- Coconut oil is sometimes recommended to treat dark circles
- No studies have proven the oil’s effectiveness at this
- On the contrary, coconut oil may clog pores and cause acne
Dark circles are caused by lack of sleep, dehydration, sun exposure, and genetics. One of the many remedies purported to treat them is coconut oil.
Coconut oil does have some health benefits: its medium-chain triglyceride fatty acids are a quick source of energy and its lauric acid fights pathogens in the body.
However, incorporating it into your skin care routine is not the best way to get these benefits. Not only can coconut oil probably not treat dark circles, but it may instead cause clogged pores.
Benefits of Coconut Oil for Dark Circles
The exact mechanism through which coconut oil is supposed to get rid of dark circles is unclear. Coconut oil has moisturizing properties and has been demonstrated to increase cell turnover rate, improve the protective barrier of the skin, and reduce inflammation. It is thought that this combination of effects may improve the overall quality of the skin below the eyes and reduce dark circles’ appearance.
Does Coconut Oil Get Rid of Dark Under-Eye Circles?
No scientific studies indicate that coconut oil can improve under-eye circles. It is likely that anecdotal evidence pointing to its efficacy is merely a placebo effect.
Coconut oil is comedogenic, meaning it clogs pores. This makes it unsuitable for use by nearly everyone except people with extremely dry skin.
How to Use Coconut Oil for Dark Circles
First, thoroughly wash your face to clean off any makeup and dirt from the day. Split about a teaspoon of room-temperature coconut oil and gently massage in a circular motion into the skin below each eye. Massage until the oil has absorbed into your skin. As an alternative to using your fingers, you can use two cotton balls soaked in the oil.
Coconut oil is best used at nighttime, as it makes the skin appear greasy. Discontinue use of coconut oil if you experience any signs of irritation, or once your dark circles disappear, as extended use heightens your likelihood of getting acne from it.
Choosing a coconut oil product
Cold-pressed, virgin coconut oil is considered the best and healthiest form of the oil. This oil is pressed from raw, fresh coconut instead of dried or bleached coconut and is not further refined.
There are a few skin care products that use coconut oil as an ingredient, but it’s most commonly used on its own.
Alternatives to Coconut Oil
Other treatments may be more effective at treating the appearance of dark circles than coconut oil. These include both natural ingredients and dermatologist-developed skin care products.
Other natural options
Turmeric, lemon juice, and almond oil are among the other natural treatments and DIY home remedies that can be used to treat dark circles. Lemon juice has been proven to reduce hyperpigmentation, while almond essential oil has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Over the counter solutions may treat dark circles with faster results.
Hydroquinone and arbutin, available in cream and serums, can be used to lighten pigmentation and discoloration around the eyes.
To treat dark circles due to thinning skin and visible blood vessels in the under-eye area, a wide variety of oils, vitamins, and proteins can be used. These include retinoids, peptides, vitamin E, vitamin C, and hyaluronic acid. They’re found as active ingredients in a wide range of anti-aging products from eye masks to eye creams and moisturizers.
Coconut oil, while not without its health benefits, is not ideal for use in treating dark under-eye circles. While this oil was previously touted as a “miracle” beauty product, its comedogenic properties increase your likelihood of getting clogged pores and acne.
More effective treatments for dark circles can be found both in the kitchen and at the pharmacy. These treatments can treat many of the causes of dark circles by improving skin quality and lightening hyperpigmentation.