Your eyes are the windows to your soul. They deserve the best possible care. Is that what you’ve been providing? You’ve researched your facial cleanser, toner, moisturizer, serum, mask. You’ve chosen the best anti-acne/anti-aging, soothing products you could find. . . . . .you’ve got all the bases covered, right?
Did you think about your eyes? Should taking care of your eyes be any different from taking care of the rest of your face?
“The eye is the jewel of the body.” – Henry David Thoreau.
Your eyes are a featured part of your face and get a lot of attention throughout the day. They work hard, too. Lifestyle choices and everyday stress has a great impact on them, leading to wrinkles, redness, dryness, puffiness, and dark circles.
About the Skin Around Your Eyes
Once upon a time, our eyes were essential for our survival. To remain protected, the area under our eyes houses tiny fat pads to cushion and protect them from trauma or force injury, so the skin is thinner to accommodate. The sensory nature of eyes requires that the area around them collect light. The skin around our eyes is much more photosensitive and environmentally sensitive than skin on other areas of the body. The lower eyelid doesn’t move very much, so the underlying muscles are not as thick and developed as in your upper eyelids.
Since your skin is not as thick here as elsewhere on your body, it is less resistant to harsh chemicals, weather, and UV rays. It thins and develops wrinkles faster from sun damage than anywhere else. It quickly loses elasticity and the fat deposits start to shrink, resulting in the puffy “sunken eye” look.
Because of the thinness, the under-eye area shows signs of “trouble” before anywhere else, and it’s more susceptible to overall issues in the body. Blood vessels that supply oxygen and nutrients are smaller in thinner skin, so if you’re lacking sleep or dehydrated, it’ll show here first. Lifestyle choices and everyday stress can lead to wrinkles, redness, dryness, puffiness, and dark circles, also resulting in more serious issues like loss of vision.
Caring For Your Eyes and the Skin Around Your Eyes
While all skin has the same general components and makeup, the skin around your eyes does differ from the skin on the rest of your face, so caring for his area does come with its own set of guidelines. Understanding how to care for this skin is important, as the unique properties of under-eye skin requires subtle differences in moisturizers, products, and application techniques.
The same basic rules apply:
- Wash your face and eyes twice daily. Avoid harsh cleansers. Be sure to remove all traces of makeup, especially from your eyes, before crawling into bed.
- Wear protective sunscreen all year.
- Wear UV-protective sunglasses all year.
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet full of antioxidants.
- Avoid temperature extremes.
- Get plenty of sleep at night, and give your eyes a rest during the day. Limit your time in front of a computer if you can.
- Don’t smoke.
But there are a few other things that you need to know about caring for your eyes.
Keep rubbing to a minimum. You could introduce dirt and bacteria into the eyes, leading to infection. To make things worse, the thin skin around your eyes is more sensitive. Rubbing often can lead to the formation of wrinkles and fine lines or make existing signs of aging worse. Fight that urge to rub your eyes unless absolutely necessary!
That said, a light massage in the evenings while applying moisturizer with the tips of your fingers can boost blood circulation in this area.
Choose your skin care products wisely. This area will be the first to react if there are any allergens or irritants. Sometimes it takes trial and error, but always look at the ingredients in each product you purchase. Choose products that are designed especially for the skin around eyes and that are appropriate for your skin needs. If you notice any pain, redness, irritation, itchiness, or other symptoms after using a new product, discontinue use and seek help from your dermatologist or eye doctor immediately.
When applying creams, lotions, makeup, etc. to this area, use a light tapping motion with the tips of your fingers. Never stretch or rub the skin in this area, as it’s easily damaged.
Your Eyes Want These Skin Care Ingredients
Retinol can pack a very powerful punch. It’s a potent molecule that boosts collagen production and repairs damaged skin cells. A light serum is a great way to deliver it. Retinol may sting a little and be slightly uncomfortable when you first start using it. This is normal and doesn’t mean you’re having a negative reaction. Be patient, the effects may take as many as 12 weeks to become visible.
An appropriate eye cream can do you wonders, and a little bit goes a long way. Try to find a cream that includes vitamins B, C, and K, plus hyaluronic acid in the form of sodium hyaluronate. These are all key ingredients to plumping the skin under the eyes.
Many-chained peptides, or oligopeptides, have restorative functions. They facilitate the production of elastin and collagen, important for keeping wrinkles at bay.
Stem cell treatments are one of the most effective treatments in skin rejuvenation and renewal. They can help to activate the dormant cells in your skin, bringing out your natural beauty.
Sunscreens can sometimes bother your eyes. Instead of skipping sunscreen around your eye area, look for a sunscreen designed for sensitive skin that doesn’t migrate easily when it warms to skin temperature. Zinc oxide sunscreens generally don’t irritate the eyes.