A Wacky Sleep Schedule
It's not just skimping on sleep that causes those circles to darken. According to Batra, hitting the snooze button too often can have the same effect.
"Sleep plays a role in dark circles under the eyes due to blood vessels that may be visible [under] thin eyelid skin. Contrary to what we've all been taught, you can actually get darker circles from sleeping too much," she said. "This is because while you sleep, oxygenated blood gathers underneath the eye. Sleeping in certain positions, such as on your stomach, can also worsen dark circles because gravity causes blood to pool under the eye." That's also what creates "bags" — aka puffiness and swelling — under the eyes.
Before you let that advice be your reason to stay up all night, remember that inadequate sleep can also trigger pigmentation. As Batra added, "Sleeping too little can cause the blood vessels under the eye to dilate, creating a dusky hue. Dark circles are more likely to show up when you haven't had a lot of sleep because sleep is when the body goes into repair mode, undoing all the daily damage and stresses that your skin faces each day." Moral of the story: no sleep means that your body has less time to heal.
All things considered, Batra said to aim for getting seven hours of sleep a night, as this amount will still leave you feeling rejuvenated in the morning and help fight those dreaded circles.