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    “I tried haemorrhoid cream on my puffy eyes — here’s what happened”

    It smells like something medicinal that’s meant for your bum. Because it is.

    25 May 2018

    “I tried haemorrhoid cream on my puffy eyes — here’s what happened”

    Susan Barrett SHARE

    Young woman applying cream to her skin to reduce swelling under the eyes

    Puffy-eyed. That’s me. Even after 8pm-to-bed-with-herbal-tea (okay, okay, never with herbal tea – but you get the gist). So when a colleague reminded me of how all the models swore by Prep H hemorrhoid cream to get those ridiculously fresh-looking wide innocent eyes, I had to try it.

    The low-down on Prep H, aka bum cream

    Hemorrhoids, also known as piles, are swollen veins in the lower part of the anus and rectum. Cute. And Preparation H has long been THE name we’ve all come to know and love in the treatment of said awkward protrusions. It works by temporarily narrowing the blood vessels in the area, so decreasing swelling and discomfort (burning, pain, itching and all those delights).

    READ MORE: 5 things that are sabotaging your skin without you even knowing it

    On the surface of it, the bum-to-face maths makes sense: narrowing blood vessels, decreasing swelling. I mean, I’ve tried the cold teaspoon trick and it just left me feeling a little chilly. Surely this, being an actual “medicinal cream”, would work better?

    Testing, testing…

    I was beyond excited on Testing Day and slapped on potentially dangerous (more on that later) levels of Prep H. The tightening feeling was encouragingly instant – but it remained more of a feeling than a result, I thought. My colleagues all seemed to notice a change, though – so, once more inspired, I repeated the performance the next day, and smeared a giant finger-full across my forehead for good measure. Because… Frown lines. [FYI: That was a very bad idea. Forehead lines and eye bags are not the same thing, dummy.]

    READ MORE: 3 women share what finally worked to clear up their eczema

    I was not the only one willing my eye area into submission. Here’s what my fellow testers had to say:

    “My under-eye area feels puffy when I haven’t had enough quality sleep – which was the case the day I tested the cream. I wasn’t expecting any difference, but surprisingly, after just a few minutes, my eyes felt more… open. There was no visible difference, but I definitely felt less puffy. It felt horribly sticky, though, and the smell was horrendous. It smells like something medicinal that’s meant for your bum. I haven’t used it since and I wouldn’t use it again. Not worth it.” – Wanita.

    READ MORE: These 7 night-time products do astounding things while you sleep

    “I had always heard the urban legend that Prep H was supposed to plump up lines around the eyes, or reduce bags – or something. But I’ve never actually tried it until now… I thought my skin under my eyes felt moisturised, but couldn’t feel any tightening or ‘plumping’. I also couldn’t see a visible difference in my own skin. I did notice a sort of ‘softening’ on the skin of a colleague though. [Yup, that’ll be me.]” – Leigh.

    I mailed a doctor – but not until AFTER I’d tried it

    “[It] might work temporarily for reducing puffy eyes,” explains dermatologist Dr Nomphelo Gantsho. “It restricts the blood vessels, which could get rid of the redness for a while, and contains one percent hydrocortisone, an anti-inflammatory that might temporarily reduce puffiness – in theory…”

    I’m sensing a but…

    “There is no conclusive scientific evidence on Preparation H Hemorrhoid Cream being more effective than other methods of reducing eye puffiness.”

    So, is it cool for an insta-fix, albeit fleeting?

    Um… No. “If you accidentally get some in your eye, the ingredients can cause serious damage, and then puffiness will be the least of your concerns. The labels state that you should NOT use the product in, or near, your eyes,” says Gantsho.

    READ MORE: 7 unbelievably cool things you can do with lip balm – besides nursing chapped lips

    And that’s not all. “Prolonged use of topical steroids like hydrocortisone has been shown to cause skin thinning, increased skin fragility, enlarged blood vessels, and can even result in problems with your adrenal gland. In short, your eyes will end up looking worse, not better.” I should probably have read the label then.

    The verdict

    “Don’t use Preparation H Hemorrhoid Cream to treat your eye puffiness. It can do more harm than good. Since eye puffiness can be a sign of a health issue, like lack of sleep, allergies, or dehydration, it’s important to address the root issue and not just the symptoms,” says Gantsho. Her safe eye-puff fix: Apply a cool compress, then conceal with make-up. Back to the spoon. Boom.

    This article was first published on Women's Health SA.

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    Hemorrhoid cream has weird benefits for under

    See what experts are saying about Preparation H as an unexpected skin solution for under-eye bags.

    BEAUTY

    Should you put hemorrhoid cream on your face? Why some experts say yes

    It certainly sounds weird, but they have their reasons.

    Nov. 15, 2017, 10:48 PM UTC / Source: TODAY

    By Kristin Granero

    Our editors independently selected these items because we think you will enjoy them and might like them at these prices. If you purchase something through our links, we may earn a commission. Pricing and availability are accurate as of publish time. Learn more about Shop TODAY.

    Preparation H ... on your face? Yes, you read that correctly.

    TODAY Style recently asked dermatologists to share their favorite solutions for reducing under-eye puffiness, and we were surprised to find so many recommending hemorrhoid cream

    "Preparation H is a vasoconstrictor," explained Dr. Sejal Shah, founder of Smarter Skin Dermatology in New York City. "By narrowing the vessels, it helps reduce puffiness. It can also make any bluish discoloration less noticeable."

    Preparation H, $20, Amazon

    Preparation H

    According to celebrity groomer KC Fee, it’s a well-known secret in the beauty industry.

    "As weird as it sounds, it actually works," said Fee, who has worked with Armie Hammer, Billy Eichner and more. "If you have sensitive skin, you might want to use it sparingly and keep it on for only about 10 minutes or so."

    Others caution that, while it works, the effects don’t last very long. "It is good to use it only on special occasions. Use a tiny amount of Preparation H cream under the eye area, being careful not to get any into your eyes because it may cause severe irritation. And let it dry before applying makeup," suggested makeup artist Kyriaki Savrani.

    Then there’s also the risk of clogging pores. "Preparation H formulations often contain petrolatum, mineral oil and paraffin that can clog pores and cause breakouts. In addition, the formula may contain lanolin that can cause contact dermatitis in many," warned Dr. Michelle Yagoda, a facial plastic surgeon in New York.

    Curious to try it for yourself? Be sure to keep these safety tips in mind when applying, and find other solutions for combating dark under-eye circles here.

    If you are a little scared of the heavy-duty stuff, two TODAY editors revealed their favorite under-eye concealers that they can't live without.

    For more beauty myths answered, read our article on whether women should shave their face!

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    STYLE

    Amazon's secret outlet section has tons of summer fashion finds — starting at $10

    Bobbi Brown Under Eye Corrector, $27, Nordstrom

    "I'm not a never-leave-the-house-without-makeup person, but if I think anyone I know might see me, this stuff is a must. It brightens up my ever-present dark circles without looking cakey or like 'makeup.' Without it I look like a corpse, basically." - Lisa Tolin, TODAY Editor

    Lisa also wrote an ode to her favorite acne spot treatment - and we love it!

    Charlotte Tilbury 'Mini Miracle Eye Wand', $45, Nordstrom

    "I love this under-eye cream-and-concealer duo because it's a two-in-one. I can put the cream on for prevention and also hide my current dark circles without having to grab another product. It's great when I'm rushing in the morning, on-the-go or headed on a trip and don't want to stuff my makeup bag with tons of products." - Jordan Muto, TODAY Editor

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    Does hemorrhoid cream work as a quick fix for under-eye bags? I tested this hack to see if it would actually work. Here's what happened.

    I feel like I've had bags and dark circles under my eyes since before I understood why anyone would be sleep-deprived. Dark circles and eyelids are common among women with dark skin, so I never gave them much thought. My mom always told me that having dark eyelids was a blessing, a natural eye shadow.

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    STEPHANIE KALOI (SHE/HER/HERS)

    00:00 / 00:00

    My dark under-eyes got worse about a year ago, and regular foundation wasn't doing the trick anymore. I tried drugstore and fancy concealers, and I still looked like I was walking into walls on the regular. I even took to wearing glasses instead of my usual contacts to mask the discoloration.

    I visited a dermatologist, who said the problem was probably due to seasonal allergies and gave me a retinoid cream, which I used for a while. The skin around eyes is very sensitive, and doctors deter patients from using anything strong for long periods of time.

    The circles and bags got a little better, but sometimes they reappear, especially on my left eye. Occasionally, I'll use Vaseline at night (per my doctor's recommendation), but I've mostly gotten used to them.

    Recently I was tagged in some photos with new friends and was horrified to see how puffy my eyes have gotten. This time, I wanted an easy cure that wouldn't have any side effects.

    After scouring the internet and Amazon, I read that Sandra Bullock, Kim Kardashian, and Emma Stone use hemorrhoid creams under their eyes to combat under-eye bags. Celebrity stylists had even more possible solutions that didn't cost an arm and a leg and were available in either my kitchen or over the counter. I'm always open to DIY (read: cheap) solutions.

    If they're good enough for Oscar winners and Vogue cover girls, they're good enough for me! With this in mind, I headed to the drugstore to try a hemorrhoid cream for something not hemorrhoid-related.

    Courtesy of LittleThings Author

    Before

    Here's a photo of me fresh out of the shower, smiling. My eye bags are really noticeable!

    Courtesy of LittleThings Author

    With Makeup

    Foundation does a pretty good job of covering up bags, and I have concealer for special occasions. But makeup melts off my face in the summer, and I need to not frighten people by looking like the living dead.

    Courtesy of LittleThings Author

    Testing Preparation H

    I was a little embarrassed to buy hemorrhoid cream at Walgreens, so I added tissues, a protein drink, and gummy bears.

    The internet has different opinions on when to apply the cream, but I opted for nighttime, assuming that would allow more time for the H to do its thing. It's also when I used to apply Vaseline and the cream my doctor prescribed.

    Courtesy of LittleThings Author

    Application

    It tingled a little upon application, but I knew to expect that from the articles I read. It wasn't unpleasant, kind of like using a minty cleanser. The smell was terrible and strong, but I was exhausted, so I spread on a thick layer and went to bed.

    Source : littlethings.com

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