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What can I do about the dark circles under my eyes?

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It’s commonly thought that dark circles under the eyes can be caused by issues such as stress, diet and fatigue. You could try yoga or mediation, changing your diet or going for regular walks outdoors.

But contrary to popular opinion – the reasons above are not likely to be the cause of your dark circles!

Much of the time, dark circles are caused by hyperpigmentation. This can be due to exposure of the skin to the sun, allergies, ageing, ethnicity – and even your genes. Yes, dark circles can be handed down from your mum. And if you have atopic conditions in your family, such as asthma and hayfever, you may suffer from inflammation and poor circulation around your eyes. And then there’s the simple fact of the ageing process where the natural loss of volume under the eyes can make dark circles more noticeable.

So many possible reasons! So is there anything I can do?

Although not sleeping well doesn’t cause dark circles, it will exacerbate them. In fact, feeling tired all the time often indicates deeper issues in your life. You may not be sleeping well, or perhaps you’re not getting enough good quality sleep. It’s worth exploring the reasons behind this, and if it’s a real problem in your life, you could try a specialist sleep clinic.

Other things that can exacerbate your dark circles are smoking and exposure to the sun. So it’s in your best interests (for many reasons) to quit smoking and wear sunscreen.  

If your dark circles aren’t too bad, then a good concealer will probably do the trick. But if they really bother you, then it’s worth looking at other options, such as a Hydroquinone skincare system like Obagi.

How does Obagi help?

There are a variety of prescription-only Obagi systems that will improve dark circles, depending on their severity.

  • Mild hyperpigmentation

Obagi-C Rx uses a formulation of prescription-strength 4% Hydroquinone, which reduces the appearance of hyperpigmentation and age spots, combined with 10% L-ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) – the only topical antioxidant proven to stimulate collagen synthesis and protect your skin by minimizing future skin cell damage.

  • More severe hyperpigmentation

Ingredients in the Obagi Nu-Derm system actively work together to ensure deep penetration. retinoic acid and Retinol are used for patients with pigmentation while Hydroquinone evens skin tone and reduces hyperpigmentation.

What other options are there?

There are a variety of different treatments that can help, including:


Dermal fillers can be used to conceal any blood vessels and melanin that are causing discolouration under your eyes. Fillers are injected into the skin, plumping it up, making it firmer and smoothing out lines and wrinkles.

Chemical peels

These can reduce pigmentation by peeling away the build-up of excessive dead cells revealing fresh youthful layers underneath. There’s a choice of different peels are designed to work at various skin depths.


Micro-needles penetrate the top layers of the skin and create pin-point injuries in the deeper layers, which triggers the body’s natural wound healing response. As a result, new collagen and elastin is formed to reduce wrinkle depth, increase skin elasticity and improve the appearance of scars and other skin flaws.

IPL (laser)

IPL uses a broad spectrum of light with short wavelengths to eliminate superficial signs of ageing. Pigmented areas absorb the light generated, which is converted into heat – this helps pigmentation to be broken down.

How do I find out what’s right for me?

The best thing to do is to have a consultation with a specialist skin clinic to discuss what results you are looking for, and which option is the right one for you. You need to feel comfortable about the treatment and confident that it will help your dark circles.

Look for a clinic that offers the following:

  • A free consultation
  • Ongoing free support and advice for Obagi treatments
  • Results guarantee
  • Quality controls
  • Experienced clinicians
  • Proven results/reviews
  • Transparency on costs

You can make a start by seeing what Brigstock Skin & Laser provides. Feel free to browse our website and check out our reviews by clicking here.

If you would like to find out more book your free consultation online now by clicking here or call us on 020 868 36730.

Now you can look forward to banishing those dark circles forever!

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