Expert Tips to Get Rid of Bags Under Your Eyes
These remedies may help you banish puffiness fast
Waking up with puffy eyes is a bummer, especially in the age of Zoom, where all of our imperfections may be highlighted through the mean gaze of the laptop cam. The best way to beat under-eye puffiness is to stay hydrated, sleep well, and cut down on salt and alcohol. But sometimes preventative measures don’t pan out. We talked to a few experts to find out how to reduce puffiness in the morning so you can get back to your bright-eyed self.
Before you try these remedies, keep in mind that chronic eye puffiness, or puffiness accompanied by redness or pain, could indicate a medical condition. Any eye swelling accompanied by redness or pain should be seen by a medical professional.
Remedies for Puffy Eyes or Eye Bags
Cucumber on eyes. Cucumbers have a cooling effect and are rich in vitamin K, which can help decrease puffiness, says Jennifer David, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin & Scripts Virtual Dermatology in Bensalem, Pa. She suggests lying down and placing thin slices of cool cucumbers—not frozen—over closed eyes, covering both upper and lower eyelids. Leave them on for about 15 minutes.
Tea bags under eyes. “Caffeine, when topically applied, has astringent and anti-inflammatory properties, so tea bags with white, green, oolong, or black tea can help,” says Rachael Pontillo, president of the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance and CEO of Create Your Skincare, which specializes in teaching people about natural skincare products. To do this, she suggests brewing two tea bags according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Then, allow them to cool to room temperature—or even better, put them in the fridge to make them cold. Finally, place them under your eyes for 10 minutes.
Skin Care Ingredients That May Help Treat Puffy Eyes
In addition to home remedies, there are some products that may help relieve puffy eyes and treat the delicate skin around them. Pontillo suggests that people look for lightweight products with a gel base for this area. “Look for soothing, astringent ingredients like aloe vera, rose petals, cucumber, and witch hazel,” she says.
David recommends seeking out the following active ingredients:
Caffeine: “Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which means it helps to constrict blood vessels, so it can help depuff eyes,” she says. “It’s one of the most common ingredients you’ll find in the best eye cream for bags and puffiness.”
But it’s important to remember that caffeine doesn’t repair the skin or improve skin health. It provides temporary relief. Once you stop using an eye cream formulated with caffeine, your eyes are likely to return to their former state, especially if the root cause is a lifestyle habit such as a poor diet, smoking, or drinking excessive amounts of alcohol.
Antioxidants: They can prevent or slow damage to cells caused by free radicals, which are unstable molecules that the body produces as a reaction to environmental and other pressures. Antioxidants often include vitamins. Vitamin E, along with aloe, can help to soothe puffy eyes, David says. Vitamin C helps the skin look brighter, so it can minimize the look of puffiness and bags.
Hydrators: Some of the best depuffing eye creams contain peptides to help firm and tighten the look of the eye area, along with hyaluronic acid and glycerin, which boost the skin’s moisture level. These are critical ingredients in the best under-eye creams for puffiness.
Retinol: Look for eye creams that contain retinol, a vitamin A derivative. It helps encourage cell turnover and boosts collagen production to soften the look of wrinkles.