Have you ever woken up to find your eyes look puffy and inflamed and are ringed by dark circles? It’s a common experience that can be brought on by a number of factors, from poor sleep, to allergies to dehydration, which is why today I’m going to be exploring how you can minimise the appearance of puffy eyes and what you can do in the future to prevent them from occurring.
Puffy eyes are a common problem that can be caused by a wide variety of factors, ranging from fluid retention to sleep deprivation to allergies. Since they are often considered to be a superficial issue, when it comes to treatment, home remedies tend to take precedence. Today, I’m going to explore a few of these home remedies, as well as some diet and lifestyle tips that can help you to get rid of those puffy eyes!
1 – Drink more water
When you think about the impact of dehydration, you probably think about your kidneys, digestion and bladder health and, while all of these areas can be affected, your eyes are no exception either! In cases of dehydration, your eyes can start to swell. This is because the retina veins, which carry blood out of the eyes, can become obstructed. Blood can then start to build-up in your eyes which causes them to become swollen and puffy – not ideal!
Drinking plenty of plain water every day can prevent this issue from occurring, not to mention it can safeguard a number of other organs too, such as your kidneys, liver and brain! The problem is that these days it’s easy to turn to other beverages such as coffee, tea and fizzy drinks which don’t actually keep you hydrated and, in some cases, can even act as a mild diuretic.
Ideally you should be drinking 1.5 – 2 litres of plain water but I usually try to spice things up by infusing my water with fruit or, if I’m hitting the gym, our Balance Drink, which is rich in electrolytes such as potassium and calcium, helping to keep me hydrated when I’m on-the-go.
2 – Eye Drops
It’s that time of year again and across all of the UK, the pollen count is fluctuating. This means that if you suffer from an allergy like hayfever, you’re probably experiencing all kinds of unhappy symptoms from congestion to itchy, inflamed eyes. In these circumstances, it might be best to consider using eyes drops to supply some much needed moisture and to soothe any irritation. Our Moisturising Eye Drops contain extracts of Euphrasia, a herb sometimes known as Eyebright which can help to ease inflammation, as well as hyaluronic acid, an extremely moisturising nutrient
3 – Watch what you eat
Too much salt can cause water retention which in turn can contribute towards puffy eyes. The problem is that nowadays salt is often concealed even in the unlikeliest places, with frozen foods, sauces, cottage cheese and cereals all having a high sodium content. That’s why it pays to be label savvy and to keep an eye on what you’re eating. You could try including more foods with potassium in your diet, such as bananas, avocados and tomatoes, to kelp balance your salt levels – if you want more information, please check out our nutritionist Emma’s blog, ‘Fact or fiction? The truth about salt.’
4 – Apply some cucumber
An old one but a good one, cucumbers have been associated with the treatment of eye problems for decades and with good reason. Applying some cold cucumber slices to your eyes may go a long way towards soothing any irritation as, thanks to their high content of antioxidants, cucumbers are naturally soothing. Provided they’re cold, they may even help to ease some of the swelling, reducing the appearance of tired, puffy eyes.
5 – Try a massage
Your lymphatic circulation can sometimes influence the appearance of your eyes. This system is responsible for transporting toxins and waste products from your skin, however, if your lymph system isn’t functioning properly, it can mean that these toxins linger in the delicate skin under your eyes, sometimes causing discolouration and puffiness. A good way to help your lymphatic system is with a massage that encourages the draining of the lymph system. You can check out one such massage in the video above!
6 – Remember aloe vera
Aloe vera is something of an all-rounder when it comes to your skin, possessing natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Similar to cucumber, the antioxidants present in aloe vera help to ease irritation as well as combatting free-radical damage while the hydrating properties of the plant work to restore moisture to the delicate skin under your eyes. Rather than apply aloe vera juice straight to your skin, it may be worth investing in a high-quality eye serum that already incorporates this ingredient, such as Sukin’s Antioxidant Eye Serum, which also contains cucumber extracts and evening primrose oil!
7 – Iced compress
Finally, a cold compress can do wonders for relieving puffy, swollen eyes, even soothing irritation and itchiness. They’re also simple and quick to make – simply wrap a couple of ice cubes in a cloth and apply to your eyes for 10-15 minutes. This should be long enough to feel the benefits and hopefully ease any swelling!