It doesn’t matter how old you are, there’s nothing that ages us as quickly as dark circles and bags under your eyes. While these pesky skin issues are more a nuisance than a cause for concern, that doesn’t take away from their frustration. From extreme puffiness that looks like bags under your eyes to dark circles that simply won’t go away, in order to look youthful, refreshed, and more awake, you’ll have to find ways to reduce their appearance or get rid of them for good. But, before we talk about how to get rid of dark of dark circles and bags under your eyes, we have to talk about what causes them and how to prevent them from ever appearing in the first place. If you’re lucky, with some lifestyle changes and simple skincare techniques, you can reduce your chances of having to deal with dark circles and bags. And if all else fails, we’ll go over everything you need to help you keep the dark circles and bags under your eyes at bay.
What Causes Dark Circles and Bags Under Your Eyes
Pinpointing just one cause of dark circles and bags under your eyes is difficult because the fact is, there are countless reasons you could be dealing with this frustrating skin issue. For some of us, puffy eyes and discoloration that appears as dark circles may be related to genetics. If your parents and siblings suffer from extreme puffiness and dark circles, chances are you’ll experience them easier and more frequently than someone who isn’t genetically predisposed. Also, if you have a lighter complexion or thinner skin, the appearance of dark circles and puffiness will simply be more noticeable than those who have darker or thicker skin. If you happen to fall into either of these camps of people, there are plenty of options that can help reduce the appearance of dark circles and bags under your eyes.
Before we discuss some of the main causes of dark circles and bags under your eyes, let’s take a look at the overall general cause which is weakening of the skin cells around the eyes due to age. As you get older, the skin cell regeneration process slows down along with the production of collagen and elastin which are essential proteins for healthy skin. When this happens, the skin may begin to wrinkle, sag, and lose its firmness. For eyes, this sagging can contribute to making the skin under the eyes appear puffy. This is typically how bags under the eyes occur for people who have mature skin.
Though age is a major factor when it comes to bags under the eyes and dark circles, it’s certainly not the only reason they can occur. Bags under the eyes and dark circles are commonly the result of things like allergies, other skin conditions like eczema, and even sensitivities that cause inflammation. If you suffer from skin conditions like eczema, dermatitis, or hormone fluctuations, it’s not uncommon to see those effects manifest as bags under the eye. Likewise, allergies often cause inflammation in the skin that can cause the eyes to become puffy as well.
And while most causes of dark circles and bags under your eyes are due to factors outside of your control, there are also many lifestyle habits that contribute to these skin conditions appearing. Smoking and excessive drinking are two of the main causes of dark circles appearing that are under our control. Our diet is another thing that we can control that can increase the appearance of dark circles and puffiness with salty foods being a major trigger. Even the way we sleep can affect whether or not dark circles and bags under your eyes will appear. Not getting enough is a definitive way to ensure you wake up with dark circles the next morning and sleeping face down can cause unnecessary inflammation which contributes to bags under the eyes.
How to Prevent Dark Circles and Bags Under Eyes
Before we dive into how to get rid of dark circles and bags under your eyes, let’s first discuss some ways you can prevent them from appearing in the first place. These measures are typically associated with the lifestyle habits that cause dark circles and bags, so being proactive in these areas can go a long way.
The easiest way to prevent dark circles and bags under your eyes is with a balanced diet that is rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C is a known collagen booster which helps your skin stay firm and strong. If you want to increase your chances of not dealing with dark circles and bags under your eyes be sure to follow a diet that is full of fruits like berries and citrusy options. Leafy greens are also a good addition along with some other common vegetables like bell peppers, peas, and cauliflower. If you’re having trouble getting enough vitamin C into your diet through your foods, you can always opt to take a vitamin C supplement to give you the extra boost you need.
Speaking of supplements, there are many different kinds you can take to help prevent dark circles and bags under the eyes. Iron supplements are especially beneficial in helping prevent dark circles along with vitamin B12. You can also incorporate a healthy dose of amino acids and copper supplements into your routine as each of these help boost the body’s collagen production.
And finally, one of the most underrated ways to prevent dark circles and bags under the eyes is to simply get a good night’s rest. Oftentimes, the reason we suffer from these pesky eye concerns is because we aren’t getting enough sleep or aren’t getting enough quality sleep. Aim for seven to eight hours of sleep each evening and make sure you’re not indulging in activities that will have you up and restless during the night.
How to Get Rid of Dark Circles and Bags Under Your Eyes
If you’ve done what you can to prevent dark circles and bags under your eyes and you still find yourself dealing with them, all is not lost. There are many things that you can do to reduce their appearance and even get rid of them once and for all.
Protection: Like any sign of premature aging in the skin, dark circles and bags under your eyes could be caused by overexposure to the sun. If you find yourself dealing with dark circles, your first step should be to protect the skin with sunscreen and even sunglasses if you’ll be outdoors for extended periods of time.
Creams & Skin Care Products: A good eye cream can go a long way in improving the appearance of dark circles and bags under the eyes but many people have a hard time finding the right one because the skin around the eyes is so sensitive. Using eye creams that have low doses of retinol is a great place to start along with those that contain bionic acid. Other ingredients to look for in your eye cream is hyaluronic acid to deliver intense moisture and glycerin to condition. And for the best results, you’ll want to apply the eye cream daily both in the morning and at night.
Medical Treatments: For those stubborn dark circles and bags that just won’t quit with protection and eye creams, you may have to move onto more advanced medical treatments. Fillers are a popular method to get rid of bags and is a procedure in which the skin under your eyes is filled with hyaluronic acid. This is a good option for those with mature skin where the skin under the eyes has begun to thin and sag. For dark circles, vascular laser treatment is a great option as it neutralizes red and purple skin discoloration.
Natural Treatments: And finally for those who want to try the natural route, there a few simple things you can do to help reduce the appearance of dark circles and bags under the eyes. For bags, a cold compress, caffeinated tea bags, and cucumber slices are popular remedies to help reduce puffiness. For dark circles applying a few drops of essential oil diffused in a carrier oil, is a great way to neutralize that discoloration. Essential oils like lavender, rose geranium, and rosemary are all great options to try to help you get rid of dark circles and brighten up the eyes.