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Say Buh-Bye to Tired Eyes: 12 Eye Treatments That Actually Work

As a skincare professional, one of the questions I hear the often is, Alana, is there an eye treatment out there that actually works?!

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Whether it’s from stress, genetics, sleepless nights (holla at ya, moms with little ones!), or simply aging, different factors can affect the brightness and youthful glow of our eyes.

And, ladies, we’re feeling the struggle! Many of us are starting to see changes pop up in our skin.

A poll from New Beauty Magazine (Spring 2015) asked readers, “On which area of your face did you first notice signs of aging?

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Don’t fret, dear friends! Today I’m going to share my top 12 favorite tried and true ways to beat bags, diminish dark circles, fade fine lines and say buh-bye to puffy eyes!

What Causes Signs of Aging Around the Eyes?

Wondering why a rough night leaves your eyes looking puffy? Or why your dark circles never seem to fade? Or why in the world you’re already showing signs of crow’s feet (But, I’m so young!)?

Let’s take a look at some of the factors that contribute to tired-looking eyes.

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Puffiness

Research conducted by Clinique found that of 13,000 users surveyed, 53% cited under eye circles and puffiness as their number one beauty concern!

A good, healthy sob fest. An up-all-nighter. An allergy flare up that has you all sneezy and congested.

All of these factors can lead to you waking up to find puffy eyes staring back at you in the mirror. But, these are all temporary effects with situational causes.

What if I have puffy eyes all the time?

The cause is likely fluid retention. When we have water retention and bloat, say from hormonal changes or consuming all the chips (or both simultaneously), fluid can collect around our eyes and cause those babies to puff up.

Bags

If a “just-one-more-episode” binge watching session kept you up waaaaayy past your bedtime, you can wake up with tired eyes.

But, if you feel like you’re in a constant baggage battle, the cause might be deeper.

As we get older, we lose collagen and elastin in the thin skin around our eyes which compromises our tissue structure and causes sagging. The fat that usually stays around our eye orbital starts to migrate down and settle and form under eye bags.

Dark Circles

Darkness under your eyes can be the result of one of two factors: blood vessels or hyperpigmentation.

How to Tell: According to New York dermatologist, Dr. Amy Wechsler, a tip for determining which is the cause of your dark circles is to press lightly on the darkened area. If it gets lighter, the cause is blood vessels. If it stays dark, then you’re dealing with hyperpigmentation.

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Blood Vessels - Again, this is a result of the skin around our eyes being thin and losing structure, allowing blood vessels below the surface to show through. As we age, the skin gets thinner, which may make under eye circles appear darker.

Genetics also play part. You may just be predisposed to having more apparent dark circles (thanks so much, Mom and Dad!).

Hyperpigmentation - An overproduction of melanin from sun exposure or hormone changes can cause dark patches under our eyes.

After the birth of my second little one, I struggled with melasma which left dark areas under my eyes that look like circles. I wasn’t thrilled about having dark spots that made my eyes look more tired, but I’m so happy to be a mama, it’s totally worth it!

Fine Lines and Wrinkles

Oh, those little lines. One day, they just suddenly show up, move in, and become the newest addition to your face family.

There’s a few reasons these guys start forming.

Break Down - Yup, once again, the main factor of wrinkle formation is a loss of collagen and elastin (also known as static wrinkles). Age, sun damage, and inflammation can all cause our skin to lose firmness and start to allow lines to show.

Facial Movements - Another type of lines, dynamic wrinkles, are caused by habitual facial movements that form creases in the skin. Your crow’s feet could be the result of squinting, laughing, or sleeping on your face.

Dehydration - When your skin is dry, it lacks suppleness, which gives skin a crepey texture and makes little lines more apparent.

So, what can you do about it? I’m excited to share some of my favorite beauty hacks for bright, Sleeping Beauty eyes.

My 12 Top Eye Treatments That Actually Work!

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For maximum eye-boosting power, look for these featured ingredients in your skincare that will combat signs of aging and reinvigorate eyes!

1. Retinol

This is an anti-aging wonder-ingredient because it kind of does it all.

It gently resurfaces skin to remove dulling dead skin cells and encourages cellular turnover. Retinol kicks skin’s collagen and elastin production into gear to help rebuild tissue.

What does this mean for you? Smoothed wrinkles, softer skin, and lightened up dark spots!

2. Antioxidants

When our skin is damaged by UV exposure, free radicals wreak havoc by breaking down collagen, altering our skin’s texture, and causing hyperpigmentation.

Antioxidants, fight free radical bad guys by repairing damage and encouraging cells to rebuild healthy skin.

3. Hyaluronic Acid

If dry or dehydrated skin is pointing a big spotlight on your fine lines, allow me to introduce you to your new best friend, hyaluronic acid.

This is an absolutely amazing humectant that grabs moisture out of the air and holds it against your skin to deliver deeply absorbed moisture and hydration.

When your skin is moisturized, it actually plumps up and fills out fine lines. Plus, you can’t beat a magical, dewy complexion!

4. Vitamin C

If hyperpigmentation is your concern, then this potent spot-lightening ingredient needs to be part of your skincare.

Antioxidant vitamin C (specifically L-ascorbic acid) not only encourages cellular repair, it also inhibits melanin production to improve the look of dark spots and help prevent future damage.

5. Peptides

To get all sciency for a bit, peptides are made up of amino acids. When these ladies get in formation, they create proteins.

Proteins are like the building blocks of your skin. Peptide-rich formulas can help rebuild skin to fill it out, thickening it over time, to help improve the appearance of dark circles and fine lines.

Now that you know which ingredients to incorporate in your skincare routine, let’s look at some other tips to try for happy eyes!

6. Under Eye Masks

These little gel pads originated in the Asian beauty market before finding recent popularity here in the states, and with good reason!

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They offer cooling, calming relief to shrink puffy eyes while infusing skin with moisturizing, nutrient-rich ingredients.

Plus, these little masks are such a delightful way to kick back and relax while soothing and treating your eyes. At-home spa day!

7. Chill Out

You’re probably familiar with cucumber slices and cold spoons as remedies for puffy eyes. Well, there’s some science behind it.

Cold constricts your blood vessels which can help reduce puffiness, bags and diminish dark circles.

This is a temporary fix, but it’s good in a pinch for those days when you need to erase traces of tired eyes.

8. Wake Up Eyes With Caffeine

No, I’m not talking about indulging in your latté habit. When caffeine is applied topically, like cold, it also works to constrict blood vessels to deflate puffy eyes.

Try soaking 2 green tea bags in a cup of water in the fridge and applying them to your eyes for about 10 minutes.

If you’d rather sip your tea than wear it, look for eye creams and formulas that contain caffeine.

9. Get Your Beauty Sleep

Sleep does some amazing things for your skin by giving it a chance to repair and rebuild. Plus, we’ve all seen what a bad night of sleep can do to our faces!

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To reduce your chance of waking up with puffy eyes, sleep on a slight incline by propping yourself up with a couple pillows, and let gravity work for you to avoid fluid retention pooling under your eyes.

Sleep also helps keep down levels of cortisol, the stress hormone that can causes inflammation and breaks down collagen and elastin.

Make sure you’re getting your beauty rest!

10. Beat the Bloat

Speaking of fluid retention, you can really cut down on puffiness by reducing your intake of salt and alcohol.

Salty snacks and happy hour drinks = water retention. This excess fluid pools in the thin skin around your eyes.

Make sure you’re eating a balanced diet of skin-friendly foods, and drink plenty of water to keep skin healthy and hydrated!

11. Expand Your Concealer Arsenal

If you’ve got dark circles, concealer can be your best beauty tool.

But did you know there are more concealer options than your skin-toned variety?

Color correcting concealers help neutralize concerns like blue/purple dark circles, redness, or sallowness.

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Add some more colors to your concealer palette to cover circles and brighten eyes!

12. Always Wear Your SPF!

If you hear nothing else from me, hear this: Wear SPF protection every single day!

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Anytime you’re headed outdoors, you should have broad spectrum SPF protection on your face.

Even on cloudy days.

Even if you’re just going out for a bit.

SPF protection is the best way to prevent your skin accumulating any more damage in the form of collagen breakdown, wrinkles, dark spots, and sagging.

Sun damage responsible for 80-90% of premature aging. So, take care of your future self and protect your skin!

Here are some of my favorite formulas to give you your best and brightest eyes!

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Alana Mitchell Anti-Aging Peptide Eye Cream

I designed my amazing anti-aging eye cream to include strengthening multi-peptides and anti-enzyme plant extracts to firm skin and diminish fine lines. Use morning and night to guard against future signs of aging. And, it’s gentle while effective, so all skin types can enjoy it!

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iS Clinical C Eye Advance +

This little bottle contains a potent formula that delivers everything you need to fight aging around the eyes. It contains 7.5% time-released L-ascorbic acid and copper tripeptide. Together, these ingredients infuse skin with antioxidants and increase collagen production to firm skin, smooth wrinkles and target those dark circles!

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Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Eye Mask

Use these truly blissful eye masks to wake up tired eyes! Simply “pop” the little fluid compartment holding the powerful treatment solution and allow it to flood in and saturate the eye pads. Then, apply them, let them set for 15 minutes, and remove. That’s it! These soothing little pads nourish skin with vitamins and minerals to help recharge tired, puffy eyes!

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Alana Mitchell Hyaluronic Moisture Boost Serum

If dehydrated skin is a big look-at-me for fine lines and wrinkles around your eyes, make this hyaluronic acid the next part of your skincare. I created this formula to deliver max moisture! It contains 20% hyaluronic acid to boost skin’s moisture by 10x! It plumps skin to fill out fine lines and delivers deep down hydration to your eyes, face and neck.

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Dermaquest EyeBrite

Give yourself bright eyes with this fabulous formula. It contains soothing ingredients to calm redness and inflammation and depuff tired eyes. Plus, it increases circulation to the eye area to stimulate cell activity for firmer, younger skin. Got hyperpigmentation? EyeBrite lifts away dark spots to reveal even, glowing skin. You’re left with bright, youthful eyes!

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Glo Minerals Corrective Camouflage Kit

Don’t just conceal, color correct too! This handy multicolor palette includes 4 corrective concealers to camouflage imperfections and neutralize discoloration. This kit combats redness, dark circles, hyperpigmentation and blemishes. Perfect lightweight coverage, great for layering under makeup for an even, flawless finish.

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NuFACE Trinity + ELE Attachment Kit

The Trinity Face Trainer is your ticket to toned, smooth skin! This handy little device gently stimulates skin to improve contour, tone and wrinkles in just five minutes a day! The eye and lip attachment uses targeted microcurrents to gently stimulate those small areas to treat eyebrow furrows, crow’s feet and smile lines. This FDA-cleared treatment will give you the youthful, glowing skin you’ve always wanted!

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Rhonda Allison Ultimate Eye Care System

This all-in-one set gives you all the tools for beautiful, young eyes! Together, these formulas target fine lines, dark circles and dull skin with peptides and antioxidants as well as some amazing, natural eye-boosting ingredients to nourish and firm the eye area.

This system includes:

  • Eye and Lip Repair Serum 0.25oz – The Rhonda Allison Eye and Lip Repair Serum contains all natural ingredients, potent antioxidants, and strong hydrators that help repair, restore, and nourish cells.
  • Eye Revitalizer 0.25oz – The Eye Revitalizer incorporates special elements that reduce things like puffiness and redness around the eye area. It also works to firm the skin around the eyes in order to help reduce wrinkles and fine lines.
  • Peptide 3-N-1 Eye Cream 0.25oz – This cream contains an incredible list of all natural ingredients that feed the skin potent antioxidants and various vitamins that keep your skin looking youthful and firm. The cream diminishes wrinkles and reduces fine lines while providing the right nutrients and hydration that will prevent any further signs of aging.

Final Thoughts

When practicing your regular skincare routine, don’t forget your eyes! And, if you’re wondering when to start using anti-aging eye treatments, start now. My basic rule is, if you’re old enough to vote, you’re old enough to take care of your eyes.

When it comes to signs of aging, dear friends, ‘tis better to prevent than treat!

What are your tried and true methods for waking up tired eyes? Share your tips and tricks with us in the comments section!

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