With our stressful and fast paced lifestyle, dark eye circles is becoming a common problem. Today, let me teach you some tips so you can say goodbye to Panda Eyes!



Dark eye circles, puffy eyes, the result of our Asian work ethic. Imagine this. You are working your socks off, drinking more coffee and sleeping less. You have not had time to pamper yourself, and you are looking into the mirror one day and wondering when in the world did you starting getting panda eyes. Welcome to the rat race.


So what are dark eye circles?

It’s largely 2 issues, the discolouration and the volume change.



Dark eye circles form as a result of vascular change, volume loss and pigmentation.

  1. Vacular changes – which can be purple, blue, pink depending on the oxygenation in the blood
  2. Volume loss – which is a direct result of ageing, where the skin develops fines lines and wrinkles and sags, and you lose volume in the cheeks
  3. Pigmentation – which is the stimulation of your melanin cells, commonly as a result of sun exposure.



Puffiness is commonly a result of fluid retention. So here are some good home remedies.

  1. Cut down on salt please. This helps the puffiness, and your health.
  2. Apply cold cucumber to your under eye area.
  3. Apply caffeinated green tea bags, straight from the fridge.

So what causes dark eye circles?

The reasons can be divided into 3 areas.

  1. Ageing – Mainfested by volume loss in the cheeks, undereye skin thinning, undereye fat bulging (the eyebags).
  2. Genetics and allergies-> notably history of allergic rhinitis, atopic eczema.
  3. Lifestyle -> for example poor or lack of sleep, taking too much coffee and alcohol, smoking, sun exposure etc, which leads to venous pooling and vascular changes.


(A patient with heavy eyebags)

So how can we treat dark eye circles?

Treatment is customised and related to your underlying cause.

For example, in Asians, vascular changes is a common cause. So for females, the dark eye circles may vary in intensity with your monthly menstrual cycle and sleep patterns.

Let me share with you the various ways of treatment, from the simple  to the more invasive.


panda eyes

Treating the cause:

Conservative measures include lifestyle changes.

  1. Adequate sleep and taking less coffee and alcohol,
  2. Not rubbing the area around the eyes,
  3. Cut down on smoking, and sun exposure.

More active measures for removal include

  1. Sunprotection – Here I cant stress enough the T.C.S principle. Time, cover and shade. Time: The sun is strongest between 10am to 4pm so please use stay indoors if you can. Cover: Use your brolly, sunglasses whenever you head out for lunch. Sunscreen: Generous use of sunscreen will complete the picture.
  2. Use of lightening products that contain hydroquinone and Vit C. Hydroquinone is the gold standard for lightening, and found in medical grade clinics only.
  3. Dermatological procedures for example, pigment lasers and undereye fillers.



How fillers help dark eye circles?

Fillers can be used to volumize the cheeks and tear trough, hence reducing the volume loss and shadow effect. So looking at the diagram above, your dermatologist can fill the grooves under the eye to correct the defect and improve the reflection of light.

It’s important to find a doctor who isnt just fixated on filling the defects, but one with an artistic eye to correct and enhance your best features.

Surgical measures would include

  1. Fat grafting- which works on the same principle as fillers, which is to volumise defects.
  2. Eyelid surgery – bleopharoplasty
  3. Surgical cheeklift. So I hope this has been helpful.

Dr Daniel Chang


To learn more about:

ALL Aesthetic treatments, do click here Ultimate Guide to Korean Medical Aesthetics.

Threadlifts, pls click here Facelift, V-Lift.

Dermal fillers, pls click here ABCs to Dermal Fillers. 

Pigments and pigmentation in skin.  Please click here PIGMENTS

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