How to Get Rid of Bags Under the Eyes: A Guide for Men
8 minutes read
The eyes are the great indicators of our health and wellbeing, and when carrying under-eye bags the size of rugby balls – it might be time to take action and find the remedies for those puffy peepers.
Men need to approach them somewhat differently due to the texture of men’s skin. “Once they’re past puberty, the testosterone levels in men’s skin causes their epidermis to become about 25% thicker than women’s skin,” explains Charlotte McHale, Clarins Training Manager. “So, even though the eye area is the thinnest part of the face, the skin around a man’s eye is still slightly thicker. And as a result, the ingredients need to be slightly different.”
What causes bags under the eyes in men?
Most people are carrying a little excess baggage under their eyes. Late nights and Netflix binges can undoubtedly be one cause – but plenty of other factors come into play. Genetics, allergies, weight gain, too much salt and even specific face shapes may suffer more – along with the natural ageing process where the skin around the eye becomes thinner, highlighting any excessive fluid. Smoking, sun exposure, dehydration and stress can also be culprits.
Most times, under-eye circles are not caused by external factors. Your under-eye bags could be genetic if you’ve had them since childhood or noticed that various family members possess the trait.
n that case, preventative measures will only partially solve your issue. “It would be a case of masking rather than changing it,” states McHale. Of course, you would still benefit from keeping your eyes protected from further damage, but also — concealer could be your new best friend. More on that later.
The natural ageing process is one of the main factors exacerbating under-eye bags. Healthline states, “When you age, you tend to lose fat and collagen, and your skin often thins. This can make the reddish-blue blood vessels under your eyes more prominent.”
Lack of sleep
“A lot of people get kind of temporary darkness or puffiness because lack of sleep can cause poor microcirculation – that is, blood circulation and nutrients within the skin,” McHale explains.
“If you sleep on one side, one eye could be a bit puffier because it’s not draining efficiently. If you’re not sleeping properly, you get similar effects. If external factors are the cause, you need to look for products that improve microcirculation when they’re applied topically.”
It might be time to limit those salty French fries. A diet high in sodium can also contribute to developing eye bags. In addition, consuming too much salt can cause your body to retain water, leading to swelling and puffiness, particularly in the under-eye area.
Plus, lacking nutrients such as vitamins and minerals can also make your skin appear dull and tired, making eye bags more noticeable. In particular, a deficiency in vitamin K can cause blood vessels under the eyes to become more visible, contributing to dark circles and puffiness. So it might be worth investing in a decent men’s multivitamin like Wild Nutrition Food Grown Men’s Daily Multi Nutrient, £33.50.
Similarly to poor nutrition, lack of water can cause the skin to become dehydrated. This is when the body’s natural defences kick in and try to preserve as much water as possible – which means bloating and eye bags will be exaggerated and puffiness will entail.
Additionally, allergies and hay fever could also cause puffiness under the eyes. Finally, rubbing the eyes could damage the blood vessels in the area, making them appear darker.
Investing in the correct skincare regimen specifically for men is key. Men’s skin has higher levels of testosterone, is 25% thicker, and produces more sebum, so a targeted range will always garner the best results.
Are under-eye bags permanent?
How to get rid of under-eye bags
Reduce salt intake
Reducing salt will help reduce water retention, which is sometimes responsible for puffiness under the eyes.
According to experts, salt encourages fluid retention in the body and can result in fluid buildup under the eyes. The NHS advises adults to eat no more than six grams of salt a day (2.4g sodium) – around one teaspoon.
Beware because even foods that do not taste salty can be high in sodium. Checking the nutritional label before adding them to the cart is vital.
Drink more water
Dehydration exacerbates darkness under the eye. When you wake up in the morning, your body is likely dehydrated and can intensify under eye bags because there is no water to reflect that light. More H2O can also hydrate your body and flush out excess fluids, reducing puffiness and making under-eye bags much less noticeable. Check out this article to clarify whether you have dry or dehydrated skin.
Choose the right products and ingredients
Certain ingredients to look for in your skincare products can help improve the appearance of under-eye bags. A well-known one is caffeine. But consuming it doesn’t help. If anything, it’s dehydrating, which will make the problem worse. However, McHale points out, “When caffeine is applied topically, it has a good stimulating effect on the circulatory system.”
Try the ClarinsMen Energizing Eye Gel, £31, which combines the powers of caffeine with ginseng extract and horse chestnut — all in a moisturising, non-sticky formula. Use it during the daytime because the circulation is slowest, and you will find darkness, and puffiness is worse.
Try the ClarinsMen Line-Control Eye Balm, £35, for nighttime, which targets fine lines and helps revitalise the skin with plant extracts like paracress and maritime pine. Then, for something a little richer, opt for Clarins Double Serum Eye, £57 – an intensive treatment for smoothing, plumping and firming the under-eye area.
UV rays could worsen the pigmentation under your eyes. So when applying your SPF, don’t skip the eye area.
The skin around the eyes is thinner, more sensitive than the rest of the face, and more prone to irritation or allergic reactions. In addition, some sunscreens may contain ingredients that can irritate the eyes, so it’s crucial to choose a gentle and safe formula dedicated to the eye area – or a face product that’s been tested to use on eyes too.
This hydrating but invisible formula has been scientifically proven to use on face, lips and eyes. It doesn’t sting or feel claggy – just a light fresh, velvety feel.
As a precaution, you should also don UV sunglasses or a hat to provide additional sun protection.
There’s been substantial research on the consequences of scrimping on suncare in the eye region, and you can find out more by reading ‘Eye Cream with SPF: Stop Missing Your Eye Area!‘ where dermatologists reveal the dangers you need to know now.
Apply something cold to your eyes
“Cold things help restrict the blood vessels and reduce puffiness,” explains McHale. “So a cold teaspoon or even a cold cloth on the eyes in the morning can help. It also feels nice if you put your eye products in the fridge before using them.”
Smoking can be a significant contributing factor to under-eye bags. This is because it can cause dehydration, poor circulation, collagen breakdown and inflammation – all of which can lead to under-eye bags. When the body is dehydrated, it retains water, which can cause puffiness and swelling around the eyes.
Use a retinol eye cream
There are some brilliant advantages to using a retinol eye cream, and it can help to prevent under-eye bags as it works to increase collagen production. Collagen helps keep the skin firm and elastic, reducing the appearance of under-eye bags.
How to cover up bags under the eyes for guys
Whether your under-eye circles result from genetics or general tiredness, a good concealer is sure to (temporarily) banish them within seconds. There are just a few rules to abide by to get it right.
Choose the right shade
“The biggest mistake that I see with concealer is choosing one that’s too light, which can give a real ashy effect under the eye and make you look worse,” says McHale.
Instead, choose one that matches the skin’s tone around the eye — typically the area between the nose and the eye socket. Matching it to this shade will help the under-eye area blend in with the rest of your face instead of making it stand out.
Beauty Daily recommends: If concealers always look ashy and grey under your eyes, try correcting the purple tones using a peachy colour corrector before applying concealer.
How to apply
When it comes to concealer, too little is better than too much. “Some men may wish to do it discreetly if they’re unfamiliar with wearing makeup. And one surefire way to make it obvious is to use too much over too wide an area,” McHale explains. “What you don’t want to do is put concealer in a big triangle under the eye.”
Make sure you put your eye cream on first. You want the skin to be nice and hydrated before applying a high-coverage makeup product.
Then, work in thin layers. Use a small amount of concealer, apply just where it needs to be and blend well. Add more only if required. The most accessible tool for blending? Your fingertip. Pat the product in till it’s blended — the warmth of your finger will help smooth the concealer over your skin quickly.
Are you looking to craft a skincare routine that addresses your specific concerns? Then, read our piece on Skincare for Men: A Routine for Every Age.
Next Read: Hit Refresh With The Best Face Wash For Men