Dark circles come into the life of every one of us, sooner or later. You can recognize those circles as they’re blueish, grayish or brownish in color, and add a slight puffiness to the face
There are different effective treatments for fading under-eye circles, such as laser, chemical peeling, fillers, surgery, and others. Even though those methods can ensure permanent fading of your dark circles, they can also be quite expensive.
In this article, you’ll find 5 “at home” treatments for fading dark circles, using accessible and budget-friendly ingredients!
Keep in mind that the information presented in this article does not aim to substitute a consultation with a board-certified dermatologist, and the effects of a professional treatment. Those 5 methods can be most effectively used as part of more complex therapy.
Let’s get started!
Why do you have dark circles under your eyes?
Under-eye circles can be caused by tons of different factors. And according to a study conducted by the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, the most common reasons for under-eye circles include :
Excessive pigmentation. That is when too much melanin is stored in the under-eye area. It may be caused by sun exposure, intake of medicines, use of cosmetic products, or skin abnormalities.
Postinflammatory hyperpigmentation after allergies and contact dermatitis. Those circles appear as an effect of rubbing, stretching, or scratching the skin, as well as after the use of cosmetic products or medication.
Blood vessels showing through the skin. In that case, the skin is translucent due to thin skin epidermis (top layer), and lack of subcutaneous fat (fat below the skin).
Shadowing due to skin loosening (also called laxity). This usually happens as you age.
How to get rid of dark circles at home?
“Cold spoon method”
This method may work wonders if your dark circles are caused by thin skin and visible capillaries or blood vessels.
Keep in mind that keeping the cold spoon on for too long can damage your skin and even cause burns.
The cold spoon helps the dilated capillaries shrink and, simultaneously, stimulates the lymph to reduce any swelling of the under-eye area.
Chemical peeling is often used for reducing uneven pigmentation. As a result, if applied correctly, this method can indeed reduce the visibility of under-eye circles .
Chemical peelers that can be used for under-eye treatment include:
It’s important to mention that the skin under the eyes is extremely sensitive, and those products can be very harsh. That being said, it’s important to consult your dermatologist about the concentration of the chemical peelers, as well as the usage frequency.
Eye massage stimulates the lymphatic flow and blood circulation of the eye area. Regular and properly done massage may reduce puffiness and pigmentation. Besides, this treatment can help the skin to strengthen, become firmer, and less loose. This way, such a massage may prevent aging skin from loosening and forming dark circles as a result.
How to do eye massage?
Place your ring finger at the inner corner of your eyes. Move it outwards, sliding it under the eye, applying gentle pressure. Repeat the same motion a few times without going the inwards (the opposite direction).
Place your middle and ring fingers on your under-eyes. Tap gently for about a minute, moving from left to right and vice versa.
Place your index finger under your eyes in a horizontal position. Roll the fingers towards the upper eyelashes, massaging the skin very gently in an upward direction. Don’t pull the skin down, as it may stretch.
Putting chilled tea bags (or makeup tampons soaked in tea) can actually help fading under-eye circles.  The tannins concentration in tea (together with caffeine) may have a beneficial effect on the skin, shrinking capillaries and blood vessels, thickening the skin in the area, and reducing dark circles visibility.
Keep in mind that only tea made from real tea leaves can be effective: black, green, white, oolong, etc. Herbal or fruit teas will not do the work as they have no tannic acid or caffeine content.
Another thing to mention is that tea is a natural ingredient that can cause allergies and irritation to some individuals (like every natural ingredient used in cosmetics). That’s why you should be very careful if you decide to put tea under your eyes. If you notice any signs of irritation, immediately stop using this method.
Even though using sunscreen on dark circles won’t help you to get rid of them, the American Academy of Dermatology suggests that SPF is an essential part of the treatment for brightening dark spots.  It can indeed prevent further darkening of the under-eye area (as well as other skin areas).
That being said, applying sunscreen daily is crucial to protect your skin from the sun radiation damage, as well as for preventing pigmentation due to melanin concentrations in certain skin areas.
The efficiency of treatment of dark circles may vary according to their cause. While sometimes home treatment may do wonders, other times it may have little to no effect. Finding the method that works for you, either at home or at the office of your dermatologist.
Fluid retention and salty diets can cause increased puffiness in the under-eye area, so avoid excess fluid consumption before bed and sleep with your head elevated.
If you try the above tips and nothing seems to work, consider consulting with a board-certified dermatologist. Sometimes, medical grade creams, fillers, and/or surgery is needed to reduce the appearance of under eye bags.