Dark Circles: Treatment Options and Considerations

Have you woken up from a troublesome sleep and looked at the mirror only to see dark circles under your eyes? You are not alone. One of the aesthetic industry’s major problems is dark circles and how to prevent them from being constant.

The eyes are an essential and sensitive part of our appearance and easily predominant in determining how we feel by how they look. The adage stating the eyes are windows to the soul is therefore not farfetched, but a correct representation of the importance of taking care of the eyes’ appearance.

But what exactly are dark circles? Dark circles are the predominant visible dark appearances underneath the eyes, making the individual look tired or sluggish. These circles are normally prevalent when the individual is not well-rested or is undergoing major life changes.

The appearance of dark circles in adults and children can come up at any time, depending on several environmental, physical, or health issues. They vary depending on color and shape.

Causes of dark circles

As much as dark circles are worrying and can make an individual feel self-conscious and unhealthy, there is a possibility of them not being all that serious. However, it is always best to visit your dermatologist to ascertain the best remedies for treatment.

The appearance of dark circles is caused by several factors, as seen below:

  • Genetics

Various research conducted over the years has pinpointed genetic makeup as one of the contributing factors to dark circles. For instance, low production of melanin and excessive pigmentation in the skin normally caused by genetic makeup can make an individual susceptible to dark circles. Low collagen levels under the eyes, which is responsible for skin elasticity, can result in dark circles. Some demographics are susceptible to dark circles due to their family history and prevalence of dark circles from early generations.

  • Aging

Age causes the skin’s elasticity to wan off after some time. The tissue around the eyes tends to weaken and become sensitive with age, causing dark circles due to the skin’s thinness. This causes fat deposits to settle on the lower eyelids, creating a shadow that creates dark circles and puffiness. The loss of fat deposits causes the skin to a hollow under the eyes, causing the dark appearance as the blood vessels are visible beneath the surface.

  • Allergies

Constant rubbing and wiping of the eyes due to allergies can cause the skin to become fragile. Allergies from the environment or face products cause redness and darkening due to an allergic pigmentation. The delicate skin on the eyes is very sensitive, and any minor or major rub may affect the skin around it with time. 

  • Fatigue and insomnia

This is normally the most cause of dark circles in many individuals who experience burnout and find no time to rest. Minimal or lack of sleep is also a sure way of getting dark circles as the skin becomes pale.

  • Underlying health conditions

There might be underlying conditions such as anemia or iron deficiency in rare cases, which causes the prevalence of dark circles. Anemia occurs when blood cells are unable to carry oxygen to the tissues leading to dark eye circles. Thyroid disease can also be an indicator of dark circles.

  • Lifestyle habits

High consumption of alcohol, smoking, and dietary changes can cause dark circles. This normally happens through dehydration and deprivation of oxygen. Alcohol causes the blood vessels to dilate, more so under the eyes, making the skin appear thinner and darker. Smoking usually tends to deprive the skin of oxygen and leads to premature aging. 

Treatment options

Dark circles are not entirely untreatable, and their appearance is minimized by embracing the following changes:

  • Cosmetic and medical treatments

A visit to the dermatologist can give individuals various options for treatment against dark circles. These treatment options include:

  1. Laser options: These seek to stimulate the production of collagen so that the skin can become thicker. As a result, the circles become less and less. 
  2. Chemical peels: These seek to dissolve the damaged skin layer and stimulate new epidermal growth and collagen production. Chemical peels are light or medium, depending on the condition of the damaged area.
  3. Soft tissue fillers: By filling the hollow skin around the eye socket with fillers with hyaluronic acid, the caved area appears less visible, giving a uniform facial appearance. 
  4. Surgery: A standard eyelid surgery involves taking excess fat deposits under the eye, and filling up the indentation around the eye socket minimizes dark circles’ appearance.
  5. Skin tightening procedures: There are non-invasive skin-tightening procedures that give a natural lift to the under-eye by resurfacing and rejuvenating the skin. Making regularly scheduled visits o the dermatologist for more information on the available procedures available is recommended. 

Licensed professional dermatologists or plastic surgeons should only administer these cosmetic and medical treatments to get safe and effective results.

  • Lifestyle changes

Changing one’s lifestyle changes to include less alcohol consumption, quitting smoking, getting enough sleep, less salt intake, and consuming more iron inclusive diets can reduce dark circles’ appearance. Using eye creams and products which enhance the lymphatic system by stimulating adequate blood circulation also goes a long way. 

Eye serums also fade pigmentation away after some time. It is important to apply sunscreen, especially under the eye, to prevent thinning of the dermis when exposed to the sun. 

Washing the face correctly, especially after applying makeup, will prevent the formation of dark circles. Be careful not to rub the under the eye as this can promote sagging intensely.

What to look out for when choosing the right eye products for dark circles

Consider products with hyaluronic acid, which brightens the skin by pulling moisture to the epidermis. Retinol also prevents the formation of fine lines by facilitating skin turnover. Products with Vitamin C, polyphenols seek to reduce the stress from pollutants in the environment. Those with peptides stimulate the growth of collagen to give way to younger, healthy-looking skin. Caffeine reduces the skin’s redness and prevents skin puffiness by constricting the blood vessels underneath the eyes. 

Elements used to create Featured image Artwork provided by Created by Jill.

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