The skin under your eyes is thin and delicate. At times, lack of sleep, poor diet, dehydration, age, smoking and/or drinking can cause this skin to trap fluid. This can cause bags or dark circles. Dr. Lisa Masterson, OB/GYN from The Doctors television show, recommends Arnica Gel for relief of these dark circles and bags under the eyes.
It has enjoyed success mainly in reducing inflammation and pain. Therefore, it’s not a big leap to believe it will reduce bags and dark circles under the eyes. Natural herbs often have the same benefits as those expensive eye creams. I believe natural herbs should always be used before resorting to man-made products.
What Is It?
Arnica is an herb that belongs to the sunflower family. It grows mostly in western North America, Canada, and Eastern Asia, but angustifolia and Montana are two species that are native to Europe. Montana and chamissonis contain helenalin, a sesquiterpene lactone, which is a main ingredient in anti-inflammatory treatments. It is also by the names Mountain Tobacco, Leopard’s bane, and Wolfsbane. The Scientific/Medical name is Arnica Montana.
What Does It Do?
The Montana species that is native to Europe, Has been used for inflammatory ailments for many years. The roots contain derivatives of thymol which is used as a fungicide or preservative. It is currently used in liniments and ointments that are used for strains, sprains, and bruises. It is commonly used by professional athletes for these symptoms. In many cases, it has provided relief of back and hip pain.
The Creams available are generally formulated using the mother tincture rather than a dilution and therefore, contain measurable quantities of the herb.
How well it works will depend on two key ingredients, sesquiterpene lactones, a chemical found in plants that are known to help reduce inflammation, and flavonoid glycosides, also a chemical found in plants, which are molecules that are known to be antioxidants.
There are about 32 different species of this herb. The flower and rhizome are often used in herbal remedies. It is used in Homeopathic preparations for wounds, infections, and inflammation. It is promoted for use on the skin to help soothe and heal wounds, bruises, sprains, muscle strain, inflammation, irritated skin, insect bites, burns, arthritis, ulcers, acne, eczema, chapped lips, sore throat, and it is believed to help heal bacterial infections. It is also an ingredient in some herbal skin care products and shampoos. Arnica ointments usually contain up to 15% of arnica oil or 25% of a tincture of arnica (the herb mixed with alcohol). Blistering and inflammation may be more likely if very strong solutions are used on the skin. It is a good idea to use a gel with no more than 25%. It is mostly well-known for reducing inflammation and pain.
Is There Evidence For Its Use?
The thymol in the roots has been clinically proven to be effective in reducing blood vessels. A study of this herb in healing wounds after surgery found a reduction of pain and bleeding following surgery. Dr. Lisa Masterson from The Doctors television show, recommends Arnica gel to decrease dark circles and puffiness under the eyes. Many women use it as a moisturizer.
It boosts the normal healing process which will ease the flow of blood and body fluids. It helps reduce the dark color of bruising.
Many medical publications and magazines have given this gel some excellent reviews and ratings. It’s one of the most preferred gels by Americans for day-to-day injuries and bruises. It’s not greasy or sticky and very easy to apply.
Is It Safe?
Arnica contains the toxin helenalin, which can be poisonous if large amounts of the plant are eaten. Just be safe, as you would with any aging skin care product, keep it on the skin. If it is taken internally, it is diluted to the extent that there is almost none of the active ingredients remaining. Homeopathic solutions of 24X or more are not toxic as there is only a tiny amount of Arnica left after the dilution. If the herb itself is taken by mouth, it can be poisonous. It has caused a number of serious reactions, including allergies and at least one death. Small doses of the herb are considered safe to use on the skin. Individuals who are allergic to sunflowers, Echinacea, marigolds, chamomile, or ragweed may be more likely to be allergic to Arnica.
You can’t use the plant directly on an open wound. This is why medical companies researched and discovered Arnica Gel. Many homeopathic companies sell it as a gel, oil, or tablets. The gel is the most popular because it is easier to apply. If you price eye cream, you’ll find that this gel is just a fraction of the cost. With so much success behind it, it makes sense to try it yourself. You’ll be very happy you gave it a chance when you see how well it works on those dark circles and bags under your eyes.