Sunday, August 7, 2011

Derma Roller for under-eye dark circles?

If you suffer from dark circles under the eyes then you know how frustrating they can be. They make you look older than your age, and people constantly tell you that you look tired (even if you just woke up from 12 hours of sleep).

I myself suffer from this, as you can see in this pic:

<---- My panda eye :-(

So I have been doing some serious research about this issue. Here are some key facts I mangaged to gather:

  1. There is no one cause for this problem
  2. Like varicose veins, dark circles under the eyes are usually an inherited trait. Other cause is (what else) aging: As we age the sensitive skin under our eyes gets thinner, we also lose some fat in this area which gives it volume. The result is a depressed area that casts a shadow.
  3. Dark circles sometimes look worse because dark (usually blue) veins start to show through the half transparent skin.
  4. In rare cases the cause for dark circles are clogged capillaries.

There are plenty of cosmetic products that promise to help with this problem, but I haven't found one that works yet (even those "vitamin K" ones). And iff you ask a dermatologist (and trust me, I have, several), he/she will tell you there's nothing that can be done about it so you'd better just learn to live with it. Relatively-honest cosmeticians will tell you the same thing, or at least that no product will make a huge difference, just maybe a slight improvement. There are ampules and serums just for the eye area but most cosmeticians are not too happy about touching this delicate area where the skin is usually very thin. Harsh chemicals could very well just make it worse.

You might remember that one of my goals in this blog was to test whether a derma roller could bulk up the skin under my eye. Well, it didn't work. In fact, it turns out derma rolling the skin under your eye with any needle length above 0.2mm could make it worse.

I know this now because recently I read about the one and only dark circle treatment that DOES work - which is injecting a special form of Hyaluronic Acid to the dermis (the inner layer of the skin) just under the eye. So I went to see a dermatologist who has gained a reputation of being an expert in this. I didn't fool myself, I knew it was gonna be very expensive. The form of HA that is used in such procedure is called Restylane (this is the name of a popular brand of some swiss company). There are other brands too, but I learned that Restylane is the most popular. And possibly the most expensive.


Restylane injections - before and after

You see, Restylane comes in syringes of 1cc (1 ml). One syringe of 1ml costs (at least in the place I visited) about $600. You usually need 2cc for both eyes. This perhaps could be tolerable if it gave you a long lasting result, the problem is that HA is a "temporary filler". This means that unlike silicone for example, it doesn't stay under the skin forever. Instead, it slowly gets absorbed by the body like regular fat in a process that can take anywhere between 4 to 12 months. After that you will need more injections = another $1200. I like the fact that HA is temporary (it means less risk) but the price is.. well, too pricey for me.

I decided that until I'm older and richer I will be looking for other ways to improve the skin under the eye.

I was still not willing to give up on Hyaluronic Acid, so I read about it some more. It turns out Hyaluronic Acid is not really an acid. It is present in our body since the day we are born. Its role is to support skin structure, the joints and even eyesight. The problem is that we get less and less of it as we age (starting at the age of 20).

As always, there are two ways to restore it: Internally and externally.

Internally, Hyaluronic Acid can be intaken in formulas such as this one which I actually ordered and now waiting to arrive.

Externally, there are quite a few Hyaluronic Acid serums out there. One has been recently added in my favourite shop, too. It's called Hyaluronic Acid Serum. I ordered it too and received it today. It is by a company called Ceutical which are considered "professional" (used by dermarologists). Their products are made in Malaysa but are formulated in Swiss.


1. This is the package I received!

2. This is what the box looks like...

3. ...And here's what's inside.. 10 cute serum vials.

The price is $29 which is not too much considering you get 10 small bottles, each one containing 3.8ml (10 x 3.8 = 380ml). (And don't forget that if you use my coupon you get 10% off). The reason it is not in just one bottles is that it is easier this way to keep it fresh. The box says you're supposed to use each vial up to 3 days after it has been opened, which makes sense. Why is this good? If a serum only lasts a few days it means it probably does not include any preservatives. And this means I can use it with a derma roller, which is exactly what I'm going to do.

As I said before, I was advised not to use a derma roller with needles longer than 0.2mm, so I am going to use 0.2mm and roll very gently in this area before I apply the serum.

Honestly, I am not expecting any miracles ... A 20-30% improvement will make me more than happy. As you can see in the picture above my dark circles could be worse.

As always, I will update regularly about my ongoing experience with this serum and my results, whether there will be results or not...

12 comments:

  1. Hi...I'm not sure if the following comment posted successfully, so if this is a repeat, my apologies:
    Thank you for testing this out! I was thinking of ordering the derma roller for exactly the same thing; the skin under my eyes and in the corners has become increasingly thin throughout my 20's, and now it looks like I have purple circles, and even some thinning to the point of a 'hollow' look. Also, thanks for mentioning the resluts at the dermatologist/ cosmeticians. I was going to head there next...*sigh*
    Like you said, even SOME improvement would be appreciated (better than gettting worse!)--so please be sure to post the resluts--I will be waiting to see!

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  2. Hi. I have been applying the Hyaluronic Acid under my eyes every night or so for the past two weeks, but to tell you the truth, I did it only once or twice with rolling. But.. I think I'm seeing some subtle improvement already. I will post fully about it soon!

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  3. Hi can you provide the web site address for the ceutical company
    thanks in advanced

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  4. Yes, it's www.dr-roller-shop.com (the same site that sells rollers). They now have a new skin care products section.

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  5. What's the scoop? Any improvement?

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  6. Sorry, I didn't really persist so I can't say if this works or not. I guess the improvement would be little at best. Nothing can give you the same result as fillers.

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  7. Wow! Fantastic guide and guinea pig trial lol Brave girl!

    I had the injections under my eyes from Groupon for £150. They looked much better in the 1st week and I was going on holiday so for a month after so it was perfect timing. It seemed to work for about a month and now I don't notice that I ever did them, but when you have lived with dark eyes, you are never really satisfied until you see them gone which is a fantast..he did do them a little uneven and I always thought one eye looked darker after but I haven't bothered to go back and nobody has actually commented on this so it must not be noticeable except to me.

    You are not supposed to rub your eyes as it apparently absorbs quicker but on occassion I did and now I don't really take any care.

    Have lived with them (and the 'you look like you have been punched/got black eye' etc comments) for all my adult life so it's not too much of a bother and at least I tried it once. Can't justify to get them done so often, maybe if I get a rich partner lol

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  8. I'm sorry but the math is wrong.
    if they are "10 small bottles, each one containing 3.8ml (10 x 3.8 = 380ml" you made a distraction mistake, but I'd like to know the right amount. It's either 3.8ml (and you have 38ml total) or 38ml for each bottle and you have 380 ml; which one?

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  9. Sorry, this is my mistake. It's 38 ml in total :)

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  10. Hey i am 17 and I have the same problems and have tried the same things as you. The only thing that I have ever noticed a difference with was getting less sleep. Oddly when I am the most tired my under eye circles are the most faded. Anyways can I just look at this site for your future updates? Ty

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  11. You should see a dermatologist first to understand the underlying cause for your circles. If it's lack of fat in that area then the only way to fix it is with fillers (such as Hyaluronic Acid (Restylane etc.)), injected by a very experienced professional.

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  12. Not all true. I am having a little success with stamping underneath tbe hollows though they are not nearly as prominent as he poster of this blog. You guys need to be your own guinnie pig And try things out for your self and not rely on others for your miracle solution!

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