Eye care tips to avoid bags and dark circles

Posted on: 22 August 2018 by 50connect editorial

As skin loses elasticity with ageing the area under your eyes Banish bags, dark circles and lines.

eye care over 50s

Looking in the mirror and seeing dark circles, bags and lines around our eyes is a sure way to make us feel old before our time. While ageing is inevitable, making the best of the facial feature that people focus on will ensure you always look good.

Dark under-eye shadows are largely down to genetics, and there's not much we can do about that. Some people are born with pigmentation under their eyes, thinner skin, or fair skin through which the blue coloured blood in the veins shows more.

The natural ageing process is another culprit. We can help lessen this through our lives, by wearing sunglasses to protect the delicate under-eye area from the sun's harmful rays, and moisturising with eye cream.

There are some lifestyle changes you can make now that will reduce the chance of dark shadows. Stress contributes to premature ageing, wrinkles and spotty skin as well as bags and circles. Too little sleep or fresh air can also lead to fatigued eyes.

Healthy diet


A healthy high-fibre diet, with plenty of fruit and vegetables, is important. Make sure you get plenty of iron, to reduce skin pallor. Dark circles may be caused by a food intolerance, avoiding processed food may lessen them. Alcohol dehydrates, which is never good for the skin or eyes, so drink lots of water.

Be sure to incorporate foods that boost circulation and the immune system into your diet. Lacklustre, yellow-looking eye whites could show that your liver needs help, so eat more citrus fruits and other liver-fortifying foods. Natural supplements may help - for example, milk thistle for liver function, or ginkgo biloba for circulation.

A healthy diet will also help fight colds and other infections, which can leave you looking pale and puffy. Allergies like hayfever often have the same effect, causing streaming eyes, and dilating blood vessels. Skin conditions like eczema that cause itching can lead to inflammation, and rubbing your eyes makes things worse. If you are suffering, the doctor may be able to prescribe or recommend a suitable antihistamine or cream.

eye cream

Eye cream

The skin in the under-eye area is sensitive and thinner than elsewhere, so treat it gently. Steer clear of exfoliants, peels and AHAs in this area. Dark circles can be caused when haemoglobin in the tiny blood vessels around the eye breaks down. Blood then comes out of the capillaries and oxidises, leading to a bruise effect. Take care what make-up you wear around the eyes, if it causes irritation you could end up with red inflamed skin. If your eyes itch you will rub them making darkness worse, and tugging the skin will also increase wrinkles.

Good eye creams used regularly should help strengthen the skin, increase firmness and tone, boost circulation and so on without irritating.

There are some temporary fixes for tired eyes. To reduce puffy eyes from lack of sleep, haemorrhoid cream may help. Witch hazel can also calm down puffiness.

A couple of slices of cucumber or a cold compress feel soothing, but for a real cooling effect place ice cubes on your eyelids for a couple of minutes. Another idea is to make a cup of tea, once the teabags have cooled enough you can relax for 10 to 15 minutes with them over your eyes. You could try chamomile tea, or apply cooled green tea, which is good to drink too as it contains antioxidants that help slow ageing.

cucumber eyes

One convenient kitchen cure for baggy dark eyes is potato. Cut a slice of raw potato, halve it and place on the shadows under the eyes, for about 20 minutes. Like expensive eye products, potatoes contain a skin-feeding mineral - potassium. You could also eat more foods that contain it, like bananas.

There are also eye masks available, ranging from gel ones that you keep in the fridge for cooling eyes when needed, to one-use packs that you wet and apply containing active ingredients like collagen.

For effective disguise, a good creamy concealer with light-reflecting particles is essential. You could also wear rose-tinted spectacles.

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