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How Do I Banish Under-Eye Shadows?

We asked the experts for their tips on ditching dark circles

By Felicity Robinson

Most days, the bags under my eyes could carry the week’s shopping, but it turns out there’s more I can do to appear fresh-faced than smudging some concealer beneath the lids and hoping for the best. Keep reading for advice on how to brighten bleary eyes.

The nutritionist: Jacqueline Alwill of The Brown Paper Bag

Fluid retention and lack of sleep are the main causes of darkness and puffiness. Try relaxation techniques such as yoga, or simply putting your legs up against the wall to carry excess fluid away from the eye area.

Sleeping on your back with a pillow tucked under your knees, or on your side with a pillow between your legs can also help.

Passionflower and chamomile tea can help you relax – but to be honest the best way for most people to wind down is to turn off stimuli such as phone and other screens at least half an hour before bed.


The skin-care expert: Emma Hobson, The International Dermal Institute & Dermalogica

For immediate results, use an eye cream or foundation that contains light diffusers, or luminescent primers under your foundation that will reduce shadows.

Longer term, Vitamin C is excellent – look for products containing magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (vitamin C by another name!) as well as botanicals such as liquorice and phytic acid, which comes from rice bran. As always, wear sunscreen round the eyes and drink plenty of water.

The plastic surgeon: Ramin Shayan of plasticsurgeryaustralia.com

The skin round the eyes is thinner, so you can see blood vessels and veins through it, which gives a darker appearance, particularly if you’re tired or suffering a respiratory infection that has made your nose and upper airways congested.

Circles are hard to treat; loose, crepey skin can be tightened with blepharoplasty, a surgical procedure to remove fat deposits and excess skin, tightening and smoothing the area.


Illustration: Melissa Drennan 


BY Felicity Robinson

Felicity is the co-founder of Primer and requires at least nine hours sleep a night

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