How To Cure A Black Eye
If only the formula for how to cure a black eye was as easy as the formula for how to get one — drink lots of booze, open your big mouth.
By Michael Irons
Okay, we can’t exactly tell you how to cure a black eye — other than to suggest you avoid getting punched in the face in the first place. But we can tell you how to treat a black eye. In a nutshell, your typical shiner is simply a bruise that’s in an unfortunate place. Most black eyes aren’t serious injuries and are the result of something — or someone — hitting you hard enough in the peeper to damage blood vessels or capillaries. Fluids subsequently pool around the eye and cause swelling and discoloration. While the one-liner, “You should see the other guy!” is a crowd pleaser at work, you’ll still want to get rid of your black eye as quickly as possible. Here’s how to do that …
• Clean It
Clean the area with a mild soap and water. If there are any small cuts, this will disinfect them; lightly pat the area around the black eye dry with a towel. Unless you’re a masochist. In that case, rub dry with sand paper.
• Ice it
If you don’t have an ice pack, grab frozen vegetables from the freezer, toss them into a Ziploc bag or wrap them in a towel, and press lightly against the swollen area. Apply the cold compress to the black eye for 10-minute intervals. That’ll help reduce the swelling, constrict damaged blood vessels, and stop the bleeding below the skin. Don’t use raw meat like Ralphie in A Christmas Story; it may look badass, but if bacteria seeps into skin lacerations it’ll cause a nasty infection. If you’re icing for a while but find yourself experiencing double vision, loss of sight, or persistent migraines, you’re in worse shape that you thought — see a doctor.
• Elevate it
Like any other part of your body, your eye will swell more if there’s a bunch of blood pooling around it. That’s not a problem while you’re awake, but when you go to sleep, try to at least have your head propped up on an extra pillow or two. However, do not attempt to sleep standing up; that’ll just result in more head trauma.
• Conceal it
No, not with a mask — we mean with concealer. Let us explain. If your black eye has come at the worst possible moment — you’re about to give a presentation, you’re about to get married, you’re about to begin a lucrative career as a glasses model — you may want to make it look slightly less awful by using a concealer for men, like Evolution Man Conceal ($20). A little goes a long way; dab a little on your eye with one of your ring fingers and see how it looks.