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Yellow Bags Under Eyes

author image Lynne Sheldon
Lynne Sheldon has over 12 years of dance experience, both in studios and performance groups. She is an avid runner and has studied several types of yoga. Sheldon now works as a freelance writer, editor and book reviewer. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and art history from Boston University and recently completed her Master of Fine Arts in writing from Pacific University.
Yellow Bags Under Eyes
Not getting enough sleep can cause bags under your eyes. Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

The area under your eyes can become puffy and yellowish in tone for several reasons. As you get older, your skin's connective tissues weaken, which can lead to sagging and a swollen appearance, according to the Mayo Clinic. Under-eye bags can also result from a buildup of fluid caused by poor circulation, allergies or not enough sleep. Talk to your doctor if you experience worsening or persistent bags under your eyes.


Your skin gets thinner as you get older, and this makes bags and fine lines look more pronounced, says Smart Skin Care. The area around your eyes loses firmness and elasticity as you age, causing some of the fat to shift forward and settle beneath your eyes, which results in a swollen-looking appearance. You may also notice a slight discoloration in your skin tone. Under the eyes, this can range from yellow to dark purple. These are common signs of aging and not typically the symptoms of a more serious condition.


If the bags under your eyes are accompanied by redness and itching, you may have allergies. An allergic reaction can cause the skin to swell, and rubbing your eyes can exacerbate this condition. Talk to your doctor about taking an over-the-counter or prescription antihistamine, which Dr. Paul Lazar, a professor of clinical dermatology at Northwestern University, says may help reduce the swelling. Once your allergies are under control, the bags under your eyes should diminish.

Lack of Sleep

Fluid pools beneath your eyes when you sleep, and not getting an adequate amount of rest can exacerbate this. Most adults require seven to eight hours of sleep a night, and the Mayo Clinic recommends sleeping with your head propped up on an extra pillow to prevent fluid from settling beneath your eyes.


Apply moistened, cold tea bags to your closed eyes for 15 minutes in the morning to cut down on swelling. According to Dr. Mary Stefanyszyn, an associate surgeon in ophthalmology at Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia, the tannin in tea can temporarily tighten your skin and lessen the appearance of under-eye bags. You can also smooth on a skin-toned concealer to help even out a yellowish tone and make puffiness look less noticeable.


Certain lifestyle changes can help prevent under-eye bags. MotherNature.com suggests reducing the amount of salty foods you eat because these can cause fluid retention. The website also advises switching to water-based instead of oil-based eye makeup, which may irritate your skin and cause swelling.

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