Are your sparkling eyes getting dragged down by dark under-eye circles? We all get them on occasion, and some of us seem to be stuck with them long-term. There are a few things that you can do to help take the spotlight off of the dark circles and put it back on your eyes.
Those dark circles under our eyes can be such a downer. They make us look older and they make us look tired. I hate waking up to find dark circles just jumping off of my face. What color are my eyes? I have no idea because all I see are raccoon eyes. Not an attractive look for women or men.
Dark circles are only cute on panda bears
Dark circles for most of us are the result of fatigue, allergies, excessive rubbing of the eyes and even certain skin conditions, such as atopic or contact dermatitis. For others it’s due to heredity, and some ethnic groups are more prone to dark circles than others. Under-eye dark circles are the result of thinning skin and loss of collagen and fat. Unfortunately, this becomes more common as we start to age.
This thinning can make the reddish-blue blood vessels found under our eyes much more noticeable.
While there are many creams, serums and gels on the market to combat dark circles, it’s hard to find that perfect product. Sometimes it can take months before we start to see an improvement. But all hope is not lost. There are things we can do in the interim to help improve our overall look.
Here are some easy tips to help camouflage the area and reduce the appearance of those unsightly dark circles.
Put the focus on the eyes, not the skin around the eyes
Make your eyes stand out with my one go-to tip—an eyelash curler. Men, don’t tune out because this tip can work for you, too. You can pick up an inexpensive eyelash curler at any drug store. The curling will instantly make your eyes look larger by casting a shadow onto your brow bone. If you wear mascara, only apply to your top lashes. If you apply mascara to your bottom lashes, you run the risk of casting a shadow that will only add darkness to the skin under your eyes. I’ve mentioned in a previous post that an eyelash curler is one of my beauty must haves: once you start using one, you can never turn back.
A little tweezing goes a long way
There’s nothing like the power of well-shaped eyebrows to help open up your eyes. Again, this tip is not just for women. Men should also be conscientious of their eyebrows to make sure they are well groomed. Get rid of any strays and tweeze just slightly to help accent the natural arch in your brow. Not comfortable doing this yourself? After one too many tweezing mishaps, I certainly can relate. Have your eyebrows done professionally the first time so you can see the difference, and get a better understanding of just where a few plucks will make a difference.
Just say no to lower lid lining
We tend to like the look of perfectly lined lids. However, by lining your lower lid, you risk putting emphasis on your dark circles. If eyeliner is your thing, apply a darker shade only on top. And if you must line your lower lid, choose a color that’s lighter. It’s a simple trick that really does work.
Perfect the art of eye shadow
Makeup is an amazing beauty tool. The more you practice your technique, the better you’ll be able to apply cosmetics. When it comes to eye shadow, try to avoid using dark colors on your upper eyelids. If you have dark circles, a smoky eye might not be the best look for you. Try using cooler pinks, light, natural mochas or plum colors. Or better yet, go for a monochromatic eye. Use one single shade of eye shadow in a lighter shade, and apply on your eyelid and brow bone. Use highlighter on your brow bone and the inner corner of your eyes to help brighten the area. By keeping your makeup fresh and neutral, it will definitely draw the attention away from the under-eye area. Be sure to have fun with your look and play around with colors to see what works for you.
Cover up with concealer
A good concealer is your best line of defense against dark under-eye circles. While I know that most men don’t wear makeup, there’s nothing wrong with a little concealer to help banish the dark circles. If you do it correctly, no one will even notice you’re wearing it.
It’s important when using concealer to always counterbalance the most prominent undertone of your dark circles. Yellow-based concealers are perfect for most dark circles. But this is trial and error. I learned a long time ago not to try to shade match my foundations or concealers by myself. What looked good in the store always looked a bit off when I applied it at home. I have an entire drawer of only-worn-once products due to my miscalculations. Now I rely on the experts at the cosmetic counters to help me pick the right shades. They are a huge help and provide a service that ultimately can save a lot of time and money.
Make sure your concealer shade is a bit lighter than your skin tone or foundation. Look for something that’s creamy in texture so it won’t settle into any fine lines and cracks during the day. Don’t make the mistake of using too much concealer or applying it under your entire eye. Only apply the product where the actual dark circles are. Usually this is a small semi-circle that starts near your inner eye and goes downwards towards your cheek. Use your fingers, damp makeup sponge or a soft brush to apply your concealer to the dark areas only. It’s always a good idea to apply your concealer last. This way, you can be sure to clean up any makeup that may have landed in the under-eye area prior to applying. Remember, use your concealer sparingly. You don’t want to draw even more attention to the area.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
If you really want to take care of the skin around your eyes and ensure that your makeup goes on smoothly, invest in a quality hydrating eye cream or gel. Hydration always makes the skin look a bit plumper and smoother. This will only help with the application of your concealer and truly help diminish the appearance of those dark circles. And, yes, gentlemen this means you, too. Both men and women will benefit from a good skin care regimen, and a hydrating eye product is a necessity.
I really wish there were a magical product to eliminate dark circles once and for all. Until then, we can continue to look for some quick fixes through trial and error.