Eyes are the window to the soul. Unless you have under eye bags that nightmares are made out of. As we grow older and more stressed our eyes seem to scream it to the world, glasses and wonderful concealer be damned.
What causes the under-eye terrors?
Under eye bags: Its in your genes. It can also be contributed to years of lack of sleep, lack of exercise, and a whole lot of salty foods. Also, as we grow older its a natural part of aging (I’m not talking about the 20’s and 30’s) due to elasticity and collagen loss.
Three typical under eye concerns are:
- Hyper pigmentation under the eyes which is the dark circles under the eyes, aka raccoon eyes. This can be contributed to a number of reasons: Sleep, diet, allergies, and genetics.
- Shadowing as seen as blue/green veins that are prominent under the eyes. This happens due to the aging process when the skin under the eyes become thinner.
- Puffy or baggy under eye problems are commonly called bags. This can occur due to poor circulation or chronic baggy eyes can be a heredity problem. Another concern can be intake of excessive salty foods and water retention causing puffy under eyes.
Lifestyle changes to decrease under-eye problems:
1) Diet- a well balanced diet with controlled sodium levels based on normal (<2,500 mg / day) or doctor recommended amounts for those with medical conditions.
2) Sleep- a no brainer and one of the most appealing options as well. Undisturbed sleep of 7-9 hours a night within 1-2 hours of regular bed-time.
3) Exercise- a great way to increase circulation and keep not just your body & mind healthy but you under-eyes as well.
4) Taking a breather- being overworked and run down is one of the easiest way to show stress under the eyes. Try to schedule only as much as you can take on and remember to take a few minutes to refresh yourself.
At home remedies:
There are probably a million and one ways to help under eye problems, its really all trial and error to see what works best for you. Here are a few popular ones with reasons to why they work. After any remedy be sure to wash the eyes with cool water and moisturize.
- Caffeinated tea bags (green or black tea). Tea bags are steeped in hot/warm water for 3-5 minutes and take out until the bags are warm and comfortable to the touch (you don’t want to burn your eyes!) Lie down, close your eyes, and place tea bags on closed lids. Keep on for 8-12 minutes and relax. If you like place a warm towel on your face to soak up dripping tea and give a more spa experience. Why does this work? The caffeine in the tea helps constrict the blood vessels and reduce swelling. Tea also contains many anti-oxidants that the eyes can reap up to keep you looking fresh and younger longer.
- Cucumbers. A common and tried method that works. Simple as cutting up two slices, placing on the eyes and relaxing for 10-15 minutes. The cucumber works in the same way as the tea bags by constricting the blood vessels and reducing swelling. This is great remedy for the hot summer days.
- Milk. The one product that is always around and a easy and cheap way to reduce puffiness. Soak two cotton balls in milk, lie back, and place one on each closed lid. Soak it up for 10 minutes. You can again use a warm towel on your face on top of the cotton balls for a more relaxing spa feel. Why the milk? Milk contain lactic acid which way not only to reduce puffiness but dark circles.
2) Dark Eye Circles & Shadowing
- Potato Slices. Cut two slices of potatoes, recline back, and place on closed lids. Keep on for 10-15 minutes. Potatoes contain natural skin lightening agents that help decrease the dark rings around your eyes.
- Rose Water. Dip two cotton balls in rose water and place on closed lids for 5-10 minutes. Rose water helps reduce dark circles by improving blood circulation to the eyes. This is one of my favorite remedies, its smells so divine, I feel like a queen in Egypt getting the royal treatment.
Under eye creams:
In a article by the Huffington Post, At What Age Should You Use Eye Creams?, Dr. Rebecca Baxt brings up when and why you need to start using under eye creams.
According to Dr. Baxt the best time to start counts on your skin type. Women with dry eyes need to start early as possible, I’m talking teens and early twenties, to keep the eye skin moisturized so skin doesn’t prematurely age. Others can get away with starting in their mid 20’s to early 30’s, right around the time when age starts to play a role in under eye health.
A good moisturizer and routine helps keep the skin around the eyes well moisturized.
Dr. Baxt mentions that “Eye creams keep the skin moist and that makes people look younger. When wrinkles get dry, they look deeper and worse. As a good and gentle moisturizer, eye creams help by keeping the skin moist so fine lines don’t show up as much.”
The best method to put on under eye creams:
1) NEVER EVER rub or smudge cream across the eyes. EVER! Under eye skin is sensitive and delicate (10X thinner than rest of face), a little pressure and rubbing the skin can cause damage to the skin and cause wrinkles.
The best way to put on cream under your eyes if you are using your hands is to use your ring finger to dab the cream and pat under the eye starting from the outside and working your way in. Do a light tapping method to stimulate the skin under the eye.
Here is a great picture that The Beauty Department posted of where to apply your under eye cream.
**Please be sure to try anything with caution due to the risk of allergies or skin reactions. I suggest trying a small patch test first. **
Have any further questions? Want to know more? Tell me what you think