AARP Eye Center
Does any of this sound familiar? You're stressed out; didn't sleep; binged on cookies, eggnog and caramel popcorn; and stayed up till 3 a.m. gift shopping online. You're so tired that walking the dog gives you jet lag. Maybe you're fighting a cold, too. Whatever the reason, the mirror is confirming red eyes; a puffy face; dry, dull splotchy skin; and an overall blah look. We've all been there, and it's inevitable we will be again. My prepare-and-repair tips can fake you awake and refreshed in no time.
1. Add an extra pillow ... in silk.
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Any grown woman who binges on salty snacks, processed foods, carbs or alcohol knows her face and eyes will pay a puffy price by dawn. Snoozing on two pillows instead of one can minimize the resulting fluid retention. Silk pillowcases like the 100 Percent Pure Mulberry Silk Pillowcase ($20 and up, amazon.com) or SLPBaby Silk Pillowcase ($20 and up, amazon.com) not only help defy sleep creases (especially if you're a side or stomach snoozer), but also keep your blowout or do intact.
2. Mask overnight.
Get an extra dose of hydration with an overnight mask like Olay Masks Hydrating Overnight Gel Mask ($27, cvs.com), Laneige Lavender Water Sleeping Mask ($25, sephora.com) or L'Oréal Paris Revitalift Triple Power Intensive Overnight Mask ($25, ulta.com) instead of your usual moisturizer. The creamy formula is amped with line-plumping humectants like hyaluronic acid and glycerin to give you a head start the next day — especially if combined with my pillow power tip. Be sure you remove all your makeup before applying the mask, and just rinse off in the morning. No worries: These creamy formulas really absorb, so that silk pillowcase stays pristine.
3. Chill in the a.m.
If puffiness persists, try cold therapy. Keep bags of frozen peas on standby. Press the pack to your face while you hit the snooze button for 10 more minutes. Cosmetic surgery patients do this at home to reduce swelling, but it works for us, too! It's the cold (not the veggies) that constrict blood vessels and reduce inflammation, of course.