The Eyes Have It


By Janice Cox  |  

Holiday parties, Internet shopping, and late-night reading can all take a toll on your eyes. But dark circles and puffy lids need not be the result of a busy holiday season. Instead, pamper and soothe your eyes with some old-fashioned remedies.

First, banish puffy eyes with a classic tea-bag remedy that uses the tannins in tea for their anti-inflammatory effect. Steep two black or orange pekoe tea bags in boiled water and let them cool to the touch. Lie down, apply one bag over each eye, and leave in place for at least 15 minutes. You may even take a short nap, which will benefit your whole body.

Eye Rest Pillow

This pretty silk pillow eases eye strain with soothing darkness and the refreshing scent of lavender. Flaxseeds give the pillow a long shelf life and provide a soft, fluid feel. If you cannot find flaxseeds at your health food store, substitute short grain rice instead. Use old or thrift store scarves as an inexpensive source of silk.

Materials:

2 pieces of 100 percent silk material, 5 x 9 inches each

1 cup flaxseeds

1 Tbsp. dried lavender flowers

Sew the two pieces of silk together (inside out) with a 5/8-inch seam. Leave a 1-inch opening on one side. Then turn the pillow right-side out. Mix together the flaxseeds and lavender flowers and fill the pillow using a small funnel. Stitch the opening closed by hand. Then lie down, place the pillow over your eyes for at least 10 minutes, and relax.

Other Tips

Drink plenty of water to hydrate the eyes and the whole body.

Use cooling, naturally astringent cucumber slices, raw potato slices, or witch hazel-soaked cotton pads to soothe tired eyes. Or use a chamomile tea bag compress. After infusing the bag for five minutes, cool and place over the eyes.

Wear less make-up (you will look more awake), and avoid reddish eye shadow shades.

If your indoor environment is especially dry, try keeping a humidifier on to help prevent dry eyes.