Parabens are a class of preservatives commonly found in cosmetics, as well as other hygiene products like toothpaste, deodorant, and shampoo. They’re used to prevent the growth of bacteria and fungi — things that you absolutely do not want around your eyes. But they’ve recently come under scrutiny out of a fear that paraben exposure is linked to some types of cancer. One of the larger questions surrounding parabens, particularly since 90% of typical grocery items contain them, is whether they are safe in small doses but become harmful as they accumulate in large doses. In other words, you might be fine if you have parabens only in your toothpaste, but not if they’re in every product you use on a daily basis.
Do you wake up every morning with puffy eyes? If you’re tired of looking sleepy or under the weather, there are plenty of things you can try to give your eyes a lift. Read on to learn about quick fixes, long-term strategies for reducing puffiness and a few permanent solutions, too.
A similar action takes place in the eyelids. The closed, non-blinking eyelids during sleep potentially can swell in certain people prone to this problem. So in the mornings, you could wake up with unusually puffy, swollen eyelids. As soon as you open your eyes and blinking begins, some of this swelling can diminish in an hour or so.
L’Oreal Paris’ White Perfect Magic White Double Whitening Eye Cream claims to whiten the skin from the inside, helping fade dark circles. It helps brighten the under eye area and claims to show results with the first use. It helps inhibit the production of melanin, which curbs pigmentation problems.
Other times we get puffy eyes after sleeping. This can be caused by too much sodium in the diet, which causes water retention. Puffy eyes can also be caused by lack of sleep or excessive alcohol intake. Additional causes of puffy eyes include:
You eat well, avoid alcohol, and always score a healthy 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Yet your undereye area sometimes resembles a tiny pillow. What’s going on? Some of us are simply genetically prone to eye puffiness, says Dr. McLaughlin. And this inherited predisposition tends to not show up until later in life, well into your 30s or 40s (though it can strike at younger ages as well).
Determine if you have a condition associated with puffy eyes. Sometimes the swelling is a side effect of another condition. Getting treated for the condition may help cure your puffy eyes. Here are a few conditions that commonly lead to eye puffiness:
There are hundreds of so-called ‘remedies’ for puffy eyes floating around the Internet. It seems that almost every day someone is posting a new blog or YouTube video about: HOW TO GET RID OF PUFFY EYES. Or, GET RID OF PUFFY EYES NATURALLY. Or, HOME REMEDIES FOR SWOLLEN EYES. The fact of the matter is that almost all of these home remedies are urban myths. But it also seems that people like to fabricate new urban myths simply for web recognition.
Vitamin A (Beta-Carotene) 0–4 yrs old 500 IU per day; 4–12 yrs old 1,000 IU per day; 2,300 IU for women and 3,000 IU for men per day Prevents night blindness; critical in function of eye; known to treat eye disorders such as pink eye, glaucoma, & dry eye syndrome Apricots; cantaloupes; carrots; pumpkins; spinach; broccoli
The majority of eye creams on the market are formulated with the same ingredients as most facial moisturizers. There are no special ingredients in eye creams that are specific to the skin around the eyes, but you should make sure you follow these dermatologist-approved rules for using moisturizer. Like the overwhelming majority of facial moisturizers on the market, eye creams are water based—water is often the first ingredient on the ingredients list. They contain humectants, like glycerin, that help draw water into the skin surface, and occlusives, like petrolatum or dimethicone, that limit water evaporation from the skin into the environment. Emollients are added to make the skin feel smooth and silky, adding aesthetic value to the product so the consumer likes how the product feels. Emulsifiers are added so the water and oil components of the emulsion don’t separate. All water-based products require a preservative to prevent overgrowth of mold and bacteria. Manufacturers also add thickeners, as eye creams are expected to be thicker than most facial moisturizers. A “marketing tool” ingredient (discussed below) is often added to enhance sales, and sometimes fragrance is also added.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1.6 mg for adult males per day; 1.2 mg for adult females per day; 1.5 mg to 1.7 mg for pregnant or lactating women Prevents itchy eyes, which can cause puffiness; helps to maintain good vision Fish; egg yolks; brewer’s yeast; liver; whole grain cereal
Khadi’s Under Eye Gel works on your delicate under-eye skin to improve its appearance by fading dark circles and reducing puffiness. It also claims to significantly reduce the appearance of fine lines while rejuvenating your skin.
Quitting smoking also helps with a host of other health issues. You can add years to your life, get rid of stained teeth, and reduce your chances of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain cancers.
Yes, the skin around the eyes is thin. But under a microscope, a skin pathologist cannot distinguish skin taken from around the eye with skin taken from high on the cheekbone. One might argue that the thinnest eyelid skin is more susceptible to the damage of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, but ironically, most eye creams don’t contain sunscreen.
I always have these patches in my fridge to use when I’m feeling under-rested. Firstly, they’re cute and pink, and that alone makes me feel a little bit better after a late night out. But they’re also great for replenishing and brightening under-eyes. The box also comes with 60 patches, so you’re really getting your money’s worth.
Fluid may also be more likely to get trapped in your lower eyelid as you age. Fluid retention is known as edema. The thin skin around your eyelid can cause fluid retention to be very prominent, resulting in puffy eyes.
And while we were initially excited about our two drugstore Olay eye creams (Olay Eyes Illuminating Eye Cream, and Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Eye Swirl), our testers gave them a uniform thumbs-down, complaining of dryness, the creams’ tendency to pill up and flake off, and their shimmery pearlescent shine — meant to disguise dark circles, but producing an odd appearance when not worn under makeup. We also cut Dr. Brandt needles no more® NO MORE BAGGAGE™ eye de-puffing gel, because it turned our skin an aggressive fake-tan shade of orange.
If your eye puffiness is severe, and if lifestyle changes or other remedies don’t work, you may want to consider cosmetic surgery. One type of surgery is blepharoplasty, which is eyelid surgery. This procedure involves a doctor moving or removing excess fat, muscle, and skin in your eyelid.
Can you wear retinoids during the day? Yes and no. Retinoids have an exfoliating effect on the skin, scrubbing away dead skin, and the more powerful they are, the more effective they are. This means that they can make your skin more sensitive to UV radiation, but it depends both on how sensitive your skin is, and the strength of the retinoid in your eye cream. An easy fix is to wear sunscreen overtop to protect your skin. However, we still recommend wearing these creams at night, because there is some research that sunlight can degrade retinols and make them less effective.
Bags under eyes are usually a cosmetic concern and rarely a sign of a serious underlying medical condition. At-home remedies, such as cool compresses, can help improve the appearance of bags under eyes. For persistent or bothersome under-eye puffiness, eyelid surgery may be an option.
Of course we have all heard about the famous chilled cucumbers over the eyes. Not only is this common in blog posts and YouTube, but it was made famous in several movies and television shows. The theory is that the enzymes and astringent properties in cucumbers are anti-inflammatories which help reduce inflammation and swelling. Some blogs even claim they will get rid of wrinkles and tighten the skin. There is absolutely no scientific support for these claims. However, chilled cucumbers do feel nice on swollen eyes.

The main difference between Estee and Botanics is application style. The Estee is a thin, cream-based formula with a tiny pump, good for dispensing precise amounts of cream. The Botanics uses a squeeze tube with a metal roller ball. Testers reported that the roller ball felt wonderfully cool under their eyes, but this application style does make it trickier to tell exactly how much product you’re applying.
Here’s what happens: As you age, fat deposits that typically support the eyes begin to sag, causing a puffing effect, says Dr. McLaughlin. The tissue and muscles surrounding the eyes weaken as well, adding to the swollen appearance. Puffiness caused by genetics and age isn’t usually a medical concern. “It’s reasonable to say you’re predisposed to having puffy eyes. I’ve seen people whose skin hasn’t aged a bit, but it can be the other way too,” he adds.
If you really struggle with dark under-eyes, this concealer is worth trying. It’s extremely pigmented and infused with vitamins that reduce the appearance of dark circles and discoloration, so you’re both concealing and actively treating your under-eyes throughout the day. Be careful though — it’s extremely pigmented on my light skin (make sure to find the right tone), so a little goes a long way. Before I realized, I put it on the way I would any other concealer and saw how I looked in a photo later — discolored — and learned my lesson: Just use a tiny bit.
Elevate your head when you sleep. It’s not unusual to have puffy eyes upon waking. A possible explanation for this may be that when you are lying down for several hours in a horizontal position and then stand up, the fluid that was resting under your eyes is suddenly being pulled down by gravity. To reduce it, you can try using an extra pillow while sleeping so that the fluid is not as drastically drawn down when you get up.[5]
Make healthy changes to your diet. Do you tend to eat salty dinners frequently? This is a big cause of puffiness around the eyes, since the salt causes you to retain water in the face. If you go to bed almost every night with a lot of salt in your system, it can actually cause the skin in your eyes to stretch out and sag over time from getting filled with fluid. Start these new habits to reduce the chances that this will happen:
Becca Wilkinson has a creative “need” and will do anything to avoid laundry. She writes over at Cul-de-sac Cool about design, DIY/crafts, easy eats, family, funny experiences and of course, motherhood. Becca wants to spread happiness, helpful tips, pretty things and funny experiences throughout the land. She is the proud mother of three boys and married to her college sweetheart. In her past life she was a graphic designer. Becca has learned a lot these past years about juggling boys, blogging, family and suburban life.
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