I’ve spent years trying to figure out how to combat the dark circles that live under my eyes. As someone who doesn’t sleep well, they’re pretty much a constant in my life. In fact, I used to never take photos without sunglasses because I was so self-conscious about my undereye bags. The fact that I’m sharing a selfie that I took last night with no sunglasses is not something I ever thought I would do.
Obviously sleep is the best thing you can do for this situation, but it’s not always realistic, especially if you have insomnia or a small child (or both, as the case may be!). So I’ve found other ways to deal with dark circles. After years of trying pretty much everything, this routine really works for me and I hope it’s helpful for you too!
Diet: Before I get into any products, it has to be noted that besides sleep, diet is the single most important thing you can do for combatting many skin issues, including eye bags. There are two main things that really make my face puff up, especially under my eyes: alcohol and salt. If you’re going to have a drink, try to have it earlier in the night as opposed to right before bed. And avoid overly salty foods at night whenever possible.
On the flip side, hydration is the best thing you can do for your skin. I try to drink half of my body weight in oz of water every day. It’s a lot of water, but I see a difference both in my appearance and the way I feel when I do this. If you want to take it a step further, a quick Google search last night led me to this article about 11 foods to reduce dark circles.
Don’t treat your eyes like the rest of your face: Never rub them harshly, never use an exfoliant on them, and only use your ring finger to (gently) apply any serums or creams. When you remove eye makeup, use a gentle remover (I like Neutrogena Makeup Remover) and a soft cotton pad. The skin around your eyes is incredibly delicate, so treat it that way!
Ice roller: Jade rollers are great, but this $12 plastic tool from Amazon is a game-changer when I wake up with dark and puffy eyes. I keep it in the freezer and roll it over my eyes and cheeks when I really need it. It’s freezing cold and feels so good.
Jade roller: The ice roller is great for an in-the-moment fix, but I think of the jade roller as a preventative measure. I keep it in the fridge and use it daily after moisturizer and before makeup. I know a lot of people use it to rub in their creams and serums on a deeper level, but I just use it for puffiness. I roll the larger roller on my cheeks and forehead, and I use the smaller one for my eyes. I do it for about three minutes every morning and that’s it.
Eye masks: I discovered Grace & Stella gold eye masks in a Fab Fit Fun box and have been a loyal fan ever since. Anel even put them in my Christmas stocking because he knows how much I love them. I use these eye masks first thing in the morning when I have a shoot or an event for which I want to look exceptionally refreshed. They really work.
Eye cream: I’ve used a lot of different eye creams and have settled on two that I really like. But I keep coming back to PCA Skin’s EyeXcellence. It’s not cheap, but a little bit goes a long way. I like the way that it easily rubs in, and that I can put makeup over it without any issues. It’s not super thick or heavy, but it moisturizes really well.
Concealer: I can use all of the masks, creams, and rollers in the world, but I still have some amount of darkness under my eyes. Concealer is the only thing that combats that. I’ve been using Benefit’s Boi-ing Industrial Strength Concealer for years and I swear by it. It glides on smoothly over my eye cream and never looks cakey.
So those are my secrets for combatting dark circles. When combined, they really work! What are your secrets?