Our expert says:
Hi Angela, thank you for the question.
This is a difficult question to answer over the net as one would ideally like to examine the skin and the ‘dark circles’ before deciding on the best treatment options.
Your first choice must be a good SPF (50 or higher) that contains zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide applied several times daily especially during our summer months.
I am a firm believer in using topicals that contain alphahydroxy and polyhydroxy acids, vitamin C and vitamin A derivatives. A number of topicals contain these ingredients in one form or another and we recommend all our patients to consider the NeoStrata range but one can also look at Environ, Nimue, IS Clinical, etc.
I would also add the NeoStrata glycolic acid peel to your regime as this will boost collagen and elastin production and improve fine lines, texture, and pores and give a healthy hydrated glow to the skin.
Ultimately one may have to consider technology based treatments (such as IPL or fractional skin resurfacing) and Botox and dermal fillers to achieve the best results.
Dark circles are typically associated with a genetic component and the commonest age of our patients for this area is between 30 to 45 years. Generally speaking dark circles around the eye area is caused by 3 main reasons:
1. Pigmentation: if there is only pigmentation then either laser (Fraxel or Alma) can be used with similar results however as with all technology based treatments one of the determining factors is the operator
2. Tear trough fat loss: this allows the skin to fall onto the bony area allowing a shadow effect which will worsen the appearance of pigmentation and veins
3. Superficial veins
Typically we find all three as a cause but if there is a tear trough depression we typically treat this first; just by lifting the skin the shadow effect is reduced allowing a considerable lightening effect of both pigmentation and veins.
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