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Dark circles and bags under the eyes have a tendency to make you look and feel old. While most people think dark circles are a sign of fatigue or illness, the fact of the matter is, they typically are not. They may make you look tired and unhealthy, but dark circles around the eyes can have a much deeper cause.
Affecting both men and women, dark circles begin in adulthood, and depending on their cause (there are several), can get worse as you age. Some of the most common reasons dark circles develop include heredity, eczema, lifestyle choices, pigment irregularities, sun exposure, and thinning of the skin due to aging. The skin around the eyes is extremely thin; so thin in fact, the tiny blood-filled capillaries just beneath the surface show through. This can lead to the appearance of discoloration around the eyes.
As we age, the skin around the eyes thins further, and there's a loss of volume around the eyes due to a decrease in collagen production. This is why the eyes typically show signs of aging first. This loss of volume results in a "hollow trough" that appears as a dark circle under the eye. These types of dark circles are often hereditary and unavoidable.
Dark circles due to sun exposure and lifestyle choices are common. Although avoidable with proper sun protection and healthy choices, dark circles still manage to present themselves and dealing with them can be emotionally difficult.