If you’ve ever seen The Walking Dead, you’re no stranger to the curse of dark under-eye circles. Worn-out and sunken, looking like a cross between raccoon eyes and too much late-night partying, these dark circles say a lot about your habits. But not always! Sometimes, it’s genetic. On the upside, however, there are ways to manage them. Here’s what causes dark circles under your eyes.
It’s all about thicker skin
Skin thickness affects how much our dark circles show. Since the under-eye area is hollow, guys with thinner skin have a more obvious indent in the groove above where their cheekbone starts. When there’s less fat there, you’ve got less padding to cover up the blood vessels under the eye, making the area noticeably darker than guys with thicker skin.
So to an extent, genetics play a role. And no, you can’t control your skin type, so let’s move on to things you can control.
The importance of beauty sleep
Are you a night owl? Men who miss too many Z’s will pay their dues in the looks department. Sleep deprivation interferes with your body’s circulation and serves you up with dull, pale skin. And it gets worse: the blood vessels under your eyes expand, making that dark tinge even more noticeable.
You know those hot Instagram models who post morning selfies with the hashtag, “woke up like this”? Ya, take notes, lads.
Thirsty? Hydrate your skin
Drinking water makes your skin brighter and firmer. But when your coffee binges outweigh your H2O intake, the skin around your eye sockets will deflate from dehydration— along with your pride.
We need 8 glasses per day to properly nourish our skin’s collagen (the structural building blocks in our connective tissue). Otherwise, our skin’s protective barrier will deplete, causing drained, dark eye circles.
The suckage of stress
During stress, your body thinks it's in danger and releases cortisol. When it overflows, your body copes by constricting the vessels under your eyes, which as we discussed, leaves you with that grim, shady look.
Then, as a double-whammy, cortisol also causes the fat pads under your eyes to hold less water. So not only will you have dark circles, the whole socket around the eye sinks in too!
Those dark circles under your eyes can be improved. Just focus on healthy habits like sleeping, hydrating and living a reasonably drama- free life. You probably won’t wake up, glowing like you just had an adult sleepover with Adriana Lima on Mount Olympus, BUT you will look a heck of a lot better.