It can happen to the best of us. We get up in the morning, we look at ourselves in the mirror, and we catch a glimpse of dark circles under our eyes. It’s like looking in the mirror and seeing a tired person staring back at you.
One night of good sleep is not enough to get rid of dark circles. Don’t panic, though; there are ways to get rid of dark circles.
One way is with cosmetics, and I’ll get to that one at the end. What I want to share with you first are natural and inexpensive remedies. You won’t have to spend a penny, as I’m sure you have all the ingredients at home. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “A man travels the world in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.” George Moore said it best, so don’t look for expensive cures; you can find everything you need to get rid of dark circles in your kitchen.
Literally, there isn’t any skin problem that a cold compress can’t help with. Most skin problems are caused because of clogged blood vessels and reduced circulation. And what do you know? A cold compress can constrict the blood vessels, which in turn reduces the symptoms of dark circles.
How do you apply a cold compress? You can use water or milk. Just soak a washcloth in the cold liquid (be it water or milk) and then apply the compress over your closed eyelids. I’ve even seen people using a cold spoon for this remedy. You can even try ice cubes. Wrap the ice cubes in the compress and place it over the eyelids for five to ten minutes. Repeat two or three times per day.
If you are into healthy cooking and cuisine, I’m sure you have some almond oil in your home. The oil helps by lightening the circles, and you can combine it with some vitamin E.
Start by applying some almond oil on the dark circles. Use gentle, circular movements to massage the area, and then leave it on overnight. In the morning, wash your face with cold water. The treatment will help, but do not expect miracles after just one night. Repeat it until the dark circles are history.
Another oil most households have is coconut oil. I know it can be pricey, but coconut oil is well worth having in your home. Coconut oil is a natural moisturizer, prevents wrinkles, slows down skin ageing and promotes smooth and healthy skin.
To get the best results, apply some coconut oil to your hands, rub them to warm the oil, and then massage it under the eyes. Let the coconut oil stay there for a few hours, and then wash it off with cold water. You can repeat the treatment three times per day. Repeat until you are satisfied with the results.
That yellow-coloured curry comes from turmeric. Many correctly call turmeric the “magic” spice. With numerous anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric can help with many conditions. On top of that, the spice itself is rich in antioxidants, and we know how they help the skin fight off free radicals.
When you need to get rid of dark circles, mix two teaspoons of turmeric powder and two teaspoons of pineapple juice. Make a paste out of the ingredients and apply it to the affected area. Leave the paste to work its magic for 10 minutes, and then wipe it off with a washcloth. This treatment can be done only once per day. But repeat daily until you are satisfied with the results.
So many movies feature a scene where ladies are enjoying a spa treatment with cucumber slices on their eyes. There is a reason why they are doing it, and it is not just a movie effect. Cucumbers are rich in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that help the skin. They are also refreshing and provide a soothing effect.
Just slice a fresh cucumber, and let the slices chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. After that, apply them on the dark circles for 10 minutes. Remove the slices, open your eyes, and wash your face with water. You can repeat the treatment two times per day.
Potatoes can work as well as a cucumber, but you don’t see them in movies. Maybe it’s because potatoes aren’t as attractive as cucumbers to the movie audience. Nevertheless, in addition to vitamin C and K, potatoes include potassium. That helps with dark circles and other skin conditions.
You can apply raw potatoes in slices, the same as cucumber, or you can extract the juice. To do that, grate the potatoes and then soak a cotton ball in the juice. Apply the cotton ball on your eyes for 15 minutes. Wash with water, and let your eyes dry naturally. Same as with cucumbers, you can repeat the process two to three times per day.
Lemons are one of the foods that are richest in vitamin C. For many years, vitamin C was considered the best option to prevent and treat any condition on the body. And for dark circles, the vitamin helps by lightening your skin.
Squeeze fresh lemon juice in a small bowl and then use a cotton ball to soak up the juice. Apply the cotton ball around your eyes for 10 minutes. Wash it off and dry your eyes. You can repeat the treatment once per day, no more. However, you can do it every day for few weeks.
You can also use lemon juice to prepare a paste by mixing one tablespoon of lemon juice, some flour, turmeric powder and two tablespoons of tomato juice. Apply the paste around the eyes, and let it stay there for 15 minutes. This treatment can be performed only two times per week.
When you were a child, I’m sure your mother told you to wash your eyes when they were sore. Rosewater helps the skin rejuvenate, which in turn reduces dark circles. And that is all in addition to helping soothe tired eyes.
To apply rose water, soak cotton pads in water and then place them over your closed eyelids for 15 minutes. Rinse with water. You can repeat the treatment three times per day for as many weeks you like.
We had tomato juice mixed with lemon juice, but tomatoes can help on their own as well. Tomatoes are known for their bleaching properties. You can apply tomato juice on its own by dipping some cotton balls in it and then massaging the area around your eyes. Or, you can mix tomato juice with lemon juice, without any other additions. The ratio you want is one teaspoon of tomato juice and half a teaspoon of lemon juice.
Tea bags are rich in caffeine and antioxidants, especially if you are using herbal teas. Applying tea bags on your eyes reduces puffiness and helps you get rid of those irritating dark circles.
The best way is to use green or black tea bags. Chill the bags in the fridge for 30 minutes, place them over your closed eyelids for 10 minutes, and then wash your face. You can repeat the treatment two times per day.
As I mentioned at the beginning, you can always purchase cosmetic products to hide and eliminate dark circles. Here are a few, but they will take a toll on your wallet.
- A good concealer is your best “in-the-moment” solution for dark circles. Make sure to get a product that is close to your skin tone. Some cosmetic experts recommend the colour theory for makeup covering. The colour theory requires using colours on the opposite side of the colour wheel to cancel each other out. This means that for your blueish dark circles, you need a peach-coloured hue.
- Another product to consider for topical treatment is an eye cream. There are many that can help with hyperpigmentation, but be careful and read the ingredients. Some ingredients like vitamin C, retinoids, and acids can irritate sensitive skin.
- Last, but not least, all dermatologists and cosmetic experts agree that a good moisturizer can help with dark circles. Daily topical treatment is all you need.
Why Do Dark Circles Appear?
We all wake up with dark circles under our eyes from time to time, but for average Joes, it is a mystery why they appear. Well, if you’ve ever asked a dermatologist or a cosmetics person, you’d know. There are three main reasons why dark circles appear under the eye:
- Genetics is the first and main reasons why dark circles appear. If your parents had dark circles, it is almost certain you’ll inherit them.
- Seasonal allergies can cause dark circles as they trigger the release of histamines. As many of you know, histamines inflame blood vessels and cause swelling. To understand whether your dark circles are caused by allergies, gently stretch the skin under your eyes. If the colour of the skin doesn’t change, it is due to allergies. However, if the colour becomes darker, the cause of your dark circles is ageing or genetics.
- And speaking of causes, ageing is a normal process that you can’t stop. As we grow older, our skin loses collagen and becomes thinner. The only way to slow down the ageing process is by consuming foods rich in antioxidants, like blueberries.
Quick Tips to Prevent Dark Circles
I know that you’ll find a cure in one of the home remedies I’ve shared with you. However, I also want to give you some tips on how to prevent dark circles from appearing altogether:
- Sleep on your back, and use an extra pillow if needed. When you sleep on your back, fluid doesn’t pool overnight.
- Get an anti-allergic pillow. Or just keep it protected from allergens like dust.
- Apply sunscreen when you go out in the sun. Dark circles can be caused by increased pigmentation and sun damage, and sunscreen helps prevention in both cases.
- Sleep more, as sleep is the best natural remedy for getting rid of dark circles.
- If you are prone to allergies, consider antihistamines before the allergy season starts.
- Be gentle when you remove your makeup. The skin under the eye is the thinnest on your body, so be careful not to irritate it while removing makeup.
- Speaking of makeup, make sure to remove it before going to bed.
- Do not rub your eyes. Avoid rubbing them as much as possible.
- Drink plenty of water. Eight glasses are recommended for living a healthy life.
- If you are a regular smoker or you consume alcohol on a regular basis, try to reduce it.