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Dark Circles Under the Eyes: Common Causes and How to Get Rid of Them

Amber is a web writer whose articles focus on beauty, skincare, health, and wellness!


How to Eliminate Dark Circles

Dark circles under the eyes can make you look older than you are, exhausted and a bit disheveled. It doesn’t matter how great you look, those Prada bags under your eyes will kill your entire vibe. Instead of layering on concealer as a part of your morning routine, learn common causes and how to get rid of dark circles under the eyes.

What Causes Dark Circles Under Eyes?

While being tired is most commonly associated with dark circles under the eyes, this is only one of the reasons you might look like you need a nap. Genetics, aging, allergies, anemia, stress, and dehydration are also common causes.

Lack of Sleep

If you’re not getting enough sleep, that alone can cause your dark under-eye circles. On average, we need 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Sometimes, that isn’t possible, but you need to try to get an adequate amount of rest every night. Dark circles are just one of the side effects of not getting enough sleep.


Unfortunately, genetics play a major role in whether or not you develop dark circles under your eyes. If your mom or dad was known for having the same condition, you are instantly at a genetic predisposition of developing dark circles too. However, that doesn’t mean that you’re cursed. Practicing healthy habits can give you beautiful, bag-free skin under your eyes.


As you get older, your skin naturally becomes thinner. It loses collagen and elasticity, which is what makes it thinner. This results in being able to see the blood vessels or veins that are underneath the skin easier. If you’re aging, you might not have dark under-eye circles. It could just be that your skin is a little thinner than it used to be.

Iron Deficiency Anemia

Iron deficiency anemia is a very common medical condition, and one of the most common deficiencies. It’s believed that this can cause, or at least contribute, to under-eye circles because enough oxygen is not getting delivered to every part of the body. It can make your skin more likely to be discolored.

Stress Makes Them Appear More Noticeable

Stress can make your skin paler, which is going to make your dark circles really stand out. On top of that, when you’re stressed you don’t sleep as well as you normally would. This makes them darker than they already were.

Dehydration Also Makes Them Appear More Noticeable

When you’re dehydrated, your body keeps whatever water it can for vital functions, like your organs. The tiny area of skin underneath your eye does not make it to the list of vital things that need water. This ultimately leads to your eyes looking sunken in, and those dark circles underneath the eyes are more noticeable than they were before.

Dehydration also contributes by making your eyes puffy. Your body will retain water if you’re mildly dehydrated, which is why you will get bags under your eyes if you’re not drinking enough water.


Natural Remedies to Get Rid of Dark Circles Under the Eyes

Getting Plenty of Sleep Can Slowly Eliminate Dark Circles

We typically need 7-8 hours of sleep a night with the occasional exception. Some people need more, and some people need significantly less. If you wake up feeling tired, you’re not getting an adequate amount of sleep. Practice positive sleeping habits to make sure you get your eight hours a night. Here are some examples:

  • Eliminate caffeine after dinner
  • Go to bed at the same time every night
  • Don’t eat large meals before going to bed
  • Avoid screen time before bed (the light keeps your brain awake)
  • Make sure you have a cozy environment to sleep in

Taking the time to make sure that you sleep well every night will slowly make your dark under-eye circles fade away.

Practice Positive Coping Skills When You’re Stressed

Stress can wreak havoc on your entire body, including the little area underneath your eyes. Most of us hold in our emotions and stress because we have to in order to get things done throughout the day, but this does little for our mental health or the circles under our eyes. Instead, find a healthy way to release stress and practice calming techniques like these:

  • Boxing class
  • Running
  • Exercise
  • Deep breathing
  • Meditation
  • Cooking
  • Listening to music

If it helps you feel at peace, it counts as a wonderful coping skill! As your stress slowly reduces, you’ll find that you both look and feel better.

Get Plenty of Iron to Naturally Reduce Dark Circles

Iron deficiency anemia is believed to contribute to dark circles under the eyes. This is because it helps transport oxygen throughout the body, and, once again, that tiny area under your eyes is not at the top of the priority list. Make sure that you get plenty of iron by eating iron-rich foods, like leafy greens, red meat, and poultry, or by taking a daily iron supplement.

Put Cold Spoons on Your Eyes for 15 Minutes

This will not eliminate dark circles under the eyes instantly, but it does make them look a lot better. It will drastically reduce puffiness, too.

Simply put two cold spoons in the freezer for twenty minutes. Then, place them on your eyes. The coldness is the same as applying a cold compress to a bruise! It will make the dark circles look lighter, help you look refreshed instead of tired and it will get rid of bags under the eyes.

What is the Best Product to Get Rid of Dark Circles Under the Eyes?

Pur-lisse Blue Lotus 4 in 1 Eye Adore Serum

This is a bit of an older product, but it’s the one product that I swear by. I have an iron deficiency, am always busy so I occasionally don’t get enough sleep, and have three children and a grandchild. Genetics are also not on my side when it comes to bags and dark circles under the eyes. I got a sample size of this in an Ipsy bag years ago, and have been using it ever since. A tiny dab every night, and I never see dark circles under the eyes. They aren’t puffy either! This is a quick way to get rid of bags under the eyes and dark circles.

Malin+Goetz Revitalizing Eye Gel

I took a small break from my Pur-lisse when I got a full-size bottle of this in my Ipsy Glam Box (I upgraded…) It doesn’t work as well with dark circles as the Pur-lisse, but it’s worth a shot if your circles aren’t dark enough to make it look like you have a black eye. It does help lighten them and is quicker at reducing puffiness than the Pur-lisse does. If bags under the eyes are your main concern, this is a great product to try.



What deficiency causes dark circles?

It’s believed that an iron deficiency contributes to dark circles. Take an iron supplement once daily, or eat iron-rich foods to combat this deficiency. Iron-rich foods include poultry, like chicken, red meat, spinach, raising, peas, and seafood. Vitamin deficiencies of vitamin K, E, and D can also cause dark circles.

What should we eat to remove dark circles?

If you have an iron deficiency, eat iron-rich foods. If not, try to up your intake of guava, tomatoes, blueberries, cucumbers, and other foods rich in vitamins K, E, and D to help lighten dark circles by eating the right foods.

How much sleep do I need to get rid of dark circles?

You need to shoot for eight hours of sleep per night to get rid of dark circles. If you feel tired or groggy throughout the day, you are not getting enough rest at night. Some people need a little more sleep, and some need a little less. Listen to your body.

Closing Thoughts

Dark circles under the eyes can instantly make you look tired, stressed, and even sick. Use otc products to get rid of them fast. Then, stick with natural remedies that address the underlying cause to make sure they are not a consistent problem.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2020 Amber Lynn