Caring For Your Eyes
The skin under your eyes is indeed delicate! It is the thinest and most fragile area on your face. It is also under a lot of strain, as these muscles are connected to main muscle groups for blinking, squinting and showing emotion, which are consistently moving throughout your day.
This fragile area also lacks sebaceous glands, collagen and elastin fibers and is why it is the first place to show aging, therefore dependent on us to keep that area well hydrated and protected. Under eye concerns can vary from person to person and can begin in our mid 20’s.
Dark Circles are a big concern for some and can be hereditary. It can also be a sign of hormonal imbalance or a vitamin deficiency and not really a whole lot can ne done topically. If it comes and goes it very well could be a sign of fatigue, eye strain from hours behind a computer and not enough sleep. Potato, cucumber and rooibos tea bags placed onto of the eyes can offer tired eyes relief while also relieving darkness.
Puffiness under the eyes most commonly is due to dehydration from not drinking your daily dose of water, too much salt, caffeine or alcohol. Smoking and medications can disrupt certain organs and have also been know to cause under eye puffiness and dark circles. If you are getting your recommended 8 glasses of pure water a day and still feel dehydrated, make sure you are getting enough minerals! It is imperative to have enough minerals in your daily diet for your body to absorb the water you are drinking.
Make sure you are getting plenty of mineral rich fruits and veggies -I drink a green veggie juice every single day to make extra sure. Adding a scoop of greens with Spirulina (and the like) into juice, water or your morning smoothie will also do the trick. Coconut water is loaded with electrolytes and vital minerals, just make sure that it is from an organic source. Some companies transport their coconuts in a formaldehyde solution for preservation (YUK!) You can also find mineral supplements in your favorite health food store.
Sensitivity- because this area is so fragile, it can also be very vulnerable and a sign of irritation somewhere within the body, as can the skin right under your nose. Eye Creams seem to hold better for those with sensitive eyes as oils and serums can move around and get into the eyes, causing more sensitivity all around. Make sure to use a cream that has simple ingredients and do not contain harmful ingredients like “fragrance” -these are known to cause eye irritation and allergic reactions. Also make sure to use very little and not too close to the eyes. Chamomile teabags and cucumber are my favorites for cooling and calming sensitivity.
Millia are little white bumps found just under the eye, where eye creams are applied. Fortunately I don't see this too often anymore, thank goodness! Quite a few commercial eye creams still do add silicon (aka dimethicone) for its super silky luxurious feel. Silicone has quite a large molecular structure which sits on top of the skin causing natural oils to get trapped into the follicle, harden and keratinize causing millia, clogged pores. This is also the precursor of enlarged pores… bad ingredients! Milia can only be removed through extraction and should be done by a professional. If you have more than just a few, you might want to see a dermatologist.
Natural Ingredients that help the skin around the eyes-
- Chamomile: soothing irritation, redness and eyes puffy from sadness (tea bags work wonders)
- Calendula: hydrating and healing
- Borage: Cooling and anti-inflammatory
- Coffee: this was my secret ingredient in my facial room. I always had coffee infused in oil on hand for those who needed an extra eye treatment and it worked wonders! Coffee contains anti-inflammatory properties and acts as a diuretic, restricts blood vessels and restores puffiness and firms like nobodies business. Coffee beans are a super antioxidant that help protect the skin from free radical damage and help smooth fine lines. Our coffee comes from a really nice gentleman on Maui who has a small organic plantation farm and grows his coffee beans right on the slopes of the Haleakala Crater. I would not suggest using coffee pure directly on the skin on a daily bases, I would suspect it be too drying.
- Rooibos: similar to coffee and a wonderful at home treatment. Place tea bags in heated water (not hot!) and then on your eyes and relax for 5-10 minutes.
- Hibiscus: natures “botox”. High in antioxidants which really regenerate the skin.
Oils of Sunflower, Tamanu, Carrot Seed and Borage are all very lightweight, vitamin rich and serve as a protectant to fragile skin.
Potato and Cucumbers: juiced or sliced and placed on you eyes help cool and soothe irritated eyes.
DIY Eye Gels:
Aloe Vera (pulp) and Cucumber: juice in blender
Egg white and a splash of organic coffee- use as a masque for tightening effect, great to use before a night out. Leave on for 5 minutes or so, rinse and moisturize.
Eye Creams also make the best healing creams! Dab them on a cut, a blemish, anything that is red and irritated.