The skin surrounding your eyes is up to 10x thinner than the skin on the rest of your face. With a delicate canvas, it doesn’t take much for underlying blood vessels and veins to show, leaving you with dark circles under your eyes. But what factors causes this area of your face to flare up? And how can you treat these dark circles? Read on to find out. Let’s be honest, there is *nothing* worse than a blog or article that means well but is so dripping in science-speak and medical lingo that you practically need a Ph.D. just to understand it. When you’ve got dark circles under your eyes, you’re not looking for a thesis on the biomechanics of skin or what particular proteins are responsible for skin discoloration.
So that’s exactly what we’ll give you. We may be the world’s most popular Face Yoga app, but we also understand that sometimes, a little straight talk can go a long way. Read on to discover why you have dark circles around your eyes, and how to say sayonara to them for good.
What Causes Dark Circles Under Eyes
OK, let’s start with the basics. The primary cause of dark circles comes down to genetics and skin tone. That means it’s not your fault if you’re applying your favorite skin cream and staying out of harmful UV rays. Sometimes, it’s just the luck of the draw. The area under your eye can appear black, brown, purple, or even grey because the skin here is so delicately thin. In fact, the skin around your eyes is up to 10x thinner than the skin on the rest of your face (and that makes it very, very delicate). With such a thin canvas, it doesn’t take much to see the underlying veins, hence dark circles under your eyes. It’s also more likely for dark circles to stand out if you have fair skin, and if you have little subcutaneous fat under your lower eyelid. With delicate skin able to show dark circles easily, let’s explore some of the lifestyle and environmental challenges that are leaving you looking tired every day.
Does Lack of Sleep Lead to Dark Circles?
Yes. Failing to get your recommended 7 to 9 hours of shut-eye each night can contribute to the problem and is a reason for dark circles around the eyes. This is due to an increase in venous congestion, which is a build-up of fluid that leads to pooled blood in superficial blood vessels below your eye. The result? Your eyes look dark and tired because your skin is so thin. Unfortunately, you can’t avoid dark circles just by sleeping in a little more. There are a few major triggers to watch out for, and we’ll break those down for you now.
Are There Any Other Causes of Dark Circles Around My Eyes?
Yes, we’ve got a few more to share with you. Although this laundry list of possible dark eye circle triggers can feel overwhelming, it’s actually empowering. The more triggers you can recognize, the easier it is to be proactive and make strong skin choices.
Here’s a quick overview of a few more reasons you may be waking up looking tired, fatigued, and worn out.
Age: We touched on this already but it’s worth repeating. The older you get, the collagen and fat you lose can change your facial features (yep, some fat is *good* for your face). Without these key building blocks, the skin around your eyes can sag and droop, making underlying blood vessels even more visible.
Dehydration: Haven’t been drinking water today? You may notice darker eye bags than usual. Dehydration can lead to skin that’s sunken and tired, exacerbating existing dark circles.
Sun exposure: You love a day out in the sun, but your skin isn’t so forgiving. Excess sunlight (more specifically, the UV rays it generates) can lead your body to produce too much melanin – the pigment that colors skin. If you’re getting too much pigment around your eyes, your skin will become darker and appear as eye bags.
“I Always Have Dark Circles Under My Eyes. What Are My Treatment Options?”
Living with dark circles near your eyes isn’t ideal, and there is a range of treatment options that can help reduce inflammation and soothe irritated skin. These cover cold compress options (from traditional ice packs to the more untraditional cucumber slices or frozen tea bags) right through to extra sleep and creative make-up concealing. But these are short-term solutions. If you had a leak in your roof, you wouldn’t just put a bucket underneath to catch the water, you’d try to fix the hole. That approach is the best way to rid yourself of dark circles above, below, and around your eyes too.
Instead of treating the symptoms, treat the cause.
By adding definition to your cheeks and targeting fine lines around your eyes, you can reduce the appearance of dark circles and enjoy a smoother, younger complexion at the same time. To help you get started, explore some of our most popular Face Yoga routines:
- 3 Face Yoga Exercises For a Natural Eyelift
- 3 Facial Exercises For Reducing Tired, Fatigued, and Puffy Eyes
- How to Fix Asymmetrical Eyes
Or, if you’d like a custom facial exercise program designed to target your unique dark circle problem, complete our short quiz below and find your 100% personalized program in your inbox within minutes.