Under eye bags and circles are very common concerns among women. Most of us would have dealt with any one of these during different times in our lives. Cleansing with cold water or using a concealer seems to be the solution for most of us to control these two, but there is more to understand about these two conditions.
Causes for dark circles:
- Fat loss beneath the eyes
- Broken blood vessels
Tips to get rid of dark circles and eye bags:
- Sound sleep – One of the easy ways to do away with dark eye circles is to get enough sleep. It helps to keep the eyes bright and gives time for the body to repair the cell damage.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine intake – Caffeine and alcohol are good stimulants for short-term, but are not good for the skin. Both of these cause mild dehydration, making the under eye circles more obvious.
- Use skin lighteners and bleaching agents – “If hyperpigmentation is the cause of dark circles under the eyes, skin lightening agents, such as retinol, hydroquinone, kojic acid, green tea, vitamin C, and soy, are recommended," says Sonia Badreshia-Bansal, MD, dermatologist in California. These products act better when sun damage is avoided using sunscreen. Badreshia-Bansal suggests the use of sunscreen containing zinc with SPF of 30.
- Injectable fillers – These fillers are recommended if the under eye circles are caused by the broken blood vessels under the eyes. “Fillers are used when puffiness is caused by the loss of fat under the eyes," says Badreshia-Bansal.
- Laser treatments and vitamin K – Laser treatments are usually used when the dark eye circles are caused by broken blood vessels. Products containing vitamin K may also be helpful in reducing the conditions.
- Use a concealer which is a shade lighter – This helps to make a skin tone that disguises the dark circles. Maximum benefits can be obtained by using a concealer with SPF 15 or higher. Oil-free concealers are recommended if the skin is oily or if it is prone to acne.
Tips to prevent puffiness
Puffiness of eye is caused by lack of sleep, age, and an unhealthy diet.
Some of the methods to reduce the puffiness include:
- Good sleep – Eight hours of quality sleep is one of the most important and simple methods to avoid having bags under the eye.
- Keep hydrated – According to Chicago dermatologist Carolyn Jacob, MD, keeping oneself well hydrated helps to prevent puffiness. Drinking plenty of liquids including water helps to keep the skin look healthy.
- Limit the intake of salt – Excess intake of salt causes water retention which makes the skin look puffy and dull. Reducing the intake of salt helps to reduce water retention and this can be done by reducing the intake of processed foods.
- Use cool compresses – Using chilled moist green tea bags helps to relieve puffiness to a large extent. Keeping cool cucumber slices or a bag of frozen peas or carrots on the eyes for 10 to 15 minutes is also recommended by Elizabeth L. Tanzi, MD, a Washington, DC dermatologist.
- Fillers – When collagen and elastin breakdown results in puffiness, use of fillers are usually recommended. This helps to make the puffiness look smaller.
- Accept it – Some people are prone to have puffy eyes and dark circles and when one gets older the dark circles and puffiness become more obvious as the skin becomes less resilient and weak.