What are Dark circles?

Dark circles refer to the increased pigmentation around the eyes that could be due to genetics, underlying medical conditions, lifestyle issue or ageing.


What is Periorbital Hyperpigmentation?

Refers to increased dark pigmentation of the eyelid skin due to an underlying genetic predisposition that increases production of the melanin pigment. This feature runs in families.


What causes dark circles?

Dark circles are due to a number of causes and often the effects are additive.
Genetics plays a major role and some people are born with dark circles. In addition, medical conditions such as hay fever, repeated allergies or sinus problems can cause dark circles due to the chronic inflammation. Lifestyle issues such as fatigue, loss of sleep, lack of nutrition can contribute to the appearance of dark circles. As you get older, dark circles are more noticeable with age as the skin thins and there is loss of volume around the under-eye area.


Can dark circles be cured?

Unfortunately, there is no cure for dark circles, certainly no miracle cure. There no one single treatment that works like a magic bullet, instead you can control the appearance of dark circle using a combination of treatments and make it look less prominent.


Can Dark circles and eyebags co-exist?

Yes, dark circles and eyebags frequently co-exist because the loss of volume in the under-eye area with ageing make both dark circles and eyebags more noticeable.


Can lack of sleep cause dark circles?

Yes, lack of sleep and fatigue can cause dark circles


What foods highlights the appearance of dark circles?

A diet rich in salt can cause fluid retention and cause puffy looking eyes. This can exaggerate the appearance of dark circles and make them look prominent due to the distortion of natural contours and the result in increased shadowing.


Does excess sun exposure increases the appearance of dark circles?

Yes, eyebags are permanent and they gradually get bigger and more prominent with age. It is very common to see uneven or asymmetric eye bags between the two sides.


Under eye creams for dark circles

Under eye or eye bag creams can help to maintain general skin health. 
Combining a prescription only medical grade skin care range would help the overall texture and appearance of skin.
I am not aware of any one cream that has any particular advantages over another with regard to pigmentation improvement.  Dark under-eyes or dark circles are partly caused due to the loss in volume that occurs with ageing. Using Dermal Fillers to restore lost volume is a logical first step and integrating a medical grade skin care regime can be a very effective solution for you. 


Home remedies for dark circles

The internet is full of home remedies for eyebags and dark circles ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous. While some home remedies may work in certain young people it is unlikely to work for everyone. Here are some of the home remedies for treating dark circles. Cold compress, cucumbers, tea bags, cold tea bags, rose water, cucumber and lemon juice, potatoes, cold milk, orange juice, Vit E oil, coconut oil, turmeric, eye massage, regular use of skin moisturizer and sunblock, and advanced skin care.


Are there any new procedures for dark circles?

Using PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) to help build up collagen in the eyelid delicate skin can help reduce the static wrinkles.  
Nano fat injections to the under eye dark circles can help lighten the pigmentary changes of the eyelid.
Integrating a prescription only medical grade skin care regime would help the overall skin health, improve appearance of skin and help maintain the results.

Options to treat dark circles at age 25

At 25, it is reasonable to consider non-surgical treatment such as dermal fillers to camouflage the hollows and reduce the appearance of dark circles and RF needling to tighten skin. Using Dermal Fillers to restore lost volume is a logical first step that is an effective solution in a 25 year old with dark circles. Integrating a prescription only medical grade skin care regime would help the overall skin health, improve appearance of skin and help prolong the results.


Options to treat dark circles at age 55

Generally speaking, at 55 you may have loose skin, eyebags, tear trough deformity in addition to the dark circles. So, the dark circle treatment options that are effective for a 25 year old will have no effect. It is important to consider a comprehensive plan that can effectively address many of the structural changes that have occurred in the eye due to ageing. This can be a combination of surgery and non-surgical options supplemented with a medical grade skin care regime to maintain skin health and prolong the results.


Summary for treating eyelid dark circles


Identify the cause 


Are your eyelid dark circles caused by :
  • hereditary periorbital hyperpigmentation
  • An underlying medical condition like allergy, sinus issues or sleep issues.
  • Volume loss due to age 
  • Lifestyle issues 


Treat the cause

  • Address underlying medical conditions like allergies, sleep issues and sinus issue 


Prevention and lifestyle options

  • Nutritious Food
  • Avoiding processed food, salt and sugar
  • Avoiding smoking, vaping and limiting alcohol

Protection using skin care 

  • Sun Protection
  • Hyaluronic Acid based skin moisturizer
  • Advanced prescription grade skin care containing Vit A, Vit C and Niacinamide


Treat using Advanced surgical options

  • Dermal filler volumizing
  • Radio frequency skin tightening and reduction of eyebags
  • Platelet Rich Plasma injections
  • Nano Fat transfer for dark circles




eyelid guide snapshot (2)






You will generally see Dr Somia 3 times before your surgery.   If you prefer one of these consultations can be held via telehealth.    Two consultations are required by law before a date for surgery is scheduled.   This is to allow you plenty of time to ask questions and feel comfortable about the procedure.   Your third consultation will assist us to prepare you for your surgery (ie paperwork, pre-operative testing). 



The surgery takes approximately  1.5 hours to 2.5 hours depending on the procedure recommended and requires an overnight stay in hospital.   Our fees include specialist plastic surgeon, specialist anaesthetist, fully accredited hospital theatre, accommodation and 6 months aftercare.    A formal estimate will be provided after you have discussed your goals and what is possible to achieve them with Dr Somia.  



Each patient recovers at a different rate and anothers recovery should not be compared with yours.

Generally, initial recovery from swelling and bruising is approximately 3-4 weeks.   A return to normal activities can usually be expected after 6 weeks.   Full results can be expected 3-6 months after.  

You can return to work when you feel well and if your employer has lighter duties for you and will allow you to take time to rest and move around. 

Most patients take 2-3 weeks off work if they work in an office context.   Patients working outdoors or in a physical capacity may need to take up to 6 weeks off work whilst they recover.   Talk to us about your specific occupation and surgery.   

You can drive when the anaesthetic has worn off, your vision is clear, and you are pain free getting in and out of the care and whilst performing an emergency stop.   You should check your vehicle insurance policy for their requirements in this situation.  



All surgery carries risks. When travelling overseas on a plane whilst the expectation is a safe journey and arrival, it is understood things could go wrong. The choice of the airline based on safety record and flight path are important elements in determining risk. Similarly, for your surgery, the experience and expertise of your Surgeon, the skill of your anaesthetist and the standard of the hospital will determine the risk. Risks, both general and specific, will be discussed during your consultations and written information will be provided for you to take home.    

General risks include pneumonia, deep venous thrombosis and pulmonary embolism, stroke, heart attack, allergies, awareness, death, bBleeding, infection, sensation change, haematoma and seroma, skin contour irregularities, damage to deeper structures, firmness, delayed healing and tissue death, exposed sutures, dog ears or additional skin golds, dressing issues, asymmetry, scars, lymphoedema and unsatisfactory results. 

Risks specific to Blepharoplasty (Eyelid) surgery are:  injury to the eye globe, need for extra tissue,  loss of vision, changes to tear secretion,  conjunctival oedema and chemosis, exposed sutures,  upper eyelid malposition, difficulty closing the upper eyelid and corneal exposure, lower eyelid malposition and eyelash loss.                                


BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOGRAPHY Our practice privacy policy prevents sharing patient before and afters online. Indicative before and after photos can be viewed during your consultation.  

DISCLAIMERS:   All surgical procedures are performed by Specialist Plastic Surgeon, Dr Naveen Somia (MBBS PhD, FRACS - APHRA Reg:  MED 0001189889).  For full information on Dr Somia's qualifications and risk/recovery information on procedures please visit the procedure page on this website.  From July 1, 2023 all surgical procedures require a GP referral.
All surgery carries risks.  information provided is general only.  Outcomes experienced by one person do not necessarily reflect the outcomes of others given factors such as genetics, diet and exercise.  Please seek a 2nd opinion from a qualified Specialist Plastic Surgeon.  

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or call: 02 9387 2110


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