Looking Tired Even When You’re Not? Five Strategies to Erase Dark Circles
In this season of parties and get-togethers with plenty of good cheer, puffy, tired eyes are a clear indicator that you might need a few more ZZZs and a little less Champagne. Yet for many, dark circles under the eyes can be an everyday, frustrating beauty dilemma that can by both aging and unsightly.
The fact is that those discolored under-eye half-moons are the second most common dermatological complaint (acne is #1) and the most common, non-hormonal skin condition. Raccoon eyes are incredibly common. But, the good news is that you’re not doomed to look like a post-bout prize fighter who has taken one too many upper cuts. The following techniques for minimizing and even preventing dark circles can truly help by giving you a more rested and youthful appearance.
1. Yes, it starts with getting enough sleep
Burning the candle at both ends and not getting enough beauty sleep can exaggerate any discolorations below your eyes. Fluid can also accumulate in your lids if you’re lying flat which can make circles even more noticeable. So, if you’re dedicated to fixing the problem, commit to sleeping seven to nine hours each night and make sure to prop your head slightly with pillows to minimize any fluid buildup.
2. Knock out the allergies
Allergies are among the most common causes of dark circles. Histamine reactions, sinus swelling, and rubbing the eyes when they feel itchy can all make circles even more noticeable. If you suffer from sinusitis, hay fever, or reactions to other common allergens such as animal hair and dust mites, making an appointment with your allergist to get symptoms in check should be one of your first steps to combating your “shiners”.
3. Examine your diet
Vitamin deficiencies and dehydration can also be key culprits of dark circles. Start with a well-balanced diet, add a multi-vitamin, and make sure you’re drinking plenty of water through the day. Don’t forget that both caffeine and alcohol can dehydrate – giving eyes a sallow, tired appearance.
4. Choose your topical treatments wisely
Harsh anti-aging creams and cosmetic products can actually agitate the thin skin under the eyes making dark circles even worse. Be particularly careful with products that contain alpha-hydroxy acids and hydroquinone which can cause irritation and even hyperpigmentation if not used correctly. Both require ample use of sunscreen. Good alternatives include those with natural anti-swelling agents such as vitamin K, bromelain, chamomile, and Ester-C. Also, don’t discount the effectiveness of cool compresses. Both green tea bags and cucumbers can be used to give the eye area a quick rejuvenation.
A cosmetic concealer will also make a dramatic difference. Look for a naturally pigmented concealer with a slight golden tone to counteract the color of dark circles. To apply, look in the mirror with your chin lowered. Dab a clean lip brush in the concealer and apply directly on moisturized skin. Start with the darkest part of the circle and blend outwards. Remember to pat and never rub the product to blend it.
5. Consider other treatment options
The three most common causes of dark circles are hyperpigmentation, visible blood vessels, and fat loss in the eye area. While getting more sleep, dietary improvements, and concealers can help, there are cosmetic treatments that can eradicate the unsightly shadows.
Laser skin rejuvenation, intense pulsed light (IPL), chemical peels, fat grafting, and certain soft tissue fillers such as Restalyne are options that you may want to discuss with your physician when discussing how best to treat your under eye circles. Interested in learning more about cosmetic treatments for dark circles? Contact Shapiro Aesthetic Plastic Surgery to discuss your specific options