Because these are bags you may not want to carry around.

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Young woman applying daily cream in the morning

At some point in our lives, we've all experienced having bags under our eyes. Mine usually appear after a late night out, or if I've been crying for a couple of hours (don't ask).

For some people, bags under the eyes are puffy and swollen, with dark circles. For others, they can appear as rolls of excess skin. Either way, while there's nothing inherently wrong with under eye bags (however, if you have any concerns, be sure to make an appointment with your family doctor or dermatologist ASAP), waking up to find bags under your eyes can make you feel self-conscious, especially when people say, "you look so tired," especially you're not tired at all.

That's why reached out to a couple of dermatologists to find the answer to this burning question: how can I get rid of the bags under my eyes?

What Causes Bags Under the Eyes?

Anyone can get bags under their eyes, however, Dr. Marisa Garshick, a certified dermatologist and clinical professor at Cornell - New York Presbyterian Medical Center, shares that people with eczema, allergies, or those who frequently rub the under-eye area, may notice increased puffiness and swelling, which can lead to the appearance bags. 

Other common causes that contribute to the overall appearance of dark circles include genetics, water retention, sun damage, and hyperpigmentation. Aging can also increase the chances of getting bags under your eyes.

"As we get older, the skin structures supporting the eyes tend to weaken and sag, this can cause the fat to be pushed forward into the lower eyelids," says Dr. Garshick. "Additionally, fluid can build up in this area, leading to a puffy appearance."

Are There Any At-Home Remedies?

There are a few different approaches to reducing bags under the eyes, depending on the cause. And thankfully, many at-home treatments can be effective in helping to reduce swelling and the appearance of dark circles, these include:

No Salt Before Bedtime 

"Sodium (or salt) causes water retention," says Dr. Mack. "People with high sodium diets often have more under-eye puffiness." In other words, too much salt before bed can cause the under-eye area to have more prominent bags or puffiness in the morning.  

Don't Sleep Flat

According to Dr. Mack, lying flat while you sleep can cause water to pool under the eyes, contributing to a puffy appearance in the morning. Sleeping with an extra pillow can help prevent fluid buildup.

An Antihistamine a Day

If seasonal allergies are causing puffiness and dark circles under your eyes, Dr. Mack recommends taking an antihistamine daily, to help alleviate irritation and reduce swelling. 

Get Some Rest 

The aftereffects of a late night always creep up the following morning, and unfortunately, the area under the eyes tend to suffer. "When we sleep our body has a chance to recover and repair, and this is also true when it pertains to the eye area," says Dr. Garshick. "Lack of sleep can cause fluid to build up underneath the eyes, contributing to puffiness." As a result, the dark circles you see beneath the eyes are sometimes shadows cast by puffy eyelids.

Stop Rubbing

It can be hard not to rub your eyes if you have an itch, but frequent rubbing of the eyes can lead to irritation of the skin and potentially increase swelling," says Dr. Garshick.

Wear Sun Protection

UV radiation can lead to DNA damage, so it's important to wear sun protection and sunglasses to protect the skin around the eyes. "Sun protection helps to prevent collagen loss, and therefore may help to prevent lower eye bags," explains Dr. Garshick.

Cold Teabags

Cold teabags are a popular remedy, and in most cases, they work. "Not only do cold teabags provide a depuffing and soothing effect, but they also contain caffeine, which helps to shrink the blood vessels," explains Dr. Garshick. "They also help to reduce puffiness and brighten the skin."

When Do I Need to Seek Medical Attention? 

If the bags under your eyes seem to worsen over time, this could be a sign of underlying thyroid or kidney disease, says Dr. Lian Mack, certified dermatologist, and founder of GlamDerm.

"Typically, bags under the eyes will not be the only findings on a clinical exam, but they will be present with other symptoms, such as difficulty sleeping, diarrhea, muscle weakness, or high blood pressure," adds Dr. Mack. "If you are experiencing multiple symptoms along with puffiness under the eye, you should be evaluated by a medical professional."

VIDEO: The 10 Best Eye Serums for Dark Circles, Wrinkles, Puffiness, and More

Non-Surgical Treatments

If there is a loss of volume that is creating a hollowing, shadow effect underneath the eyes, a dermatologist might recommend a filler to smooth the transition from the under-eye to the mid-cheek. "In my practice, if a patient presents with very mild under-eye bags combined with hollowing of the under-eye area, I recommend and treat with under-eye hyaluronic acid filler," says Dr. Mack. "The procedure takes approximately 20 minutes, and when using a blunt tip needle called a cannula, results are seen immediately with very minimal bruising."

However, Dr. Mack adds that not everyone is a good candidate for this procedure. "If a patient has significant bulging due to fat, severe allergies, and excessively loose skin, they are not a good candidate."

For some people, bags under the eyes are more pronounced when smiling, this may be related to the muscle that surrounds the eye, also known as a jelly roll, says Dr. Garshick. "A small amount of Botox to treat this muscle can help to reduce the apparent puffiness that occurs with contraction or smiling."

Procedures that help to tighten the skin and stimulate collagen production are also an option, as they can help strengthen the skin around the under-eye area, adds Dr. Garshick. "This includes CO2 laser resurfacing, radiofrequency devices, and microneedling with or without radiofrequency or PRP (platelet-rich plasma)."

Surgical Treatments

For patients who have excessive fat herniation or larger under-eye bags, combined with excessively loose skin, Dr. Mack recommends a lower lid blepharoplasty. "During this surgery, a plastic surgeon or oculoplastic surgeon will make a small incision on the lower part of the eyelid," she explains. "Through this incision, the fat pad is repositioned, and the lax skin is removed. The skin surrounding the eye area is very forgiving and heals well and quickly."

Shop Products for Under-Eye Bags

Cetaphil's Deep Hydration Refreshing Eye Serum


"I often recommend Cetaphil's Deep Hydration Refreshing Eye Serum, says Dr. Mack. "Key ingredients include hyaluronic acid and tripeptide amino acid." The hyaluronic acid attracts and boosts the skin's water content, while the tripeptide amino acid promotes a firmer appearance for the skin and helps to mask the appearance of a protruding orbital fat pad.

To shop: $15;

Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Gel-Cream 

Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Gel Cream -

This gel formula is specifically designed to brighten and smooth the under-eye area for a well-rested look. "I like to recommend this to clients as the gel formula is very cooling, and can be applied two times per day," says Dr. Mack. "In addition to topical therapy, I also suggest using an under-eye roller. Eye rollers help with lymphatic drainage of the under-eye area, reducing puffiness." 

To shop: $13;

Colorescience Total Eye Concentrate Kit 


This kit contains the brand's popular Total Eye Concentrate and Total Eye Hydrogel Treatment Masks: two powerful products that work to immediately minimize the appearance of dark circles, puffiness, fine lines, and wrinkles while delivering lasting results to restore the delicate eye area. "The ingredients include actineyes, a combination of seawater and marine microalgae, which supports collagen and firms the skin," says Dr. Garshick. "Both products help to improve the overall appearance of the under-eye area."

To shop: $119; 

Garnier SkinActive Clearly Brighter Anti-Puff Eye Roller 


This affordable option that you can pick up on your next drugstore run is a great quick fix for under-eye puffiness as it contains caffeine it helps reduce the appearance of bags. The cool microstimulating roll-on applicator makes it so satisfying to literally roll the puffiness aside.   

To shop: $11;

Kiehl's Eye Fuel  


"Both men and women can experience bags under the eyes," says Dr. Garshick. "This lightweight under-eye cream uses caffeine and vitamin B3 to reduce puffiness and dark circles." It is easy to apply and can be used morning and night. 

To shop: $24;

Sunday Riley Auto Correct Eye Cream

sunday riley auto correct eye cream

This eye cream contains caffeine and Brazilian ginseng root extract, which helps to reduce under-eye puffiness, instantly giving a more rested and brighter appearance — all while boosting hydration and improving the appearance of fine lines. 

To shop: $65;

Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Eye Masks


These rose gold-colored eye masks contain hyaluronic acid, which delivers exceptional hydration to diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Other ingredients include aloe leaf extract and lavender oil which offer a cooling effect, while soothing and calming the under-eye area.

To shop: $25;