skip to Main Content

tired woman

Under-eye Bags and Ways to Get Rid of Them

Under-eye bags are a problem that many people have. They are more noticeable in people with thin or pale skin. A 2008 study suggests that one of the reasons for their appearance is age-associated fat increase beneath the eyeballs. The muscles and tissue structures supporting the eyelids weaken with time, and the fat around the eye can move to the area below the eyes.

Bags under the eyes rarely indicate an underlying health issue. In most cases, it’s just a cosmetic concern that can be improved.

Although aging is the most common cause, it is not the only one. So what causes eye bags? Read on to learn about the other reasons under-eye bags occur and how you can get rid of them.

Causes of Under-eye Bags

Not Enough Sleep

During sleep, fluids tend to settle in the tissue underneath the eyes. Lack of sleep makes blood vessels leak and mix with the fluids, causing dark circles under the eyes.

High-salt Diets

Fans of salty foods are prone to water retention. This leads to swelling in many parts of the body, such as the hands and feet, as well as in the under-eye area.


Allergies cause inflammation and congestion, swelling of the sinus tissue, and a stuffy nose. All these can translate to puffiness under the eyes.

Tobacco and Alcohol Use

Tobacco is known to damage the structure of the skin. Skin elasticity and collagen are highly affected by smoking. Nicotine is also known to disturb natural sleeping patterns, leading to fluids collecting under the eyes.

Alcohol can also result in dehydration, which in turn causes the skin under the eyes to become weak and baggy, hence forming under-eye bags.

Medical Conditions

Rarely, under-eye bags may point toward certain health conditions. These include thyroid problems, connective tissue disease, infection, dermatomyositis, and renal disease.

Genetics and the Natural Aging Process

Under-eye bags may be a physical characteristic that runs in the family. However, if your relatives don’t have this problem, then you might have under-eye bags simply because of the natural aging process that causes the skin and muscles to lose their firmness.

Getting Rid of Eye Bags

Since under-eye bags are a common problem, there are countless methods being marketed to address them. The market is flooded with creams, serums, eye masks, and even tools like jade rollers and Gua Sha stones, that claim to de-puff and lighten dark, swollen under-eye areas. Home remedies and lifestyle changes are also popular.

The following are some examples of common under-eye bag treatments.

cup-of-coffeeHome Remedies

Under-eye puffiness before an important event, such as a party or date, requires a fast, if temporary, solution. In situations like these, many people turn to home remedies that utilize ingredients found in the home.


Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, meaning it constricts the blood vessels, which is why cosmetic companies use it in their eye creams. One of the best sources of caffeine with anti-inflammatory effects is green tea.

The caffeine in green tea may boost blood circulation, helping combat puffiness. Green as well as black teas also contain antioxidants that may help reduce inflammation.

Put the tea bags in the fridge to cool them for an hour or so before use for best results. The cold also helps constrict blood vessels, reducing swelling.

Cold Compress

Apart from cold tea bags, you may also use an ice pack, chilled cucumber slices, refrigerated spoons, or even a bag of frozen veggies as a cold compress to provide temporary relief from under-eye puffiness. Make sure to wrap the cold compress in a soft cloth to protect the delicate skin around the eyes.

Follow a Healthy Diet

What we put in our bodies always reflects on our skin. Eating salty foods is a potential cause of under-eye bags. As we age, it is recommended to cut down on salt and eat more collagen-rich and iron-rich foods. Foods rich in vitamin C and iron help with collagen production and increase the oxygen in skin tissue.

Surgical and Noninvasive Treatments


This is a surgical option also known as a lower eyelid lift. It involves removing excess fat from the lower eye area, tightening the skin and muscle, and creating a smooth appearance. It’s usually done with local anesthesia.


The under-eye area is injected with a filler, usually hyaluronic acid, to reduce the appearance of puffiness, dark circles, and pronounced tear troughs. Results last from six to twelve months.

Chemical peel

This procedure removes the superficial top layer of the skin, encouraging the production of new skin cells. An eye chemical peel may help flatten minimal puffiness as well as brighten the under-eye area. The results can last a few years.

How to Choose the Best Option

The under-eye area is very delicate. For this reason, it’s important to choose the right treatment—one that delivers beautiful, lasting results without damaging the skin.

Home remedies are not always effective, and if they do produce results, they are typically temporary. On the other hand, surgical and noninvasive treatments as well as specialized skincare products provide longer-lasting and visible results

To help you choose the best treatment for under-eye puffiness, reach out to the experts at Vargas Face and Skin. Our center is led by Dr. Hannah Vargas, a board-certified surgeon with more than a decade of experience. She has been featured in magazines like Women’s Edition and Lucky, and she was named Kansas City’s Best for Face and Lips in the Goop Guide to Cosmetic Surgeons.

We offer cosmetic procedures such as blepharoplasty and injectable fillers to address under-eye bags and dark circles, as well as a selection of products from trusted skincare brands like Obagi, SkinMedica, and ZO® Skin Health.

Reach out to us today for a complimentary virtual consult. You may also call us at 913-381-4900 to schedule an in-office treatment where we will discuss your needs in detail and provide you with a formal quote.

Back To Top