Friday 10 April 2015

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Whether your under eye dark circles come from your genetics or the stress of your new job, there is a solution. In fact, you have more options than you can possibly imagine. Old school ideas like sitting around with cucumbers on your eyes will only get you so far.
If you’ve got serious dark circles under your eyes, you know that there isn’t a cucumber on earth that’s big enough to tackle those bags that are staring back at you from the bathroom mirror every morning.
Did you know that the skin underneath your eyes is only 0.5 mm thick, while the skin almost everywhere else on your body is a full 2.0 mm thick? It might seem small, but it makes a massive difference. You can’t treat the incredibly fragile skin under your eyes the same way you treat the rest of your skin.
Now is the time to start babying that delicate skin! Loathe it or hate it, the problem is only going to get worse. Even the most fresh-faced gal among us will get dark circles eventually. It’s a sad but unchangeable part of the aging process.
BUT, I do have some good news for you! If you can figure out what’s causing them, you can learn how to get rid of dark circles that haunt you. It’s not all about having good genes and being well rested. There are tons of simple, cheap fixes that’ll totally transform your face.
Ready? Here is everything that you’ll ever need to know (AND MORE!!) about those dreadful dark circles under your eyes.

What causes dark circles under the eyes?

Before you can deal with treating the problem, you’ve got to know its cause. While they might all look the same, they all need special treatment! Dark circles caused by smoking are very different from the bags that you inherited from your mom. So, before we talk about solutions, let’s look at the causes.
There are a lot of different reasons why we get dark circles under our eyes. More often than not, you can blame your parents for your baggage! Heredity is the number one cause of dark circles under the eyes. Some people have thinner skin there, while others have more blood vessels than the average person.
If one of your parents has dark under eye circles, there is a very good chance that you will too. While women with dark complexions are more prone to pigmentation issues, women with very fair skin also have issues with transparency. Unfortunately, since it’s not a lifestyle issue, there is nothing that you can really do about it.
It’s not a totally hopeless situation though! While you might not be able to do anything to change your genes, there’s a lot that you can do to cover up the darkness and prevent it from getting worse.
If you aren’t sure whether you inherited your dark circles, here’s a quick test to see where they might have come from. Hold your fingers beneath your eyes. Gently stretch the skin. If the dark circles underneath your eyes get darker, you’re probably dealing with a genetic issue. If your skin stays the same color, the bags under your eyes are probably caused by environmental factors.
One good thing about having such thin skin underneath your eyes is that it gives you a glimpse into what’s going on underneath the surface. That might sound a bit gross, but it’s important! The slightest alteration in pigmentation is obvious under your eyes and it can serve as an important alert to a few different conditions.
If you have dark circles under your eyes that won’t go away, you might want to get checked for anemia. Don’t freak out as soon as you spot bags under your eyes, but if they are accompanied by dizziness, fatigue and generally feeling under the weather, you might have an issue.
There are a few different forms of anemia, but the most common type is iron-deficiency anemia. A lack of iron in your blood stream is typically a result of heavy periods or an inadequate diet. If you think that you might have an iron deficiency, chat with your doctor. It’s not a big deal as long as you are proactive about it.
Your doc will just give you a quick test, and then, if you do have an iron deficiency, you will probably get some supplements. It’s also incredibly easy to add more iron to your diet. There are cereals and breads enriched with iron. Dark green leafy vegetables, peas, soybeans, chickpeas, beans and dried fruits are also great sources.
So, it’s definitely worth looking into, because sitting down with a bowl of cereal is a whole lot easier than messing around with under eye concealer every single morning.
If you’re downing spinach like Popeye, you might have perorbital hyperpigmentation. Again, it’s not a scary condition! Having periorbital hyperpigmentation just means that you’re producing a high level of melanin around your eyes. It’s pretty common among people with Mediterranean and African ancestry.
While it’s often hereditary, it’s possible to have perorbital hyperpigmentation even if your parents don’t. While there are some treatments for it (and we’ll talk about those), it is just an aesthetic issue, so it’s nothing to worry about.
Do you have a steak for breakfast every morning? If the dark circles under your eyes don’t seem to be hereditary or caused by an iron deficiency, you might have allergies. They don’t just cause watery eyes. Allergies can make the entire area around your eyes appear dark and discolored.
While most allergy meds will help to dry out your eyes and prevent watering, they won’t do anything about the dark circles under your eyes. It’s not always a year-round thing though, a lot of people deal with seasonal allergies. “They trigger the release of histamines in the body, which in turn inflame blood vessels and cause swelling,” says Dr. Ranella Hirsch, a dermatologist in Boston.
Again, it’s just about appearance, so it’s nothing to worry about, but it’s something to keep in mind if you are at the cosmetics counter.
After spending years trying to hide them, a lot of women are annoyed to learn that the bags under their eyes are caused by nothing more than dehydration. An amazing number of us are dealing with dehydration most of the time. Forget about recommended water intakes. The amount of water that you need depends on YOU.
If the weather is hot and sticky or you’ve just had a hearty workout, you’ll need to drink tons of water. You can also become dehydrated after having too much sodium and that can come from a surprisingly wide number of sources.
While you probably know that you should drink more water after you tuck away a salty pile of junk food, a lot of so-called healthy foods are also shockingly high in sodium. Pre-packaged diet foods, like low calorie soups and frozen dinners, are often jam-packed with sodium. Do a reality check every so often.
It’s not easy to guess product ingredients, so check the labels and start paying attention to your sodium intake. Ultimately, the most important thing is to always, always keep drinking water. If you don’t like the taste, add some flavoring. If you simply hate water, grab some tea or carbonated water.
Forget the myth that caffeine dehydrates you. Unless you are drinking espresso shots 24/7, it’s irrelevant. The important thing is to keep sipping on basically anything except soda (which most definitely is bad for you).
While drinking water will help to keep you alive and kicking, smoking will undo even your most diligent effort to stay healthy. Smoking causes vascular problems that will lead to constricted blood vessels and poor circulation. This will make your under eye circles look much darker.
Also, in case you missed the memo, smoking will kill you. Sure, it’s hard to quit, but smoking is an incredibly time-consuming and expensive hobby, so quitting pays off pretty much immediately.
Want a less stressful way to get rid of under eye circles? Start sleeping more! Lack of sleep is one of the most common causes of under eye bags, but it’s incredibly easy to fix. Simply start sleeping more and you’ll start seeing results. Too busy? Nobody wants to hear your excuses!
People who are well rested do everything faster and more efficiently, so you aren’t doing anyone any favors by dragging around that sleep-deprived bag of bones.
Of course, regardless of everything else, time will catch up to all of us. The process of aging will cause everybody’s under eye skin to darken regardless of genetics and lifestyle. “Another factor is age,” says Dr. Lisa Kellett, a Toronto-based dermatologist. “Dark circles usually become a problem around age 35. As we get older, we lose fat in the under-eye area, making dark circles look more prominent.”


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