Anti-Dark Circles and Puffiness
How to Remove Under-Eye Bags?
How to Remove Under-Eye Bags?
Puffy eyes and under-eye bags are common for both men and women. They are primarily an aesthetic inconvenience rather than a sign of a serious health problem. Simple remedies or cosmetics can help alleviate them.
Description of Under-Eye Bags
Under-eye bags correspond to swelling of the lower eyelid. They can be transient upon waking up or settle in more durably with aging. They should not be confused with dark circles, which are a darkening of the skin due to poor blood circulation or hollowing due to thinning skin under the eyes.
Causes of Under-Eye Bags
One of the main causes of under-eye bags is age and the aging of the accompanying skin. The fat, which is normally on the eyelids to help support the eyes, slides to the lower eyelid under the effect of gravity and sagging skin. The skin also loses its flexibility and firmness. The lower eyelids can then sag, and under-eye bags develop.
Like dark circles, under-eye bags can also appear upon waking up. Overnight, lymph, responsible for transporting blood waste, can accumulate in the lower eyelid, causing temporary swelling. This swelling usually disappears during the morning, but the bags may persist for a longer time, especially if you have circulation problems.
Allergies of all kinds, insect bites, or eye trauma can also cause swelling of the eyes but disappear with appropriate treatment.
Evolution and Possible Complications of Under-Eye Bags
Under-eye bags do not appear overnight. They establish themselves over time and increase with age. An unhealthy lifestyle, lack of sleep, excessive alcohol consumption, and smoking accelerate the development of under-eye bags.
Treatment and Prevention: What Are the Solutions?
Under-eye bags are initially an aesthetic discomfort but are usually mild and do not require medical attention. However, you can consult your doctor if the swelling is severe and prolonged over time or if it is accompanied by redness, itching, or pain and also if it affects other parts of the body, such as legs. A medical examination will rule out more serious causes, such as thyroid disease, infection, or allergy.
If the aesthetic aspect bothers you, there are simple remedies:
- Apply cold compresses to the eye area to reduce swelling;
- Take care of your lifestyle, especially your sleep. Eight hours of sleep is ideal for most adults;
- Raise your head slightly with a pillow at night to avoid lymph accumulation on the face;
- Don't forget to remove makeup before sleeping;
- Monitor your diet and especially salt consumption, as it promotes water retention;
- Finally, do your skin a favor and limit the consumption of alcohol and cigarettes.
If the swelling persists, many cosmetic companies offer creams and lotions to reduce the swelling effect on the skin.
In the elderly, when under-eye bags are associated with swelling of the upper eyelids and impair vision, surgical treatment may be considered to reduce excess fat.
Treatment for the Eyes
Wrinkles, Dark Circles, and Puffiness: At Every Age, Your Eye Contour Care
Wrinkles, Dark Circles, and Puffiness: At Every Age, Your Eye Contour Care
Fine lines at the corner of the eyes, puffiness, dark circles, drooping eyelids. The eye area is the one that most cruelly betrays fatigue and the passing years. However, effective care exists, regardless of our age.
How a new and bright appearance is enough to make us look almost 10 years younger. From 25 to over 60 years old, we give an overview of the best plans to take care of this delicate area at any age.
From 25 years old: chasing fine lines and draining pockets
The skin around the eyes is excessively fragile. It is three times thinner than the rest of the face. Without a hypodermis (the deepest area below the dermis), it does not receive the nutrients that the rest of the facial skin does.
It also lacks sebaceous glands and tends to dry out more quickly than other areas. To make matters worse, its muscles are constantly used, as we blink more than 10,000 times a day.
All this explains why fine lines appear under the lower eyelid or at the corner of the eye, even before we reach the age of thirty. These initial marks are, above all, a sign that our skin is dehydrated; therefore, we must provide moisturizing active ingredients, but above all non-oily ones.
This is done by gently massaging the fine lines in small circular motions, morning and night, creating a V between the index and middle fingers at the corner of the eye towards the temple. Then apply the usual face cream when the product has penetrated enough.
From 30 to 40 years old: fighting against wrinkles and dark circles
Erase wrinkles. Signs of aging appear more or less quickly, depending on our genetics and lifestyle. The phenomenon is progressive: the skin around the eyes is much more fragile than that of the face, and epidermal renewal is slower.
It is accentuated, for example, if we squint frequently in front of the computer, in the sun, or while concentrating. Furrows are carved around the temples, under the eyes, at the bottom of the forehead (crow's feet).
We must favor care that protects or restores our elastic fibers that relax. We apply every day the equivalent of a grain of rice of our favorite product in very light touches on the eye area, we practice a twist of the pyramid (located at the top of the nose, between the two eyes) with the index finger and draw an 8 around the eyes, ending with a spiral on the temples.
Camouflage dark circles. We must combat the stagnation of blood that oxidizes and reveals blue or brown pigments under the skin, which becomes thinner with age. Careful, concealers hide pigmentation but often accentuate contour lines. It is better to increase microcirculation for an overall beautiful effect.
50 years or more: fatty pouches and drooping eyebrows
After 50 years, the bone structure of the entire face becomes thinner. Cheekbones lose volume, temples widen, the forehead bone flattens, causing the upper eyelid to droop. Hormonal deficiencies set in and weaken all tissues.
This is the perfect time to invest in a comprehensive anti-aging treatment capable of redensifying the skin, regenerating subcutaneous cells, and increasing blood flow to oxygenate them.
The cream is applied in small touches all over the eye area using a massage accessory (available in most products) or, in its absence, with the index finger. Light touches should be made on the lower and upper eyelid to activate microcirculation. To perfect our appearance, we smooth the space between the eyebrows, the upper part of the eyelid towards crow's feet with a toning gesture to firm the eye area. Finally, the lower eyelid is lightly stretched at the level of dark circles, from the inside out, to promote drainage and reduce signs of fatigue.
Some targeted care on the market is relatively expensive. They contain powerful and rare active ingredients, included in high-tech textures that penetrate quickly without the risk of irritating the eyes. Therefore, very little needs to be applied, and their packaging allows for a treatment of two to three months.
At any age, after a short night: we soothe the eyes
During the night, lymphatic circulation decreases and leads to an accumulation of fluid in the tissues of the eyelids. This phenomenon is even more pronounced if we drink alcohol or eat a lot of salty foods.
It is essential to stimulate microcirculation with draining and astringent active ingredients, practicing decongestant maneuvers.
Regardless of our age, it is advisable to put a drop of product on our two fingers, to make several gentle pressures under the eyes at the level of the pockets (but without smoothing) from the inner corner to the outer corner. Ideally, if you have one, use a small massage accessory with a metal tip. And for even more efficiency, it is possible to leave products and tools in the refrigerator for a few moments to decongest more quickly.
Cosmetics for Women
What is natural or not in cosmetics?
There seems to be confusion between petrochemical synthesis products and toxicity, especially when it comes to cosmetics. Here are some keys to better understand.
In recent years, there has been an awareness of the composition and impact of what we consume every day, also around the cosmetics industry and the substances used.
Chemical or natural?
Often, this tension arises from a dichotomy between "chemical products" and "natural products," with the latter being presented as better.
However, there is a nuance to be observed because saying "chemical" does not necessarily mean harmful, toxic, or controversial!
"Chemical Products" What exactly is a chemical product in cosmetics?
It is a generic term that does not mean much from a scientific point of view. This expression is often used by the general public to designate a synthetic product or, in a broader sense, something that has undergone a transformation by humans. However, chemical reactions also occur in contact with various natural products that are not processed. For example, by mixing lemon and chalk (which is limestone), you can get CO2!
What is a synthetic product? Chemical synthesis involves creating molecules by assembling already existing products, usually derived from petrochemicals. The creation processes can vary from heating to extracting molecules to alter their biological characteristics, assembling them differently.
However, we have synthetic compounds that do not use petrochemicals, such as silicones, which are created quite differently.
Why use synthetic substances in cosmetics?
Use of synthetic substances to diversify the sensory experience
Synthetic substances are used to obtain a variety of textures, fragrances, colors, and detergents (cleaning action) in cosmetic products. It is also necessary to preserve the products. Indeed, until now, chemists do not have natural preservatives as effective as synthetic preservatives. A natural preservative can prevent the proliferation of bacteria, fungi, and yeasts for only 1 to 2 months at most, especially if the cosmetic product is solid. It is much more complicated for creams and liquids.
Use of synthetic substances in an economic and ecological approach
There is also an economic and ecological imperative because cultivating natural actives is expensive and can lead to waste, such as cultivating entire fields of avocados to extract oil. It will consume a lot of water, while an avocado-based active will consume less energy and be easily reproducible. It is also for this reason that chemists strive to isolate molecules responsible for benefits and reproduce them to achieve maximum efficiency. For example, the flavonoids found in the Ginkgo Biloba tree drain and activate microcirculation, and that's what we consumers find in eye creams! And that, without cultivating entire forests.
Synthetic compounds that cannot be replaced by natural compounds
By unanimity, young people answered "no": certain products cannot be reproduced by natural active ingredients. I quote, for example, emulsification - that's why natural shampoo does not foam. Similarly, the touch brought by silicone does not exist naturally. Otherwise, that's why organic labels Ecocert and Cosmebio currently tolerate 5 synthetic preservatives. A large part of synthetic ingredients are derived from natural ones that have been used. Therefore, you can find equivalent products, but they will necessarily be less potent than the concentrated version and more expensive.
Is it not possible to go 100% natural on a large scale?
Admitting that 100% natural includes natural and naturally derived ingredients, it is possible, but these products will not keep well, and this is a concern when offering them to consumers. Certified natural or organic products can advertise compositions with 97 or 99% natural because the only synthetic compounds are preservatives. On the other hand, for certain products like oils, chemists add vitamin E (tocopherol)! Conclusion: the natural way to make your own product at home does not cause problems, but on an industrial scale, it is more complicated.
"Ingredients of natural origin" and organic ingredients
What does "ingredients of natural origin" mean?
An ingredient of natural origin has undergone a modification and is not in the same state as it came out of the plant or mineral from which it comes. This is the case, for example, for ingredients obtained by fermentation, such as hyaluronic acid, obtained from yeasts to which chemists add chemicals.
The same goes for soap, obtained through a saponification process.
Are certain ingredients not of natural origin?
Yes, some ingredients are not of natural origin: their origin is purely petrochemical. This is the case for vaseline and mineral oils.
Are organic ingredients really better?
Currently available studies show that untreated plants that had to defend themselves against the environment to grow are more loaded with nutrients, so they are considered good. Organic production also respects the environment more, as you can imagine.
When we add to this an organic certification in the final product, it is a guarantee of rigor with controls throughout the production chain.
In the certification process of an organic product, we audit the entire chain of products, i.e., we start from the farmer who grows his olives to the brand that sells the product to the consumer.
With all these players, we will check whether the regulations (in organic farming for olives and oil) and standards (Ecocert or Cosmos since 2017 for the cosmetics part) are well respected.
For example: no environmentally toxic cleaning product is used to clean manufacturing tanks, etc.
These labels ensure the absence of controversial substances.
Note that some certifications work differently; therefore, discover the specifications of those that interest you!
Toxic and controversial substances
What is a controversial substance?
Ah, finally, we address the subject of the famous controversial substances. These ingredients have been the subject of studies that seem to indicate they may pose a risk to consumer health. The problem is that there is no consensus in the scientific community; therefore, some advocate not using them while others call for more studies. Meanwhile, these ingredients are sometimes replaced by others, compared to which science really does not move away because they were recently invented. An example is paraben. Parabens (there are several types) have been disapproved because a study links the presence of certain parabens to breast cancer in rats.
As no one else bought products with parabens, laboratories decided to replace it with MIT (MethylIsoThiazolinone), another very powerful preservative.
And unlucky, MIT is not really good, as evidenced, it is now banned. However, no one knew among consumers.
This example is one of the reasons that explain why compositions are not systematically changed in case of unproven suspicion.
How to recognize dangerous substances in the composition of a cosmetic?
This question remains complex.
First, there is European regulation as the first filter; this legislation prohibits ingredients when health risks are demonstrated. If products from non-EU countries contain a prohibited ingredient, it will be the first warning sign.
Moreover, the same study conducted by an independent laboratory is often interpreted differently.
The goal of consuming as much natural products as possible is just the first step because not everything is available in a natural state, and natural is not synonymous with safety.
Natural often means "inert to health" for people, and that is not true. On the contrary, there are cancer drugs developed from plant active ingredients, proving, if necessary, that nature is very potent.
All this to say that zero risk does not exist, and it is not due to laboratories' bad intentions, but also because we move very quickly and do not always have perspective on everything.
Introduction to Cosmetics and Their History
Introduction to Cosmetics
Cosmetics are non-medicinal substances and preparations intended to come into contact with different surface parts of the human body (e.g., epidermis, teeth, nails, hair, lips, etc.) with the goal of minimal risk. They do not act in depth and are not essential for the proper functioning of the body. Instead, they are reserved for body care, beauty, and cleanliness, with their sole purpose being to cleanse, beautify, protect, and perfume the body.
It's important not to confuse cosmetics with cosmetic: cosmetics refer to the world of skincare, all techniques, processes, and products used for beautification, while cosmetic is the product itself.
To Use or Not to Use Cosmetics?
Cosmetics come in various forms (gels, creams, emulsions, lotions, etc.) and serve the purpose of well-being without acting as medicines. All cosmetics have a roughly similar composition, consisting of excipients, active substances, and additives.
- Excipient: It allows the active substance to act where it should. Common excipients include water, oils, and alcohol, with natural alternatives like sweet almond, avocado, or shea butter. Silicones, on the other hand, are synthetic excipients.
- Active Substance: Gives the cosmetic "care" properties and is not the most significant substance in terms of product quantity. Examples include zinc, vitamins, clay, and various fruits and vegetables.
- Additive: Enhances and stimulates the cosmetic's action. Cosmetic additives include preservatives, antioxidants, colorants, and adjuvants for coloring, perfuming, foaming, etc.
- Hygiene products for the body, such as toothpaste, shower gel, shampoo, deodorant.
- Skin products, often in cream form, like anti-wrinkle cream, day and night cream, lip balm, face mask, etc.
- Hair products, directly applied to the hair, such as conditioner, hair spray, gel, dyes.
- Makeup products, predominantly used by women, including mascara, eyeliner, gloss, foundation, blush, lipstick, nail polish, self-tanner.
- Perfume, cologne, and toilet water.
- Sunscreen products to protect the skin from UV rays, like sunscreens, post-exposure lotions, and creams.
- Shaving and depilatory products, such as shaving foam, post-shave foam, and depilatory cream.
- Bath and shower preparations, such as bath salts, foaming bath, and bath oil.
Not considered cosmetics:
- Food products, as cosmetics cannot be consumed.
- Medicines or drugs, as cosmetics do not have curative properties.
Cosmetics and Their History:
The earliest use of cosmetics dates back almost as far as humanity. Prehistoric people produced body paints from mineral sources mixed with fatty substances.
In ancient times, civilizations like the Egyptians, Babylonians, and Hebrews used cosmetics for magical, medical, and ritualistic purposes, including body and face paints, oils, perfumes, and ointments.
During the Middle Ages, cosmetics were primarily used to represent the Western feminine ideal of pale skin and rosy cheeks, but these products were only available to the wealthy.
In the 18th century, cosmetics became more accessible to all social classes, and the consumption of perfumes increased during the Renaissance. However, awareness grew about certain cosmetic ingredients like lead, which could harm the skin or even lead to death.
Since the 20th century, with industrialization, cosmetics have become more diverse and affordable, often made with synthetic or petroleum-derived ingredients.
Today, cosmetics are used for personal satisfaction, to feel beautiful and confident. Men are increasingly using cosmetics, and they are used across all generations for various purposes, from baby care to anti-aging creams for the elderly.