You may have heard about beauty pageant contestants and models using unconventional tricks of the trade to perfect their appearances. They may, for instance, rub Vaseline on their teeth to brighten their smile. They have also been known to apply Preparation H hemorrhoid cream under their eyes to reduce puffiness. While some women may swear it works, the makers of Preparation H say their product should not be part of any beauty enhancement regime.
The theory behind the use of Preparation H for puffy eyes is if it can reduce swelling caused by hemorrhoids, it should be able to decrease swelling around the eyes. There have not been any studies conducted to determine whether Preparation H is in fact effective at reducing puffy eyes. Despite the lack of solid evidence, many users insist it is an excellent way to minimize under-eye swelling.
Preparation H may work for some people as a temporary remedy for under-eye puffiness. Apply only a tiny amount on the skin and make sure to keep it away from your eyes. Don't use Preparation H more than twice a week for this unorthodox purpose.
As a treatment for hemorrhoids, Preparation H contains a powerful blood vessel constrictor called phenylephrine. Excessive vascular constriction may lead to headaches.
Canada-based Whitehall-Robins Inc., the maker of Preparation H, says the product is intended to help shrink hemorrhoidal tissue and is not meant to be applied to the area around the eyes. A company spokeswoman adds that the product no longer contains live yeast cell, which was one of the ingredients purported to reduce puffy eyes.
There are a number of options for preventing and treating under-eye puffiness. For starters, limit your daily intake of salt and drink a minimum of eight 8-oz. glasses of water every day. Also get an adequate amount of sleep. That's about eight hours for most people. Always apply sunscreen around your eyes and your entire face before heading outdoors. Cucumbers are a natural astringent. Try placing a cucumber slice over each eye to reduce puffiness. Contract your doctor if you have extreme swelling or puffiness under your eyes.