The Causes of Dark Circles Under the Eyes (and How to Get Rid of Them)

woman with dark eyes

Image credit: Pixabay/AdinaVoicu

Do you have dark circles under your eyes? Do you worry they are making you look tired, old or even sad? Do you wonder where they come from and wonder even more about how to get rid of them? If you answered yes to any of these questions, here is what you need to know.

Causes of dark circles ender the eyes

Heredity – If your parents or grandparents have dark circles under their eyes, the chances are high you have them because you inherited them. What you really inherited is thin skin beneath the eyes. As you get older, the skin around your eyes may become even thinner. It really isn’t the skin itself that has the dark coloration. It is the blood vessels beneath the skin that are shining through. If the capillaries beneath the skin should ever break and bleed, the grayish/blue circles may turn to a dark blue or black.

Lack of sleep – If you go without sleep for a period of time, your skin will become tired and pale. The paler your skin becomes, the more the capillaries beneath your skin will reveal themselves as dark circles under the eyes.

Too much sun – While the thought of darkening the skin with a tan is a leap that some people with pale skin take to rid their face of dark circles, too much sun can make dark circles under your eyes even more apparent. Sun damages the skin and can thin the skin. It can also cause the skin to wrinkle. This combo can make dark circles under the eyes more of a problem than they were before you ever baked your body in the sun.

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Diet and exercise – Believe it or not, what you eat and your activity level can contribute to dark circles under the eyes. Without a healthy, well-balanced diet, your skin will start to age prematurely. This can give you dark circles. Exercising regularly can keep dark circles from your face, too, as exercise will improve blood circulation. So, if you are a sedentary person who doesn’t eat the right food, change those things and your dark circles may lighten and disappear.

Allergies – If you are allergic to things that you are around on a regular basis and you are continually rubbing your eyes, this can contribute to dark circles under your eyes. Continually rubbing the skin under your eyes can damage and thin it.

How to get rid of dark circles under the eyes

Now that you know the things that can contribute to dark circles under the eyes, you probably want to know how to conceal them.

Concealer – Many people put white concealer over their dark circles. This is a no-no and can make the circles more obvious. What you need to do is purchase a tube of concealer that is a shade or two lighter than your skin. To apply, use a sponge or your fingertip. It is best to avoid using the applicator that comes with the concealer as it may be too rough and it can damage the thin skin beneath the eye—which can result in circles looking even darker. After you have applied your concealer, blend foundation over the area with your fingertips or sponge. Next, set the area with a light powder. In regards to concealers and foundations, do not use products that are oil based. They will only fill in the lines that are beneath your eyes and draw more attention to the area.

Eye creams and other products – If dark circles are truly troubling you, consider using one of the products that are on the market that are reported to work at eliminating the dark circles. One product, Hylexin, was talked about in a Dermatology Report in 2006. It was given a superior rating for improving the color of dark circles. It is also reported to firm the skin, strengthen the capillaries and postpone premature aging.

Visit your doctor – You always have the option of going to a dermatologist to deal with your dark under-eye circles. Dermatologists can prescribe creams that can lighten the appearance of dark circles, as well as offering other alternatives to alleviate the problem.

It is very easy to become preoccupied with something we deem as a ‘flaw’ or an ‘imperfection’ on our faces. The truth is, those of us with dark circles under our eyes probably think they are more noticeable than they really are. So, step back a bit and try to judge realistically if your dark circles are truly as bad as you think they are. Chances are high that they aren’t!

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