There are differences between puffy eyes, eye bags and dark circles, so we've created this guide to help you differentiate the three.

    Dark circles, puffy eyes and eye bags are all different problem areas and you may not targeting the right one, therefore it persists longer! Read more on how you can decrease the appearance of these problem areas and find out which products to use to target each part individually.

    Luster Eye Creme, Opaleze Brightening Serum, R&R Peptide-Packed Eye Serum, Hydrating Cleanser

All About Under-Eyes

No one asks for dark circles under their eyes, but yet somehow we’ve all experienced them from sleepless nights or stress at work, and we’ve tried our best to get rid of them. From catching up on sleep, to holding a cold metal spoon under our eyes and of course the age-old sliced cucumber method, it seems like we’ve tried it all. But, no matter our efforts, the effects are generally short-lived. Perhaps the issue isn’t our efforts, but the fact that we might not even know the actual problem that we’re trying to address, or where it’s stemming from. Puffy eyes, eye bags and dark circles, we probably think we have it all when in reality they’re different issues with different origins and solutions. Open your eyes and learn how to get under your under-eyes and come out on top.

Dark circles are the most common under-eye concern, and while lifestyle factors can make a difference in the appearance of dark circles, for the most part they’re mainly caused by genetics and skin tone. The under-eye area contains some of our thinnest and most translucent skin, making it easy to see underlying veins. The lighter the skin tone, the more apparent the dark circles.

This isn’t to say that if you’ve hit a genetic jackpot and avoided dark circles that you’re free to enjoy long nights without facing the consequences. A lack of sleep causes congestion in the veins, creating fluid build-up and making dark circles appear even darker. Even those with darker skin tones can see dark circles, as they may produce extra pigment around the eye area.

The good news is that among the three categories of under-eye concerns, there are the most solutions for dark circles. One solution alone may not work for your dark circles, but with a combination of foolproof methods, you will soon see brighter under-eye days, just make sure you’re also getting plenty of sleep for these methods to have the best effects.

Because the skin under the eyes is thin and easily reveals dark circles, it’s necessary to address the underlying issue to eliminate dark under-eye circles and prevent them from worsening or appearing. Using a topical application of hydrating ingredients with anti-aging properties like collagen and squalane, you can work to strengthen and plump the thin under-eye area. Our Luster Eye Creme contains additional hydrating ingredients including Matricaria Extract and Panthenol, a Pro-Vitamin B5 complex - it’s also perfect under makeup. These ingredients increase blood circulation, relieve skin congestion and regenerate tissues, strengthening the delicate skin over time.

Products that help to lighten the skin can also do wonders for under-eyes, if the darkness is caused by pigmentation. Lightening agents such as licorice root can help decrease skin pigmentation over time and result in the lightening of dark circles. Our Opalex Lightening Serum contains these ingredients as well as five other natural actives to target hyperpigmentation and dark spots. It’s Hydroquinone-free and contains antioxidants to counter irritation, so it’s perfect for even sensitive under-eye skin.

To even further avoid dark circles from hyperpigmentation it’s important to wear sun protection daily. The under-eye area is commonly forgotten when applying sunscreen, but is equally as important. To ensure you’re fully covered, look for a concealer that contains broad spectrum protection.

Puffy eyes tend to come and go, they’re usually temporary and they’re largely attributed to lifestyle factors. One of the biggest causes of puffiness are seasonal allergies. When allergens come into contact with the eyes they cause that annoying swelling that so many of us have experienced. Puffiness can also be caused from water retention, which can happen in the case that you’ve had too much salt or alcohol, leading to dehydration. So yes, you can have too much of a good thing. Another main cause of puffiness is pooled fluid due to lack of sleep, as is the case with other under eye issues. Luckily, if you wake up with puffy eyes, it usually resolves itself by the afternoon as the fluid has time to drain and you gain the power of gravity on your side.

If you’re having worries about your under-eye area, puffiness is the easiest to resolve. Since the main causes of puffiness are caused by lifestyle factors, all it takes are a few lifestyle tweaks to get your eyes back on track.

If you have the inconvenience of going through seasonal allergies, it’s important to maintain a clean household and frequently dust. Even lingering dust in your closet can cause an allergy flare up that can easily be avoided. The easiest way to get past the symptoms of seasonal allergies are daily non-drowsy allergy pills, a one stop shot at eliminating puffiness caused from allergens.

Promoting blood flow while applying products meant for under-eyes can also make a world of difference. Using a metal roller ball to distribute lymphatic buildup and help it drain from under the eyes, apply your favorite eye serum. Our recommendation is Sonage R&R Peptide-Packed Eye Serum. A mix of five peptides including Argireline, and botanical extracts work to diminish the appearance of fine lines and puffiness. Cucumber fruit extract also provides a cooling effect to any inflammation.

We can’t stress this enough, but be sure to drink plenty of water to keep fluid moving through the veins, and sleep! Sure, if you’re relaxing at night enjoying your favorite shows before bed, another episode may seem enticing. But, your body, mind and under-eyes will thank you if you guarantee yourself enough rest every night. Sleeping on your back with an extra pillow may also help so that fluid doesn’t pool so much overnight.

We often hear the word “bags” being used in place of dark circles or puffiness, but there is a unique distinction.  Eye bags are caused primarily by the elasticity of the skin, they’re genetic and a very normal sign of aging. That’s where those fine lines and wrinkles start coming in to play. The under-eye area is one of the thinnest areas of skin and very easily neglected, so it’s more prone to visible sagging. As we age, the fat around our eyes also starts to sink, which can further contribute to under-eye bags.

While we certainly can’t stop the aging process, there are ways that we can take care of the delicate skin around the eyes. Following the tips for dark circles and puffiness are also steps that shouldn’t be forgotten if you want to take care of bags under your eyes. In treating and preventing under-eye bags it’s important to be gentle with how you treat your own skin. When applying an eye serum or creme, be sure to always dot products from the inner corner of the eye and move outwards towards the temple using your ring finger. The ring finger is weaker than the other and will be more gentle on delicate skin.

The key is to always be gentle. During allergy season when your eyes are itchy, it’s tempting to rub them until you feel relief. However rubbing your eyes also impacts the delicate skin surrounding them and over time can lead to increased wrinkles, instead go for some soothing eye drops. Same goes for makeup removal. Rubbing a wipe across your face to remove eye makeup is usually quick, especially after a long night. But, night after night of forcefully rubbing your skin can impact elasticity and lead to eye bags. Using a gentle cream cleanser like our Hydrating Cleanser, or an oil based makeup remover can dissolve tough eye makeup without stripping the skin.