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Home arrow Beauty arrow Skin arrow Under-Eye Wrinkles: Causes and 10 Simple Solutions to Get Rid of Them

Under-Eye Wrinkles: Causes and 10 Simple Solutions to Get Rid of Them

Maham Yousuf
Written by Maham Yousuf
Dr. Donika Vata
Fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
Last update: June 12, 2023
9 min read 712 Views 0 Comments
clock 9 eye 712 comments 0

Looking for ways to smooth fine lines and under-eye wrinkles? Here’s what you can do to achieve a more youthful appearance.

under eye wrinkles

While we advocate accepting and owning the natural evolution and aging process of our bodies, including the fine lines and under-eye wrinkles, we also understand and support those who wish to prevent or remove them. 

Compared to the rest of your face, this area is more prone to developing deep wrinkles, so it’s crucial to take care of it and keep it nourished. 

If one of your skincare goals is to treat and prevent under-eye wrinkles, read on to find their causes and possible treatment methods.  

What Causes Under-Eye Wrinkles?

The skin around the eyes is the thinnest on the body. It’s constantly moving and stretching with age, causing loose, sagging skin, lines, and wrinkles.

Under-eye wrinkles are usually a result of biological factors like the natural aging process leading to a decline in collagen and elastin in our skin over the years.

Here are the factors that can contribute to the development of fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes:

  • Eye movements: Facial movements like squinting can lead to lines, which can eventually develop into wrinkles. Have your vision checked regularly, and wear sunglasses on sunny days.
  • Smoking: It is one of the major factors that lead to wrinkles, as it generally accelerates the aging process of the skin.
  • UV rays in sun exposure: Sun damage is also one of the primary causes of eye wrinkles. The UVA and UVB rays are particularly damaging to the delicate skin around the eyes.
  • Lifestyle: Physical stress can also contribute to under-eye wrinkles. This can be in the form of frequent eye rubbing (as occurs in people with allergies) or constant rubbing and pressing of the skin against the pillow while sleeping.
  • Finally, how you care for your skin as you age also impacts the development of fine lines and wrinkles on your face.

The skin around the eyes is the thinnest on the body. It’s constantly moving and stretching with age, causing loose, sagging skin, lines, and wrinkles. 

Under-eye wrinkles are usually a result of biological factors like the natural aging process leading to a decline in collagen and elastin in our skin over the years. 

Here are the factors that can contribute to the development of fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes:

  • Eye movements: Facial movements like squinting can lead to lines, which can eventually develop into wrinkles. Have your vision checked regularly, and wear sunglasses on sunny days.
  • Smoking: It is one of the major factors that lead to wrinkles, as it generally accelerates the aging process of the skin.
  • UV rays in sun exposure: Sun damage is also one of the primary causes of eye wrinkles. The UVA and UVB rays are particularly damaging to the delicate skin around the eyes. 
  • Lifestyle: Physical stress can also contribute to under-eye wrinkles. This can be in the form of frequent eye rubbing (as occurs in people with allergies) or constant rubbing and pressing of the skin against the pillow while sleeping.
  • Finally, how you care for your skin as you age also impacts the development of fine lines and wrinkles on your face. 

Types of Eye Wrinkles

There are two types of wrinkles that can show up around the eyes over the years depending on how they are formed:  

#1 Dynamic wrinkles  

These minute folds are formed as a result of facial expressions like smiling, laughing, and squinting. Dynamic wrinkles form due to muscle contraction under the skin’s surface. 

When you frown or exhibit surprise or anguish, you can notice dynamic wrinkles forming on your forehead. When you grin, the ones at the outer corners of your eyes are commonly referred to as crow’s feet.

#2 Static wrinkles  

These are present when the face is at rest. Static wrinkles transform from dynamic wrinkles over time as a result of advancing age and environmental factors like sun exposure, smoking, or poor lifestyle habits. 

How to Get Rid of Under-Eye Wrinkles at Home: 10 Treatments to Try 

No matter what type of under-eye wrinkles you have, you can try treatments to reduce their appearance and achieve a more youthful look. 

#1 Retinol  

Retinol is a vitamin A derivative used popularly in skincare products as an anti-aging ingredient. It increases the turnover of cells and boosts collagen and elastin production in the skin.  

Retinols are a wonderful choice to prevent under-eye wrinkles. However, a product with gentle formula and low concentration should be used as the skin around the eyes is more delicate than the rest of the face. It’s best to start with the lowest concentration of 0.25% before moving up to see how your skin is reacting to it. 

If you have sensitive skin or can’t tolerate retinol on your face, you may want to try one of the other options below.

#2 Antioxidants

The skin experiences oxidative stress when it comes into touch with free radicals. The aging process of the skin is sped up when this continues for a long duration.  

You can use antioxidants like vitamin C in your skincare products to protect the under eyes from sagging and creasing. Vitamin C helps stimulate collagen production and combats free radicals in the skin tissue leading to a smoother appearance. 

#3 Hyaluronic acid  

Hyaluronic acid draws water into the skin and produces a glowing, plump effect, which is why it is a well-known skin hydrator. It can be used as part of moisturizer or applied separately in the form of serum to help eyelid skin retain moisture. 

The effects produced by hyaluronic acid are only temporary, but it works great as a quick-fix tool for moisturizing the skin and giving instant gratification. 

#4 Peptides 

According to multiple studies, peptides boost collagen production and reduce fine lines. They can induce a mild botox-like effect, keeping the facial muscles from forming wrinkles.  

Peptides such as Argireline can help reduce the appearance of lines and wrinkles on the face and under the eyes, giving the skin a smoother texture. Peptide formulations are available on the market as part of facial serums, eye serums, or eye creams.

#5 Eye patches 

What facial masks do for your skin, eye patches do for the area around your eyes. They contain similar ingredients to eye creams, such as hyaluronic acid, ceramides, retinol, niacinamide, and caffeine, depending on the desired effect. They provide quick results and are great for preparing the skin before applying makeup or for plumping up the under-eye area.

#6 SPF suncreams 

While applying sunscreen to your face, don’t forget your eyelids. This will protect the under-eye skin from the damaging effects of UV rays.  

Sunscreen is one of the ways to minimize the side effects of free radical damage to the skin. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher. Apply generously and reapply every two hours when you are outdoors, swimming, or sweating.

#7 Exfoliation 

Dead skin cells can accentuate the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Using a gentle exfoliator around the eyes as part of your eye cream can help smooth them out. The key is to be gentle, as the area is very delicate and fragile.

#8 Aloe vera  

For those looking for a natural remedy, aloe vera can be a great choice. The ingredients in it help the skin produce collagen and elastin, which, in turn, results in smoother and younger-looking skin.

Aloe vera can not only prevent eye wrinkles, it can also help with puffiness and bags under the eyes. Apply it around the eyes, taking extra care not to get it in the eyes, and leave it on overnight.

#9 Coenzyme Q10  

Coenzyme Q10 is an important vitamin-like substance found throughout the body. It helps provide energy to cells and is thought to have an antioxidant effect.  

It’s still being researched, but early studies show that it may improve skin wrinkles caused by sun damage.

#10 Facial exercises and yoga 

Exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. It improves blood flow, including the skin, which is the largest organ of our body. Improved blood circulation means improved nourishment of the cells and enhanced clearance of toxic metabolites like free radicals. 

Exercise also stimulates the muscles, reducing strain and tension in them. You can learn facial yoga exercises from YouTube videos if you don’t want to attend classes/workshops and follow along.

4 Cosmetic Procedures to Reduce Eye Wrinkles  

If wrinkles persist even after using under-eye products and proper skin care, you may want to consider cosmetic surgery after consulting with your doctor.

#1 Microneedling  

Microneedling is a procedure that uses tiny needles to make thousands of tiny holes in your skin, stimulating the repair process and the production of collagen and elastin, resulting in a smoother texture. This sounds a lot scarier than it really is.

Board-certified dermatologists find that microneedling helps not only with fine lines but also with under-eye bags, puffiness, and dark circles. You’ll start noticing the results after the first session, but it may take multiple sessions to see the full effects and benefits. 

#2 Chemical peels  

Chemical peels remove the top layer of skin, helping to rejuvenate skin cells and reduce wrinkles and other lines. The skin that grows back is smoother.

Chemical peels can be of different types depending on the chemical compound they contain, such as TCA, glycolic acid, etc. Although chemical peels won’t remove deep wrinkles, they will make an improvement.

#3 Fillers  

With age, the collagen content of our skin naturally begins to decline. Dermal fillers intend to replenish the collagen and volume content of the treated area.  

Hyaluronic acid fillers are helpful in reducing not only the appearance of eye wrinkles but also dark circles and bags under the eyes. However, the results are temporary, as is the case with other cosmetic under-eye treatments.

#4 Botox  

Botox is a popular treatment in the United States for reducing the appearance of wrinkles on the face and around the eyes. 

It is particularly good for crow’s feet because it relaxes and softens the orbicularis oculi muscles in the eye. When the muscles can’t contract, the skin looks smoother and less wrinkled.

You would need to repeat injections after a few months to maintain the results.  

How to Prevent Under-Eye Wrinkles 

The treatments mentioned above prevent the appearance of fine lines and prevent wrinkles from getting worse. But as a quick reminder, there are a few things you can do to promote firmer, fuller under-eyes:

  • Keep a healthy lifestyle: Get a good night’s sleep and eat a healthy diet. Nutrients like vitamins can help keep your skin healthy. So make sure to add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your meals. 
  • Protect your skin from sunlight: Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses when outdoors, and do not forget to apply sunscreen. 
  • Moisturize from the inside out: Dry skin worsens the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Drink lots of water, and apply either a regular moisturizer or an eye cream to keep your eye area hydrated and plump.  

FAQs 

Why do I have lines under my eyes?

Fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes are a natural part of the aging process. Environmental factors such as UV damage and smoking can accelerate this aging process.

Can wrinkles under the eyes go away?

Certain treatments, such as topical and cosmetic procedures, can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and prevent them from forming. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and getting enough sleep can also help.

How can I tighten the skin around my eyes?

You can use at-home treatments by investing in retinoids, hyaluronic acid, and antioxidants, or go the DIY route with aloe vera. And if none of these produce the results you want, you can look into cosmetic procedures.

A Word From a Dermatologist

Several treatment options are available to help smooth wrinkles, make them less noticeable, and prevent them from forming.

Basics like getting enough sleep, keeping your eyelid skin moisturized, and wearing SPF during the day should usually take care of the problem. But what can you do if bags and circles persist? Topical retinoids and over-the-counter eye creams are usually the first choice for treating fine lines that are just beginning to form.

If topical treatments, in addition to good skin care, do not produce the desired results, you can turn to cosmetic procedures for immediate and dramatic results.

Conclusion

Fine lines and wrinkles are a natural part of the aging process, but there are remedies and treatments available if you want to reduce their appearance. Don’t worry if some lines remain. They are simply a testament to a life well lived, which is something to be proud of. 

If you’re concerned about your under-eye wrinkles, talk to a dermatologist about the best course of action.

Maham Yousuf
Written by Maham Yousuf
Maham Yousuf is a registered doctor and a medical residency trainee. She’s an internal medicine resident, with experience and interest in dermatology. Maham has a passion for writing blogs and articles that are interesting and well-suited to everyone looking to learn more about different health topics.
The article was fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
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Maham Yousuf
Written by Maham Yousuf
Dr. Donika Vata
Fact checked by Donika Vata, MD
Last update: June 12, 2023
9 min read 712 Views 0 Comments
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