How do I treat my dark circles? (photo)

I am 20 and looking back through pictures I have always suffered with bags under my eyes. They don't seem to be getting better they seem to be getting worse. I look tired and drained, it isn't lack of sleep as I get plenty and I also eat super heathy. I think it is the vains underneath, any advice for this. I have tried every remedy going so I am looking at turning to surgical

Doctor Answers 3

At age 18-24 your options for improving dark circles under the eyes should be conservative

At your age, most of the issues that you see surrounding your lower eyelids are due to genetics and anatomy and not so much to the effects of aging.  The two main culprits are the pigmentation of the tissues and the contours and structure of the anatomy.  The first one is much harder to do anything about.  Color and dark circles under the eyes typically comes from either pigment deposited in the skin itself, or more likely in someone with your fair coloration and complexion, the dark brown - reddish - purplish pigment of the muscle and veins immediately underlying the very thin skin of the lower eyelid (the thinnest on the body).  The two main strategies for dealing with this are a good concealer, or sometimes, especially in the case of veins, certain laser treatments can be effective at diminishing the color.  The thing about that is that you have to go to the right doctor with the right experience in that specific thing and probably most importantly, with the right type of laser for the job.  Not all lasers are the same, and only very specific ones will help this kind of thing.  I don't even own one of those myself, but I have colleagues who do, and I only refer this kind of thing to them.

The other issue, which involves your anatomy, is more easily dealt with.  Some people just naturally have more hollow areas in places like the lower eyelids and orbits, just like some people have big humps on their noses or ears which protrude.  Those things are features of their anatomy, and if there is something there that can be improved to make you look and feel even better than you do, and the downsides, like risk and costs, are acceptable, I think it's perfectly fine for you to proceed.  At 20 years old you are an adult of legal age, and you can decide for yourself whether or not to do this.  Just be sure you are doing it for the "right" reasons, and you are very specific and conservative in what you do right now.  Having said that, I would focus on non-invasive, or non-surgical, options first.  Your skin and tissue tone there is excellent, so you mainly need volume to camouflage hollow areas.  This is very easily accomplished in the office by injecting fillers.  If you get this done and like the effects, you can always think about having your own fat injected permanently from somewhere else on your body, but I wouldn't start there.  I would start small, simple, and safe at your age, and see how that goes.  I have many a patient just like you who is very happy with just a small amount of filler placed just right to fill in the volume under their eyes.  It typically lasts a year or so, and they don't mind having it redone when it is gone.  Be sure that you consult with board certified experts in this area, like plastic surgeons, facial plastic surgeons, and occuloplastic surgeons to be sure that you have a good evaluation and that all of your options are presented.  I'm partial to those with surgical experience treating this area, because the anatomy is complex, and the chances that things will be done safely and effectively are increased when someone who actually operates in this area and knows and understands the three dimensional anatomy on a practical level is doing the procedure.  Best of luck.

Tired but Not Tired

The dark bags you have are genetic and can be treated with lower eyelid surgery or fillers, lasers, and microneedling/PRP. See an expert for a formal evaluation. Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

Dark circles

You are very pretty. A great deal of money is spent every year by older patients who want their eyes to look just like yours do now. The dark circles in your lower lids are due mostly to the fact that the eyelid skin is very thin, so the underlying muscle color makes it look dark. If you you have chronic allergies and rub your eyes a lot, this could also contribute to the darkening. I recommend that you use a little lightening makeup and be proud of your appearance!

Daniel Lensink, MD
Redding Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

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.