If you trust what you see in magazine ads and from cosmetic companies, you should be able to completely get rid of dark circles, and puffiness around the eyes. Products abound! They are everywhere and all claim to diminish circles and puffiness, create firmness around the eyes and make you look young and fresh. And so you continue to buy these products and continue to have dark circles and puffiness.

How much money have you spent trying to get rid of dark circles? I can admit that I have spent hundreds, maybe thousands on these products. I have always had dark rings under my eyes and bags (thank you Tomlinson genes!) Over the years I have had to educate myself on what is real and what is true when it comes to the cosmetic industry and what it can and cannot do.

Cosmetic companies are allowed to “bend” and sometimes completely lie to the consumer in  order to sell products. Cosmetics are regulated by the FDA and are expected to follow strict guidelines when marketing their products. Unfortunately the FDA does not test or approve cosmetic products, however some ingredients must be approved for use.

How is a cosmetic product defined?

The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) defines cosmetics by their intended use, as “articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied to the human body…for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance” [FD&C Act, sec. 201(i)].

And a Drug as by:

their intended use, as “articles intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease” and “articles (other than food) intended to affect the structure or any function of the body of man or other animals” [FD&C Act, sec. 201(g)( 1)].

In other words, a product that claims to do anything beneath the surface of the skin would be labeled a pharmaceutical and therefore dictated by the approval and testing guidelines of a “drug”. However do I believe that cosmetic products can go deeper than the visual surface? I do, but they cannot physiologically change the body.

A dark circle is usually pigment or blood beneath the skin. Because the skin around the eyes is thin it is not as opaque as other areas on the body, this darkness shows through. Also with age the skin thins and drops, often creating a bag. (Sad I know, but there are things we can do!)

So any product claiming to get rid of your dark circle is not being totally honest. And no matter what claims a product makes about firming a puffy eye, only a surgeon can tighten what has become loose. (Although as I write this I am starting to believe we can use the power of our minds to do a lot in this arena.)

If you have stuck with me through this article which is a bit more technical and tedious than most, there are things that you can do to make the eyes look better. There are also ways to treat puffiness and darkness from the inside. Check back next week for some tips and products.


Until next time, Terri Tomlinson Makeup Artist Dallas TX


*quotes taken from fda.gov/cosmetics

Terri Tomlinson- Makeup Artist based in Dallas, TX creating hair and makeup for print, film, video, runway, Television and the real world for over 20 years. She loves super natural, clean makeup, HD, and getting people “camera ready”. Terri owns Makeup Training Academy offering professional training to new and existing makeup artists. She consults on makeup for HD, speaks publicly, and serves as an on-camera Beauty Expert.