"Are you tired?" "Did you not sleep last night?" "You look exhausted."
Our eyes are our windows to the soul. If you get asked these questions frequently, it's because someone's looking at your eyes and gathering an overall idea of what your life must be currently looking like. Having healthy, radiant eyes is an indicator of vibrancy and youth, while under eye bags, lines, and dark circles are a hint that you're not sleeping, getting older, or overall just having a pretty bad time.
But sometimes it's not our fault. Getting the suggested 8 hours of sleep isn't always practical and even for those of us that do, sometimes we're genetically predisposed to bags and circles that we just can't seem to get rid of.
So let's talk solutions. You want to look younger, healthier, and well, not so tired anymore. So I'm here to help.
1. Get Your Sleep
Sleep is underrated. During this crucial rest period, your body is undergoing a lot of processes, ones that directly affect growth and stress hormones, the immune system, appetite, breathing, blood pressure, cardiovascular health, skin, and more.
When you don't get sleep, it shows. Your eyes will appear puffy, dark circles can appear, and with continuous neglect of your sleep cycle, your body will begin to spike its production of cortisol, the stress hormone, and viola, say hello to fine lines and wrinkles.
Stress ages you, and when you don't get enough sleep, your body enters fight or flight mode much easier. Your body is working harder, it's on higher alert, and it's not paying so much attention to other things, like collagen production.
Considering the skin beneath the eyes is the most delicate and thinnest skin anywhere on your body, and considering that the eyes are the biggest indicator of your overall health and age, I'd say that it's pretty important for you to ensure that you're doing what you can to reduce stress factors. Lack of sleep causes fluid buildup beneath the eyes, explaining puffiness. But why do the dark circles appear? Lack of sleep causes blood vessels to dilate, and since this area of skin is pretty thin, the increase in blood volume is seen as a dark tint.
Bottom line? Catch your z's. Your eyes will thank you later.
2. Green Tea
Green tea is packed with antioxidants and tannins. A tried and true method to reducing puffiness and dark circles involves cold green tea bags and a little time out of your day. Try this:
- Steep two green tea bags in hot water.
- Squeeze out the liquid from the tea bags.
- To use as a warm compress, wait for them to cool down slightly.
- To use as a cold compress, cool them in the refrigerator.
- Place the tea bags on closed eyes for up to 15 minutes. Sit back and relax!
- Repeat as often as needed.
That's it. The caffeine in the green tea helps bring the blood vessels back to normal, shrinks any swelling, and reduces fluid retention.
As a safety precaution, always be sure tea bags are at a safe temperature before applying them to your eyes. And of course, if you experience any discomfort or unwanted side effects from applying green tea bags, discontinue immediately and consult a physician.
3. Drink. Your. Water.
I'm constantly telling people the benefits of drinking water and I'm not sure the general population understands just how good water is for your health, skin, and overall mental well-being.
Our bodies are 60% water. That means everything. Our skin cells, our hair, our organs, our bodily fluids, our bones, etc. Fun fact? Skin is 64% water. So what happens when our bodies don't receive a proper water intake per day? Our skin starts to pay the price.
Now back to that thin patch of skin under our eyes. If we're not getting enough water, it's no wonder that we're starting to see some changes here, especially in regards to elasticity. As elasticity decreases, wrinkles tend to happily make their way into our complexion, and that's a big no-no.
Not only is water good for your face, it's also good for your body. It flushes out toxins, cleans your organs, and lubricates your joints. What's not to love?
Experts claim that 8 glasses of water (roughly 64 oz.) is what you should be intaking per day. This is a good place to start, but sometimes we don't have the time to be checking our water intake progress. Try making it fun! Get a water bottle that tells you how much water to drink at certain times of the day or 64 oz. water bottles that you just need to fill up once and make sure you finish by the end of the day.
Microneedling, AKA dermarolling, is the process of rolling a microneedling tool, or dermaroller, over the skin, inflicting gentle, microscopic puncture wounds that kickstart collagen production and tighten the skin.
But wait, this sounds pretty risky. Rolling needles around the eyes? While the benefits of rolling would definitely help the under eye skin with elasticity, appearance, and wrinkle-reduction, from a safety standpoint, it might not be worth the risk.
Never fear. There's a tool designed for just this specific thing. The Gin Amber Beauty Aqua Stamp is a useful microneedling tool designed to reach hard to get areas of skin.
Since microneedling is such an effective method of rejuvenating skin through stimulating new cell growth, it's ideal for under eye bags, wrinkles, and texture. The Aqua Stamp is an amazing alternative or accessory tool to use in your derma rolling practice and a particularly unique feature it has is the added advantage of dispensing serum through a hydraulic system as you stamp the tool over your face or neck.
The serum will quickly and evenly penetrate and absorb via the punctures made by the Aqua Stamp’s gold-plated surgical stainless-steel needles. Just like with a derma roller or pen, micro-needling with an aqua stamp will improve skin texture and tone, replenish collagen, rejuvenate, soften or remove wrinkles and hyperpigmentation, and boost the overall healthy appearance of your skin. Perfect for shaving years off your look and getting to those tricky areas.
Under eye bags and circles don't have to keep interfering with your appearance. With some useful tips, you can be well on your way to looking younger, healthier, and more radiant. Stay conscious of your sleep, diet, and lifestyle, and do your part to take care of your skin. You have it for the rest of your life.