Why Do We Get Dark Circles Under Our Eyes?

Sleep is a commodity that many working mothers can only dream of because they have so much to do.  Unfortunately, lack of sleep means visible dark circles that we struggle to hide or at least improve.  But is the lack of sleep the only culprit in this battle against having a tired appearance?  Recent studies show that sleep isn’t the only thing to blame for dark circles.

The skin around your eyelid is called periorbital skin.  Dark circles or periorbital dark circles under your eyes are a result of the thin layer of skin below your eyes showing blood vessels and the blood they contain more clearly than anywhere else on your body.

What are the causes?
When the body is tired, production of the chemical cortisol is dramatically increased to help give you the energy you need to stay awake. Among many other things, cortisol actually increases the volume of blood in your body, which causes blood vessels to engorge in order to accommodate the higher volume.  When these blood vessels are engorged, they are easier to see, even on people that have thicker skin below their eyes.
Other causes 

Heredity- some people are born with thinner skin below the eyes which gives an appearance of constant dark circlesOld age
Periorbital hyperpigmentation- a condition that results in more melanin being produced by the skin below the eyes, resulting in it appearing to be a darker color.
Oxidization- blood vessels around your eyes could get damaged, blood leaks out of the vessels, resulting in puffy dark circles under eyes.
Food Allergies- One of the potential side effects of having a food allergy can be overall puffiness.  In some people that include the whole face and even under the eyes.
Diet high in salt
Iron and B12-  People with low iron levels have been reported to suffer from under eye circles.
Thyroid-  Low thyroid levels may result in puffiness.
Sun exposure, which prompts your body to produce more melanin, the pigment that gives skin its color.


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