You’ve been there before: You’re scrolling through your Instagram feed when you see your favorite celeb post about their favorite new product — a face serum, vitamins that will make your skin brighter, or a specialty food service. You can’t help but want to be like the stars, but are the products worth it? In Elite Daily’s new series, I Tried, we put it all to the test. We’re trying those products as well as celebrities’ health and wellness tips, recipes, and life hacks. We’ll do the leg work and tell you what living like your fave star is really like.
At least a decade before Kim Kardashian’s colored contacts became national news, I begged my mom to buy me lenses when I was about 13 years old. It was the ’90s and we were shopping at the Santee Alley in Los Angeles, which is basically a swap meet for cheap clothes and knockoff makeup. Obviously, she laughed at me. First of all, I was way too young to be altering my look, and she wasn’t about to buy me some sketchy lenses from an alley in downtown. Now that I’ve gotten older (and slightly wiser), I appreciate that she was smart about it, but I’ve literally wanted colored contacts ever since then.
15 years later, I finally got to live out my teenage beauty dreams. I was invited to Tokyo with Japanese beauty brand Koh Gen Do to learn all about the local beauty scene. We went shopping for beauty products in a ton of pharmacies and department stores, and I noticed colored contacts were everywhere. The 13 year old in me was screaming, so I bit the bullet and bought two colors — I opted for both a green and a bluish-gray shade. I needed the help of a Koh Gen Do team member to translate for me as I filled out a waiver. I still have no idea what I signed (pray for me).
While at the store, I became slightly overwhelmed by all the colors. I also couldn’t read anything on the packaging. So I grabbed two that looked cool and bought them (each box equals about $16 USD). I opted not to try them while in Tokyo, and decided to wait until I got home in fear that something would go wrong. I’m just super paranoid.
When I got home, I YouTubed a bunch of videos on how to apply colored contacts. Since I’ve never done it before, I want to make sure that I do it correctly. Plus, all the directions that came with the contacts are fully in Japanese. I came across this tutorial and totally imagined this is what I’ll look like trying to get them in:
The first thing I do in LA is stop at CVS to buy some contact lens solution. Full disclosure: I don’t even know if I need this, but again, I’m super paranoid. I even texted a few friends for support and also to ask if there should be a left and right lens. They all say it only matters if you have a prescription, and I don’t, so I got started.
First, I removed the lenses from their vials and soaked them in solution. I then tied my hair out of my face and cleaned my hands like a diligent surgeon preparing for surgery. I rubbed hand sanitizer all over, then washed my hands, and finished with more sanitizer.
I blocked out about an hour of time (which I’ve heard is a normal amount of time to get your first contacts in), but I was pleasantly surprised when I got the first lens in on my first shot. With my middle finger on my dominant hand, I just gently placed it n my eye and blinked about a million times to make sure it was in place. I didn’t even tear up.
My left eye instantly looked bigger AND I’m so obsessed with the color. It didn’t feel all that comfortable though. It’s a sensation that is difficult to describe. All I know is I can feel something in my eye. It moves a little bit every time I blink long enough, but I can still see. It’s not enough to scare me away though, so I moved on to the second eye.
Once both lenses are in, I love them so much, I can’t take it. It’s basically everything I love about Snapchat filters. It changes the color of my eyes, makes them look bigger, and even gives them a glossy twinkle. I’m not the only one who thinks so either. Even Kim Kardashian swears by contacts now. In a post on Instagram (which went up a day after I bought mine, thank you very much), she wrote, “New obsession. Colored contacts.”
However, I wore them for only an hour before I gave up and took them out (which, by the way was scarier that putting them in). They’re just uncomfortable, but I still have nine more sets of lenses, so hopefully I can wear them longer and longer each time.
To get them off my eyeballs, I tried a removal method that uses two Q-tips to pinch them out. It didn’t work. I started to freak out thinking that they’d be stuck in my eyeballs forever. I got so anxious that I just stuck my finger in my eye, slid the contacts over to the outer corner of my eye, and plucked ’em out.
Once I get them both out, I savor the feeling and rub my eyes for a few seconds. I can’t wait to try the other color and take a million selfies, but man, they gotta make these things more comfortable.