Dark Circles Under Eyes: Causes, Symptoms, and How to Treat Them Naturally


John Saad

Dark circles under your eyes occur when the skin below your eyes appears darker than usual. The color of this area may vary and can be blue, purple, brown, or black, depending on your natural skin color. If you have dark circles under your eyes, it can make you appear tired or older than your actual age.

There are many possible causes for dark under-eye circles. However, they are typically not a sign of a medical issue. Having dark circles under your eyes is usually not something to worry about. However, you might want to reduce the visibility of your under-eye circles for cosmetic purposes.

What Causes Dark Circles Under Eyes?

Dark circles, also known as “bags,” can be caused by various factors other than tiredness and are a common issue for people of all ages. According to Mayo Clinic, having marks under your eyes is usually not a sign of a medical condition. However, it can be a symptom of certain problems that should be taken care of. “Dark circles under the eyes can be caused by broken blood vessels, tear troughs, and bulging valves in the skin,” explains Mary Stevenson, MD, who is an associate professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Health. According to her, these symptoms may also be related to age.

According to Dr. F. Clarissa Yang, a dermatology professor at Tufts University School of Medicine and the head dermatologist at Tufts Medical Center, dark circles are often linked to aging. “As we get older, our skin becomes thinner and loses collagen and fat that normally surround the blood vessels. This causes the blood vessels to become more noticeable over time,” she explains. She also mentions that as we age, the skin under our eyes can become loose and form wrinkles, which can make any dark pigmentation more noticeable.

Allergies are another common cause of dark circles. Allergies can cause inflammation, which leads to puffiness and the feeling of wanting to rub your eyes to relieve itchiness. This can cause small blood vessels to break and lead to bruising. “When these bruises heal, they leave behind pigmented hemosiderin, which is a component of hemoglobin that causes those dark marks under the eyes,” explains Inna Lazar, OD, an optometrist based in Connecticut and the founder of Greenwich Eye Care.

Lazar explains that when your body is exposed to the sun and its harmful UV rays, it can cause your body to produce more melanin. Melanin is the pigment that gives your skin its color. “According to her, this can cause hyperpigmentation and, as a result, dark under-eye circles,” she explains. She explains that the skin beneath the eyes is particularly affected by darkening, which is caused by UV damage and contributes significantly to the appearance of these unwanted marks.

What are the Causes of Dark Circles Under Your Eyes?

There are many reasons why dark circles can appear under your eyes. Dark circles are often caused by aging. As you get older, the skin under your eyes starts to become loose and thin, which can make the blood vessels under your skin more noticeable. This can make your under eyes look darker. You may also develop hollowed areas called tear troughs. Tear troughs create shadows that make puffy eyes look more pronounced.

Dark Circles Under Eyes

Some other reasons for dark circles under your eyes may include:

  • Genetics: Research has found that dark circles under your eyes can be inherited from your family.
  • Dermatitis: Eczema and contact dermatitis can make the blood vessels under your eyes become wider and more visible through your skin.
  • Rubbing Your Eyes: If you rub or scratch your eyes, it can make the skin under your eyes swell and cause your blood vessels to break.
  • Lack of Sleep: When you don’t sleep well, the skin under your eyes can look pale. It is common for your blood vessels to be visible through your skin.
  • Hyperpigmentation: When you spend too much time in the sun, your body produces more melanin. Melanin is a pigment that gives your skin its color.
  • Dehydration: When you don’t drink enough water, the skin under your eyes can appear dull.
  • Lifestyle Factors: Dark circles under your eyes can be caused by factors like stress, excessive alcohol use, and smoking.

Different Types of Dark Circles

Dark circles are a common beauty concern that come in different types. Each type is linked to specific reasons and treatments.

Pigmented Dark Circles

  • Pigmented dark circles are often caused by an excess production of melanin and can be inherited.
  • Exposing your skin to the sun can make the circles around your eyes look darker.

Vascular Dark Circles

  • Vascular dark circles are caused by problems with blood vessels and appear as bluish or purple discolorations.
  • These circles become more prominent due to factors such as not getting enough sleep, getting older, and having poor blood circulation.

Structural Dark Circles

  • Structural dark circles are characterized by thinning or hollowing of the skin around the eyes.
  • This type of condition makes the blood vessels and tissues underneath more visible, which creates a shadowed appearance.

Lifestyle-Related Dark Circles

  • Dark circles can develop due to lifestyle choices such as high stress levels, dehydration, and an imbalanced diet.
  • By making changes to your lifestyle, you may be able to reduce the severity of these circles.

It is important to know the specific type of dark circles in order to use the appropriate solutions. Using special creams or making changes to daily habits can help reduce and improve dark circles, depending on the cause.

Different Ways to Reduce Dark Circles

The skin under the eyes is very sensitive and requires a lot of care. Many people today struggle with dark circles, which is a common problem. If you want to get rid of these circles, you need to treat them from the inside. Applying makeup won’t make them go away.

Dark Circles Under Eyes

Dark circles usually appear due to genetics, allergies, stress, or illness. Some other things that can contribute to the problem are not getting enough sleep, eating an unhealthy diet, and not drinking enough water. Some medical conditions, like eczema and hormonal imbalances, can also cause the formation of these. This post will teach you about some treatments that can help reduce dark circles.

Treat Your Allergies

Seasonal and environmental allergies can cause nasal congestion, which can result in dark circles under the eyes for many people. If you have allergies that cause stuffy nose, you can try taking a medicine called antihistamine or decongestant. This can help reduce symptoms like sneezing and a runny nose. If you have red and swollen eyes due to allergies, you can try using antihistamine eye drops that you can buy without a prescription.

Get Adequate Sleep

When you don’t get enough sleep, your body can retain fluid, which can make your eyes puffy and cause dark circles to appear. Make sure you aim to sleep for seven to eight hours every night. If you want to sleep better, it’s a good idea to avoid drinking alcohol before going to bed. Even just one drink can disturb your sleep cycle.


Cucumber is a natural ingredient that can help tone the skin and reduce the appearance of dark circles. It also has soothing properties.

Slice one cucumber into thick pieces. Put the slices in a bowl of cold water and keep them in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Take the slices out of the fridge and put them on your closed eyelids for 10 minutes. Do this every day for a few weeks until you completely eliminate the problem. If you don’t have cucumber slices, you can also use cucumber juice or cucumber paste as alternatives.

Vitamin E Oil

Vitamin E is a nutrient that is beneficial for the skin. Many natural beauty products use vitamin E oil to help with dark circles and wrinkles. You can purchase it from a pharmacy or health food store. However, it’s important to avoid applying undiluted oil directly to the skin as some people may be allergic to it. Instead, combine a few drops with coconut oil or olive oil and gently apply it to your eyes using your fingertips until it is completely absorbed. Use once a day as necessary.

Cold Press

To refresh your eyes, dip two cotton pads in cold rose water or green tea and gently place them on your eyes for around 15 minutes. This will help narrow the blood vessels and therefore reduce dark circles. If you want to cool your skin, you can try using ice cubes wrapped in a cloth. Just be careful not to put the ice directly on your skin because it could hurt you. To get rid of dark circles, do this 2 to 3 times a day.

Cold Tea Bags

Using tea bags is an effective method to eliminate dark circles. Tea has tannins, which are natural substances that can help reduce swelling and redness around your eyes by constricting blood vessels.

Almond Oil

Almond oil has vitamin K, which can help reduce dark spots, blemishes, and dark circles under the eyes. It is also a good moisturizer and helps to keep the sensitive skin under your eyes soft and smooth.

To treat the area around your eyes, you can gently apply almond oil with your fingertips for about 10 minutes each day. After 20 to 25 minutes, rinse it off with cold water. If you want, you can combine a small amount of almond oil with coconut oil and gently rub it onto the area that is affected. This treatment can help get rid of dark circles and give you a more even skin tone.

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is a natural substance that can lighten or bleach certain things. This product helps to make dark circles under the eyes less noticeable and reduces swelling. There are various ways to use lemon juice:

To treat dark circles, soak cotton balls in fresh lemon juice and gently apply it to the affected area. Keep it on for 10 minutes before rinsing it off with cold water. Do this remedy two times each day until your dark circles go away.

Another choice is to combine one tablespoon of lemon juice and cucumber juice, a small amount of turmeric powder, and one teaspoon of tomato puree (if desired). Put this mixture on the skin under your eyes and keep it there for 15 minutes. Then, wash it off with cold water. Do this remedy once every day until the dark circles go away completely.


Did you know that potatoes can help reduce dark circles and puffiness around your eyes? Potatoes contain starch that can help reduce inflammation and improve the health of your skin. To help with the affected area, cut a potato into circles and gently rub them on the area for 5 to 10 minutes. Repeat this action twice a day for a few weeks.

Another option is to grate a potato and squeeze out its juice. To use this method, you need to soak cotton balls in the juice and then put them on your eyes for 10 minutes. Do this remedy once every day until you achieve the desired outcome.

Do Any Deficiencies Cause Dark Circles?

Lazar explains that darkened halos can be caused by malnutrition and a lack of essential vitamins. However, the most common cause of darkened halos is not getting enough sleep. According to Mayo Clinic, the most common cause of dark circles under the eyes is a lack of sleep.

According to Yang, not getting enough sleep can prevent your muscles from relaxing and can also cause your blood vessels to expand and make your eyes look puffy. Lazar explains that the problem becomes worse when you are sleep deprived and tired, as it can make your skin look paler and make the dark tissue underneath more noticeable.


Dark circles under the eyes, also known as “bags,” can be caused by various factors, including aging, allergies, and UV damage. As we age, our skin becomes thinner, causing blood vessels to become more noticeable. As we age, our skin becomes loose and forms wrinkles, making dark pigmentation more noticeable. Additionally, allergies can cause inflammation, leading to puffiness and bruising. Exposure to harmful UV rays can also cause melanin production, leading to hyperpigmentation and dark under-eye circles.

Dark circles can be inherited, caused by dermatitis, rubbing your eyes, lack of sleep, hyperpigmentation, dehydration, and lifestyle factors like stress, alcohol use, and smoking. Different types of dark circles include pigmented, vascular, structural, and lifestyle-related. To reduce dark circles, it is important to know the specific type and use appropriate treatments. Lifestyle changes, such as reducing stress levels, dehydration, and a balanced diet, can help reduce the severity of these circles.

Dark circles under the eyes can be caused by various factors, including allergies, inadequate sleep, and natural remedies. To treat these issues, try using cucumber slices, vitamin E oil, cold press, cold tea bags, almond oil, lemon juice, and potatoes. Cucumber can help tone the skin and reduce the appearance of dark circles, while vitamin E oil can help with wrinkles. Cold press can narrow blood vessels and cool the skin, while cold tea bags can reduce swelling and redness. Almond oil, rich in vitamin K, can help reduce dark spots and blemishes, while lemon juice can lighten or bleach the area. Potatoes, rich in starch, can help reduce inflammation and improve skin health. Lack of sleep is the most common cause of dark circles, as it prevents muscle relaxation, blood vessel expansion, and makes the eyes appear puffy.