11 Dermatologist Hacks to De-Puff Puffy-Looking Eyes
Whether they’re an unfortunate byproduct of a late night out, the side effect of watching the saddest movie…ever, or a sign that you partook in one too many salty snacks, puffy eyes are the worst and they are hard—if not impossible—to hide. Thankfully, there are some easy hacks you can try to de-puff the appearance of your swollen situation. Below, we share some of our go-to tricks for puffy eyes—including some from top NYC dermatologists!
Hack #1: Don’t Throw Away Your Tea Bags
Green tea does so much more than offer you a caffeine-boost in the morning. The tea is also rich in antioxidants and minerals, and it’s the star in this derm-hack for puffy eyes. Board-certified dermatologist, and Skincare.com consultant, Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali not only recommends this trick for patients…he uses it himself! At night, boil some water and make a cup of green tea. Once it’s cooled down, place the mug—with the teabag still in the tea—into the refrigerator.
In the morning, remove the teabag from the cup—squeeze out the excess water—and lightly place the bag over the eye area, alternating between sides every 5-10 seconds. “The coolness helps vasoconstrict the area so the ‘puffy look’ improves since it is usually due to vasodilation,” he says.
Hack #2: Stock Up On Cucumbers
If you frequently experience a case of puffy eyes in the morning, consider keeping your fridge stocked with cucumbers. Celebrity esthetician Mzia Shiman uses chilled cucumber slices as mini-eye masks, allowing the slice to sit on top of the eye area for a few minutes, to help reduce that puffy look. (Pro tip: Slice up a few extra pieces to nosh on while you have other cucumber slices sitting on your eyes.)
Hack #3: Massage Your Eye Contour
Clarisonic is perhaps best known for its range of cleansing brush heads, but the brand recently unveiled a new Sonic Awakening Eye Massager that—when paired with the new Mia Smart device—can help reduce the appearance of puffiness after one week of use, and crow’s feet fine lines and wrinkles around the eye area after eight weeks of use. Sonic Awakening Eye Massager boasts rounded aluminum tips that feel cool and refreshing on the skin. “[The massager] delivers 18,000 gentle massages to the eye area and that’s a good thing,” says board-certified dermatologist, and Clarisonic ambassador, Dr. Doris Day. To learn more about how to pair the Clarisonic Mia Smart with the Sonic Awakening Eye Massager, check out our full product review here!
Want to give the Sonic Awakening Eye Massager a spin? Start by applying your favorite eye cream or serum to your eye contour. Attach the Sonic Awakening Eye Massager to your Mia Smart. (Pro tip: store your Sonic Awakening Eye Massager in your fridge for amplified cooling benefits.) Start underneath the eye, near the nose, and move the massage applicator outwards following the guided timer. Repeat same steps on opposite eye area. Wash Sonic Awakening Eye Massager with liquid soap and water after each use.
Hack #4: Get Some Rest
When you’re not getting an adequate amount of sleep, you may notice your eyes are more swollen in the morning. The best long-term solution is to get the recommended hours of sleep each night. If you have trouble falling asleep, try eliminating phones or electronics by your nightstand that could be distracting. If your stress is keeping you from heading to bed on time, curl up with a good book or take a relaxing bath to help ease your mind and nerves.
Hack #5: Adjust Your Sleeping Position
Sleep is important for the overall look of your skin, including your eye contour, but so too is your sleeping position. If you’re a stomach sleeper, fluid may pool under the skin around your eyes. If possible, switch to a position on your back and keep your head propped up and elevated with an extra pillow.
Hack #6: Watch Your Diet
Fluid can build up under the eye area as a result of excessive alcohol consumption and a diet rich in salty foods. Stick to a balanced diet of healthy fruits and vegetables and lots of water. You don’t have to eliminate alcohol and salty foods altogether, just enjoy them in moderation.
Hack #7: Keep Your Allergies in Check
Contact with an allergen—whether it be pollen, dust, or pet dander—can cause temporary puffiness around your eye contour. “If you have allergies, make yourself an allergy calendar,” says Dr. Day. “Take your antihistamines ahead of time so you don’t have to fall behind and then catch up. You just have to be aware of what you’re prone to and address it in a way that minimizes any flares.”
Hack #8: Remove Your Makeup Before Bed
Do you have a tendency to fall asleep with makeup on your skin and around your eyes? Neglecting to remove your mascara, eyeshadow, and winged eyeliner can cause the skin around your eyes to look puffy and irritated come morning. Before hitting the sack, take an extra minute or two to remove your eye makeup. It may seem like an annoying step when you’re exhausted and just want to get to bed, but the payoff is worth it. To learn more about what can happen to your skin when you sleep with your makeup on, click here!
Editor’s note: Feeling lazy at night? Store cotton pads and micellar water on your nightstand for quick and easy makeup removal from the comfort of your bed. You don’t have to get up and head to the sink and you can remove your makeup with ease!
Hack #9: Apply Eye Creams or Serums
While you may not see an immediate benefit from eye creams or eye serums, continued use over time can help improve the look of your eye contour. Be choosy when picking your formulas of choice, and keep an eye out for specific ingredients. “Ingredients like niacinamide, caffeine, and vitamin C can be helpful,” Dr. Day says. “Retinol strengthens the skin which can help with de-puffing as well.”
Hack #10: Protect Against the Sun
Not only can UV rays harm your skin and cause signs of premature aging, they can also cause you to squint your eyes. Dr. Day recommends wearing sunglasses prior to heading outdoors, even when the sun’s not out, along with broad-spectrum sunscreen. “If you’re squinting, get your eyes checked out and change your glasses so you don’t squint,” she says. “Wearing a hat can help give you that protection as well.”
Hack #11: Remove Your Contact Lenses Before Bed
Contact lenses can help improve your vision during the day, but those benefits aren’t needed at night when your eyes are closed. In fact, keeping your contact lenses in during sleep can cause a handful of negative consequences beyond just puffy-looking eyes come morning. While it may seem easier to just leave them in, do your due diligence and remove your contact lenses before bed to eliminate any added stress on your eye area that can cause swelling.