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This One Trick Will Help You Say Goodbye to Dark Circles

Do you wake up with dark circles under your eyes even after the best sleep of your life? Are you always applying concealer to look more awake, even when you feel refreshed? 

While dark circles are typically caused by lack of sleep, sometimes getting rid of dark circles starts with understanding what your skin needs. With dermatologists’ method called “the pinch test,” you can find out exactly what products you need to apply without the trip to the doctor’s office.

September 2, 2022
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What causes dark circles around the eyes?

Dark circles under your eyes can be caused by more than just a bad night's sleep. 

Other common causes of dark circles include:

  • Fatigue 
  • Allergies
  • Eczema 
  • Contact dermatitis
  • Irritation from rubbing your eyes
  • Genetics
  • Aging 
  • Sun exposure (don’t forget your sunscreen) 

Hyperpigmentation in your eye area causes what you know as “dark circles,” which are often accompanied by puffiness or irritation. The skin around your eyes is very thin, which is part of the reason dark circles become visible. Dryness from eye strain or allergies might increase blood flow to the area, and thinning skin as you age might make this pigmentation more prominent. 

Most of these causes, like your genetics and aging, are out of your control. That said, you can limit their appearance by getting enough sleep at night, wearing SPF daily, and resisting rubbing your eyes, which causes your blood vessels to swell and results in the pigmentation you see. 

If the causes of your dark under eyes seem elusive, don’t forget genetics and age play a role. People with dark skin tones and older people are also more prone to dark circles. But that doesn’t mean you’re stuck with them forever.

Do you always wake up with dark circles?

If no amount of SPF or patience seems to brighten your under eyes, don’t worry. Many skincare products help relieve dark circles to show your most refreshed complexion. To find what products will work best for your skin, try the pinch test — a simple trick that will keep you from wasting your time and money on the wrong products.

The pinch test

The pinch test will help you understand your skin’s needs to properly treat your under eyes. Dermatologists often perform pinch tests, but you can easily do them at home.

First, find a mirror — preferably one that is magnified so you can see your skin clearly. Then, gently lift your skin with two fingers where you experience dark circles. The skin on your lower eyelid is some of the thinnest skin on your body, so be gentle when pinching and lifting your skin. Eye creams are usually formulated to be more delicate to match the delicacy of this under-eye skin, with less intense actives and lighter consistencies.

If the lifted skin returns to its normal skin color as you lift, your skin is thin, and you want a firming product. The thin skin allows the veins underneath your skin to show through slightly, resulting in the appearance of dark pigment under your eyes. A vitamin C serum is ideal for this result to strengthen your skin and increase elasticity to help relieve the bags under your eyes.

The other outcome is lifting your ski and still seeing the purple hue, meaning your dark circles are due to pigment in your skin. To treat pigmented skin, use retinol eye creams to fade the appearance of dark circles. 

How to take care of your under eyes 

Taking care of your under eyes doesn't have to be complicated with so many treatment options and products available. You can easily use a few home remedies to brighten your under eyes with the right products. 

First, start with your regular skincare routine. Use your favorite cleanser, moisturizer, and any other regular products and treatments. Then, mix in one of these products below to treat your specific under-eye concern. Give each product several weeks in your routine to start working before deciding it’s not for you.

Pigmented skin

For pigmented skin, we recommend applying the Dr. Dennis Gross Advance Retinol + Ferulic Correction Eye Serum to the affected area. This retinol is designed specifically for your delicate skin around the eye area. To help remedy puffy eyes, put the serum in the refrigerator before applying it for a cooling eye treatment as you apply it. Apply this product all over your eye area to fend off signs of aging and discoloration. 

Don’t just take our word for it. Here’s a customer review:

For your night skincare routine, you can use a luxurious night cream made with retinol to keep dark circles away, even if you don’t get enough sleep. (Nothing can replace a good night’s sleep, but you can try!)

Thin skin

For thin skin that needs strength and firmness, the Murad Vita-C Eyes Dark Circle Corrector helps strengthen and brighten your under eyes with powerful vitamin C. This isn’t your average vitamin C serum; it was formulated specifically for your under eyes to help you get the best results. 

See what others think about this serum:

When eyes look tired and dull, DRMTLGY Brightening Eye Masks step in to rejuvenate, using ingredients like caffeine, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide.

How can I remove my dark circles?

Dark circles might be stubborn, but with the right products, you can fade your dark under-eye circles. Topical products won’t be complete miracles, but if you find the right one, you should see an improvement. If your dark circles are from a lack of sleep, try to get your solid eight hours along with using brightening skincare products. 

Do dark circles go away?

Everyone’s skin is different, but you can treat dark circles to help lessen their appearance. If your dark circles are particularly stubborn, you can make an appointment with a dermatologist to get a professional opinion from a healthcare standpoint. There’s a chance that you can’t remove your dark circles completely — but they’re perfectly natural, and the right products will help them fade.

Try it for yourself

The pinch test is a simple way to understand your skin, and you can skip the visit to the dermatologist. Remember to be gentle on your skin when you lift it to avoid causing any damage or irritation. If you’re battling puffy eyes as well as dark circles in the morning, you can try a cold compress or face tool, like a jade roller, on your eye area. 

If you’re looking for the right product for you, find creators with similar skin concerns to yours on Flip. You’ll be able to see their honest reviews of eye creams to see what works for them — and decide what’s best for you.

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