In this chaotic, twenty-first-century world of non-stop information, appointments, business meetings, and fast food, it is easy to become bogged down and neglectful of our inner health. Unfortunately, such neglect tends to show up on the outside – specifically in the form of wrinkles, dark circles, and eye bags. Now, you can better prepare for occasional slip-ups with some natural, eye-opening tips for looking your best. Here are 8 ways that you can naturally reduce premature eye bags and wrinkles:
Don’t drag the skin
Try to remember that the skin around the eye area is about 10x thinner than the skin on the rest of the face. So, think about that the next time you touch your face. Avoid rubbing your eyes, especially if you are tired, removing makeup, or if you have been staring at a screen or mobile device for long periods. While it may relieve discomfort, you may actually be doing more long-term harm in the process. Instead, consider using a warm flannel or cotton wool to gently dab the affected areas. Treat this area of your face as though the skin were a piece of tissue paper – rubbing or dragging can easily tear and can contribute to or worsen existing lines and dark circles.
The orbicularis oculi is an expansive facial muscle in the face, primarily responsible for opening and closing the eyelids. As we age, this muscle tends to become weaker, and the adjoining skin overtop gradually becomes looser and prone to sagging. This is why it is important to keep this muscle engaged and strong. Eye movements have been a fundamental part of traditional practices like yoga and shiatsu for centuries. When properly executed, eye movements can tone and build the muscles in and around your eyes, resulting in greater vision and improved appearance.
This goes hand in hand with eye movements. Not only are these a great tool for strengthening the eye muscles, but they are also an effective method for retraining your face. We tend to display most of our expressive reactions with our forehead, which, over time, builds wrinkles and deepens existing lines. By learning to be more expressive with our eyes instead of our foreheads, you can greatly alleviate common crows’ feet and furrowed brows. A great tip for this is to place a hand on your forehead while widening your eyes as much as possible, looking up and down repeatedly – all the while, keeping your forehead muscles disengaged and straight and as still as possible. This method retrains the face to be more expressive with the eyes.
There are several important benefits to eye massage, but chief among them is that it aids in lymphatic drainage. Draining the network of vessels in the facial area helps to eliminate a build-up of toxins and other waste from the body. By doing very gentle tapping around the eyes, and under the eyebrow, with your ring finger, you are improving circulation and bringing fresh, nutrient-rich blood back to the area which, in turn, helps to alleviate dark circles and bags. A good rule of thumb: try to complete this simple task at least once a day.
You’ve no doubt been told to drink plenty of water to look and feel your best – but did you know that it can actually do wonders for the skin around your eyes? Not only does an adequate amount of daily water intake help to reduce puffiness, eye bags, and dark circles, it can even help prevent them from returning. Drinking water goes hand in hand with lymphatic drainage and improved circulation: flush your drainage channels with your fingers and keep them clear by staying hydrated and replenishing the tissues under the skin’s surface.
We all indulge – some of us even occasionally over-indulge – on toxins. These can include sugar, fats, caffeine and alcohol. Unfortunately, just about any build-up of toxins in or around the face tends to manifest itself around the eye area – again, the skin around the eyes is the thinnest so if problems exist, this is where they will show. While you often cannot control environmental stressors like pollution, toxins from poor diets and bad habits can be prevented. Note: do not try to wean yourself off of tea, coffee, sugar, and alcohol all at once. Moderate your daily intake and gradually reduce toxins from your system.
There are a lot of skincare products on the market, which can be very confusing – and some of them can actually do more harm than good if you don’t know how certain ingredients interact with your face. When it comes to the delicate eye area, this is where you’ll need to do a little bit of research. Know your skin type and address your individual eye care needs before you purchase an eye cream or a moisturiser. Some may prefer a gel to a serum, or vice versa. Look for a product with Vitamin C as this ingredient diminish the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and premature ageing. And when in doubt, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor or even the beauty expert at your local chemist. I recommend a drop of the organic, vegan serum, Fusion by Danielle Collins.
Without question, sleep is the most important thing you can do for the skin around your eyes – and just about everything else. Skin does all of its regenerating and restoring at night, while you are asleep. So, the better your sleep (and quality sleep – no mobile screen or television noise in the background), the better your skin will look when you wake up. The generally accepted rule on sleep is eight hours. Of course, if you can’t get to this number, do your best…the closer the better. A good way to tell if you are getting enough quality sleep is by measuring how you feel in the morning. If you feel rejuvenated and refreshed, you’re doing great. Don’t confuse this feeling with energy. If you’ve slept 3 hours and manage to feel energised in the morning, that’s probably heightened adrenaline and stress hormones at play, which is definitely not the same as adequate sleep.
So overall, my advice is, take a little time each day to do techniques from The Danielle Collins Face Yoga Method and look after your wellbeing. Then you will be well on your way to healthy, sparkly eyes.