Botox for Dark Under Eyes?

Can you have Botox under the eyes? My eyes are very dark. They look like I have two black eyes. If not, can you suggest something else?

Doctor Answers 13

Botox for dark under eyes

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Thank you for your question. Botox may help to soften the wrinkles under the eyes. It does require a very small amount and it will help to soften the lines. It will not necessarily reduce all the wrinkles like you might see in the forehead or crows feet region. You will notice a soft relaxation of the dynamic lines under the eyes, and you may notice a slight opening of the eyes. I would start with 1-2 units under the eyes on each side. If you like the effects, then it is very easy to incorporate this into your future treatments. However, it may not help with the darkness under your eyes.

Dermal fillers such as Restylane can be used to fill in shadows under the eye and achieves a more rested look. You can combine the two treatments but it would require a thoughtful approach and careful analysis of your concerns to ensure that treatment options will help you achieve your goals.  This may be a more appropriate treatment to address your concerns.

I would recommend visiting with a board certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist in your area to address your concern as it is an advanced area to treat.

Restylane for dark under eyes

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Botox is not the answer for you, but the good news is that there is an answer.  It's Restylane (or Juvederm). 

At our practice, we use Hyaluronic Acid fillers such as Restylane and Juvederm to correct dark circles and under eye bags.  The procedure is VERY technique dependent as you will find by reading consumer posts on this site so make sure to find someone experienced in the "tear trough" injection procedures and make sure they use a technique where the product is placed UNDER the muscle.  Good luck.

Harold J. Kaplan, MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Botox for undereye darkness

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The darkness under the eye is mostly due to blood vessels and fluid shift. Botox would not treat this. However, Botox does treat the under eye dynamic wrinkles.

Isabel Zhu, MD, PhD
Boulder Dermatologist

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Under eye darkness and Botox?

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Alot of people complain of under eye darkenes. This can be due to shadowing or thin lower  eyelid skin. Each are treated differenlty.  Botox will treat neither.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Yes and no

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Botox can be given under the eyes gingerly, but it is not for dark circles.  You should be evaluated to determine the cause of the circles, and treated appropriately.  You may need hydroquinones, peels, microdermabrasion, or nothing at all.  Perhaps makeup.


Botox Does Not Help Dark Circles Under The Eyes

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Botox will not help with the dark circles under the eyes. These are usually from shadow of fat bulges, increased vascularity under thin skin or allergies.

You can get some relief from bleaching creams at times. Next step is laser or chemical peel combined with blepharoplasty.


Tanveer Janjua, MD
Bedminster Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 126 reviews

Botox is not for dark circles under eyes

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Botox will not help lighten dark under eye circles. Depending on the cause(s) of the discoloration, you would be best served considering one or a combination of the following options: chemical peels, laser resurfacing, dermal fillers, topical eye lighteners.

Keep Botox for frown lines such as those in between the brows, crow's feet and forehead.

Absolutely, BOTOX is a tool in managing dark cirlces!

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Dear Sarah Jane

Got to disagree with my colleagues here. For the right individual, small dose of BOTOX can be helpful in managing the dark circle. The real key is, what is right for you?

A lot of theories, and there are just that theories, are probably just flat out wrong. Some think they are caused by allergies, other pigment deposits, others too many blood vessels.

Largely though, dark circles are simply the results of the optical phenomena caused by the way the lower eyelid is assembled. Contrast the lower eyelid just above the cheek where the dark circles lives with the cheek itself. The cheek skin is much thicker that eyelid skin and underneath it is a thick layer of fat.

Fat is bright yellow. Light getting though the cheek skin (skin is translucent) hits the fat which acts as a pretty effective reflector. This makes the cheek skin look lighter. Contrast this to the eyelid skin. Here, the skin is very thin and there is no fat under the skin. Light readily penetrates the skin, striking a thin muscle found just under the skin called the orbicularis oculi muscle, the muscle that closes the eyelids. This muscle is dark red and effectively absorbs much of the skin.

Compared to the cheek, there is less light to be reflected back into the skin, so this part of the eyelid looks darker. Additionally, this part of the eyelid sits in a little (or not so little depression) also contributing to shadowing.

When muscle bunching contributes to the problem, BOTOX can be effectively used. However, there is much better longevity using fillers. Here a filler like Restylane is used to fill in the dark circle, this alters the shadowing effects making area look lighter.

Good luck finding doctors who understand these issues!

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

How to Treat Dark Under Eye Circles

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The appearance of dark circles under the eyes can be due to several different things. Skin color can be hereditary, due to allergy, or other systemic problems. Topical creams can help, as can laser resurfacing, or chemical peels.

When the problem is due to shadowing as a result of puffiness, a lower lid blepharoplasty or eyelift can help but not eliminate the color problem.

There are selected patients in whom the under eye puffiness results from a thickened muscle. In those circumstances, a very small amount of botox can help to smooth out the lower lid.

Richard W. Westreich, MD
Manhattan Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Botox no help here

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Botox has a growing list of uses, but I am afraid correcting sub-orbital discoloration is not one of them. Discoloration under the eyes may attributed to mild bleeding with bilirubin and biliverdin depostion, natural pigmentation, sun damage, and thin skin. Muscle movement is not involved with discoloration and therefore Botox is not helpful.

Creams such as Revale Replenishing Eye Therapy, Teamine Eye Complex or Young's KojiLac-Ci are all good products. There are others. Fillers help some by providing some thickness to the skin and helping with tear troughs. Lasers are of some benefit too.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist

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.