Tried And Tested: How To Get Rid Of Under Eye Bags And Dark Circles

If you're on a constant hunt for industrial strength concealer, have spent more money than sense on eye cream and you hear the phrase "You look tired today" more than your own name some weeks, then I can empathise.

Under eye bags and dark circles have been the bane of my beauty life since I traded in leisurely university lie-ins, for late nights and early mornings. But recently, no matter how much sleep I seemed to get, those two bags packed for a week-long vacay didn't want to budge.

Sadly, cosmetic products aren't legitimate miracle workers (despite what it says on the tube) and there are no quick fixes. But there are ways to reduce your under eye bags, even almost completely, you just a little help from the experts...

The following tips recommended have all been tried and tested, while the product suggestions are things I have used on my actual face.

According to Chelsea-based nutritionist Petronella Ravenshear, it’s not so much about which foods to eat than which foods to avoid.

She told HuffPost UK Style: "Wheat is the main culprit for dark circles - sometimes called ‘allergic shiners’! Very often when people stop eating wheat the black bags magically disappear.

"Other than food allergy or intolerance, dark circles can also be a sign of poor detoxification and lymphatic congestion."

If you're feeling sluggish, plenty of water, a healthy diet with lots of fresh fruit and veg, regular exercise and dry body brushing are all brilliant ways to boost your lymphatic system.

Lymphatic congestion can also be eased with targeted massage techniques, as loved by facialist Antonia Burrell (who's famed in celeb circles for her de-puffing facials).

Burrell shared her method with HuffPost UK Style, "I recommend gently placing your ring fingers in the corners of your eyes nearest your nose, and gently rotating them along your eye line.

"This technique helps to improve circulation. You might feel a dull ache in some areas, but this is actually a good sign as it means you are easing congestion."

You might need to do this more in the summer season as hay fever is a big cause of congested sinuses and swollen eyes (and the pollen count is soaring right now!).

Beauty blogger and facialist Caroline Hirons has also shared an imperative piece of beauty wisdom when it comes to selecting an eye cream.

In her eye cream "cheat sheet" blog post, Hirons recommends sticking to serums and lighter formulas so as not to cause further puffiness.

Apparently one of the worst culprits for swelling is mineral oil, which she advises never to use around the sensitive eye area.

Makeup artist Xavia Somerville shared her top concealing tips with HuffPost UK Style:

"If your eyes are looking tired or swollen, instantly wake them up by using a concealer a shade lighter than your skin tone along the crease," she said.

"For under the eye, first correct, then conceal. Use a colour corrector to neutralise dark circles - peachy and orange colours will cancel out the blue and purple tones.

"Finally, a good concealer is all you need to finish the job. Set with a powder to avoid creasing and ensure the product lasts all day."

Concealers like By Terry Touche Veloutee, £37.50, and Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer Kit, £24.50, (which comes with a setting powder) will brighten up the eye area, while a colour corrector like Bobbi Brown Corrector, £19, helps to disguise dark circles

The classic surgical route for under eye bags has always been a lower blepharoplasty, where the loose skin under the eyes is removed, or temporary fillers, where hyaluronic acid is injected under the skin to pad out the area.

Not wanting major surgery or to put anything foreign in my body, I sought other options and discovered the FAMI technique - a type of fat transfer which allows patients to using their own cells.

According to a new survey by, fat transfers are one of the top 10 most highly requested procedures, with enquiries growing by 87% in the last six months.

Before and after my FAMI treatment (believe it or not, I'm wearing the same makeup!)

In the FAMI technique, stem cells are collected from fat tissue and then injected into the face under local anaesthetic.

One of the pioneers of the treatment, and the surgeon who performed my procedure, Dr Olivier Amar from London's Cadogan Clinic, told HuffPost UK Style: "This is a minimally invasive procedure and much more effective and natural than using fillers.

"By restoring volume around the orbital area to compensate the early stages of deflation of the temples, eyebrows and cheekbones, through the FAMI technique a ‘lift’ effect occurs which restores the patient’s own anatomy and volume.

This results in a harmonious, natural and youthful appearance.”

At just under £2,000, the procedure doesn't come cheap. But, while cosmetic procedures aren't for everyone, I found this the most effective.


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