Dark circles under the eyes, also known as black circles and scientifically called Periorbital Melanosis, are the most common cosmetic concern that we have around us. Eye bags and puffy eyes are other common concerns of under eye skin. A lot of women and men suffer from dark circles under the eyes; the degree of darkness, however, differs from person to person.

Why do we get dark circles?

It is a myth that dark circles only happen with age, though that is one of the causes. There are many other causes that may lead to dark rings around your eyes. Let us look at the most common causes:

  • fatigue,
  • lack of proper sleep,
  • lack of nutrients and poor diet,
  • Sinus congestion
  • Stress or exposure to the sun that causes skin pigmentation.

Some uncommon causes for dark circles are:

  • hereditary,
  • Liver problems
  • allergies or eczema that make your eyes to itch a lot,
  • certain medications that cause dilation of blood vessels,
  • Pregnancy and menstruation

All these factors make the skin below the eyes more transparent than it already is. The more transparent the skin, the darker is the area. Since the skin around the eye area is very thin, the veins under the eye that are blue appear to be black. Any slight change in a person’s diet or sleep pattern can cause the under eye area to become dark. Seasonal allergies can trigger sinus. The sinuses beneath our cheekbones are connected to the delicate skin under the eyes.

Expert views

Some experts also believe that dark circles under the eyes can also be the cause of vitamin deficiency. Any of the vitamin A, C, K and E deficiency can lead to an increase in the dark area under the eyes.

Can dark circles be treated?

Yes, there are a number of ways in which dark circles can be lightened and treated. You first need to find out the cause of your dark circles. Is it a recurrent thing or has it appeared recently? Have you made changes in your lifestyle or do you suffer a lot from sinus or allergies? Is your liver full of toxins? Address the root cause of the dark circles. There is only so much that can be achieved by the cosmetic solution. The main emphasis should be on tackling the root cause.

Cosmetic solution

The most common method that people resort to is laser resurfacing. But that is not a permanent solution. If your dark circles are caused by the sinus or are hereditary, they might appear again. Therefore, try and treat dark circles naturally.

Physiological solution

If your dark circles are caused by sinus, then rinsing your sinuses with salt water solution can relieve congestion and improve dark circles. For the liver problem, go for a detox. Have a wholesome diet. Avoid too much of sugar, caffeine and refined carbohydrates.

Regular home remedies and Ayurvedic treatments have proven to be beneficial. Here are some of the simple home remedies we can use for dark circle treatment:

  • A simple and effective way to treat dark circles is to get eight hours of sound sleep. A healthy diet is something that can be easily imbibed into the daily routine. Increasing your water intake, having more fresh fruits and vegetables and limiting the intake of caffeine, alcohol, tea, and aerated drinks and increasing intake of food containing more calcium, proteins, fiber and less of carbohydrates have a fruitful effect on one’s health. They not only improve your skin tone, making dark circles appear lighter, but also reduce wrinkles.
  • Acupressure for your eyes has also been seen as beneficial for improving dark circles. By closing your eyes and using the ring finger you can gently press and release your eyes moving your fingers from the inside corner to the outside of your eyes. When you repeat this 10 to 15 times, it not only feels rejuvenating but also improves the skin texture under your eyes.
  • Dark circles under the eyes can also be treated with slices of Pumpkin. Pumpkin contains Vitamins A, C, and K which have a reverse effect on them. Similarly, one teaspoon of tomato juice, mixed with half a teaspoon of lemon juice, applied on the under eye dark circles can reduce the darkness. Using cold tea bags, cucumber slices, and the peel of a potato can also have a cooling effect on your eyes and reduce the darkness around them. Experts also recommend applying a little Vitamin E around your eyes before going to sleep to help get rid of dark circles.

Dark circles and Ayurveda treatment

Ayurveda suggests that under eye dark circles happen due to an increase in body heat, a dominance of the Vata and Pitta factors. It believes in body detoxification and skin rejuvenation when treating dark circles. Ayurveda also treats under eye dark circles with the following treatments:

  • Nutmeg- This has both Vitamin E and C. Nutmeg paste mixed with water and applied overnight can work wonders. You can remove it in the morning with cotton soaked in rose water.
  • Almond– Almond paste should be applied with fresh milk. A cucumber slice should be placed on the eyes for fifteen minutes. Using almond oil around eyes and rubbing it on them before sleeping at night also removes dark circles.

Apart from these remedies, one needs to change his/her lifestyle. Regular exercises and Yogasanas can help. Ayurveda has a long, lasting and powerful effect on reducing dark circles. Dark circles do not vanish overnight. They take time to heal and adjust to the new lifestyle changes. One must be persistent and have patience in following any regimen.