Dry Skin Under Eyes: Causes, Symptoms, and Effective Treatments

Dry skin under eyes can be a frustrating and uncomfortable condition. Not only does it make the area look dull and tired, but it can also cause itching, flaking, and irritation. If you are struggling with dry skin under eyes, rest assured that you are not alone. This is a common problem, and there are many effective treatments available.

Causes and Treatments for Dry Skin Under Eyes

There are several factors that can contribute to dry skin under eyes. Some of the most common causes include:

Ocular Rosacea

Ocular rosacea can affect the eyes and surrounding areas, leading to symptoms such as swollen or red eyelids, bloodshot eyes, conjunctivitis, eyelid crusting, and itching. Left untreated, it can potentially impact vision. Management strategies for ocular rosacea may encompass warm compresses, eye cleansers, eye drops or medications, and prescription antibiotics.


Facial psoriasis, affecting about half of individuals with psoriasis, commonly occurs on the eyebrows, between the nose and upper lip, or along the forehead and hairline. On rare occasions, psoriasis may extend to the skin around the eyes, causing redness, dryness, and discomfort. In some instances, it may even lead to vision issues. Specialized topical treatments can be administered to manage psoriasis around the eyes, but caution must be exercised to prevent excessive use of creams or ointments, which could elevate the risk of cataracts or glaucoma.

Harsh Weather

Extreme weather conditions can induce dryness and flaking around the eyes. Dry air, especially during the winter or in arid climates, accelerates moisture evaporation from the skin, resulting in dehydration. Employing a gentle moisturizer around the eyes can be beneficial during these periods. Furthermore, sun exposure can contribute to skin dryness and cracking, necessitating the application of sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher or the use of sun-protective headwear.


Blepharitis is a commonly encountered condition that can manifest as redness, dryness, swelling, and itching of the eyelids, often accompanied by dry eyes and the presence of crusty flakes on the eyelashes. It is essential to note that blepharitis is neither contagious nor typically detrimental to ocular health. In some cases, it can be linked to clogged oil ducts, resulting in dry skin around and beneath the eyes. Fortunately, regular eyelid hygiene can be an effective means of managing this condition, even though it may not entirely resolve it. Consulting with healthcare professionals such as dermatologists or ophthalmologists can help identify the underlying causes of blepharitis and guide appropriate management.


Conjunctivitis, commonly known as pink eye, manifests as a pinkish hue in the whites of the eyes, often triggered by viral or bacterial infections or allergens. This condition can be marked by itching, eyelid swelling, excessive tearing, crusting of the eyelids or eyelashes, and eye discharge. While cold compresses and artificial tears can offer relief, healthcare providers can conduct evaluations to distinguish between bacterial and viral conjunctivitis. In cases of bacterial origin, prescription antibiotics may be necessary to resolve the infection.


Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, can occur anywhere on the body, including the delicate skin surrounding the eyes. It is more common in individuals who also experience eczema in other areas. The thin and sensitive nature of periorbital skin makes it susceptible to irritant and allergic contact dermatitis. Avoiding known irritants or allergens is pivotal in reducing the risk of dermatitis. For management, topical treatments like creams or steroids can be employed. In more severe cases, oral steroids or other immunologic medications may be recommended.

Other Contributing Factors

  • Age: The skin around the eyes is thinner and more delicate than the skin on other parts of the body, and it becomes thinner with age. This makes it more prone to dryness.
  • Dehydration: Not drinking enough fluids can lead to dry skin all over the body, including under the eyes.
  • Harsh skincare products: Using harsh soaps, cleansers, and other skincare products can strip the skin of its natural oils, leading to dryness.
  • Allergic reactions: Allergic reactions to cosmetics, skincare products, or other allergens can also cause dry skin under the eyes.
  • Medical conditions: Some medical conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis, and thyroid problems, can also cause dry skin.

What Are the Symptoms of Dry Skin Under Eyes?

The symptoms of dry skin under eyes may vary depending on the severity and underlying cause of the condition. However, some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Tightness or discomfort in the area
  • Redness and inflammation
  • Flaking or peeling skin
  • Itching or burning sensation
  • Fine lines and wrinkles

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to take steps to address the underlying cause of your dry skin.

How Can You Prevent Dry Skin Under Eyes?

Preventing dry skin under eyes begins with taking good care of your skin. Some tips for preventing dryness include:

  • Using a gentle cleanser that does not strip the skin of its natural oils
  • Moisturizing the delicate skin around the eyes daily with a nourishing eye cream
  • Protecting your skin from environmental factors by wearing sunglasses and avoiding prolonged sun exposure
  • Eating a healthy, balanced diet rich in vitamins and nutrients that support skin health
  • Staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day
  • Getting enough sleep and managing stress levels

dry skin under eyes: home remedies

Cucumber Slices: Treat yourself to a mini spa moment by popping some chilled cucumber slices onto your closed eyelids for about 10-15 minutes. Cucumbers are like nature’s moisturizing superheroes and can work wonders in soothing dry skin.

Aloe Vera Gel: Aloe vera is your skin’s best friend. Simply dab on some pure aloe vera gel to the dry areas under your eyes. It’s famous for being ultra-hydrating and super soothing.

Coconut Oil: Before drifting off to dreamland, pamper your under-eye area with a smidge of extra virgin coconut oil. It’s like giving your skin a cozy, hydrating hug while you sleep.

Honey: Whip up a little honey magic by mixing it with warm water and gently applying it under your eyes. Leave it on for around 15 minutes, then rinse it off. Honey’s a natural moisture-locker and oh-so-delightful!

Tea Bags: Grab those used, cooled tea bags (chamomile or green tea work like a charm) and place them over your closed eyelids for a mini relaxation session. The antioxidants in tea will work their magic, leaving your skin feeling soothed and refreshed.

Cold Compress: Feeling a bit puffy? No worries! Just grab a clean, damp cloth and chill it in the fridge for a few minutes. Then, give your under-eye area some gentle love with this cool, soothing compress.

Cocoa Butter: Treat your skin to a nightly spa-like ritual with a touch of cocoa butter. It’s like giving your under-eye skin a rich, moisturizing bedtime story.

Almond Oil: A drop or two of almond oil goes a long way. Gently massage it into the dry skin under your eyes, and let it work its nourishing magic. Plus, it’s packed with vitamin E!

Shea Butter: Shea butter to the rescue! It’s a natural softener, so a tiny bit of shea butter will make your skin feel oh-so-smooth and cared for.

is vaseline good for dry skin under eyes?

Vaseline is a petroleum jelly that can be used to moisturize dry skin. It forms a protective barrier that helps lock in moisture and prevent further moisture loss, which can be beneficial for combating dryness. However, it’s essential to use it sparingly and with caution, as it can be quite thick and may cause milia (small, white bumps) in some individuals if applied excessively. Moreover, be sure to apply it only to clean, dry skin and avoid getting it in your eyes. If you have oily skin or acne-prone skin, it is best to avoid using Vaseline on your face.

In case you have specific concerns or underlying skin conditions, consulting a dermatologist for personalized skincare recommendations is advisable.

When you need to contact doctor

  • The dryness is severe or does not improve with home remedies.
  • The skin is red, inflamed, or cracked.
  • You have other symptoms, such as itching, burning, or pain.
  • The dry skin is accompanied by other symptoms, such as fatigue, weight loss, or hair loss.

These symptoms may be a sign of an underlying medical condition, such as eczema, psoriasis, thyroid problems, or diabetes.


  1. What skincare products are best for treating dry skin under the eyes? Look for gentle, fragrance-free moisturizers and eye creams specifically formulated for sensitive skin. Ingredients like hyaluronic acid, ceramides, and niacinamide can help hydrate and repair the skin barrier.
  2. Can lifestyle factors affect dry skin under the eyes? Absolutely. Lifestyle factors like smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and poor dietary choices can contribute to dry skin. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, adequate hydration, and avoiding smoking can benefit your skin.
  3. Can makeup exacerbate dry skin under the eyes? Certain makeup products, especially if they contain drying ingredients or are not removed properly, can exacerbate dryness. Look for makeup products labeled as hydrating or suitable for sensitive skin and be sure to remove makeup gently and thoroughly.
  4. Is it safe to use over-the-counter eye creams for dry skin under the eyes? Over-the-counter eye creams can be safe and effective for treating dry skin under the eyes. However, it’s essential to choose products that are formulated for your skin type and concerns. If you have specific skin conditions or concerns, consult a dermatologist for personalized recommendations

Final Takeaway

Dry skin under eyes can be frustrating, but it is a common condition that can be effectively treated with the right approach. By taking good care of your skin, using high-quality skincare products, and making lifestyle changes that support skin health, you can improve the appearance and comfort of the delicate skin around your eyes.

Remember, if you are experiencing severe or persistent symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention. A dermatologist can help you identify the underlying cause of your dry skin and provide targeted treatment options.