There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for dark circles under the eyes, and the first thing sufferers need to do is find out the causes of their dark circles. Different people have dark circles under the eyes for different reasons, and while some treatments for some people may be effective, other people may find that there is no improvement, or even that the problem is made worse!
In most instances, the appearance is actually caused by an increased transparency of the already extremely thin eyelids, allowing the blood vessels underneath to show through. This is a very common part of the aging process.
Dark circles under the eyes can be caused by several factors. The easiest thing to try is getting more sleep, as tiredness can frequently contribute to the appearance of dark circles. However, if the problem is an ongoing one, it is likely that there are other reasons.
Some other causes of dark circles are poor nutrition, allergies, food intolerances, dehydration, fat-loss, anaemia and various other health and lifestyle-related reasons, such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and too much caffeine.
Once you have ruled out these possibilities, you may choose to arrange a consultation with a cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist, to find out more about the causes of those circles, and what will be the best to treatment for them.
The causes of persistent dark circles will generally fall into one of the following categories:
Hyperpigmentation. This is where the coloration of the area under the eyes is simply stronger than in other areas, leading to an appearance of dark circles. Using sunblock, and wearing sunglasses can often go some way to reducing the problem, or stopping it from becoming worse.
Fat-Loss. A loss of fat on the face can lead to the eyes getting a sunken appearance. If you are already prone to dark circles, then the loss of fat around the eyes will often create extra shadows in the lower eyelid area.
Visible Blood Vessels. Known as superficial vascularisation, visible blood vessels are a very common cause of dark circles.
Dark circles under the eyes can be an indicator of various underlying health issues, such as liver problems, anaemia and iron and vitamin deficiencies. None of the treatments for dark circles can address these underlying issues, so sufferers should seek medical help if there is reason to believe that there may be some health problems causing those circles.
Dark circles can be, and often are, hereditary. In these instances, nothing much can be done about the causes, although there may be methods of concealing the appearance, either using cosmetics such as concealers, or with surgical treatment.
Treatments vary from folk remedies, which may not be very effective, but will be cheap; to rather expensive surgical and dermatological procedures, such as injectable fillers, laser treatment and microdermabrasion and chemical peels. In the middle ground are a number of eye creams and serums.
There are a number of creams available that are said to help to reduce the appearance of dark under-eye circles. It should be noted that these products are not cheap, and will need to be used regularly to see the benefit. There are certainly plenty of instances where they will not work, especially if the cause of the dark circles is health-related or hereditary. It should be added that frequently rubbing serums into the affected area can in some cases make the problem worse.
At the end of the day, you need to understand that there are no creams or serums that are likely to compensate for a loss of fat, or increase the thickness of excessively thin skin around the eyes. It also seems unlikely that any creams will be able to reduce any hyperpigmentation without the use of bleaching agents of some kind.
If you want a non-surgical treatment dark circles under the eyes, you will be better off looking at your lifestyle, and making small changes to see if they help, along with checking whether you do suffer from any allergies or intolerances. If this doesn’t help, realistically your options are to use concealer, or consult a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon.
We would love to be able to recommend a product, but we are suspicious that any of them genuinely get results!
Various surgical solutions are available. The exact method used will be dependent on the actual causes of the problem.
Dark Circles due to loss of fat can be treated using fat grafting techniques, or by using injectable fillers, such as Restylane. Where the problem is caused by hyperpigmentation, bleaching agents, chemical peels or laser treatments are a possibility. Visible blood vessels will probably require laser or IPL(Intense Pulsed Light) to correct the dark circles. In all cases, the procedure must be done carefully, by an expert, to avoid any damage to the area.
What is also important is that the patient, and for that matter, the surgeon, understands that the dark circles will not be successfully treated with traditional Blepharoplasty (eyebag removal surgery). In many cases, this has been found to actually increase the sunken, hollow look about the eyes.
To make sure that the procedure goes as well as possible, and gets the best results, you, as a patient, must make sure that your surgeon or dermatologist is experienced and skilled at the procedure. Don’t be afraid to ask to see some photos of their previous work. Any surgeon who has performed a given procedure with successful results should be only too pleased to show off what he is capable of!