Dark under eye circles or raccoon genes?

First, identify the kind of dark circle:

Does it get better, then get worse?

Does it stay the same color all the time?

Does it have a yellowish undertone?

Does it look like you have a black eye? With some purple and blue

Is it accompanied by puffiness?

All of the above???

Does it Get better then get worse?
If the darkness of your dreaded circles fluctuates, you may need to look
seriously at getting more regular sleep. This means shutting off that
iPhone, computer, and TV about an hour before bed. Seriously! Gazing at
electronic screens tires the muscles in your eyes, and can contribute to
dryness, eyestrain, and inhibits melatonin production, which you need for
deep sleep. There is a reason they call it Beauty Sleep.
What to do about it? Add a pinch of sea salt to your water every
day. Real sea salt, NOT table salt! Holistically, the eyes reflect the
health of your kidneys, and adrenals. Not enough sleep = higher cortisol
(adrenals) production. Sea salt or Himalayan salt contain trace minerals
that our bodies use up under stress. And who doesn’t have stress?? Consider
a daily dose of magnesium as well.

Does it stay the same color all the time?
You can probably blame your parents for this one! Genetics determines the
color of your skin, and deeper skin tones have more likelihood of this kind
of circle. Excess sun exposure will make it worse over time.
What to do about it? Topical preparations like retinol and vitamin
C have been shown to reduce this kind of pigmentation. Topical brightening
serums containing arbutin, licorice, and mulberry can be helpful when used
regularly. Lets not forget the SPF shall we?

Does it have a yellowish undertone?
Anytime there is a yellow tone in the skin, holistically this indicates a
sluggish liver. Yellow with brown may reflect a sluggish bowel.
What to do about it? A detox may be in order here! Generally
any “detoxification” really means you need to look at how you are nourishing
yourself, so cut the processed “foods” and load up on the dark green leafies
and healthy fats. Again, a little sea salt every day can help to provide
trace minerals for healthy liver and bowel function. Yellow dock, nettles,
and dandelion can be your best buds for this.

Does it look like you have a black eye?
Um, have you been out brawling? If not, this is what we call an allergic
shiner, and you guessed it, indicates allergies. This could mean
environmental allergies, like hay fever or mold, but it could also mean food
sensitivities. The most likely culprits are wheat, dairy, corn, soy and
Sometimes people tell me that everyone in their family has these, so it
can’t be a food issue. Well, actually, sometimes your whole family is
sensitive. These kinds of food issues have a genetic component. Try
cutting them out completely for a while, and see what happens with your
circles. I often see gluten (wheat) as the culprit in my practice.

Is it accompanied by puffiness?
Have you been out drinking? Not only will alcohol mess with your Beauty
Sleep, it stresses your liver, increases insulin resistance, and slows down
lymphatic flow, often resulting in a lovely pair of marching dark circles.
What to do about it? Keep a couple of teaspoons in your fridge, and
when you wake up with dark puffs, gently rock the chilled spoons over your
eyes. This stimulates lymphatic flow, and constricts swollen tissue. Feels
pretty good too. Follow it up with a dose of niacinamide, dandelion, and
don’t forget that pinch of sea salt in your water! This is where the
classic cucumber slices work as well.

All of the above???
Go take a vacation! Sounds like you may have been abusing yourself for too
long. Adequate sleep, real food, nourishing botanicals like nettles and
dandelion, trace minerals, and a long walk in nature may be just what your
Esthetician ordered.

Thanks for reading! I am a licensed Esthetician (skin care specialist) and
owner of Viriditas Beautiful Skin Therapies, a holistic skin care practice
and acne clinic in Providence RI. I hope some of this will be of help to