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No matter how old you are, we bet that one of the last things you want to show up on your pretty little face—right up there with fine lines and wrinkles and dark spots—is a set of under-eye bags. Ugh, puffiness, be gone! If this is something that you’re dealing with, you’ve probably searched high and low to find out how to get rid of bags under your eyes. Sadly, there’s no magic solution that will completely get rid of puffy under-eyes—but there are some skin care products and tips you can add to your skin care routine to help reduce the appearance of under-eye bags. Of course, it’s also important to understand what can cause puffiness and bags in the first place. Keep reading to find out about the most common causes, plus learn multiple ways—15, to be specific—to help minimize their appearance.
According to the Mayo Clinic, under-eye bags are a common issue that many people experience as they age. The skin around your eyes is generally thinner than the rest of your skin. So, it’s more prone to showing signs of aging like under-eye bags, sagging skin, and dark circles. The tissues and muscles around your eyes tend to weaken as you age, meaning the delicate skin in that area can become more susceptible to visible wrinkling and sagging. And that’s not all! As you age, the fat around your eyes, which supports the area, can start to sink, which can also contribute to under-eye bags.
Other causes of under-eye bags can also include everything from lack of sleep to overeating salty food. Oh, and under-eye bags can be genetic, too. Thanks, Mom and Dad!
Of course, there’s nothing you can do about genetics or getting older, but now that you know about the most common causes of under-eye bags, you can learn how to address their appearance. Depending on what’s causing your under-eye bags, try incorporating some of the following tips into your routine to help minimize the look of under-eye bags.
Dr. Rocio Rivera, head of scientific communications for L’Oréal Paris, recommends raising your head with an additional pillow while sleeping on your back to help avoid fluid retention that can lead to under-eye bags.
Remember, it’s called beauty sleep for a reason. So, go ahead and get your recommended eight hours. Then, see if it makes a difference in the appearance of your under-eye bags.
If you’re guilty of sleeping with your makeup on, it’s time to correct your bad behavior. Not only can falling asleep with a full face of foundation and heavy eye makeup on lead to breakouts—which you likely already knew—it can also result in puffiness. To wake up fresh-faced, use a micellar water to remove every trace of makeup before bedtime. Simply saturate a cotton pad with the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof – All Skin Types and sweep it over your skin, no need to rinse.
You deserve a pat on the back if you’re already using eye cream, but that brings us to our next question—are you using the right eye cream? It’s important to make sure that in addition to providing hydration, your product pick helps to reduce the appearance of under-eye bags. Try the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Anti-Wrinkle + Firming Eye Cream which can help minimize the appearance of puffiness.
Need a morning pick-me-up? Try an eye cream with a cooling applicator for a refreshing wake up call that can also help with your baggage. Rivera likes the L’Oréal Paris RevitaLift Triple Power™ Eye Treatment, which has a cooling applicator tip and is formulated with caffeine and helps reduce the look of under-eye bags. Use morning and night and gently massage the eye treatment around your eye area until it’s fully absorbed. Your skin will look brighter immediately, and your under-eye bags will look visibly smaller with continued use over time.
Rivera says that storing your eye cream in the fridge can help to temporarily reduce the look of under-eye bags and dark circles. When cold, eye creams can cause short-term vasoconstriction (meaning tightening of blood vessels), which can be beneficial for those with puffy eyes or dark circles. When you’re ready to use your eye cream, take it out of the fridge and apply it with your fingertips in small dots around your eye until it’s absorbed.
Editor's tip: Don't want your eye cream intermingling with your produce? In that case, it may be time to get a mini skin care fridge!
Here’s another way your fridge can come in handy: Store a few metal spoons inside. When you find yourself with a little free time, perhaps while you’re watching an episode of your favorite TV show, grab two chilled spoons from the fridge and place them on your under-eye bags. The spoons will work similarly to your refrigerated eye cream, helping to de-puff.
We’ve all seen movie makeover scenes involving someone sporting a brightly colored face mask, paired with cucumber slices over their eyes, but is that really a thing? As it turns out, yes! It makes sense if you think about it. “Cool as a cucumber” isn’t a saying for nothing. The cool feel of the cucumber slices can aid in reducing puffiness. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that you’ll feel like you’re straight out of your favorite rom-com.
Remember how we told you that the cold may be beneficial if you have noticeable under-eye bags? Well, Rivera says you can create a cold compress to help temporarily reduce the appearance of under-eye bags. Place a chamomile tea bag in the refrigerator to chill. Once it’s cold, place the tea bag over your eye—the combo of the temperature and the chamomile can be soothing and have a temporary de-puffing effect.
Nowadays, there are masks for everything. Face, hair, lips, and even eyes! If you’re wondering why all those masks are necessary, it’s because there isn’t a one-size-fits-all product. You probably won’t want your favorite face mask to get too close to your eyes, right? So, you need a mask that’s specifically designed for the under-eye area. Eye masks are typically cushy, apostrophe-shaped sheets that go underneath your eyes, right where your under-eye bags happen to be.
So, you slather your skin from head to toe with sunscreen, but you avoid getting your SPF too close to your eyes. It may sound reasonable since you don’t want to deal with stinging, burning eyes. But that doesn’t negate your need for sun protection in that area. For an easy solution, seek out an eye cream that’s formulated with SPF.
Additionally, make sure you wear the proper accessories. When you are exposed to the sun, don a pair of large sunglasses that provide UV protection with a wide-brimmed hat. Besides defending against sun damage, proper sun protection can help prevent under-eye bags.
When the seasons shift, it’s not out of the norm to wake up with watery, itchy, puffy eyes. The cause: allergies. You’ll no doubt want to manage your allergies to save yourself from that uncomfortable experience, but getting your allergies under control could also help reduce your under-eye bags.
Remember how we said eating too many salty foods could be the cause of your under-eye bags? Well, it’s only fitting that reducing how much salt you consume might help minimize those bags. Try making healthy lifestyle choices, like watching your salt intake, and your skin could reap the benefit.
When all else fails, help cover your under-eye bags with makeup! Stock your makeup bag with a flesh-toned concealer so that you can quickly dab over any unwanted under-eye bags. Try the L’Oréal Paris True Match™ Super-Blendable Multi-Use Concealer, and for a natural-looking finish, gently apply concealer with a makeup sponge.
Since under-eye bags are often accompanied by dark circles, you may need a color corrector to help disguise the look of a dark, puffy under-eye area. Blend the L’Oréal Paris True Match™ Color Correcting Crayon in Peach, Bisque, or Orange under your eyes. And don’t worry about the unnatural hue, add a little concealer on top, and no one will know.
Have a different complexion concern regarding the skin around your eyes? To help reduce the look of crow’s feet, head over to our article on Our Best Eye Creams for Crow’s Feet. If dark circles are your major issue, read about 6 Easy Ways To Improve the Look of Dark Circles.
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