Sleepless nights, stressful days, and seasonal allergies can all leave us with puffiness and dark circles around the eyes. And these issues tend to worsen as we age since the muscles around our eyes weaken as we get older.
If you’ve been experiencing puffy eyes or dark circles, I have a short, simple Face Yoga sequence that will help. My favourite thing about this sequence is that it only takes four minutes, making it easy to fit it into your day.
Since puffiness and dark circles are often worse first thing, you might want to include this sequence in your morning routine after you’ve done your skincare.
But if that doesn’t work for you, don’t worry. You can do this short Face Yoga routine whenever suits you best.
It has just three steps and is designed to increase the circulation around your eye area, while also toning and strengthening the muscles of your eyes and eyelids.
Step 1: Massage the Eye Area
Start with your index fingers resting on either side of the bridge of your nose. Gently tap them around below your eyes, following your cheekbones and moving out towards your temples.
Continue tapping round above your eyes, over the ridge of your eyebrows and back down to the bridge of your nose.
Repeat the circle several more times, taking deep breaths as you tap around your eyes.
This is one of my favourite moves. It is so simple, but it can really boost the circulation, bringing fresh blood to the skin around your eyes. That blood brings with it oxygen and nutrients, helping to nourish your skin. And it also takes away the toxins that contribute to puffiness and dark circles.
Follow the tapping by resting your index fingers between the bridge of your nose and the inner corners of your eyes. Gently smooth your fingers outwards across your cheekbones. Lift your fingers off, return them to your nose, and then repeat a few more times.
Keep the pressure as light as a feather here. The skin beneath your eyes is very delicate, so you don’t want to press too hard and end up pulling at your skin with your fingertips.
Even this gentle touch can help with lymphatic drainage, clearing toxins from the eye area. And any massage around the eyes will increase the collagen and elastin in your skin. These plumping agents help your skin look firmer and more toned.
Step 2: Mini V
Place your middle fingers to either side of your nose, near the inside corners of your eyes. Then bring your index fingers to the outside edge of your eye, so your fingers form a ‘V’ shape.
Move your eyes to look up toward the ceiling, keeping the rest of your head and face still.
Squint your lower eyelids up so that your eyes are half-closed. Everything should go a bit blurry, and you will notice a little shake in your upper eyelids. Hold this for two to three seconds, and then relax.
Repeat the move three more times.
As you squint your eyes and then open them again, you’ll feel the small muscles around your eyes contracting and relaxing. This tones the muscles, lifting and firming the skin.
Not only is it a great move for reducing the lines on either side of your eyes, but it also helps to reduce puffiness and eye bags. You can find this move in my book, Danielle Collins’ Face Yoga.
Step 3: Eye Yoga
Our final step will work the muscles of the eyes themselves.
Place one hand on your forehead, palm down. Keeping your forehead as still as you can, move just your eyes to look up to the ceiling and then down towards the floor.
Try to keep the movement as smooth and continuous as you can. Carry on moving your eyes up and down for up to thirty seconds, then switch to look from right to left and back again.
Remember to just move your eyes – that hand on your forehead will help you to notice if you are moving it as well.
After around thirty seconds, bring your eyes back to the centre. Open them as wide as you can, taking a deep breath. Then release your hand down.
This eye movement has been used in yoga for thousands of years. It is excellent for increasing the circulation in and around the eyes, combatting puffiness and dark circles.
That’s it – a three-step Face Yoga routine to reduce dark circles and puffiness around the eyes.
It should take around four minutes. I always encourage you to work intuitively with Face Yoga, responding to what your skin and muscles need on any given day.
Short Face Yoga sequences like this are so easy to incorporate into your routine. It is just a matter of doing them regularly so that they become one of your daily habits.
I share plenty of tips and other Face Yoga moves via my apps, on Instagram, and via my YouTube channel. Or, if you want to take your Face Yoga practice to the next level and use what you’ve learned to help others, I offer Teacher Training Courses in both Face Yoga and Facial Gua Sha.