These are all very common areas of concern for both men and women. Under eye circles are dark patches that are visible under the eye. Depending on cause and skin tone, these can look like shadows or discolouration that’s red, blue or green in hue. Under eye bags on the other hand, are swollen pockets or patches under the eye. Both under eye circles and bags can either occur separately or alone. They may also be caused by or exasperated by the presence of a tear trough (this is a loss of fat tissue leading to hollowness under the eye). The most common complaints people tend to have with under eye circles, bags or tear trough deformities is that they give the appearance of tiredness.
There are a number of genetic and environmental causes that give rise to under eye circles, bags and tear trough deformities. Some people are more predisposed to developing these and whether they affect other members of your family is a good indicator of your risk. Your skin tone may also play a role. Paler skin tones tend to show up blood vessels more readily and thus give the impression of bluish discolouration under the eyes. Darker skin tones may exhibit increased pigmentation in the under eye area which gives the appearance of shadowing. Aside from genetics, other common causes include:
– Ageing: as we get older, the skin under the eyes loses its thickness and elasticity. This thinner and more fragile skin is more likely to show underlying muscles and blood vessels which also gives the appearance of dark circles under the eyes. Sun damage can also cause dark pigmentation under the eyes as well as accelerate skin ageing. Fat loss and reduced skin laxity can also cause under eye bags to appear more prominent. Loss of fat under the skin and skin ageing can also give rise to tear trough deformities.
– Diet: deficiencies in Vitamins C and K as well as iron are thought to present with discolouration under the eyes. Diets high in salt can also increase fluid retention which can increase the prominence of under eye bags.
Sleeping: or rather lack of, can result in worsening of under eye circles and bags.
– Dehydration: reduced water intake, excess caffeine and alcohol can all cause volume depletion in the skin and lack of laxity.
– Sun damage and smoking: this can cause increased pigmentation and skin ageing both of which give rise to dark under eye circles and bags.
– Inflammation and allergies: this can cause puffiness, bags and under eye circles over time.
Luckily, there are a wide range of treatment options if you suffer from under eye circles or bags. The first thing is to ensure that you have a good skincare routine which includes using an under eye cream that contains ingredients like Vitamin C, Vitamin K and ferulic acid which help with under eye circles. Another important skincare tip is to ensure that the under eye skin is kept moisturised so having hyaluronic acid in your under eye cream would help immensely.
If the problem is purely due to thin skin or pigmentation issues, then advanced skin treatments like chemical peels and collagen induction therapy can help brighten and firm up the under eye skin. For tear trough deformities and under eye bags, hyaluronic acid tear trough fillers can treat the hollowness under the eyes and rejuvenate the eye area. For more defined tear trough deformities, cheek fillers can help provide support for the tear trough fillers.