Have you heard people say, "Dark circles are like shadows under my eyes, telling me about my late nights"?
Well, there's some truth to it. Although dark circles are not a serious problem, they do make you look tired and older. And in a world where the eyes are considered the window to the soul, it's important to take good care of your eyes.
Mind you, picking up a concealer or splashing some cold water is not the way to go for bright, well-rested eyes. Wondering what is the right way to get rid of dark circles and puffy eyes? Three words, one product — under-eye cream.
And if you want to find out how it helps, all you need to do is stay with us till the end, and we will tell you all there is!
Causes of Dark Circles and Puffy Eyes
Dark circles and puffy eyes can be challenging to get rid of. And what makes them even more challenging is the fact that there are multiple causes behind them. Let's look at them closely.
As you gracefully age, your skin undergoes natural changes. For instance, your skin's collagen production decreases. As a result, your skin's elasticity reduces, and it starts to get thinner, which means that the fat pad under your skin is reduced. As a result of this natural process, the dark vessels underneath your skin become more visible, making the area appear darker.
Dark circles, also known as Periorbital Hyperpigmentation (POH), can be in shades of brown, black, purple, or blue. Interestingly, dark circles are related to genetics. Some studies suggest there is a strong association between dark circles and family history. This means that some people are genetically predisposed to develop dark circles.
You will notice early signs of dark circles in childhood, and as you age, the darkness may increase or decrease. Thankfully, the best under-eye cream can help you manage it.
Lack of Sleep
Ah! The age-old culprit – insufficient sleep. Sleep helps your skin restore and rebuild itself. Depriving yourself of sleep hampers this process, affecting your overall skin quality. It compromises your collagen production, which leads to skin thinning and increased visibility of your blood vessels.
Furthermore, lack of sleep may trigger the release of stress hormones, leading to inflammation and fluid retention. As a result, you don't just end up with dark circles but also puffy eyes.
Melanin is the pigment that gives your skin its color. If you get too much sun, your body may make too much of it. Then, your body may put this extra melanin under your eyes, which is called hyperpigmentation, more specifically, post-inflammatory pigmentation. The good thing is that some of the best eye creams for under-eye circles are formulated to treat this pigmentation.
When you stare at a TV or computer screen for extended amounts of time, your eyes are constantly being treated to visual stimuli. When this happens for a long time, it can cause eye strain, which hurts the eyes, making them feel dry and generally tired. But that's not all.
Because our eyes are fixed on the screen, they keep focused and refocusing, which makes our muscles tired. Because of this tiredness, the blood vessels around the eyes get bigger, which lets more blood flow through. Because the skin around the eyes becomes more clear, showing off the blood vessels below, the increased blood flow can make dark circles appear.
Your body has its natural balance, and any disruption to this balance shows. When fluid balance is disrupted, especially around the eye area, it can lead to puffy eyes. But what influences this balance? Factors such as diet, hydration levels, and even certain medical conditions result in swelling around the eyes, giving them a tired and bloated appearance.
When the body encounters an allergen, it initiates a defense mechanism, releasing histamines to fight the allergen. Although important, it may cause redness and itchiness. And what do you do when it itches? Scratch it.
Constant scratching can damage the skin, leading to inflammation and swelling. Furthermore, it may break the small blood vessels beneath the skin, resulting in the appearance of dark circles.
Lifestyle Adjustments for Prevention
Besides including the best under-eye dark circle cream in your routine, it is wise to try changing your lifestyle, too. Here are three adjustments that can go a long way.
Quality sleep, as mentioned, facilitates cellular repair, allowing the delicate skin around the eyes to recover from the day's stressors. Furthermore, it reduces eye strain to prevent a tired look. Thus, try to:
- Create a conducive sleep environment by dimming lights
- Minimize screen time before bed
- Stick to a consistent sleep schedule
Dehydration can lead to fluid retention, significantly increasing the appearance of puffy eyes. And so, by increasing your body's hydration, you can fight those pesky puffy eyes.
Besides making sure you have an adequate amount of water, you must control your caffeine intake. While enjoying a cup of coffee or tea is a daily ritual for many, excessive intake can lead to dehydration. So, balance it out with a glass of water.
Diet plays a vital role in maintaining your skin's elasticity and reducing the prominence of dark circles. So here's what you should attempt to include in your diet:
- Collagen-rich foods such as bone broth, fish, and lean meats
- Vitamins A, C, and E
- Antioxidant-rich food
- Omega-3 fatty acids, such as fatty fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts
Japanese Eye Care Rituals
The Japanese are famous for their respect for nature and balance in their skincare rituals. Their rituals have been passed down generations and cherished equally.
One such ritual is called 'Gankyo.' Gankyo translates to eye bathing. In this ritual, warm water is infused with natural ingredients and splashed on the eyes. One such ingredient is Green Tea. It offers a soothing and rejuvenating experience and, with constant use, may give you refreshed eyes. The antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties present in green tea reduce puffy eyes and fight dark circles.
Here's how you can use it:
- Choose a high-quality green tea bag.
- Brew it as you normally would for drinking.
- After brewing, let the tea bag cool down to a comfortable temperature.
- Gentle squeeze the excess liquid out. You want the bag to be damp, not wet.
- Place one tea bag over each closed eye, covering the puffed area and dark circles.
- Let it rest for about 15-20 minutes.
- Gently remove the bags, pat your skin dry, and apply an under-eye cream.
Skincare Products for Dark Circles and Puffy Eyes
Many under-eye creams and related products flood the market now and then. But how do you choose the right one? Which one works? Here are your answers.
Smoothing Eye Cream
This one is the best under-eye circle cream to fight dark circles and puffy eyes. It's formulated using 98% natural origin ingredients like Japanese Fermented Rice Extract and Alpine Rose Stem Cells.
The eye cream provides nourishment, hydration, and protection to the delicate skin around the eyes, helping with fine lines. Furthermore, it protects your skin from environmental stressors like UV and free radicals.
Nourishing Eye Cream
- Japanese Rice Lees Extract & Molasses
- Swiss Apple Stem Cells
- Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid
The formulas soak in deep to moisturize at the skin's deepest level to leave it buttery smooth, replenished, and plump.
Rejuvenating Night Gel
ILEM JAPAN's Rejuvenating Night Gel is another super product that complements the above-mentioned under-eye creams. Think of it like a concoction of good-for-skin ingredients that work overnight so that you wake up with a refreshed complexion.
It consists of revitalizing Bulgarian Damask Rose Stem Cells, protective Evening Primrose Seed Extract, and anti-inflammatory Japanese Plum Extract. But that's not what makes this product unique. It's the Japanese ingredient, Gotu Kola Leaf Extract. It keeps the skin firm and tight by boosting collagen production. Additionally, it reduces the skin's redness and fights off free radicals to keep your skin youthful.
Tips for Selecting the Best Under-Eye Cream for Your Specific Concerns
The process of selecting the best under-eye cream for under-eye circles, puffiness, and aging starts with understanding your skin's needs. Here's a quick breakdown –
- Dark Circles: You need an under-eye cream with vitamin C, kojic acid, or niacinamide to reduce pigmentation
- Puffiness: You will want to invest in an eye cream containing caffeine, chamomile, or green tea to constrict blood vessels and reduce fluid retention.
- Fine Lines and Wrinkles: Choose a cream with retinol, peptides, or hyaluronic acid to boost collagen and hydration.
Professional Treatments and Procedures
Besides investing in the best under-eye circle cream for your pesky dark circles, there are a couple of other professional treatments that you can consider. Here's what your dermatologist may recommend to you:
- Skin-lightening creams containing Kojic acid and Glycolic acid
- Laser therapy vaporizes damaged cells and boosts new collagen production
- Light chemical peel to lighten pigmentation
You must consult with your dermatologist before opting for any of these treatments. They will help you personalize the treatment to your skin's needs and type.
Makeup Techniques for Concealing
One of the easiest ways to cover your dark circles when you are running late is to conceal it. Here's how you can do it:
- Start by identifying your skin's undertone – whether it's warm, cool, or neutral.
- Based on this, choose a concealer shade for yourself, closely matching it to your skin tone. Make sure the shade you choose is slightly lighter to brighten the under-eye area.
While choosing a concealer, also consider your skin's concerns. For example:
- For redness or blemishes, select a concealer with a yellow or peach undertone.
- For bluish tones like dark circles, choose a concealer with a peach or pink undertone.
Additionally, consider the skin type. Cream or liquid concealers are great for dry skin, while those with oily skin may prefer a matte or powder formula.
Besides choosing the right shade and undertone, it's important to choose the right technique as well. Here's a quick breakdown:
- Triangle Technique: Apply your concealer in a triangle shape, extending from the inner corner to the outer corner.
- Layering Technique: Start with a color corrector to neutralize any discoloration, then apply your concealer over it. This ensures a seamless and natural-looking finish.
- Dab, Don't Rub: Gently dap or tap with your ring finger or a makeup sponge to blend the concealer.
- Set with Powder: This is to avoid creasing and maintain a smooth look.
Japanese-Inspired Minimalist Makeup Tips for a Natural Look
1. Illuminating, Dewy Eyes
Japanese beauty culture focuses on creating an illuminating, dewy complexion. For this, start with a small amount of concealer strategically to brighten the inner eyes and create an illuminated look.
2. Natural Eyelash Curl
Don't go in with heavy mascara. Instead, go with a natural eyelash curl to open up your eyes.
3. Soft Eyeliner
Use soft eyeliner techniques like tightening or soft brown pencils to subtly define your eyes without creating too much contrast.
4. Tinted Lip Balm
Focus on achieving a natural look. For this, add a hint of color, just a small amount, to maintain a fresh look.
5. Focus on Smooth Skin
The goal of Japanese makeup is a smooth, natural finish. For this, use a BB cream or a light-coverage foundation after moisturizing your skin.
6. Gentle Blush
Apply blush with a light hand for a gentle flush of color. Focus on the apples of the cheeks, blending towards the temples for a subtle and natural-looking glow.
Embracing Bright-Eyed Confidence
Managing dark circles and depuffing your eyes may seem challenging at once. However, investing in the best eye cream for under-eye circles based on your skin type and needs can change your game. It will leave you with refreshed eyes and healthier under-eye skin. As a result, your dark circles may appear lighter and your eyes brighter!
FAQs about Dark Circles and Puffiness
How often should I apply eye cream for optimal results?
Consistency is the key to any routine. For optimal results, make sure you apply your under-eye cream twice daily.
Can lack of sleep be solely responsible for dark circles?
No. Although it may be one of the major reasons, other factors such as genetics, ageing, screen time, and sun exposure may also have a role to play.
Are there natural remedies for reducing dark circles and puffiness?
Yes, natural remedies like depuffing with ice, bathing your eyes in green tea bags and cucumber slices, and gentle massages can help. Green tea's antioxidants can soothe, while cucumber's cooling effect helps reduce puffiness. Gentle massages improve circulation and lymphatic drainage.
How can I protect my eyes during different seasons?
Adjust your eye care routine seasonally. In winter, focus on hydration; in summer, prioritize sun protection with sunglasses and sunscreen. Similarly, in spring, look out for refreshing products with antioxidants. As for fall, watch out for allergens.