It's normal for your eyes too look a little swollen first thing in the morning. But drinking alcohol, eating salty foods, allergies, and watching The Notebook can produce bigger bags that stick around for a few hours. Here's how to get rid of them fast.
Choose a Caffeinated Cream
Drinking a double espresso won't help under-eye bags, but applying caffeine topically can. "Caffeine draws water away from the skin for a tighter appearance," says Laura Hittleman, director of Corporate Beauty Services for Canyon Ranch. You can place cool, moist black-tea bags on your eyes for five minutes or just use an eye cream that contains caffeine. She recommends Canyon Ranch Your Transformation Brightness Eye Cream, $70.
Try Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is a natural skin-tightening astringent, says makeup pro Shalini Vadhera, who uses it on photo shoots to deflate under-eye bags. Her trick: Soak two cotton pads in cold witch hazel (keep a bottle in the fridge) and apply one to each closed eye for five minutes.
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Slice Up a Cucumber
Believe it or not, your mother was right - chilled cucumber slices are a good remedy for bags. "They contain enzymes that reduce inflammation," says derm Audrey Kunin, founder of DermaDoctor. Also, since the veggie is 90% water, it has an instant cooling effect.
Give Yourself an Eye Massage
If you've ever had a professional facial, then you know how well rested you look afterward. That's because most facials include what the pros call "manual lymphatic drainage," which is a massage that helps push fluid out of the area. Using your ring fingers (they apply the least amount of pressure), start at the inner corners of your eyes and slowly massage in a slow, circular motion to the outer corners, says Tammy Fender, an aesthetician in Palm Beach, FL. Then, move to your temples and down your jawline.
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Use Cold Spoons
This low-tech solution is surprisingly effective, according to Kate Sommerville, an aesthetician in L.A. She tells her celeb clients to place cold metal spoons (put them in the freezer or on ice) on their eyes for three minutes to tighten up the skin. Another option: a bag of frozen peas - it'll contour to the shape of your face.
Buy Hemorrhoid Cream
Sounds gross, but the main ingredient - phenylephrine - constricts blood vessels and shrinks under-eye tissue, says Dr. Kunin. Apply just a bit of cream to the puffy area, being very careful not to get too close to your eye.
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.