How to get rid of panda eyes

PANDA WOES: Lack of sleep can cause eye rings, and being Asian does not help as we have thinner skin under the eyes.


    Jul 29, 2014

    How to get rid of panda eyes

    BLACK circles look extremely cute on pandas, but when it comes to human eyes, dark rings are not an attractive feature.

    Generally, most people attribute panda eyes to lack of sleep. While it is true that insufficient sleep can make you look like Kai Kai or Jia Jia, dark eye rings may actually be caused by other factors.

    Yes, lack of sleep can give you eye rings, regardless of age or gender, but being Asian does not help as we have thinner skin under the eyes. Having thin skin makes the pigment below the eye stand out more, giving a darker impression of the circles.

    If you spend a lot of time in the sun, be more conscientious with your eye serum, moisturiser and sunscreen. Excessive sun exposure creates fine wrinkles around the eyes, which darken the skin and create those circles.

    Puffy eyes can happen due to a diet rich in salt. Because of osmosis, the water in our body accumulates in areas with high salt concentrations. That is why a salty dinner can leave you with puffy eyes.

    Rubbing our eyes will only worsen the condition because of the thin skin around the eyes. Nasal congestion makes the blood vessels from the eyes to the nose swell, which darkens the under-eye area.

    Panda eyes are more prominent during pregnancy when hormonal changes darken the skin and dilate the blood vessels around the eye, making eye rings more conspicuous. Hormonal changes can also be the result of a poor diet and smoking.

    Research has shown that certain sleeping positions can cause panda eyes as well, like sleeping on our sides and stomach.

    People who sleep on their sides will find their black eye circles worse on the side they sleep on, because gravity causes fluids to accumulate under that eye.

    Meanwhile, ageing also causes the eye area to hollow out, creating shadows that mimic black circles. Age also thins the skin under the eyes, making the blood vessels in that area stand out.

    Some people are born with pigmentation problems, which cause skin discoloration at the eye area. For them, the only help is through make-up and concealers to lighten the dark area and reduce the effect of the eye circles.

    Side sleepers should try sleeping on their backs to reduce the fluid accumulation.

    Conscientious use of eye serums and gels can reduce puffiness and dark circles, too. Placing cucumber slices, aloe vera gel and tea bags on closed eyes have minimal effect, but they do help us to relax and reduce our stress levels.

    Creams with retinol and skin-lightening formulas can also help to lighten the skin tone around the eyes, which will reduce the darkness of the circles. Apply sunblock gently under the eyes with your finger.

    Your last resort would be cosmetic surgery. But to avoid having to remove your eye bags with a nip and tuck, try the early remedial methods suggested here. Accumulative action over a prolonged period will save you money and the risk of surgery.


    Dr Nor Ashikin Mokhtar is a consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist (FRCOG, UK). The information provided is for educational and communication purposes only and it should not be construed as personal medical advice.