In need of a good cry? You’re not the only one. Science (and both Frozen movies) tell us that it’s better to let it go rather than hide your emotions.
Contrary to popular belief, a solid session of ugly crying is far from weak, because crying is actually good for your health. The old guard used to say that there is no place for crying in the workplace. Yet, because we’re human beings with eyes that cry, often we have no choice. A paradox.
I’m sure you’ve heard the rumors about crying and how it can be good for your eyelashes. Well, it’s just that: a rumor.
Truth is, crying has many, many benefits for both the mind and the body, but making your natural eyelashes grow longer just isn’t one of them.
In reality, there is absolutely zero scientific evidence to suggest that crying causes eyelashes to grow longer (le sigh). The growth of eyelashes is determined by genetics and the natural growth cycle of hair. As we all know, crying can cause temporary swelling of the eyelids, which can cause eyelashes to appear longer–but this is not the same as actual growth. Sorry to rain on your parade.
HOWEVER: Here are a few other health benefits of crying:
Crying is Self-soothing
Researchers have found that a good old-fashioned sob sesh helps activate the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), which helps your body rest, among other things. It may take several minutes of shedding tears before you feel the soothing effects of crying, but feel them you will.
Crying Helps with Pain
During prolonged crying, oxytocin and endogenous opioids, which are also known as endorphins, are released into the body. The presence of these feel-good chemicals can help with physical and mental pain. The endorphins released by your body may lead to the feeling that your body has gone into a fuzzy state.
Having an abundance of oxytocin can give you a feeling of calm and wellbeing–which helps your brain react differently to pain and discomfort.
Crying Improves Your Mood
Even though it seems counterintuitive, crying can actually improve your mood.
In addition to relieving pain, crying, specifically sobbing, may even lift your spirits even if it’s just for a short period of time. When you sob, you often take in a lot of quick breaths of cool air. Breathing in cooler air can help regulate and even lower the temperature of your brain. A cool brain is more ideal for your mental state than a warm brain. As a result, your mood may greatly improve after a crying episode.
But, Does Crying Make Your Eyelashes Grow Longer?
If you’ve ever cried your eyes out and wondered, “does crying make your eyelashes grow longer?” you’re not alone. It’s a common misnomer, and there honestly might be a tiny bit of (unscientific) truth to this idea. When you cry, your eyelashes become wet with tears and appear to be thicker, but it’s just an illusion.
However, crying can help release toxins, moisturize your skin, and make you feel better overall–all of which can contribute to growing longer eyelashes. Maybe it’s a stretch, maybe there’s something to it.
At the end of the day, crying is good for you. And even though crying won’t make your eyelashes longer, it will make you feel better. So, just let it out. And then smile, because you’re okay.