The Eye Bag is one of the most common problems I encounter in my practice. The eyes, being the focal point of the face, is often subject to scrutiny more than any other facial feature. Before I got my dark eye circles treated, I would have been a millionaire if I got a dollar for every “you look tired” comment which came my way.
What causes the Eye Bag?
Aging affects the eyes first, as the skin around there is paper thin. What happens in the undereyes is an unfortunate double- hit event – Firstly, the fat which envelopes the eyeball starts to protrude out, which occurs due to the effect of gravity, together with weakening of the muscles around the eye, which kept the fat nicely dammed behind when we were younger. Secondly, the fat in our cheeks start to descend towards the floor as we age, also due to gravity, creating a hollow under the eye.
You can imagine how unkind nature is – as we age, we get not only a bulge from the herniating fat, but a hollow right below the bulge, making the eye bag appear even worse!
Blepharoplasty – The Ideal Treatment
The best treatment for the Eye Bag is to remove it surgically. This is especially true for more severe cases. With improving techniques, the scar is barely visible, and recovery time is very much shorter. However, there is a significant number of people who cannot still afford the downtime associated with a surgical procedure – which often takes about a week.
Hyaluronic Acid Fillers – A Non-Surgical Alternative
The next best alternative to eye bags, is using injectable fillers. This may seem counter intuitive at first, and I often get people gasping at the very suggestion – wouldn’t injecting more stuff into an already bulging eye bag make it worse?
The secret lies in how the fillers are injected.
You can think of hyaluronic acid fillers as putty – the type we use to patch up cracks and holes in our walls.
The cheek sagging which I described earlier makes the Eye Bag look worse than it really is. Hence, the trick is to patch up the hollow caused by the cheek sagging underneath the eye bag – this alone makes the bag look much better. But the wonders of fillers do not stop there – like putty, we can use hyaluronic acid fillers to smoothen the junction between the eyebag and the cheek below it, creating a gentle hump which will hide the Eye Bag.
It is not perfect, but most people leave my office very happy with the results, commenting they have never looked so fresh in years.
The idea of an injection near the eye often makes people cringe. The truth is, the procedure is very painless, very safe, and very fast, with excellent results. The most common unpleasant side effect is mild bruising at the site of injection – but this can be minimzed with proper injection technique and preparation. The bruising, if it occurs, will resolve in a few days, and can usually be covered with make-up.
Another common concern my patients voice to me is lumpiness – which they read about on the internet, or hear about from other doctors. Lumpiness occurs when a filler which is too hard is used in the wrong area. And the eyes, being a delicate area, is very unforgiving – therefore, lumpiness can occur if the procedure is done by an inexperienced injector. It is important to find a doctor you can trust, to perform the procedure for you, and in the right hands, lumpiness will almost never occur.
Yet another common concern the need for repeated treatments. Yes, hyaluronic acid fillers do not last forever – typically, a treatment will last about a year. However, no permanent filler can give the same beautiful and natural result like hyaluronic acid fillers. Furthermore, no permanent filler should ever be used near the eyes. Surgical treatments will last longer – but because our face is constantly aging, even the results of surgery are not permanent – they typically last for 5-10 years.
Hyaluronic acid fillers have become the most common procedure I perform in clinic, due to their versatility, high safety profile and excellent results. Speak to your doctor for more details about how you can improve they way you look with hyaluronic acid fillers.