Do you long to have smooth skin around your eyes—no puffiness or hollows, no dark circles, no lines or wrinkles? Getting more sleep and drinking more water are important, but there are some less obvious causes and do-it-yourself solutions.

Drinking too much alcohol. Alcohol depletes your skin of water, and the sugar increases skin inflammation. Also, when people drink, they typically eat foods high in salt and low in nutritional value, further increasing dehydration and inflammation. Cut back on alcohol, and you’ll see the difference within a day. Alcohol also can disrupt sleep. An occasional drink is fine, but always have extra water when drinking alcohol.

Allergies cause increased redness, and rubbing will further darken and irritate the skin under your eyes. If you have seasonal allergies, start taking allergy medication a week before they tend to start. Speak with an allergist if over-the-counter treatments are not enough.

Rubbing can create a response in the skin, which leads to inflammation, wrinkling and dark circles. When you’re tired from staring at your computer or phone screen, suffer from sleep deprivation or are having an allergy attack, resist the urge to rub out your discomfort. Instead, gently pat on eye cream or try the home remedies below.

Vascular inflammation. Blood vessels under the skin can be prominent if there is irritation in the area, causing dark circles. Use a firming eye cream or one that reduces inflammation such as ISDIN K-Ox Eyes. Products that have white and green tea extracts also work well. My product, CE HPR Eye Cream, has a high-potency retinol and vitamins C and E to firm and reduce puffiness, redness and dark circles.

Fast Home Remedies 

Tea-and-honey-soaked cucumbers ease eye bags and lighten dark circles within minutes. Cucumbers are cooling and astringent, honey is anti-inflammatory, and tea has antioxidant properties. Green tea has the most healing benefits, but black or white tea also will work. This brew can last up to a week in the refrigerator. The best time to do this is morning and evening.

Brew four cups of strong tea. Add three tablespoons of honey. Let the tea cool to room temperature. Add one cucumber, cut into about 16 thin ­slices. Refrigerate for at least four hours.

To use, lie down, close your eyes and put one cucumber slice on each eye for about two minutes. 

If you don’t want to wait hours for a remedy, you can simply place moist tea bags on your eyes. Again, green tea has the most benefits, but black and white tea also will work. 

Dip two tea bags in a cup of room-temperature water for 60 seconds. Take them out, and squeeze out the water. Lie down and close your eyes. Place a damp tea bag on each eye for three to five minutes.

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