10 Home Remedies for Dark Circles Under the Eyes

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Certain home remedies may help to diminish the appearance of dark circles under eyes, but will not get rid of them. If you are having health concerns, it's important to speak with your doctor. Self-treating a condition with alternative medicine and avoiding or delaying standard care may have serious consequences.

Common Causes

Thinning skin: The skin under the eyes is thin and delicate to begin with. As we age, skin and the fat pad under the eyes becomes thinner, causing blood vessels to become noticeable. This gives the appearance of dark circles. Sun damage can make it worse because it weakens skin.

Allergies and Hayfever: Dark circles under the eyes can be the result of allergies to airborne substances, such as pollen, dust, and pet dander because people rub their itchy eyes. People with hayfever may notice them at the height of the season. Food allergies or sensitivities can also contribute to dark circles.

Genetics: Dark circles under the eyes runs in families. They tend to be more noticeable in people with fair skin or deep-set eyes.

Fluid Retention: Blood vessels under the eyes can become dilated and engorged, which can contribute to dark circles. Excess dietary salt and smoking are common causes. Conditions that cause fluid retention (e.g. heart, thyroid, kidney, liver diseases) or medications that cause blood vessel dilation may be a factor. Your doctor should be aware of any symptoms you're experiencing.

Lack of sleep: A lack of sleep can make skin appear more pale, which allows blood vessels to be more visible through the skin, giving the appearance of bluish or dark circles.

Iron Deficiency Anemia: Iron deficiency anemia may cause a bluish tinge below the eyes.

Dehydration: Dark circles under the eyes can be a sign of dehydration.


Certain home remedies that may help to temporarily diminish the appearance of dark circles under the eyes, however, keep in mind that scientific support for the claim that any remedy can treat dark undereye circles is lacking.

  • Be sure to drink enough water. Use a hydration calculator to figure out how much water you need.
  • Wear sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 under the eyes to prevent skin weakening caused by sun damage.
  • Get plenty of rest. Find out 15 sleep remedies to help you get a better sleep.
  • Apply plain cool teabags over closed eyes. Don’t use herbal teabags, because the tannins in black tea are the active ingredient.
  • Apply cool cucumber slices over closed eyes for 15 minutes.
  • Be careful not to consume too much dietary salt. Start by learning about sources of sodium in the diet.
  • Apply vitamin K cream. Although studies haven't looked at the use of topical vitamin K for dark circles under the eyes, preliminary studies have found that vitamin K may help with bruising.
  • Vitamin C helps to strengthen blood vessel walls.
  • The dietary supplements grape seed extract and pycnogenol contain antioxidant pigments that may help to strengthen blood vessels. They should be used under medical supervision by people on "blood-thinning" drugs such as Coumadin (warfarin) and aspirin. Certain foods, such as cranberries, blueberries, bilberries, tea (green and black), black currant, onions, legumes, and parsley also contain these antioxidant pigments.
  • Eat kidney-balancing foods. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, a bluish cast under the eyes is due to an imbalance in kidney energy.

Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. It is not meant to cover all possible precautions, drug interactions, circumstance or adverse effects. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.

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Article Sources

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