Non-surgical Treatment for Undereye Bags?

Is there a non-surgical way to treat bags under the eyes? I'm getting to the age where they are starting to become noticeable (I'm 41), so is there any drug or process to eliminate them at least temporarily? I'm really not interested in surgery, but I also don't want to waste my time.

Doctor Answers 34

Under eyelid bags and dark circles can be improved

It is an excellent question.  Can "eye bags" on the lower eyelid be treated.  The eye bags are usually inherited and results from orbital fat herniating or outpouching below the skin of the eyelid.  The only way to completely fix this problem is through surgery.  Lower blephroplasty, in the hands of an expert, results in removal or repositioning of the orbital fat.  Excellent results can be obtained with an approach near the eyelashes.

Good improvements can be made by using cheek volumization, tear trough filler and resurfacing with carbon dioxide.  For a really nice improvement in the area, some patients would benefit from doing all of these procedures, but the problem can't be completely solved without surgery.

Springfield Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Non-surgical treatment for under eye bags

The first thing I'd say is beware of absolutes. For someone to say that there is no other option, or this is the only option, etc. is based on preference more than facts, and I would disagree with the statement that there are no nonsurgical options for lower eyelid bags.

Now I am a surgeon, I like doing surgery, and there are definitely times where it is the best option, but it is not the only option if it is something that you are vehemently trying to avoid.

Fillers can be an excellent option to address under eye bags, and there are even new types of clear skin tape/under eyes stickers that are aimed at reducing the appearance of under eye bags. Most nonsurgical options are going to just camouflage or try to disguise the under eye bags, but sometimes this may be all you want or all you need.

Those camouflaging options are often something that needs to be repeated, from daily to every few months.
To find the best option for you, seek out a dermatologic surgeon, oculoplastic surgeon, facial plastic surgeon or plastic surgeon who is board certified and fellowship trained in one of these "core four" cosmetic specialties.

Cameron Chesnut, MD, FAAD, FACMS, FASDS
Spokane Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

There is No Effective Non Surgical Treatment for Under Eye Bags

Thank you for your important question.

Puffiness of or Bags Under Eyes is a structural problem caused by excess or herniation of eyelid fat bulging against the eyelid skin.

This fat must be repositioned and or removed to remove the puffiness or bag.

Do not believe ads that say a cream or laser treatment will remove puffiness or eye bags-they will not.

Fat injection and Filler injection such as Restylane can camouflage the problem but injections into the eyelid can be dangerous and should only be done by an expert who is familiar with this technique

Restylane might help

At 41, you might have early tear troughs making it look like you have buldging fat bags above them. It may be that rather than needing fat removed or repositioned, you could mask the tear trough very effectively with Restylane. I have had many patients with this and they have great non-surgical results that last a year or longer.

How can I fix my puffy, heavy, lower eyelid bags without surgery?

Lower Eyelid Bags can be caused by many different issues. Sometimes a combination of issues are contributing to the puffy, heavy look of the lower lids. Changes in skin, fluid accumulation, muscle, fat from the eye socket, and changes in the cheek and surrounding structures can all contribute. It is important to have an experienced physician evaluate your eyelids to determine all the changes that need to be addressed to achieve your goals. In many cases, in office procedures can be used to improved the shadowing and baggy appearance of the lid. I commonly use injections such as Restylane, and Voluma in combination with skin rejuvenation to improve the lower eyelids without surgery.

Jeffrey M. Joseph, MD
Newport Beach Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Lower eyelid fillers can help lower lid bags

As on ophthalmic plastic and cosmetic surgeon I see people in the office every day who are bothered by lower eyelid bags.  Some people need surgery. However the majority do not.  We now have hyaluronic acid fillers that can, for the right people give the most natural improvement of lower eyelid bags.

Here is how it works.  As our faces age we lose fat in our cheeks and in the area right below the eyelid bags.  Fat that causes lower lid bags does not get smaller as we age.  When we are young there is a smooth curve from the lower eyelid down onto the cheek.  However as the cheek fat gets smaller with age the adjacent lower eyelid fat becomes more noticeable and looks like a bag.  In other words our face has hills and valleys. In the lower eyelid, often the hill is not getting higher, the valley beneath is getting deeper.  

That is where fillers like Restylane and Voluma come in.  The filler is injected in the office to replace your cheek fat smooths the transition from the eyelid to the cheek and effectively removes the bag.

Of course you did not provide a photo, so I can not say if this treatment is the best for you.  I would suggest an evaluation with a cosmetic surgeon who is experienced with lower eyelids to see what treatment might be right for you.  

Marc Cohen, MD
Philadelphia Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Non surgical treatments for Eyelid bags

There are many non surgical effective options for improvement of "bags". HA fillers can be an excellent way to improve the junction of the lid and cheek to improve the aesthetics. Ulthera is another very effective option for improving the appearance of the peri-occular tissues. Please keep in mind that only a consolation with a skilled provider will be able to determine whether a non surgical option is right for you. Hope this helps

Julian W. Dixon, MD
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews


Injectable fillers can help reduce the appearance of undereye bags by addressing volume deficiency. The results are temporary.

Treatment for Eye Bags Surgical or Non-Surgical

Non-surgical options can be used to treat eye bags.  Oftentimes a dermal filler can be injected to smooth the contour of the lower eyelid or tear-trough region.  In addition, chemical peels or laser can also be used to smooth the texture of skin.  The issue is that these results are often not permanent, and over time repeated treatments can be costly.  Factoring in the cost of a peel and filler every 6 to 8 mos, in about 2 years, you would have paid for the cost of a permanent fix.  Surgery is really the gold standard for fixing eye bags.  With minimal invasive techniques (such as a trans-conjunctival blepharoplasty), swelling is short-lived and downtime can be minimized.  This is certainly worth a discussion with your board-certified plastic surgeon who is experinced in eye bags treatment.  Bets of luck to you!  Dr. Pacella

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.