How To Combat Dark Circles and Puffiness

Michael Brown

Beauty Expert

Do you ever find, no matter how much you sleep, drink water and eat healthy, those dark circles and puffiness can still be present? It really does ruin your morning when you wake up and they are the first thing you see.

Well, there are a number of reasons why we wake up with so called ‘bags’ under our eyes and dark circles, which really are the biggest cause of looking fatigue, even when we are not.

Lack of sleep, diet, stress, all that can be contributors, but also the way we sleep. The lack of moisture and the circulation around the eye area is often the biggest factor.


Image credit: Zimbio

The Why Facts

Puffiness is basically trapped fluid around the eyes. It can be caused by fatigue, allergies, and crying. If we sleep on a certain side, we lack circulation around the eye to flush it out.

Lack of circulation around the eye is common, the skin is so delicate and thin; there is less flow to move fluid around the area. This also goes for dark circles, which can be trapped blood.

The build up is daily. If not treated over the time, or re-circulated. Before you know it you wake up 50 years old with enough bags to go around the world and back.

The How Facts

Stimulation and circulation is key for success for the removal and/or reduction of dark circles and puffiness, otherwise they just keep building up until they are too hard to reduce from such a large build up over time.

Some eye creams can help stimulate circulation which contain caffeine, or the new craze of on-the-go roller ball eye gels to help cool and massage the area in the morning.

But the best way is manual stimulation daily, so you never have build up.

Eye Cream and Application

Of course using eye cream of any kind can help the area soften and look more revived, but the texture you choose is key for success.

Morning – I suggest a lighter gel, or cream-gel hydrating texture. This will be absorbed very quickly to give instant results. It will plump, refresh and cool the area, assisting in reduction of puffiness and expression lines.

It is also a great under makeup base, it has less residue, so your concealer can have better longevity.

Evening – This is the time to use richer, nourishing cream based eye creams.

At night, our skin is at rest. So it has more time to absorb the richer formula to give comfort, ready for the morning.

If you already have a lot of puffiness, richer textures, if over-used, can create more puffiness, so less is best!

These oil based, rich eye creams are not as good under makeup, as it can create a slip that products can fall into.

Application – No matter what eye product texture you use, always use a dabbing application with your ring finger, as it is a softer touch with less nerve endings.

The dabbing application should start from inside to out. By starting inside, you are assisting in the draining of trapped fluid.

It’s best to start on the upper outer eye, then travel inward, move to lower inner eye, then dab to outer.

This is a great way to create manual stimulation for circulation and helps flush away unwanted trapped fluid. Doing this daily, a minute each eye is the best way to avoid build up of ‘bags’.


When you go to a facial, they do a piano like dabbing movement on the eye area, in to out. It’s all about drainage to release trapped blood and fluid for the freshest eyes daily. So create your own manual result with a dabbing application when applying eye cream.


The biggest mistake women make is using the wrong shade of concealer to correct a dark circle. Usually it is too light and this makes the area go grey.

– Don’t match your concealer to your face shade; a dark circle has a blue/green/purple undertone, so it needs an entirely different shade tone. Usually a peach to yellow for pale skin and a yellow to orange base for olive skin.

– Puffiness also needs a slightly deeper shade to correct and recede the area, otherwise using the same shade as your face or a lighter shade will make it stand out. Don’t highlight a puff, correct it by going deeper with concealer.

– When applying, only dab on the area where the concern actually is. Too many apply out to the outer eye area. This is where we can get expression lines and then we can age ourselves when the product creeps into our ‘crows feet’. We should only apply where needed; less is best when it comes to areas on the face that has movement.

– Once the area is corrected, use the double concealer trick. Correct first to reduce concern, then highlight over the top to brighten and lift the area. The deeper shades used to correct either dark circles or puffiness is great to counter-act the problem, but they can appear dull. Use a brighter concealer over the top, in a light dabbing application, you will see the area lift instantly.

– For puffiness, don’t use the highlight directly on the puffiness. Only directly underneath it, where the shadow is. This will lift forward the shadow, appearing more in line with the puffy area, creating balance.


You cannot brighten the under eye area until you correct the concerns you have. Highlight and shade play a big part in creating illusions of a more lifted eye look.

So ladies, prep with the right eye texture, always dab your eye cream in a circular movement, inwards to out to drain away excess fluids and use a deeper shade of concealer to correct, then finish with some highlight! BOOM, ready to rock!


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