Any time a film or TV character goes to a spa, you can bet they’re getting cucumber slices placed over their eyes as they gossip about their enemies-to-lovers antagonist with the Judy Greer of the program (you know, the best friend sidekick). It’s such a common trope that we don’t even question it, but I, personally, have never had a facialist put cucumbers on my eyes. And honestly? I feel like I've been cheated.
It’s a legitimate treatment, albeit a basically cost-free one. Cucumber has been used to treat under-eye puffiness and dark circles for centuries, and it’s due to the vegetable (fruit?)’s anti-inflammatory and hydrating properties. Considering cucumbers are all but 100 percent water, you’re getting a direct dose of easy moisturization, and they’re super rich in vitamin C and folic acid, so they can stimulate cell growth and fight off the exact toxins that cause the puffiness to begin with.
Esthetician Erin Larson told Allure in 2017 that "cucumber slices act as a vasoconstrictor, slowing blood flow," meaning that the cool temperature of the cucumber combats the vessel dilation and swelling of the blood vessels around your eyes. As a result, the puffiness decreases. Meanwhile, the vitamin K in cucumbers improves your circulation; your skin relaxes and starts to glow. It’s all about letting the natural acids of the cucumber melt into your skin.
Still, using cucumber slices for your under-eye problem areas is more of a quick fix than an actual long-term remedy. After all, you’d be going through a lot of cucumbers if this was part of your daily routine. On the other hand, there are plenty of cucumber water serums and the like on the market that advertise the exact benefits of a cucumber itself (try Peter Thomas Roth's Cucumber Gel Mask, Origins' No Puffery™ Cooling Roll-On for Puffy Eyes or Illari Skin's Cucumber Eye Cream to get a feel).
Our next spa day is going to be great.
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