6 Of Our Best Tips For Depuffing Your Face

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There are a number of reasons why you might wake up to find your face looks and feels puffy. Amongst them? A lack of quality sleep, stress, dehydration, and poor diet. But there can also be serious medical reasons why your face is looking bloated. "Facial puffiness that is new or sudden may occur as a result of allergies, infections, skin irritation, medication reactions, and more," board-certified dermatologist Dr. Marisa Garshick told The Wellnest. Moreover, thyroid disorders, Cushing's disease, sinusitis, and lupus can all be reasons why your face doesn't look the same, so it's important to check with your doctor if you're feeling concerned.

Regardless of the cause, we can all agree there's nothing more annoying than dealing with unexpected puffiness. It's not like it's something you can really conceal, unless you're a super pro at contouring. But that doesn't mean you're out of luck, either. This is how you can bring a little sculpting back to your look naturally, without having to turn to anything invasive.

Turn to something cold

When your face is angry from the night before, it's time to get icy. Literally. Cold temperatures, when applied to your warm skin can help shrink blood vessels, which contribute to your face's red, bloated appearance, Dr. Hadley King explained to Insider.

The easiest and most soothing way to do this is by taking a refrigerated facial roller and gliding it along your cheeks. While you can use any type of roller for this, keep in mind that a rose quartz roller will retain a cool temperature for longer than a jade roller. To make sure you're getting the best results, Dr. Joshua Zeichner recommended to Byrdie that you start from the center part of the face and roll outwards to essentially expel the puffiness away. "In treating the jaw and cheeks, start from below and roll upwards against the direction of gravity," he shared. Dr. Nicole Hayre, founder of the Cosmetic Dermatology Center, also recommended to HuffPost UK putting a slice of refrigerated cucumber over each eye for 15 minutes to help any puffiness around the eyes.

If you don't have a jade roller on hand, you can get similar results from  from facial icing. We'd recommend using a freezer block wrapped in a cloth though rather than putting ice directly onto your face, as applying ice directly to the skin can not only leave it wet, but can also cause ice burn. Though this won't give you a super toned face instantly and the results will vary from person to person, there's no doubting most people will see an at least slightly less puffy face after using a cold jade roller

Try a lymphatic drainage massage

Unlike a regular facial massage, lymphatic massage is a careful process specifically designed to move lymph fluid off the face and toward the lymph vessels.Dr. Karena Wu, owner and clinical director of ActiveCare Physical Therapy, told Women's Health, "[The lymphatic system] acts like a sanitation system for our body by getting rid of 'waste' that our body naturally produces, or other things that can invade our body, like bacteria." Dr. Linda Koehler, assistant professor of physical therapy and rehabilitation medicine at the University of Minnesota, added, "It's what protects us from getting an infection."

A lymphatic drainage massage won't give you crazy dramatic results, but many people do see some benefits. When you regularly perform lymphatic drainage massage, you're essentially moving the excess toxins and fluid that accumulated in your face. This reduces swelling and gives your skin a more sculpted look. "It can calm inflammation and soothe irritated skin, promoting a clearer complexion," facialist April Brodie told Harpers Bazaar. It also improves circulation and helps to reduce congestion. 

The process can be easily done at home by using some facial oil and a jade roller, or via the dry brushing technique with just a few minutes of your time. You can also use your fingers, too. Apply a light amount of oil to your face and massage with gentle, upward strokes, facialist April Brodie told Harpers Bazaar. Be careful not to press too hard as this could have the opposite effect and make skin look worse. Repeat the process every morning upon waking for best results.

Change up your sleeping routine

The way you sleep can also have more of an effect on the puffiness of your face than you might realize. Sleeping on your side can actually make your face puffier than sleeping on your back due to the retention of fluid. "There is a fluid redistribution to face when we are in a horizontal-lying-down position," dermatologist Dr. Apratim Goel explained to Vogue India.

But it's not just the position you sleep in that can make a difference. Skin expert Jasmina Vico added that getting a good night's sleep (doctors recommend at least seven hours is the sweet spot) can also do a whole lot to make your cheeks look less puffy. "Sleep is rejuvenating in so many ways... it removes a lot of toxins that build up," Dr. Zakia Rahman, clinical professor of dermatology at Stanford School of Medicine, told HuffPost UK.

But that's not all you can do at night to look depuffed in the morning. Skin expert Jasmina Vico told British Vogue that for optimal rest, you should try to sleep in a room that's around 64.4°F. "Invest in a good pillow, keeping your head slightly elevated to allow fluid to drain easier at night," she added. 

Use caffeine to your advantage

Dr. Zakia Rahman shared, drinking a cup of coffee or tea containing topical caffeine can actually work to temporarily depuff the face. But if you're not a fan of drinking coffee, not to worry. You can still repeat those caffeinated benefits by applying them to your skin topically. Dr. Marisa Garshick recommended to The Wellnest using more skincare products that contain caffeine. "Caffeine in skincare works to constrict the blood vessels, which can help to reduce puffiness and swelling," Dr. Garshick explained. She also recommended applying your caffeine-infused skincare with a cold applicator, particularly around the eyes, to combine the depuffing methods. Yep, there's a reason so many eye creams contain caffeine.

Similarly, applying cold teabags to the face can also help with puffiness, especially around the eye area. To use them effectively, wet the bags in cold water and then apply them to the skin. "Not only does the cold provide a depuffing and soothing effect, but the tea bags contain caffeine, which helps to shrink the blood vessels, reducing both redness and puffiness in addition to antioxidants to help brighten the undereye skin," Dr. Garshick shared.

Over time, keep an eye on your diet and alcohol consumption

A lot of puffiness in the face can be caused by an unhealthy diet. Drinking too much alcohol can actually be one of the main causes of changes in our appearance because of the vast array of negative side effects it can have on the body. As Dr. Nicole Hayre explained to HuffPost UK, "Alcohol lowers a naturally occurring anti-diuretic hormone, causing the body to lose more fluids and become dehydrated." Dehydration can really affect the fact, as when the body feels dehydrated, it will hold on to and store more water. Therefore, if you suffer from a puffy face and have a big occasion coming up you want to look great for, you may want to avoid the bar for a few days prior.

But it's not just what you drink that can affect how puffy your face appears. What you eat can also play a big part. What we eat and when we eat it can make a big difference to the face appearing puffier. Dr. Hayre explained that swelling in the face can occur if you're prone to eating a lot of salty food late, shortly before going to bed. Dr Apratim Goel also told Vogue India that too much sodium can have the same effect.

Of course, its important to remember that you'll only maintain a debloated face so long as you're minding these habits. This doesn't mean you necessarily have to give up happy hour forever, but if you're trying to reduce overall puffiness, experimenting with a sober curious lifestyle could help.

Heading to the gym can help, too!

Finally, one of the best ways to debloat the face is to get your body moving. As Dr. Goel told Vogue India, exercising helps to open up the skin's pores, which, in turn, increases the blood's supply to the face. This one also ties into the consumption of sodium and salt, because, through the sweating caused by exercise, they'll both leave the body. "This keeps the water-salt balance low in the body and reduces puffiness," he shared. "So it's important to have an active lifestyle to maintain this balance and avoid a puffy face."

Don't think you have to go for some HIIT or a heavy run to reap the benefits either. Even light exercise like a brisk, 30-minute walk can get the blood circulating around the body, which, in turn will, help with the appearance of puffiness (though keep in mind there's no guarantee it will go away entirely, especially if you're consuming a ton of sodium or alcohol). On top of that, exercise can help get rid of any other fluids and toxins. Not only that, but as some facial puffiness can be caused by stress, exercise can help reduce stress and release endorphins to combat the causes of puffiness.