Dressing up for Halloween can be fun! But if you are considering adding costume (cosplay) contact lenses to your ghoulish get-up this season, make sure you don’t purchase them from unlicensed dealers—or you and your eyes could be in for a real scare.
Costume contact lenses—also referred to as decorative, fashion, Halloween, colored, and theater contact lenses, are easy to find and are often sold illegally without a prescription online, at flea markets, novelty shops, barbershops, beauty salons, mall kiosks, Halloween costume stores, convenience stores, and even gas stations.
Don’t be fooled. In California, cosmetic contacts that do not correct your vision, just like contacts that correct your vision, must be prescribed by a licensed eye-care professional and sold by a licensed optometrist, ophthalmologist, or licensed contact lens dispenser. Otherwise, costume lenses purchased over the counter without a prescription from an unlicensed source are illegal and may harm your eyes or eyesight.
It is easy to verify the license of an optometrist, ophthalmologist, or contact lens dispenser with the license search tool from the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) https://search.dca.ca.gov/.
Need more convincing? Watch this 2019 PEEL by DCA video for more information.
Finally, DCA wants to remind you we are still battling COVID-19, and the County of Sacramento and the California Department of Public Health have guidelines available to help keep you, your family, and your community safe and help slow the spread of the coronavirus.