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Over-the-Counter Creams for Under Eye Bags: Do They Really Work?

Under eye bags and dark under eye circles are a common complaint for many people concerned with looking tired or older.

The bags often develop due to aging or genetics, which causes the fat surrounding the eye to fall or sag from its normal position. The circles appear because of the relative hollowness beneath the eye bags in the orbital rim or tear trough, which lends a “shadow” effect that looks dark. Due to genetics or aging, this can occur because of the loss of upper cheek fat or loss of elasticity in the lower eyelid skin, which leads to wrinkles and stretched or excess lower eyelid skin.

Dermal Filler Eye Rejuvenation
There are several ways to treat under eye bags, but are over-the-counter creams really effective? Are they a viable substitute for eyelid surgery or the latest non-surgical treatments for under eye bags?

Before you spend hundreds of dollars (or even more) on OTC under eye creams, Los Angeles oculoplastic surgeon Dr. Mehryar (Ray) Taban cautions you to be careful. Although these creams, gels, and serums are advertised as being effective at erasing and smoothing away under eye bags, the truth is often a different matter.

The Skinny on OTC Creams for Under Eye Bags

First, the marketing for these products is slick and often misleading. The creams are not subject to FDA scrutiny or approval, so labels and claims are under-regulated, which leaves you in the dark.

Second, be wary of the so-called “clinical trial” cited in the marketing as proof of efficacy and safety. Such studies are likely funded by the company that manufactured the cream, which makes them biased. The claims almost never come from independent clinical trials.

Third, the wordsmiths in the marketing departments of these big companies create names and product descriptions that imitate real medical and cosmetic procedures and/or products.

If you can, make sure to research the marketing agencies behind these products. Trusted medical online marketing agencies like DeTorres Group, based out of Tampa, FL, are a good example of ethical and proven industry veterans.

Here’s how:

  • The eye cream that calls itself a “treatment” is nothing more than an eye cream.
  • By saying that an eye cream is a “volume filler,” gives the impression that the cream is formulated with hyaluronic acid when it likely is not.
  • A “laser focus” eye cream insinuates that it’s a replacement for laser therapy.
  • A prescription-like label that includes a percentage of an allegedly proprietary ingredient (e.g., 6% hydroxy stridol) seems to suggest that it’s a medical product that’s effective.
  • Untrue or apples-to-oranges comparisons, such as having an ingredient that’s like needle-less Botox to tighten under-eye bags. Botox neither tightens skin nor corrects under-eye bags, so stay clear.

Instead of wasting time and money on products that might help restore moisture for a few hours or days, why not choose more effective and longer-lasting options that actually are proven to work?

Lower Blepharoplasty

Surgery on the lower eyelids, called a lower blepharoplasty, can make the eyes appear rested for a natural-looking, more youthful appearance.

Los Angeles Lower Eyelid Bag Treatment
The procedure removes or re-positions fat in the lower eyelids with a scar-less incision on the inner side of the eyelid. This results in a smoother appearance to the eyes.

With skill and precision, Dr. Taban’s transfers the fat beneath the eyes to also fill in the hollow area of the under eye bags. Otherwise, mere removal of the fat means that the eyes appear hollow and sunken.

Furthermore, because of the hidden incision on the eyelid inner surface, you experience less pain and quicker healing. It is an outpatient surgery performed under local anesthesia, therefore, the procedure is less extensive, as is downtime.

Recovery typically takes about a week with side effects such as eyelid bruising and/or swelling. No eye patch is necessary and you typically resume your regular activities in 7-10 days, including wearing contact lens.

Non-surgical Treatment for Under Eye Bags

Eyelid surgery is not always necessary. If you’re like many patients, an injectables procedure is a viable solution that involves no incisions or skin removal.

Facial Under Eye Filler Beverly Hills
Under eye fillers as a treatment for under eye bags can deliver natural-looking results that have been proven in clinical studies and approved by the FDA.

Dr. Taban uses only injectables that are safe, durable, and effective. In addition to restoring volume to the eye area, some facial fillers:

Promote collagen production

  • Volumize and tighten skin
  • Reduce wrinkles

Minimize Eye Bags

Administered with precision and skill that only a board-certified oculoplastic surgeon like Dr. Taban can deliver, injectables are safe, minimally invasive, and practically painless. Side effects such as swelling, tenderness or soreness, and/or bruising are minimized to about 1-2 weeks and you should be able to go about your normal everyday activities immediately.

Baggy Eyes Injectables Beverly Hills
To get the refreshed, natural-looking youthful appearance you desire, the most popular and effective under eye filler treatment includes:

  • Juvéderm
  • Juvéderm Voluma
  • Restylane
  • Belotero
  • Sculptra
  • Radiesse

These are safe and clinically proven treatments that are actually composed of safe and nourishing hyaluronic acid or other viable components, like calcium hydroxylapatite or polylactic acid.

Skip the OTC Creams and Contact Dr. Taban for Safe, Effective Under Eye Bags Treatment

Be wary of OTC creams that promise correction of under eye bags. In fact, if you do your due diligence, you’ll find that eyelid surgery or non-surgical treatment for under eye bags from the TabanMD oculoplastic surgery team is the best solution.

To schedule a consultation, call our Beverly Hills office or our Santa Barbara office today.

Next, read Top Reasons to Consider Oculoplastic Surgery in 2018