You open one eye, stare up at the ceiling and try to remember the night before. It was a late one. There were mojitos. Many mojitos. Another eye opens. After mojitos, there was dancing. After dancing, there were chips. Curry chips. You roll out of bed and head for the bathroom where you bravely glance in the mirror. Ugh. Dark circles! Bags under the eyes! Who knew it was even possible to have both at once? You’re going to need concealer – and lots of it.

We’ve all been there – waking up and looking like we’ve done a few rounds in the boxing ring. The likely culprits, of course, are alcohol, smoking and sheer exhaustion. The skin under the eye is thin and therefore quite transparent, meaning that blue or purplish blood vessels can be visible. When tired, we look paler and the contrast between pale skin and dark circles makes them even more visible. The skin thins even more as we age so over time, we look even more ‘tired’. And what about the bags? Blame the salty chips for that. Salt-heavy meals make us retain water for a not-so-attractive puffy look.
But there is a lot we can do. Obviously avoiding alcohol, smoking and caffeine goes a long way. Wearing sunglasses or sunscreen around the delicate eye area also helps. Nutrition is really important too. An iron deficiency makes skin look ashen so eat plenty of red meat, pork or oilier chicken meat. Beans, dark leafy greens and dried fruit such as raisins or apricots are also good sources, especially when combined with a source of Vitamin C such as orange juice, peppers or tomatoes.

Foods to eat to avoid dark circles

Meanwhile, incredible Vitamin K helps blood to clot and strengthens capillaries – broken capillaries leak blood which forms dark circles, so this one is important. Find Vitamin K in kale, broccoli, sage, thyme, oregano, aubergines, kidney beans, prunes and celery. Vitamin A, found in butternut squash, sweet potatoes, peaches, papaya and many things yellowy-orange, helps keep skin firm. The powerful antioxidant Vitamin E, of hazelnut, almond, shellfish and tofu fame, is also known for helping skin retain elasticity. B Vitamins – in salmon, chickpeas, spinach, watermelon, lentils, beef liver and more - are great for skin and several of them come with the added benefit of helping us fight fatigue and therefore that tired look. If in doubt about the quality of your diet, it’s best to supplement with a good quality supplement such as Cleanmarine For Women.

Dark circles are hereditary, and they certainly aren’t going to improve with age but good choices and great nutrition can keep them at bay. Shorter term, a proper night’s sleep can make them look a lot better - so look after you, and your eye bags and dark circles will look after themselves!

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