Of all the annoying beauty conundrums out there (it’s a tough life), eye makeup smudging all over your eye bags wins first prize.
Or second if you always seem to end up with lipstick across your face, but that’s a tale for another day. Back to dark smudges underneath your eyes.
Never mind those precious minutes carefully spent concealing your dark circles, only to have old mate mascara gunk swoop in and mess it all up. Who doesn’t love re-doing their concealer again and again throughout the day?
Sure, sometimes, a shaky hand, a bad product or rogue bottom lashes are to blame. But, as it turns out, there’s a reason your mascara or eyeliner looks smudged under your eye that has nothing to do with your makeup skills.
As Mamamia’s executive editor and beauty journalist Leigh Campbell explained on the You Beauty podcast, this annoying eyeliner/mascara smudge is actually… a vein. (Listen to the full episode of You Beauty below, post continues after audio.)
“They’re called periorbital veins, I only have it under my left eye. I was forever trying to conceal it and thinking ‘God dammit, my mascara or eyeliner is smudging my concealer’, then I realised it’s a vein,” she said.
So what exactly are periorbital veins, and can you get rid of them or cover them up? Here’s what you need to know.
What are periorbital veins?
Periorbital veins are small blue-ish facial veins that can stretch right underneath the eye area.
While they aren’t a health concern – they provide blood supply to the eye – for people with fair skin or thin skin under the eyes, they can make the under eye area look darker. See below for an example of what periorbital veins can look like.