Getting Rid of Undereye Bags: What to Do for Less Puffiness

Kylie Corral Kylie Corral
8 minute read

No one likes looking like a raccoon when they first wake up due to eye bags. We’ve all had those mornings when we found our reflection staring us down, undereyes puffy and swollen. No matter how old you are, there comes a time when eye bags present a problem in our lives.

However, the question is—how do we get them in the first place? There are a number of reasons eye bags appear and finding out what causes them is the first step to making them disappear.

undereye bad puffiness

Here are a few reasons why undereye bags can occur:


The unfortunate truth is that many of us don’t get the sleep that we need to stay healthy mentally and physically. While the recommended amount of sleep for adults is seven to nine hours, 7-19% of adults reported not getting enough sleep , with statistics in 2014 showing 35% of adults getting less than seven hours of sleep a night.

It is also a lack of sleep that can lead to puffy undereye bags. Less sleep than is required creates weak muscles in the area around your eyes, leaving you with less collagen than before. With the lack of collagen, there is less structure in your skin, making it possible for eye bags to form.

Most undereye bags caused by lack of sleep disappear quickly, but if you have a regular bad sleeping schedule, those eye bags might just be there to stay.


Allergies caused by seasonal disruptions, dust, smoke, pollution, makeup, pollen, and much more are just some of the other reasons you can find yourself with eye bags.

When allergens find their way into your eyes, the mast cells in your eyes act as your immune system's defense against these substances. Your eyes will often get red and watery because your eyes are trying to get rid of allergens that aren’t supposed to be there.

Eye drops and antihistamines can provide relief during allergy season, as well as alleviate those pesky eye bags.

Eye Infections

An eye infection can be a more serious example of why you find yourself with eye bags. There are many different types of eye infections that can be diagnosed, but some of the common types include pink eye, styes, and keratitis.

Eye infections can usually have symptoms such as pain, itchiness, burning, and tearing eyes. Eye bags can be the result of a swollen undereye due to the infection that has spread. In these cases, it is best to visit your doctor for the right antibiotics and eye treatments in order to get rid of both your infection and your eye bags.


One of the most common ways you can cause eye bags to appear underneath your eyes is by crying. Whether it’s a happy cry after seeing your friends after a long time or crying over a sad movie that you’ve just seen, you’ll find yourself with eye bags later that night.

Thankfully, this puffiness doesn’t last for a prolonged time. Crying can result in inflammation and swelling around the eyes, leading to puffy bags that will eventually disappear on their own.


There also happens to be a genetic link that contributes to the eye bags that you find yourself stuck with. However, there isn’t a specific gene that contributes the most to eye bags. Instead, eye bags are caused by a polygenetic trait.

Although eye bags can be caused by genetics, this doesn’t mean that they are permanent. There are still many ways that eye bags can be treated even if they are hereditary to you and your family.

Direct Remedies for Eye Bags:


Caffeine is a good way to drain the fluids that gather around your eyes, in the case of allergies and crying. Eye creams and tea bags are a great way to get caffeine around your eyes, helping to alleviate the swelling.

To do this, soak two tea bags in cold water and place them over your closed eyes as you nap or relax. The tea bags need to be on your eyes for 15 to 20 minutes for your eye bags to lessen. As you leave the tea bags on, the caffeine from the tea will narrow blood vessels under your eyes, making eye bags less noticeable than before.

Lymphatic Massages

Stress and age can cause the lymphatic system to have a harder time draining lymph fluids, and this can contribute to having eye bags.

Lymphatic massages can encourage lymph nodes to drain this fluid naturally without any invasive treatment. After the fluid is drained from under your eyes, the appearance of eye bags will lessen.

With your fingers or a facial roller, massage your face and the area around your eyes. Tapping underneath eyes where eye bags are located will drain fluid from lymph nodes and sinuses, as well.

Cool Compresses

A cold compress is another way to help fade the appearance of eye bags. Applying a cold compress to your eyes with a wet washcloth or even chilling a spoon in the refrigerator works just as well. Holding the chilled washcloth or spoon to your eyes will help you get immediate relief from irritated eyes, as well as help your blood start circulating.

If you have an eye cream that specifically targets eye bags, you can also pop those in the fridge along with the spoon.

Eyelid Surgery

If your eye bags seem more stubborn than average, there is still another option. Eyelid and eye bag surgeries are available in many different forms, including non-invasive surgery tactics, leaving you without the eye bags that have resisted every other treatment.

The official term for eye bag surgery is lower eyelid blepharoplasty , which is a collection of treatments that enhance the undereye by removing eye bags. This is usually a treatment in the form of four stages: anesthesia, incision, closing, and recovery. During the surgery, the excess fatty tissue will be removed from under the eye, leaving you with a smoother undereye area.

Non-invasive procedures for eye bags also include micro-needling, chemical peels, and more. Although you will most likely be released and go back home after the surgery, healing will usually take a few months. Medication, cold compresses, and dark-tinted glasses will most likely be needed in order to take the best care of your eyes.

Lifestyle Remedies For Eye Bags

Getting More Sleep

Getting the sleep you need is significant to your overall health, but this might be your answer to getting rid of shadowy eye bags. Make sure to get the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep a night. If you find yourself overworked and tired during the day, make it a practice to rest during the day and maybe even take a nap. You might start to see some improvement in your eye bags with more rest.

Avoiding Highly Salted Foods

Eating too much salt can lead to inflammation around the eyes, as well. Salt can retain a lot of water, so if there is too much salt retained in your body, there’s a chance that water can be retained under your eyes. Cut down on salty and processed foods to reduce inflammation and water retention.

Consume More Potassium

If you want to counter the salt that has caused the eye bags in the first place, potassium is a good place to start. Drinking plenty of water and eating foods that contain potassium, which can be commonly found in products such as bananas and yogurt, can help reduce the appearance of eye bags.

Stay Hydrated

By drinking plenty of water, you ensure that your body stays hydrated and flushes out toxins and excess salt. This can lead to smoother, plumper-looking skin overall, especially around the eyes.

Boost Collagen Intake

Collagen is the support system of your cells and this is what gives your skin structure. As we age, our bodies create less collagen than they did in our youth, making skin less healthy and more prone to eye bags and wrinkles.

College can be taken in supplements and this can help a great deal with the eye bags you are dealing with. If you want to give your skin the structure it needs to keep eye bags away, boosting collagen intake is a good place to start.


If you have allergies, you know what antihistamines are. Some antihistamines include Claritin, Benadryl, and other allergy medications that will help you deal with the pollen and dust that impact your eyes.

Antihistamines can help stop your eyes from becoming irritated by these allergens, which also cause swelling of the lower eyes. When the swelling has gone down, you’ll notice that you no longer have any eye bags.

Eye bags can be a struggle, especially when you don’t know why they are occurring so frequently. Knowing the solution to undereye bags is a great first step to making them fade from your life forever. With these solutions, you can get rid of eye bags and relax a little bit more in your life, too.

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