How to Treat Puffy Eyes, Dark Circles & Wrinkles

by Joshua Duvauchelle ; Updated July 18, 2017

A young woman is touching her face.

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Puffiness, dark under-eye circles and fine lines or wrinkles are some of the common signs of aging seen in the skin surrounding your eyes, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. These can detract from your face's overall appearance, making your complexion look aged and tired. Brighten your complexion and smooth away wrinkles with a combination of both skin-protecting lifestyle changes and skin-repairing skincare products.

Wear UV-blocking sunglasses or sunscreen even if weather is overcast, recommends the American Academy of Dermatology. The academy says that the sun is a top cause of wrinkling, while the Mayo Clinic reports that sun exposure can cause dark circles around your eyes due to the darkening effect it has on your skin's pigmentation.

Smooth on a beta hydroxy acid or alpha hydroxy acid eye cream every morning, recommends skincare expert Paula Begoun. She says the acids can help inhibit the formation of skin pigment, thus helping to lighten your skin. Additionally, the University of Maryland Medical Center reports that topical use of the acids can help fade the severity of wrinkles.

Apply a retinol-enhanced eye cream every evening before going to bed, as retinol may make your skin more susceptible to the sun. Retinol improves your skin's levels of collagen and elastin, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. The center says this reduces wrinkles, while the Mayo Clinic says greater skin collagen levels can make surface blood vessels less visible for less apparent under-eye circles.

Sleep on your back with your head on a pillow to keep it elevated above your body. This keeps fluids from collecting in your face, which can lead to puffiness. Avoiding sleeping on your side can also help prevent wrinkles that are caused by your face being pressed against the pillow every night.


  • For quick treatment of puffiness, sit up and press cold teabags against your eyes. The cold temperatures help to reduce inflammation for an instantly more wide-awake look.

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About the Author

Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.