Having bags under your eyes is more likely a harmless cosmetic concern than a big medical problem. You might have eye bags occasionally simply because you’re stressed out or had a particularly late night, and might be wondering about how to get rid of them.
This article discusses how to get rid of eye bags and puffy eyes naturally, medical remedies, and when it’s time to see a healthcare provider.
Say goodbye to eye bags naturally
Cooling the area under your eyes reduces blood flow, which helps ease swelling. You might be able to get rid of eye bags by holding something cold over them for a few minutes. You can try:
An ice pack
A bag of frozen veggies
Chilled cucumber slices
A cold spoon straight from the refrigerator
A washcloth rinsed in cool water
Any tea bag can serve as a handy and effective cold compress. After steeping tea as usual, place a couple of tea bags in the refrigerator until morning, then place them on your eyes and relax for a few minutes. Like other cold compresses, this can help reduce swelling and soothe the area around your eyes.
Green tea in particular is known for its anti-inflammatory properties.
Some people use haemorrhoid creams on puffy eyes because they help narrow blood vessels and reduce swelling.
This requires caution, though. Haemorrhoid creams are not approved for this use. They can produce side effects, such as skin and eye irritation. Be sure to read product labels carefully. If you intend to use these creams long term, speak with a healthcare provider to ensure this is safe for you.
Apply an eye cream
Unlike haemorrhoid creams, eye creams are intended to help with eye bags and can provide an effective temporary fix. Look for ingredients such as:
Vitamins A, C, and E
Antioxidants, such as ceonzyme Q10 (CoQ10)
Retinol is a form of vitamin A often used in skin care and eye creams. Research suggests that applying retinoid eye cream every night can improve the appearance of puffiness, lines, and dark circles under your eyes. These benefits may be greater if you apply peptide-rich eye cream in the morning.
The skin around the eyes is quite delicate and easy to damage. And ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun can lead to premature ageing around the eyes, highlighting bagginess and puffiness.
Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 or higher. Look for sunscreens made specifically for the face or around the eyes.
Some topical eye products contain caffeine because it constricts blood vessels and may improve the appearance of puffy eyes. You can also chill some caffeinated black tea bags and rest them on your eyes for a few minutes.
Elevate your head as you sleep
Since lack of sleep can contribute to eye bags, it makes sense that getting enough sleep can help with this issue. And sleeping with your head slightly raised keeps fluids from settling around your eyes during the night. Adding another pillow can do the trick if you can’t raise your bed.
Dehydration can make the area around your eyes puffy and saggy. Be sure to stay well hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
However, try not to drink too many fluids just before bedtime. That, along with too much salt in your diet, can lead to nighttime fluid retention and baggy eyes in the morning.
Visit the dermatologist
A dermatologist is a medical doctor specialising in skin, hair, and nail conditions. If the skin around your eyes is persistently baggy or puffy and is causing great concern, it makes sense to visit a dermatologist for advice.
Any skin care product has the potential for unwanted side effects. Some people experience skin irritation while using retinol. If you use a product that irritates the skin around your eyes, it may be a good idea to have it examined by a dermatologist.
Home remedies can work, though the effect is temporary. If your eye bags are due to ageing or genetics, it may take something more. Speak with your dermatologist for more information on medical procedures that may help. Some to consider are:
Filler: Your provider injects fillers, such as hyaluronic acid, into the under-eye area. Fillers generally last about six to 12 months.
Laser resurfacing: Your provider uses a laser to remove surface layers of skin under the eyes. This prompts new collagen growth and firmer skin. Skin type and sun exposure determine how long it lasts, but it could be a few years.
Chemical peel: A chemical solution is applied to your under-eye skin to remove the top layers, allowing tighter, brighter skin to show. How long it lasts depends on skin type and sun exposure.
Surgery: A surgeon can readjust the fat under your eyes to tighten the muscle and smooth the skin. It’s called a lower eyelid lift or blepharoplasty. It’s an outpatient procedure that often lasts for life, though some people may need touch-ups.
When to see a healthcare provider
Eye bags, puffy eyes, and dark circles under the eye are generally harmless. Contact a healthcare provider if you get creams or ointments in your eye or if you have:
Pain or itching in or around the eyes
Discolouration of the eyes
Eye bags or puffiness are often caused by stress or a lack of sleep. Dehydration, smoking, ageing, and genetics can also play a role. To get rid of eye bags naturally, try cool compresses, stay hydrated, and get good sleep. If you’re bothered by persistent eye bags, see a dermatologist. They can advise on which eye creams and lifestyle remedies will work for you. Medical procedures may include fillers, later treatment, chemical peels, and surgery.
This story first appeared on www.verywellhealth.com
(Main and featured image: Alexandru Zdrobău/Unsplash)
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