Puffy under eyes? Dark circles? One eyebrow lower than the other? It's time to face facts! Our sleeping habits can wreak havoc on our faces, in particular our eyes.
The skin around the eyes is very thin and is full of blood vessels which makes it very sensitive. When it comes to pointing the finger for our under eye ailments, why are our sleeping habits to blame?
Puffiness can be due to changes in weather, hormone levels, allergies or your sleeping position! Sleeping on your stomach can block your lymphatic glands and cause a fluid retention.
Whereas sleeping on your side can pull at the face resulting in quicker loss of elasticity. This can cause wrinkles, droopy eyes, lowered brows or uneven hoods on our eyes.
Lack of sleep can drain you of colour and make your appear paler, allowing blood vessels to be more visible in the under eye area. Ding ding ding!!! Dark circles!
10 practical tips to help:
- Make sure that you are getting at least 7-8 hours of undisturbed sleep. This will help you to recuperate, renew and brighten your skin cells, reducing the depth of dark circles.
- Raise your head at night with a pillow or a rolled towel under your neck. This helps prevent fluids from accumulating around your eyes as you sleep.
- Build good skincare rituals. Cleanse, tone and moisturise morning and night and invest in a soothing eye cream. Try to avoid detergents in cleansers and look for eye creams with ingredients like aloe and Vitamin E to cool down skin, reduce puffiness and darkness under the eyes. Always remove eye makeup with an eye makeup remover to truly dissolve any traces of product.
- If puffiness is the problem, try applying a cool compress to the skin under your eyes for a few minutes. You can also use chilled cucumber slices, a refrigerated gel mask or chilled, damp tea bags.
- Hydrate your body. It seems counter-intuitive when you are retaining water, but hydration reduces puffiness. So try to stick to 8 glasses a day and a bit extra when you notice your eyes getting a little droopy.
- Get the most out of your diet. Try to avoid processed food and instead opt for foods high in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, iron and folic acid. Try berries, citrus, leafy greens, whole grains, nuts, seafoods and lean meats.
- Try to be more upright. Regular exercise and breaks from screen time can help increase blood flow, circulation of oxygen throughout the body and help drain the lymphatic glands on our face of excess fluid.
- Limit your bad habits. Yes I mean smoking and alcohol. We all know that smoking is bad for us but did you know that nicotine constricts your blood vessels and slows your circulation which can cause greater appearance of dark circles as well as premature ageing? Alcohol decreases the flow of oxygen to the skin by inhibiting cardiac function. Try to cut back to two glasses in a session and see the results in the mirror!
- When it comes to makeup look for oil free. Oil-based cosmetics can inflame the eye area and build up under the skin causing more skin concerns. Try to use water or silicone based formulas that look and feel lighter and smooth out the skin.
- Never underestimate the power of concealer. When you need a quick camouflage follow these quick steps:
A. Apply a small amount of eye cream and allow time to absorb.
B. Neutralise the discolouration with a sheer wash of a corrective concealer. If your circles are blueish try a warm peachy tone, if they are more reddish-violet try a pale olive tone. Or for more coverage use a creamy or liquid concealer that is one shade light than your skin tone.
C. Set the concealer with a layer of loose powder to keep it in place and prevent creasing.