehead, beard, face, and scalp, behind ears, hairline, in between your eyebrows, jaw and jawline, nose, nostril, among other places. It all depends on other places the causative agent may have affected. One e.g., the left or right eyebrow can be affected or both.
Besides being itchy, your eyebrows could also be crusty, flaky (scaly and flaking), be with bumps and spot), have a rash or no rash, swollen or even be red (skin redness), eyebrow balding (when you have eyebrow loss), pain, burning and stinging sensation on your eyebrows and any other affected part. Again, while some causes may be mild, others may be really itchy.
What causes itchy eyebrow?
Why are my eyebrows so itchy? Why do my eyebrows itch? What causes eyebrow to be itchy or what does it mean when your eyebrow itches? Let us look at the possible reasons why you have itching eyebrows.
1. Eyebrows itching after wax, threading, plucking and other brow beauty services
If you end up with itchy eyebrows and eyebrow areas after waxing, threading, tweezing or other eyebrow shaping procedures, it is possible they make be causing the itchiness, soreness and irritated eyebrow skin, which is very delicate.
It is normal to have bumps and mild itchiness that will disappear after a few days but if bumps, rash or itchy eyebrows after waxing, threading or tweezing persists, there is a possibility of skin infections.
Your dermatologists should help determine if you have any superficial skin infection that may be causing the rash, itchiness or bumps. Milder causes can be treated with OTC products and home remedies. Try home remedies such as use of ice on the affected parts; try applying aloe vera gel carefully to ensure they do not worsen the inflammation.
2. Seborrheic dermatitis on eyebrows
Another common reason why your eyebrows may be itchy is seborrheic dermatitis on eyebrows. According to the healtline.com, seborrheic dermatitis “often affects the scalp, but it can also cause itchy, flaky eyebrows or skin issues in other oily areas. Seborrheic dermatitis may cause the skin to be slightly red”
It is one of the possible cause of a burning or itchy rash on eyebrows especially if it is swollen, red in color and greasy.
a). Seborrheic dermatitis and eyebrow loss
Besides itchiness, eyebrow loss is possible; this is According to WebMD, which notes that the fact that seborrheic dermatitis is “first and foremost a skin condition, but it can involve infection and temporary hair loss if the dermatitis is located on the scalp or other skin areas”. Your eyebrows are no exception.
b). Dermatitis on eyebrows treatment
If you have this skin problem, you should know that that the American Academy of dermatologists states that, “although treatment cannot cure seborrheic dermatitis, treatment has benefits. Treatment can loosen and remove scales, prevent a skin infection, and reduce swelling and itch.”
Common recommended medications include barrier repair creams, gentle removal of scales, and use of medicated dandruff shampoos (with ketoconazole, selenium sulfide, ciclopirox, coal tar, zinc pyrithione, and salicylic acid), tar creams, , as well as other short-term medications to easy symptoms such as itchiness especially steroid creams.
c.) Seborrhoeic dermatitis on eyebrows pictures
To help you identify how eyebrow dermatitis may look like, see the below two seborrheic dermatitis eyebrows pictures.
3. Eczema on eyebrows
Eczema refers to a number of skin conditions that inflame and irritate the skin, which can affect various areas of your body including the face including eyebrows (and at times you can have eczema between eyebrows), on back of your knees, the wrist, etc. The most common type of eczema is atopic dermatitis.
According to WebMD, “eczema symptoms include itchy, red, and dry skin caused by inflammation.” It begins with a rash on the affected area then it can develop into a thickened, very dry scaly skin. On people who have fair skin, the affected area can be reddish but later it turns brown in color.
It is common in young children but it can also affect adults i.e. 20%-30% of children and about 3% of adults in America.
The cause of eczema is not known. However, it is assumed to be connected to the response of the body on allergens
Eczema under eyebrow treatment objective is to contain itching where cold compresses, moisturizing your eyebrows, the use of OTC hydrocortisone 1% cream, tar and other types of antihistamines are used. In case the itching triggers infections, bacterial infections can be treated with antibiotics while fungal with antifungals.
4. Eyebrow fungus like ring worms
Tinea or ringworms according to medscape.com, a “superficial fungal infection of the scalp skin and hair that may also affect the eyebrows and eyelashes.” Medicinenet.com goes ahead to state that ringworms can cause a “scaly, crusted rash that may appear as round, red patches on the skin .Other symptoms and signs of ringworm include patches of hair loss or scaling on the scalp, itching, and blister-like lesions” .
Note that ringworms or fungal infection in eyebrows contagious and they can spread from one individual to another. Treatment of fungus on eyebrow is by antifungals both oral and topical.
5. Itchy eyebrow dandruff
Dandruff (pityriasis simplex capillitii or scurf) is a skin condition, which according to eyecare.ygoy.com “scalp, eyelids, eyebrow, ear, nose sides, facial skin, beard and hair bearing parts of chest.” It causes itchiness and flaking i.e. according to WebMD, it causes “flakes of skin that range from small and white to large, greasy, and yellow”. Expect also itching on affect areas, which often include nose, hairline, ears, chest and back centers.
Some patients may have dry crusty eyebrow area. In acute cases eyebrow hair loss, an inflamed, red eyebrow may also be present.
Although the actual cause is not known, dandruff is associated with a number of possible factors, which include:
- Seborrheic dermatitis
- Not brushing your hair sufficiently
- Yeast infection
- Dry skin
- Not shampooing your hair adequately
- Reaction to eyebrow care products
- Poor diets especially those lacking zinc, B vitamins and some fat types.
- Some skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, among others make people more susceptible to dandruff.
- Some illness such as Parkinson’s disease as well as neurological problems tend to have dandruff more often.
To deal with eyebrow dandruff, there are anti-dandruff shampoos and scalp preparation. According to NHS.UK, you need to look for ingredients such as selenium sulfide, ketoconazole, zinc pyrithione, coal tar, salicylic acid, tea tree oil and green tea.
6. Psoriasis on eyebrows
Psoriasis is an inflammation disease that leads to dry red patches that won’t go away. It is possible to suffer from facial psoriasis and to be specific sebo-psoriasis, which affects your eyelids, nasolabial folds, beard and eyebrows. Common symptoms include thin “salmon pink, thin plaques with bran-like scale.”
Treatment of Eyebrow psoriasis is by tropical anti-inflammatory such as topical corticosteroids, topical anthralin, retinoids, vitamin D analogues, calcineurin inhibitors, salicylic acid, coal tar, as well as moisturizers. Light therapy and oral medications can also be used.
7. Rosacea and eyebrows
This is inflammatory skin disorders characterized by stinging or burning read flushed skin, visible blood vessel, papules and pustules common on central face zone. According to Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD, most people who have rosacea tend to also have seborrheic dermatitis, which we have seen, affects eyebrows and in between eyebrows, on scalp as well as other body parts. Rosacea itself may not affect your eyebrows.
8. Itchy eyebrow piercing
For those who have eyebrow piercings, soreness, inflammation and itchiness may be due to infections. Although this happens near the piercing site, it is possible for it to affect a larger area around the piercing.
When you have an infection, Infinitebody.com notes that “the entire area may get shiny, itchy, and red, and there may be a yellow, green, or bloody discharge.” Serious causes of infections can lead to not only an itchy but also a swollen eyebrow.
9. Eyebrow makeup use
There are often cases of people complaining of itchy eyebrows after a tint, going for HD eyebrows, eyebrow embroidery, or even after permanent eyebrow makeup or tattooing. This could be due to allergic reaction due to certain eyebrow makeup especially to people who have a very sensitive skin.
Untreated or poorly managed type 1 and type 2 diabetes often lead to skin itchiness on various parts of the body include those on your eyebrows. This is often linked to high sugar levels it causes as well as compromised immunity, which will often make it easy for bacterial and fungal skin infections to thrive.
11. Itchy eyebrows due to blepharitis
According to the American Optometric association, blepharitis is an “inflammation of the eyelids in which they become red, irritated and itchy and dandruff-like scales form on the eyelashes.” Therefore if blepharitis, especially anterior blepharitis can cause itchiness below or under your eyebrow the eyebrow area and on your eyelashes.
12. Eyebrow itching due parasite
Having skin parasites such as lice can lead to itchiness on scalp, eyebrows or eyelashes. Although having lice on eyebrows is not common, it can happen. The itchiness is due to lice biting you which would be common at night.
Since lice spread, ensure you do not share brushes, scarves, hats, betting or any items that came in direct contact with an affected person.
To treat lice try OTC products such as 1 percent permethrin lotion or anything that has both pyrethrin and piperonyl butoxide. Your doctor or dermatologist may also recommend products that have ingredients such as ivermectin, benzyl alcohol, or Malathion.
Herpes zoster or shingles are known to cause rashes on various body parts including on your eyebrows. This is not common but possible. You will begin itching followed by burning and tingling sensation before you get a full rash. The problem is common in people in older adults, the sick, those who have much stress and do not get enough sleep. Shingles can spread through skin contacts with affected people, contact with open shingle blisters.
Shingle treatment is through antiviral medications and medications that can deal with pain including creams, anesthetics, corticosteroids and numbing agents.
Other possible causes of itchy eyebrows
Besides the above, other diseases, conditions or reasons why your eyebrows may be itchy include:
- Acne on eyebrows
- Eyebrow botox during eyebrow lift
- HIV rash and weak immunity due to HIV and AIDS can trigger a number of skin problems.
- a little itchiness when eyebrow is growing back can happen
Dry itchy eyebrows
From the above, the question of what causes dry itchy skin under eyebrows or dry itchy eyebrow is settled. Expect conditions such as eczema, harsh eye makeup, dandruff, psoriasis and others to make your skin to be dry.
Red itchy eyebrows
Itchy red eyebrows can be a result of the various causes we have seen including fungus, eczema, dandruff, psoriasis, piercing, blepharitis, seborrheic dermatitis among others. Generally, expect the skin to turn red if it is inflamed or is infected.
Itchy flaky eyebrows
Itching and flaking or flakey eyebrows can be due to conditions such as eyebrow fungus, dandruff, psoriasis, blepharitis (if on eyelids), seborrheic dermatitis and eczema. Look at other symptoms if you are trying to identify the actual cause of flaking on your eyebrows.
Itchy eyebrows hair loss or falling out
What causes itchy eyebrow loss or why do I have an itchy eyebrow with brow hairs falling off? Well, if you are having eyebrows itching and falling out, there are a number of eyebrow hair loss causes such as seborrheic dermatitis, eczema (atopic dermatitis), parasites on eyebrows, eyebrow dandruff and eyebrow fungus. All these can cause itchy brow area as well as make your eyebrow hair to fall out.
Itchy eyebrow superstition and what does itchy eyebrows mean
What does it mean when your eyebrow itches besides the real causes of itchiness on eyebrows we have seen? Different societies have different superstitions regarding having itching eyebrows. These are simply old wives tales, which associated itchy eyebrows with some good or bad omen.
For instance, itchy left eyebrow or eye in some society is taken to mean you will have a reunion with an old friend. On the other hand, if it is the left eyebrow or eye, you should expect a disappointment.
According to trange-ology.com, in other societies, itching eyebrow superstitions such as “if your right eyebrow suddenly itches, it means that someone is saying good things about you. If it is your left eyebrow itching, you are about to receive bad news” existed.
Itchy eyebrow treatment and cures
While looking at each of the causes of itchy eyebrows, we mentioned the relevant treatments you should go for. Depending on the cause, there are a number of other treatments and at home remedies, which your doctor may recommend.
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References and cited work
- Eczema Health Center: http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/eczema/
- Eyebrow Piercing FAQ: https://www.infinitebody.com/facial/eyebrow-faq/
- Blepharitis: http://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/eye-and-vision-problems/glossary-of-eye-and-vision-conditions/blepharitis?sso=y
- What Causes Itchy Eyebrows? http://www.healthline.com/health/itchy-eyebrows#1
- Tips to Cure Eyebrow Dandruff: http://eyecare.ygoy.com/2011/09/06/tips-to-cure-eyebrow-dandruff/
- Ringworm: http://www.medicinenet.com/ringworm/article.htm
- Tinea Capitis: http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1091351-overview
- How is rosacea linked to a red, itchy rash around the eyebrows? https://www.sharecare.com/health/rosacea-cutaneous/how-rosacea-linked-rash-eyebrows
- NHS Choices – Dandruff http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/dandruff/pages/introduction.aspx
- 9 Crazy Eyebrow Superstitions: Http://Strange-Ology.Com/Health-And-Beauty/9-Crazy-Eyebrow-Superstitions/