Skip to main content

How to Get Rid of Bags Under Your Eyes

Are you wondering why you have puffy eyes or how you can make under-eye bags disappear? Good news: Although they can be bothersome, bags under your eyes don’t usually impact vision or health. But if you want to reduce the puffiness around your eyes, there are temporary and long-lasting solutions for under eye bags treatment.

What causes bags under the eyes?

There are several reasons people get puffy eyes, including:

• High-salt diet: Eating a lot of salty foods causes you to retain water and leads to swelling.

• Allergies: Congestion and inflammation from allergies can sometimes exacerbate under-eye puffiness.

• Medical conditions: Some health conditions such as thyroid problems can cause the eyes to become swollen.

• Genetics: Having under-eye bags can be a physical characteristic that runs in your family.

• Natural aging process: Loss of firmness in the skin and muscles happens as you age.

Why under-eye bags form when you get older

“The most common cause of under-eye bags or puffiness is natural aging,” says Dr. Robert Sheffield a plastic surgeon in Santa Barbara, California. “Older skin becomes too lax and tends to fall or wrinkle. The muscles and tissues around the eye can also weaken and contribute to the baggy look. This weakening allows the fat surrounding the eye to bulge out, creating that bubble-like appearance.”

Ways to Get Rid of Eye Bags

There are different approaches to reducing under-eye puffiness, depending on the cause. At-home treatments can temporarily shrink lower lids that are sometimes swollen from fluid pooling in the undereye area.

But, says Sheffield, home remedies and over-the-counter products can only do so much, “To effectively get rid of under-eye bags that are prominent and permanent, medical treatment is oftentimes necessary.”

At-home treatments for puffy eyes

If you occasionally wake up with puffy lids, these quick fixes may help. They work to reduce swelling until it naturally subsides over the course of the day.

• Cold compresses: Cooling the area lessens inflammation and swelling by reducing blood flow. You can place anything cold, such as an ice pack, frozen bag of vegetables, chilled cucumber slices or refrigerated spoons, over closed eyes for a few minutes.

• Hemorrhoid creams: Some people pat over-the-counter creams designed for hemorrhoid treatment under their eyes. Product ingredients such as phenylephrine narrow blood vessels to reduce swelling. But use these products with caution: They may cause irritation in this sensitive area. Also, it’s important to keep this medication from getting in your eyes.

• Caffeine: Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, meaning it constricts blood vessels. Many cosmetics companies sell eye creams with caffeine to reduce under-eye puffiness. You can also try resting chilled tea bags (caffeinated black tea) on closed eyes.

Medical options for under-eye bags

If you’re fed up with under-eye bags, these medical treatments can improve and even eliminate them:

Nonsurgical options

These noninvasive treatments smooth the under-eye area:

• Filler: This treatment places a filler material (usually hyaluronic acid, which is a jelly-like substance) where the under-eye area and cheek meet to create a smooth transition. The injection is performed in a doctor’s office under local anesthetic. Results last six to 12 months.

• Laser resurfacing: This treatment uses a laser to remove surface layers of wrinkly skin in the under-eye area and stimulate new collagen growth, resulting in firmer skin. Results can last years, depending on your skin type and sun exposure.

• Chemical peel: A chemical peel also treats wrinkly under-eye skin by removing superficial top layers. An in-office application of a chemical solution dissolves old skin cells to reveal tighter, brighter skin. Depending on your skin type and sun exposure, results can last a few years.

Surgical option

A lower eyelid lift (blepharoplasty) is an outpatient procedure where the surgeon readjusts the fat in the lower eye area and tightens the muscle and skin to create a smooth appearance. In most cases, a lower eyelid lift gets rid of under-eye bags for life — it’s rare for people to need future touch-ups.

However, says Sheffield, sometimes patients require multiple therapies to treat under-eye bags, such as combining laser resurfacing with filler or an eyelid lift.

How to Remove Bags Under the Eyes

Are you curious about why your eyes are puffy or how to get rid of the bags under your eyes?? The good news is that, while they may be unsightly, bags under your eyes usually do not pose a health or vision risk. Puffiness under the eyes can be reduced in two ways: temporarily and permanently.
What factors contribute to the development of dark circles and crow’s feet around the eyes?

There are a number of reasons why someone’s eyes become puffy, such as:

As a result of a high-salt diet, your body stores water, resulting in swelling.

Inflammation and congestion caused by allergies can exacerbate puffiness under the eyes.

• Medical conditions: Swollen eyes can be a symptom of conditions like thyroid issues.

Some physical traits run in families, such as having under-eye bags being one of them.

Skin and muscles lose their elasticity as we get older, and this is normal.

Why do under-eye bags appear as you age?

“Natural aging is the most common cause of under-eye bags or puffiness,” says Dr. Robert Sheffield, a Santa Barbara plastic surgeon. “As we age, our skin becomes looser and more prone to wrinkles and folds. Baggy eyelids can also be caused by weakening muscles and tissues in and around the eyeballs. That bubble-like appearance is caused by a weakening of the fat around the eye,”

Eye Bag Removal Methods

In order to get rid of puffy under-eye bags for under eye bags treatment, there are a variety of methods to try. When the undereye area becomes swollen due to fluid accumulation, at-home treatments can help reduce the size of the lower lids.

“Medical treatment is oftentimes necessary to effectively get rid of under-eye bags that are prominent and permanent,” says Sheffield about the effectiveness of home remedies and OTC products.

Treatments that can be done at home for puffy eyes.

If you wake up with puffy eyelids on occasion, these simple fixes may help. Reduces swelling until it subsides naturally over the course of a day.

Inflammation and swelling can be reduced by cooling the area, which reduces the amount of blood flow. Using an ice pack, a chilled cucumber slice or a few refrigerated spoons, you can close your eyes for a few minutes.

• Hemorrhoid creams: Some people apply over-the-counter hemorrhoid creams to the area under their eyes to relieve the pain. Swelling can be reduced by using ingredients like phenylephrine, which constricts blood vessels. This is a sensitive area, so use these products with caution. As a precaution, keep this medication away from your eyes.

Vasoconstrictor: Caffeine reduces blood flow because of the constriction of blood vessels. It is common for cosmetic companies to sell eye creams that contain caffeine to help reduce puffiness under the eyes. Alternatively, you can place a chilled tea bag (caffeinated black tea) on your closed eyes to relieve eye strain.

Under-eye bag treatment options in medicine

A number of medical procedures exist that can help reduce or even eliminate the appearance of dark circles under the eyes for under eye bags treatment.

Alternatives to surgery that do not involve surgery

Smoothing the under-eye area with these non-invasive treatments

Hyaluronic acid (a jelly-like substance) is injected into the cheek and under-eye area to smooth the transition between the two areas. Under the influence of a local anesthetic, the injection is carried out in the doctor’s office. Results can last up to a year or more.

There are two types of procedures that can be used to improve the skin around the eyes: laser resurfacing and dermal filler injections. Your skin type and sun exposure can affect the length of your results.

Under-eye wrinkles can also be treated with a chemical peel, which removes the superficial top layers of skin. A chemical solution applied in-office dissolves old skin cells, revealing younger-looking skin. When it comes to long-term results, it depends on your skin type and exposure to sun light.

Surgery is an option

Upper and lower eyelids can be improved with an outpatient procedure known as a “blepharoplasty,” which involves a surgeon repositioning fat and restraining muscles and skin to create a more youthful, refreshed appearance. For the most part, a lower eyelid lift is a one-time procedure that eliminates under-eye bags for good.

Patients may require multiple treatments to address under-eye bags, such as a combination of laser resurfacing and filler or an eyelid lift, says Sheffield.


Click below to learn more about how Injectables are used in non-surgical procedures.

Dermal Fillers Guide

Non-Surgical Facelift Guide

Lip Enhancement

Non-Surgical Blepharoplasty

Liquid Facelift

Non-Surgical Rhinoplasty

Fillers with PRP Facelift

Back to Medical Spa Services



Interested in eye bag fillers, under eye bags treatment, dark under eye circles Santa Barbara?  Whether you are thinking about having an aesthetic treatment, a non-surgical procedure or have had prior surgery and are seeking to additional touch-ups, it is critical to work with a skilled plastic surgeon that specializes in facial procedures. Dr. Robert Sheffield is a board-certified facial plastic surgeon at SB Aesthetics offering Med Spa services to those in Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, San Luis Obispo, Oxnard and Ventura, CA, and the surrounding communities.  Dr. Sheffield offers patients a customized treatment plan and is available to answer your questions. To schedule a consultation, call 805.318.3280 today.

Leave a Reply

Close Menu