What Causes Under-Eye Wrinkles and How to Manage Them

The delicate and thin skin around the eyes is among the first areas to show signs of aging. Under-eye wrinkles can appear and develop in your early 30s or even in your 20s. There are a number of reasons why these fine lines show up, with many of them associated with your daily habits.

So, what causes under-eye wrinkles?

As previously mentioned, the skin around your eyes is extremely thin. This makes it susceptible to breaking down, which only means that it’s prone to developing lines, wrinkles, and sagging skin. And as you age, the skin loses collagen and elasticity, with effects more visible on the delicate skin. This can also contribute to other eye skin issues such as dark circles and puffiness.

Here are some of the things that can cause under-eye lines or wrinkles.

  1. Excessive sun exposure – Prolonged and unprotected sun exposure can cause you to develop lines and wrinkles, particularly around the eye area. It can also contribute to age spots and make existing wrinkles and pigmentation more prominent.
  2. Smoking – This is one of the worst things you can do to your skin, body, and overall health. Cigarettes contain nicotine that impairs blood flow, reducing the amount of oxygen and nutrients that reaches your skin. The habit also damages both collagen and elastin, resulting in premature wrinkling and sagging. It may also cause you to squint your eyes to keep the smoke out.
  3. Repetitive facial expressions – Constant squinting, frowning, and raising your eyebrow cause muscles in your face to contract and develop a groove underneath the skin. And since the skin loses elasticity as we age, it eventually loses its ability to snap back and return to normal. Consequently, lines and creases start to form.
  4. Constantly rubbing your eyes – Again, the skin around the eyes is thin and delicate. Constantly rubbing the eyes can cause the surrounding skin to stretch a lot, contributing to dryness and irritation. It can also weaken the skin over time and run the risk of breaking down its elastin, resulting in lines and wrinkles. Further reading: 5 Reasons Why You Should Stop Rubbing Your Eyes.
  5. Sleeping on your side or stomach – With both sleeping positions, your face (or one side of it) is likely to be pressed or smashed against the pillow or pillowcase. This creates friction on the skin, resulting in unwanted lines like forehead wrinkles or crow’s feet.
  6. Genetics – Genes influence our health, traits, and behavior and can determine how soon we are going to develop signs of aging and how severe they may be. Do take note, however, that many of the age-related skin changes are usually associated with extrinsic aging or a result of lifestyle and environmental factors  

What can you do about under-eye wrinkles?

You can start with taking better care of the eye area by keeping it moisturized. This will protect the skin and avoid dryness that can make the lines more prominent. Other things that can help include:

  • Always wear sun protection and accessorize – Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen every time you go out. Apply it gently on your eyelids, and don’t forget commonly neglected areas like the top of ears, neck, and back of hands. You can also benefit from wearing wraparound sunglasses with UV protection and a wide-brimmed hat, particularly on sunny days.
  • Use an eye cream or serum – Add eye care products to your skin routine, especially if you notice fine lines, dark circles, and puffiness. Dr. Sylvia Skin Care’s Elastifirm Eye Restore and Repair has clinically proven ingredients that can protect the area. They can also reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles, puffiness, and dark circles under the eyes. 

  • Give your eyes a restLooking at a screen for long periods of time can lead to dry eyes and digital eye strain. The blue light emitted by electronic gadgets can also penetrate the skin and contribute to photoaging. It is best to take short breaks throughout the day and use cooling under-eye patches or masks from time to time.
  • Be gentle with your eyes – Your eye area is delicate, so be sure to be gentle when applying skincare products or removing eye makeup. This also includes removing your contacts before bed, avoiding rubbing your eyes constantly, and seeing an eye doctor for checkups or vision problems.
  • Try aesthetic procedures – Injectables like Botox can smooth the wrinkles around your eyes by temporarily blocking the signal from a nerve to a muscle. It can reduce muscle contractions and smooth the look of facial lines. There is also microneedling like Dermapen 4, which can improve lines and wrinkles and treat hard-to-reach-areas like around the eyes. 

The right care, products, and mindful habits can help protect your skin and soften signs of aging. Don’t hesitate to consider aesthetic treatments and other preventative measures, especially if age-related changes are making you look tired, angry, or sad. Contact Cutis Medical Laser Clinics in Singapore and schedule a consultation with our aesthetic doctor to learn more about our non-surgical anti-aging treatments.