Puffy eyes can make you look like you’ve had a really bad night… or a really really good night. But the swelling can easily impact your overall confidence and comfort levels. Whether the result of a late night, lack of sleep, allergies, or your lifestyle, you’ll want to learn how to prevent puffy eyes.

Luckily, if you want to hide your misery (or hayfever) and de-swell those eyelids, there are some simple methods and natural remedies that can help.

Let’s take a look.

In this article:

  • Why do my eyes swell?
  • The main causes of swollen eyelids
  • Homemade remedies for puffy eyes
  • Other top tips to soothe swollen eyes
  • Protect your eyes from blue light
  • Homemade remedies for puffy eyes: Final thoughts

Why do my eyes swell?

Swelling of the eyelids (also called eyelid edema) is linked to excess tear fluid and/or inflammation, or even infection of the eyelids and around the eyes.

Puffy eyes have one or more of the following symptoms:

  • Swollen eyes: (duh) the most obvious symptom for those who suffer from eyelid edema
  • Redness of the eyes: A sign of inflammation
  • Itchy eye: an itch may accompany swelling of the eyes
  • Burning sensation: Your eye may burn (just the feeling, you don’t suddenly have lazer vision) or tingle
  • Excessive tearing: In some cases, you may also have eyes that water more easily. Either way it’s a good excuse if you cry every time you play The Last of Us Part II.
  • Sensitivity to light: This is called photophobia and is a symptom that can accompany swollen eyelids. It doesn’t mean you’re a vampire.
  • Eye pain
  • Clear or colored eye discharge
  • Blurred vision: If you’re experiencing puffy eyes and blurred vision, there’s a good chance the two are related.

If these symptoms persist, it’s essential you consult a doctor ASAP.

a man with red puffy eyes

The main causes of puffy eyes

So, what causes all those delightful symptoms we’ve outlined? There are a few reasons you might end up with eye puffiness.

It’s important to know these to understand why your eyelids are swelling, and the most effective strategies for preventing it. Good eye health is essential!

Puffy eyes can be caused by:

  • 🤧 An allergic reaction: If you suffer from seasonal allergies, like hayfever, you’re probably already well acquainted with puffy and streaming eyes. So much so, in Summer, people frequently ask you if you saw Titanic recently.
  • 👁️ Conjunctivitis: Inflammation like conjunctivitis is often the cause of swollen eyes
  • 😣 Chalazion or stye: These are small lumps, or masses, that can appear around the eyes. Styes are caused by bacteria, which inflames the gland located on the follicle of an eyelash; while chalazion’s are caused by the obstruction of these glands.
  • 💧 Fluid retention: In some cases, fluid retention can lead to swelling of the eye.
  • 🤕 Eye injury: After an injury, a blow or even eye surgery, it is common to have swollen eyelids.
  • 👀 Eye fatigue: If you’re tired a lot, chances are your eyes are too. Particularly if you spend a lot of time looking at screens that emit blue light as this can cause digital eye strain and eye inflammation.

Homemade remedies for puffy eyes

Now you know what causes red or puffy eyes, but you still don’t know how to get rid of them and stop looking like you joined MacCauley Culkin on the set of My Girl (too soon?).

These simple, natural home remedies for eye puffiness will get your face looking back to normal in no time!

🧊 Apply cold to your swollen eye

One of the best tips for decongesting and activating microcirculation is cold!

As the skin around your eye area contains a lot of fragile blood vessels, you need to be careful that temperatures are cold but not freezing, when trying this natural remedy.

Cold water, a compress, or fresh cucumber slices are ideal for this home remedy. Just leave them on your eyes for a few minutes and you’ll be bag-free in no time!

🥄 The little spoon technique

This doesn’t mean getting into bed and demanding cuddles.

Instead, take a teaspoon that you’ve chilled in the fridge.

Notes: We’re not suggesting you regularly keep teaspoons in the fridge, we’re saying put one in earlier.

Using the same method as before you can now apply the cold teaspoon gently to each swollen eye.

This method combines thermal shock with a shape that fits your eyeball well, for an anti-puffiness and decongestant technique that works in less than 20 minutes.

The downside is, it’s not something we recommend trying in public as some people might question why you have spoons lying on your face.

Also, don’t forget to close your eyes before application… for obvious reasons.

🫖 A little tea for your bags under your eyes?

Tea bags for your eye bags! There are lots of ways tea and other herbal remedies are beneficial to your health, and that includes relieving swollen eyes!

There are a few different ways you can do this:

  1. Using green tea: Steep two green tea bags in hot water for 5 minutes, let them cool and then put them in the fridge. Once they’ve thoroughly cooled down in there, place them on your closed eye for 10 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water. Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties and is rich in antioxidants, meaning it aids blood flow and the coolness will help decongest your eyelids. Soothed eyes and the healthy feeling of using green tea… even if you didn’t drink it!
  2. In compresses: Soak two cotton pads or washable wipes in chamomile herbal tea, and leave them on your puffy eyes for 10 to 15 minutes. You’ll be as good as new!
  3. Drinking herbal tea: Certain herbal teas have fantastic preventative ingredients. Teas like green tea or chamomile allow you to hydrate yourself while benefiting from the soothing properties they contain.

a woman lying back with tea bags on her eyes

👀 Compresses for swollen eyelids

As we’ve already mentioned, compresses can be instrumental in soothing puffy eyes.

We recommend using rose water or cornflower water for the cold compress as they both contain decongestant properties. Or, if you’re feeling like Cleopatra, try cold milk. It’s not scientifically proven… but it is one of those old methods your grandma swears by!

💆 Massage helps reduce puffiness

Eye massage can help puffiness as it dilates the blood vessels around the eye, thereby decongesting it.

Eye massage can also reduce bags under the eyes, prevent fine lines, eliminate toxins, and reduce headaches and eye fatigue!

💧 Use eye drops

We know your eyelids aren’t inside your eyes, but eye drops can still be beneficial. We recommend checking in with a professional (a pharmacist or ophthalmologist) who can tell you the best type to try.

💡Note: If you’re not sure how to put in eye drops properly, make sure you ask a professional!

a woman putting in eye drops

🩺 Consult a specialist

If all else fails, it’s essential you make an appointment with a doctor for as soon as possible. They can make a precise diagnosis and prescribe treatment for the underlying cause of puffy eyes.

Our top tips for soothing puffy or swollen eyelids

Prevention is always better than cure. There are some simple ways you can combat swelling and remove the likelihood of ending up with puffy eyes that make you look like Steve Buscemi.

(No offense, Steve).

  • 🏋️‍♀️ A healthy lifestyle = healthy eyes: Stay hydrated! Make sure you drink plenty of water and where possible, avoid alcohol and tobacco.
  • 😴 Quality sleep: A good night’s sleep is essential for reducing puffy eyes and preventing other eye issues. It also makes you more pleasant to be around.
  • 👩‍⚕️ A regular eye and vision check-up: Consult your ophthalmologist regularly, especially if you are prone to inflammation.
  • 👀 Take care of your eyes: Especially important if you wear contact lenses. Avoid an eye infection by following the hygiene instructions given by your optician

Protect your eyes from blue light

This is super important. Blue light causes many eye issues, including the digital eye fatigue we mentioned earlier. And what have we learned in this article?

Digital eye fatigue is one of the leading causes of eyelid edema!

To avoid swollen eyes, you can protect yourself from blue light by reducing your screen time, or wearing a pair of quality anti-blue light glasses. These are your shield, protecting you from the harmful waves of artificial, and natural, blue light you’re exposed to daily.

an older woman wearing blue light glasses

Homemade remedies for puffy eyes: Final thoughts

  • Pain, burning and tearing of the eye may accompany eyelid swelling.
  • Several factors: allergies, eye infection (styes), inflammation of the eye (conjunctivitis) or around the eye, eye fatigue, eye injury, lack of sleep, dehydration, pollution, and more can cause eye swelling.
  • To make your eyes less swollen you can apply cold (compresses, tea bags, cucumber slices or even a cold spoon). If the swelling does not go down, we strongly encourage you to consult a medical professional.
  • You can also massage your eyes for a few minutes, use eye drops, or try cornflower water to depuff your congested eyelid.

It’s always better to avoid the inconvenience of puffy eyes altogether with preventative methods. Remember to drink a lot of water, sleep well, take care of your peepers and, if you spend a lot of time on screens, effectively protect them from blue light.

18 diciembre 2023

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