Beautology Team
7 minutes

Dark Circles Uncovered: Causes and Concerns

Dark circles under the eyes have been a cause for concern for many people across the globe. These seemingly harmless blemishes can be a sign of various underlying issues, such as ageing, poor sleep, or even heredity. This article aims to uncover the various causes of dark circles and provide you with the necessary knowledge to manage and potentially lessen their appearance.

Understanding Dark Circles

Dark circles or periorbital hyperpigmentation, as the medical fraternity refers to it, is a common condition that affects many people, regardless of age or gender. These are dark blemishes that appear around the eyes, often giving the person a tired or aged appearance.


Ageing is one of the primary causes of dark circles. As we age, our skin naturally loses collagen and grows thinner. This allows the blood vessels underneath the skin to become more prominent, leading to the appearance of dark circles.


Genetics also play a significant role in the development of dark circles. If your parents or grandparents have or had dark circles, there is a high chance you might develop them too. This is known as hereditary dark circles.

Lack of Sleep and Overworking

Sleep deprivation and overworking are leading causes of dark circles. Lack of sleep can cause your skin to become dull and pale, allowing dark tissues and blood vessels beneath your skin to show. Similarly, overworking, particularly in front of a screen, can strain the eyes and lead to the development of dark circles.


Dehydration is another common cause of dark circles. When the body is not receiving a sufficient amount of water, the skin beneath the eyes begins to look dull and the eyes look sunken. This is due to their close proximity to the underlying bone.

Sun Overexposure

Overexposure to the sun can prompt your body to produce an excess of melanin, the pigment that provides your skin with its colour. Too much sun — particularly for your eyes — can cause pigmentation in the surrounding skin to darken.


Allergic reactions and eye dryness can trigger dark circles. When you have an allergic reaction, your body releases histamines as a response to harmful bacteria. Other than causing uncomfortable symptoms — including itchiness, redness, and puffy eyes — histamines also cause your blood vessels to dilate and become more visible beneath your skin.

Iron Deficiency

Iron deficiency or anaemia can result in a bluish tinge below your eyes. This is due to the skin appearing paler because of the lack of nutrients, allowing the blue veins underneath to show through.


Emotional and physical stress can also lead to the development of dark circles. Chronic stress can make you look pale and lead to pigmentation changes that can result in dark circles under the eyes.


Dark circles are a common issue that many individuals struggle with. Understanding the various causes can help us find effective methods to manage and reduce their appearance. Whether it's altering lifestyle factors such as getting enough sleep, drinking enough water, or wearing sunscreen, or seeking professional skincare advice, tackling the causes of dark circles is possible.

While this article provides a thorough overview of the causes of dark circles, it's essential to remember that every person is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another. For personalised advice and treatments, it's always best to consult with a skincare professional.