Friday, March 12, 2010

Beauty Solutions: Relieving Puffy Eyes Naturally

I get puffy eyes a lot more often than I would like to. In my case it’s mainly genetic but if I cried the night before, if I didn’t get enough sleep or if sinusitis decides to kick in, it gets much worse in the morning. If your eyes look or feel swollen sometimes, know that you’re not alone. A lot of women experience this due to all that I said above and more. For instance, pain killers and some non-steroid anti-inflammatory medicines are known to cause puffiness in the eye area. Also, in those particular days of the month, it’s common to feel your eyes heavier and swollen.

There are no makeup tricks that I know of and can tell you about that will successfully disguise puffiness, so if it bothers you, getting rid of them is the only way to go. Eye gels with arnica and/or caffeine can work wonders, especially if you store them in the fridge but let's be honest, the ones that do work aren’t exactly the most inexpensive products in the world. If you do have some extra money, though, splurge on a very good one because you will definitely see a difference.

Since I’m currently saving up some money, I've decided to go natural and homemade with whatever I can (oh, no, onion hair mask is not going anywhere near me. I don’t care if it’s supposed to make hair grow faster. Thanks, but no, thanks!). I used to say that natural and homemade remedies were just myths and that nothing really worked. I changed my mind after giving some of them a try. We all heard the old cucumber or potato slice trick but the reason I don’t like it is that it tends to bleach the skin. Sure, it can be helpful to reduce dark under eye circles but it will also bleach the skin around your actual circles. I’m not sure there are many of us who would like to go around with greyish bleached circles around our eyes. Sure, you could cover them with concealer, but if you are bothering with concealer, why not only conceal the actual under eye circle anyway?
Here’s how you can do that and here are three methods I have to share with you as far as sore and swollen eyes go:

The spoon method

How: What you have to do is basically leave two metal tablespoons in your freezer. In the morning (or whenever you have swollen eyes), just take them out and put them on your closed eyes. When you’re done, just put the spoons back in your freezer.

Why: Edema (puffiness) caused by fluid retention is warm because all the fluids that make edema come from inside your body that is, of course, warm. By counteracting the increased temperature, you diminish the swelling. It’s the same principle of why you apply ice when you hit your head for example.

Pros: It does work most of the time, it’s quick (about 2 minutes will do most of the time) and it’s not messy at all.

Cons: You have to plan in advance to give ample time for the spoons to get really cold and you have to sit and do nothing while you hold two tablespoons sideways on your closed eyes.

Tea bag method

How: Get two green tea bags and put then in boiling water for about a minute to “open” the leafs. Run them under cold water and apply onto your closed eyes.

Why: Green tea is known to be a potent diuretic when ingested and the same principle applies to when it is used on your skin. Basically, it helps to drain fluid.

Pros: It helps prevent puffiness on the long run and you can always drink the tea that you get from putting the tea bags in hot water. Green tea is good for kidney and bladder problems and also if you are trying to lose weight.

Cons: It can be messy and you shouldn’t re-use the same bags more than once because it won’t work as well.

The coffee method

How: Take espresso coffee that is not hot already and dip two cotton balls/pads in it. Squeeze to remove the excess liquid but not too much. Apply on to your closed eyes and rinse afterwards.

Why: Just like green tea, caffeine drains fluid but it also helps your system fight the slight inflammation that might be going on under your skin.

Pros: Works amazingly and, all in all the main ingredient in most de-puffing creams and gels is caffeine.

Cons: It’s definitely messy and you have to plan ahead to get your coffee to be cold. You can save coffee from the day before in the fridge, in which case, would be ideal.

Choose the method(s) that work the best for you but give them all a try if you can. Note that puffiness can very well be caused by more serious conditions like conjunctivitis. If you never had swollen eyes and suddenly you do, please consider that it can be something more serious and call your doctor. Do you use a lot of home remedies? Let me know in the comments.

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  1. humm keep hearing of the tea bag method - i'll try it out. how fast does it work?

  2. Hi LiiLa. The colder the tea bag is, the quicker it works but I'd say anywhere between 2 to 5 minutes. Hope this helps and thank you for commenting :)


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