How to Get Rid of a Puffy Face

beautiful girl in bathroom and mask for facial skin care
A woman is applying a face mask. (Image: evgenyatamanenko/iStock/Getty Images)

Swollen eyelids or an overall puffy face can make you look tired or sleepy. In severe cases, they can make you look like you’re sick or suffering from a bad cold. Because there are several causes for a puffy face, you might need to try several remedies before you find the one that works best for you.

Step 1

Drink more water throughout the day. Dehydration causes blood vessels to enlarge, leading to water retention in certain parts of the body, especially the face, ankles and stomach. If drinking a glass of water before bed doesn’t interrupt your sleep, make it a habit. Also, drink a large glass as you wake up as well, so you can get your body started in the right direction.

Step 2

Put ice cubes in a large bowl filled halfway with water. Hold your breath and then lower your face into the bowl. Hold for 10 to 15 seconds. Repeat a few times or hold longer if you can. The cold water will constrict blood vessels and reduce the puffiness.

Step 3

Talk to your doctor about possible medical causes for the puffiness. Certain medications can cause you to retain water, and allergies, conjunctivitis and allergies --such as hay fever--can cause your face to look puffy. If there’s a medical cause behind the problem, your health care provider will recommend a change in medication or other adjustments to fix the problem.

Step 4

Lower your intake of sodium and salty foods. Salt retains water, which in turn causes puffiness. Aside from table salt added directly to foods, look for high sodium content in packaged snacks, soups, canned vegetables, salad dressings and sauces.

Step 5

Buy a water-filled mask or gel pack you can refrigerate and use first thing in the morning. To apply, lie down with your head on top of two pillows--the height will help the puffiness go down. Apply the mask on your face and leave on until it warms up or for at least 10 minutes. Then, wash your face with cool water.

Things You'll Need

  • Large bowl

  • Ice cubes

  • Face mask of gel pack

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