At a certain age, your morning mirror gazing may begin to cause you some stress as you come to the abrupt realization that your youthful supply of collagen has, yes, begun depleting. Unfortunately, one of the first signs appears around the delicate skin of your under eyes.
Our under eye skin is about 1/10th the thickness compared to the rest of our facial skin. This opens up the possibility of blood vessels or the peri-orbital bone becoming exposed through the newly translucent skin, giving the appearance of dark circles or an overall ‘tired’ look.
Currently there aren’t too many studies available that provide solid proof of why some of us are more prone to dark or puffy eyes. However, there are some theories.
Besides age, here are some other possible contributing factors to the tired under eye look:
- Heredity – Like varicose veins, dark circles can be an inherited trait. For example, the more fair skinned someone is, the more translucent their skin will be, thereby accentuating any underlying veins or bone.
- Lack of nutrients – Lack of essential nutrients such as iron is said to increase under eye darkness. We are what we eat, and dark under eyes may be your body saying it’s missing something. Lots of water is also crucial in keeping skin hydrated.
- Fatigue – Although the science behind the exact number of hours of sleep we actually need is mixed, generally if we aren’t getting enough sleep or reversely if we are getting too much sleep we will awake with puffy or dark under eyes. Take some time to monitor how many of hours of sleep your body needs to feel rejuvenated.
- Hyper-pigmentation – The production of melanin can often give the impression of darker under eyes. Sun-glasses will help-out with this problem if the hyper-pigmentation is self-induced, i.e., excessive tanning. A good way of indicating hyper-pigmentation is by pulling the skin sideways and watching if the darkness turns blotchy. If it does, that’s evidence the problem is caused by excess pigment in the area, says Joseph Eviatar, MD, a New York ophthalmic plastic surgeon.
- Sleeping position – Thanks to gravity, sleeping on your side or stomach can encourage fluids to collect under your eyes. If you’re a side sleeper, you may notice a heavier bag on the side you sleep on. If you often wake up with puffy eyes, try sleeping on your back and see if you notice the difference.
8 Simple Home Remedies For Those Dark or Puffy Under Eyes
When it comes to beauty products, the CE team likes to recommend going as natural as possible. Expensive creams with large lists of chemicals aim to stimulate collagen production but fall flat with their results. One especially nasty ingredient to look out for is hydroquinone, a skin lightening ingredient known to cause cancer in rats.
Nevertheless, here are 8 simple tried, tested, and true beauty remedies for dark or puffy under eyes.
Yes, the trans-generational cucumber beauty tip actually holds true. Cucumbers contain a rejuvenating blend of antioxidants and flavinoids, as well as ascorbic and caffeic acid, all which help with reducing fluid retention. Cucumbers are said to have a mild skin lightening effect as well. Placing a fresh cut cucumber on both eyes for 10-5 minutes should do the trick.
2) Raw potato
Potatoes contain a mild bleaching agent, called catecholase, to help with dark pigmentation. Rubbing a peeled potato on freckles or applying the juice from a grated potato to age spots will help lighten mild skin discoloration. 10-15 minutes is ample time for the potato to works its mojo.
3) Rose water
One of the main benefits of rose water is that it acts as an anti-inflammatory, soothing irritated skin. Roses are a rich source of antioxidants, which can help strengthen skin cells and regenerate skin tissue. Apply with a cotton pad for a soothing finish.
4) Lemon Juice
Lemon juice acts as a mild skin lightener due to the presence of vitamin C. Use a cotton pad to apply, leave on for 10 minutes and wipe away with a damp cloth. For people with sensitive skin, blend some fresh cucumber with lemon juice and apply.
5) Coconut oil/castor oil
Using coconut oil as a moisturizer will help keep the under eyes moisturized and reduce the appearance of dry, depleted skin. If using in the daytime, dab a light layer of coconut oil around the dry areas, avoiding excessive oil on the nose, chin, or forehead. For people who are sensitive to coconut oil, try using castor oil. Castor oil is much thicker compared to coconut oil, so night time application may be more practical for some.
6) Cold tea bags
The caffeine and antioxidants in tea bags work to help treat dark circles as well as puffiness by shrinking the blood vessels and reducing fluid retention. The tannins, in particular, help decrease swelling and discoloration. Take two used and chilled tea bags (green or black tea preferably!) and place them under youreyes for 10-15 minutes.