So You Wear Contacts

I’ve been going to Burning Man since 2014 and I’ll be honest, wearing contacts is a B!#&H. Burning Man is honestly the single biggest reason that I want LASIK. There is an incredible amount of dust flying around at all times, so putting in your contacts without scratchiness is incredibly difficult and time consuming each morning. Just look at this dust storm


HOWEVER. I have found a manageable approach over the years, with one huge realization: It’s the dust that’s already in your eyes that is the issue before you put them on!

Here is my approach.

Supplies To Bring

  • 21 days worth of dailies
  • 2-3 small bottles of good solution
  • 1 box of Systane drops
  • 4-6 packets of tissues
  • Non-Scented Wet Wipes

How To Put In Contacts

  1. Use Wet Wipes to clean your hands and wipe off your face and eyelashes of all dirt, dust, grime
  2. Use contact solution to lightly rinse out your eyes so they are clean; blink while adding drops
  3. Grab two fresh contacts and open them in front of you
  4. Add two-three drops, dip out excess solution
  5. Attempt application of contact to eye
  6. Does your eye feel scratchy? Chances are you didn’t clean your eye enough in step 2. Remove contact to open tab, refresh.
  7. Add drops to eye to clean excess dirt, repeat.
  8. If you have failed after 6+ attempts for the same eye, you may have rinsed your eyes so much that natural lubrication is lost or you’ve simply aggravated your eye. You might have to reattempt in an hour or so, and drink TONS of water.

That’s it. Usually I have found that there is dirt in my eye vs there being an issue with the contact lens itself being dirty, or my hands. You can repeat re-applying the same contact lens three to four times and finally nail it before trying a fresh one. But this is also why you bring 3x as many daily lenses that you’ll need. Since I go for seven days, I bring 21 days worth, or 42 lenses. Don’t even TRY using bi-weeklies or monthlies.

It is CRUCIAL to clean off your eyelashes and eyes of crusties! This was my biggest realization. For years I thought my hands were not clean enough, and that dirt was getting on my lens while I was putting them in. NOPE! It was that my eyes were ALREADY DIRTY!! Lightly rinse out your eyes of dirt and ensure there is no dirt on your eyelashes. It is possible that you rinse out your eyes so much that they lose their natural lubrication, you’ll just have to trust that it will get better after a few hours at this point.

And another factor that I didn’t consider for several years: You may be incredibly dehydrated. Drink stupid amounts of water, this will naturally help your eyes lubricate.

Good Luck out there.