I wore a new pair of swim goggles with suction to prevent leaking I'd estimate about 25-30 times this summer, 20-40 minutes per swim. I am a long distance swimmer, female, age 447. I noticed at the end of August I was developing these marked "troughs" under my eyes and I stopped using the goggles. I also would have reddish discoloration/ bruising under the eyes after I removed the goggles which seemed to dissipate within a couple of hours.
I now have deep dark circles with discoloration under my eyes that is marked. I was sick for a couple of weeks with a cold/post nasal drip in October which may have made this worse. Anyway, it has been two months since I stopped using the goggles. I am very very worried about these awful looking troughs.
A friend asked me three weeks ago if I had a black eye and someone else remarked I looked "very tired".
I'm very concerned that I have done permanent damage to the skin under my eyes by wearing these suction type goggles with the resultant pressure and and I'm wondering if you have ever seen this problem. Is there anything I can do? What is the prognosis and is it possible I have done permanent damage?
I have exactly the same problem! I'm 50 and don't consider myself vain but the troughs, as you accurately describe, are bothersome. I'm considering purchasing an Anew under eye cream from Avon and also will try to use cucumbers on my eyes after I swim. I just read in RealSimple that the cucumber thing actually has some benefit for any under eye swelling. I don't know if any of it will work. I too am worried about long term damage. I hope someone answers our questions!
Avon under eye cream? Hmmm..I have a friend who sells Avon, is this cream supposed to be good?
I've stopped swimming (last swim outdoors was mid-September) and I purchased a swim mask at the end of the summer, which leave marks in a different place but at least they don't cause the eye swelling.
I posted the question to another board and a derm MD answered, saying this was uncommon and to try goggles that fit to bone. However, I believe if one has been using goggles (especially the suction kind which are the best way to keep out water leaks) for years, even decades like I have, then there must be some kind of long term cumulative effect. I believe the pressure of the goggles has over the years contributed to my baggy eyes and now I'm waking up with incredible puffiness. I have to put cold compresses (I use a cold moistened facecloth) over my face for 10-15 minutes in the morning.
I think at some point I will consult a plastic surgeon or derm MD although at 47 I feel I am too young for this. Maybe in a few years....
I'm sure some of it is just aging and something I/we will have to accept as inevitable changes but I do worry that the long term use of goggles has just added years to my otherwise youthful appearance.
I noticed these dark rings under my eyes last time I went swimming and thought it was just because I was getting old (51) -- or perhaps not hydrating properly. Today I went again, and I have these same dark rings. They take at least a day to go away. On another site they said that these were due to bruising, but I think it is the pressure of the goggles pushing the fatty tissue away, and we see the gray color of the bone underneath.
I agree that this makes me look years older, and actually pretty strange.
I don't want to give up swimming, but the one of the the benefits of exercise is to look fit.
So glad I found all of you! I am 50 and have been swimming for 10 years. The "goggle troughs" always went away after a few hours until recently. I agree with Greg that it looks like the goggle pressure pushed the fatty tissue away - and that it looks rather strange! I am hoping to hear some good news...that it goes away without plastic surgery, which is out of the question for me. Am curious if anyone has tried facial massage and/or lymphatic draining to help. Also wondering if anyone has seen improvements in their goggle troughs as more time has lapsed? I really don't want to give up swimming, but I also need to not look tired all the time in my profession....
Thanks for your comment. Nice to know we are not alone. I have not tried facial massage nor lymphatic drainage...how does one do lymphatic drainage? I'd be willing to try it if I knew it would not make it WORSE.
I do believe that goggle pressure over a period of time does cause fat herniation (I have seen this term used by plastic surgeons) and the skin is so thin around the eyes that the bluish color is the vasculature underneath...the veins and capillaries.
I have done quite a bit of research, have emailed plastic surgeons and MD's who have written articles about goggle injuries and it seems the consensus is that once the bags or circles or are there, especially at a certain age (I'm 47.5) there's not much that you can do (short of surgery). You can try cold compresses and then someone else said warm compresses. I don't believe any of the creams out there will achieve miracles but maybe some of the firming creams are worth a try.
Also, some of this naturally occurs with aging depending on your genetics. It's hard for me to tell how much of this is due to the goggle pressure or my genetics. I am pretty convinced that the goggles have hastened this development.
For me, I will never wore goggles again. I am so disheartened by the change in my appearance this that my last swim was mid-September and I wore a mask at that time....I'm DONE with goggles.
I will swim again, but I will either use the mask or nothing.
I agree that the cause is a combination of genetics and swim goggles, and that the goggles hastened the 'fat herniation" process (a term I learned from further research). My mom is 86 and has never used swim goggles, and the same under eye bags and dark circles are there for her. But she's 86!
I plan to continue swimming with a mask, give the healing process more time, and pray. The body knows how to heal itself, and as for prayer, that's a longer discussion.
I am very interested in leading efforts to have swim goggle manufacturers include a warning label about possible under eye damage for older swimmers. If anyone has contacts in this industry, please let me know. Otherwise I will pursue Congress. And if anyone finds a non-surgery cure for our goggle troughs, please post! Even if the cure was just time...
I have thought about writing to people in the industry to ask about this issue. I did find a name of someone who works for Tyr who posted on a swimmer's board about goggles. I'll try to track his name down.
My sisters don't have this problem but my brother (who is 58) does have bags under his eyes so perhaps I am taking after him. When I wake up in the morning I can see the imprint of where the goggles rested on my face and there are two puffy fat pads sitting on the tops of my cheeks, just below the "troughs" and dark circles. I did not look like this in June. This developed and hastened after wearing the goggles (Kaiman Aquasphere) this past summer. By the end of the day they are not as noticable as it is water retention and with gravity it lessens but for several hours after awakening it is pretty unsightly.
Sure, if there was a warning on the goggle package I never would have taken the risk. I have thought that if this worsens (which by all accounts it may) that I may have to consider surgery maybe at the age of 50. Not at all happy about this possibility, in fact, quite terrified but I don't know if I could face myself in the mirror.
I was wondering mpl2009 why surgery is out of the question. Is it financial or just that you would not take the risk? Of course, there is a risk it won't come out the way one wants. This is what cares me. I would be ready and willing to drop the money for the best surgeon to fix this. But they can't even guarantee a good result.
I will also try prayer and meditation and thinking positive thoughts. If I find any more information on people in the industry I will be happy to email them to you or post here.
I am so pleased to have discovered this discussion by googling 'damage from swimming goggles'. I'm 45 and swim twice a week for fitness, I'm only in the pool 40 mins each time but I get the pressed in/black eyes look afterwards and still have it 8 hours later although it clears by the next day. I wear contacts so goggles are a must, I tried a mask and hated it, it felt like swimming with a box on my face and it interfered with my breathing. Since fitness and the over 40s are such a big growth area right now, why haven't Speedo or another manufacturer got hold of this, they could grab the whole market sector if they designed a 'non invasive' goggle. I've tried the cold tea bag treatment, I think it's just the cooling effect of the bag (same with cucumber) that helps.
Any other successes with creams or different eyewear that you have found I would be delighted to hear about.
I'm a 31 y/o female and swam with goggles last night for the first time in a long time. The suction caused brusing above and below my eyes and swelling. The bruising is mostly gone (14 hours later), but the under eye region is still swollen. I am very disappointed. I just started training for my first triathlon, but I refuse to wear goggles if it will cause these effects. I'm glad it's not just me, but that does not really help :).
I am the original poster. I tried to post something yesterday to piscenlex but it did not post as I guess I forgot to log in.
Anyway, I have not swum since October 08. If I do swim this summer, I do have a mask from AquaSphere that is a smaller shape for women. I have heard they came out with a newer mask model as well so it might be worth checking out AquaSphere Seal Mask on Google and see what options you find. I will never wear goggles again if I can help it. Not worth it.
My swelling, under eye circles, eye bags are still there and I attribute it to aging, genetics AND wearing goggles for 24 years. So I would advise a younger woman if you have sensitive skin (I'm Irish so I do) and you plan to swim for many years and if you want to avoid "goggle eyes", consider skipping the goggles and wear a mask. A mask will also leave marks but it will be on the parts of your face where the skin is thicker, the cheeks and the forehead. Don't wear the mask too tight if you can help it, again you will have some marks but my feeling is they won't be as dramatic as the under and over eye marks. And it's unlikely a mask will cause bruising. The under eye area skin is some of thinnest on the body and thus more susceptible to swelling and discoloration when compressed.
I also posted a longer message a few days ago that didn't make it for some reason. I will be briefer in this one, in case it erases as well.
I agree that the eye bags and dark circles are a combination of genetics, aging and (tight) goggle use. I have contacted Speedo and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and requested that goggles include a warning to inform users of this potential damage.
If I had known about this when I was in my forties, I would have stopped wearing goggles and switched to a mask. I wear and aqua sphere mask now and have adjusted to it just fine.
My eye bags bother me a lot. I have considered eye surgery but don't think I'll go that far to fix them. They are better when I'm not tired, when I'm happy, and as they day goes on. But they do return in the morning and I think it's because the fat pads have herniated.
Guess the only 'good' that can come from this is to prevent others from suffering by getting the word out. So if you're so inclined, contact google manufacturers or the CPSC at http://www.cpsc.gov/
I appreciate all the research you all have done on this goggle/eye problem. I have worn the Speedo small suction goggles for years and believe they added to the dark rings & puffy under eye look I've endured. I am now age 70 and a few months ago had plastic surgery on upper & lower lids and now wear an old AquaSphere mask that leaves dents on my forehead and cheeks. These lines do go away after several hours or the next day...not perfect but the best solution I could find.
A few years ago I purchased an expensive pair of Barracuda Goggles that were not supposed to make marks but they leaked. Does anyone know a place that fits these goggles to ones face?
Hey guys, I'm 25 and have just started swimming for fitness cause I have always had trouble losing weight and having a decent body shape. I've been swimming for about 1.5 months, 5 days a week at 1~1.5rs a day. I've already lost 5kg; but better than that, my physique is looking awesome. I plan to make this a long term form of fitness. One problem is that I wear glasses, so I use prescription goggles. The goggles are now causing the dark circles which stay until the next morning even. I am worried that the circles might become permanent.
Someone suggested wearing contact lenses and using swedish goggles. I bought the goggles, but I'm not sure that they are preventing the dark circles because they press along the same location as my normal goggles. Also, they are very uncomfortable and leak a lot. I haven't bought the contact lenses because I've never worn contacts in my life. Anyone have any experience with the swedish goggles solving the dark circles problem?
I guess the worst case scenario is to wear a mask with contact lenses. I would appreciate any suggestion. (cos I don't want to stop swimming because it is the only sport that has given me the results I was looking for)
I thought when I typed "dark circles from swim goggles" into Search, there'd be no results for me. Yikes--this is a common problem!! I caught on to the prob when co-workers were telling me I looked "beat" and here I felt great from my new-found swimming routine. Like Alex, I'm new at swimming laps and like the results--it relaxes & tones my "computer" body--so I'm eager to get this figured out.
I wear prescription Speedos. I'm very nearsighted, so without my prescription goggles, I sorta lack confidence in the pool setting. I tried using contacts/goggles but most goggles leak. I think I'll bite the bullet and try the "no goggles" approach as the mask sounds cumbersome. Also slathering on creams right after the swim makes sense--my older relatives rubbed tiny amounts of Preparation H on upper cheeks to rid puffiness and circles--seems silly but I might give it a whirl.
So glad you were all honest about the circles not going away over time.
And thanx to those contacting manufacturers.
have just bought some aquasphere vista goggles - a miracle, no puffiness, no red marks no bruising on my 50 year old skin would thoroughly recommend them. can now swim in the morning before work or before a night out. never possible before as looked such a mess.
I am happy to have found this thread! I also am frustrated about puffy circles under my eyes, and have been a long time swimmer. I in my thirties, and have always had a bit of circle under my eye, but it recently has gotten puffier and more tired looking, and less like just a natural feature of my face. I chalk the change to fatigue, getting older, realizing I had some allergies (down, dust, pollens), but also to using swim goggles. Many older family members have similar puffy circles under their eyes, so maybe it is just my fate, but I am determined to try and counteract them.
-I have been using a cream called MyChelle Fresh Eyes, and it seems to help. I always apply it directly after swimming, and it seems to take the puffiness and lines down. They have a website: www.mychelle.com.
-I have also been told that if your liver and kidneys are having any kind of deficiency, it can show up in circles under your eyes. A Chinese doctor who did acupuncture on me, as well as a different naturopath, both told me that they thought my liver was a little bit weak, so that is another avenue I am looking down.
-I decided after my last swim that I am just going to try and swim without goggles. I have used goggles since my earliest days on swimteam at age 7, but I figure if I can count my strokes and swim straight, maybe I can do without them. We'll see. I'll try those Aquasphere masks otherwise.
-I can't imagine myself ever getting plastic surgery or botox, but I was reading about this thing called carboxy, where they inject carbon dioxide under the skin and can potentially reduce dark circles (and other undesireable features, I guess) because it increases circulation in the area or something. I don't know that I would ever try it, but maybe it's an option for people who are talking about considering plastic surgery.
-I also like the positive attitude option that a few people mentioned above. That certainly helps with most things.
Just an option to those who do not want to quit swimming. Speedo makes a strapless stick-on goggle. It uses a medical grade adhesive. You can get them at swimoutlet.com. I haven't tried them myself, but i figured you might want to know about them. Not sure how the adhesive will affect the eye area though.
I am age 51, been swimming twice a week for about six years and have always noticed the rings around my eyes after swimming but until recently they have always went away after a few hours. I just noticed in the last week or two that the lower darker ring under my eyes isn't going away at all. So I finally decide to do some research and through Google I read these postings for the first time and find out what is happening.
Thank you all for your stories. I'm sure there's millions of others who have had the same experience. Fortunately, I am a very un-vain male who wears glasses and doesn't have to worry too much about my appearance but I'd like to correct this problem if I can.
When I swim today, I'm going to loosen my Speedo goggles as much as I can but frankly, without suction, they're going to leak which defeats the whole purpose of goggles in the first place.
I'm an occasional scuba diver and I have a great mask at home that I will try swimming with next week, which will stop this other issue from happening but I, like others, don't know how lap swimming will be with my scuba mask but I'll give it a try and report back here.
Finally, it will be interesting to see if these marks go away if I quit using my goggles.
Original Poster here. I stopped swimming for several months and it did seem to help my puffy, discolored eyes. No one asked me if I had black eyes anymore. But I started up again this past summer and I used the AquaSphere Seal XP mask for Ladies. It does leave some marks against the cheeks and sometimes it pressed too much against the bridge of my nose and leaves a mark but these usually go away. It's not nearly as bad as the marks I got with goggles. You can find this mask on line in certain colors for $19.99. There is also the Vista mask which is superior (and I think unisex) but pricier. The Seal XP also comes in unisex style, and is just a big bigger and wider.
I do still have some "bags" but I attribute them more to genetics and aging. I doubt the goggles for 20+ years helped but there's not a lot I can do about it except wear a mask and try to not worry about vanity so much!
I've been swimming with goggles for two decades, and now at 44 find that the rings around my eyes just don't seem to go away, either. Ugh! I'll try swimming with no goggles but as a contact lens wearer that's kind of annoying because of the chlorine residue. Swimming has such huge mental and physical benefits, just wish the goggles problem would go away!
Hi folks, I'm 31 and have been swimming for 25 yrs - wearing goggles almost every week. Yes googles can cause or exaserbate under-eye dark circles. These circles go away-no lasting damage. I had some googles that made this noticeably worse. So even though they worked well I had to switch. I've found that the smaller eye socket type goggles are worse (swedish style). I've found that the Speedo graded seal foam goggles work well for me - GCG. The trick is to try different types and find which fit your face well and create a seal with the least amount of pressure = least bruising. Goggles that press again firmer areas of your face and not the soft tissues adjacent to your eye accomplish this but are a very individualized fit. There are goggles that rest completely out of the eye socket (not nearly as streamlined) such as the vista goggles mentioned above. Dark circles can be caused by aging and lack of sleep/tiredness. Excessive swimming can lead to tiredness :) so make sure you get enough after a good workout. My wife discovered a miracle eye cream called Eyewish by Karavita which works well in the other instance. Hope this helps and happy swimming.
To everyone that is having problems with googles making permanent marks on their faces...
I bought the Aqua Sphere Vista yesterday. Used them this morning. THEY ARE A MIRACLE!!!!!!
I had a slight mark on my upper check but was gone before I got out the shower. What a fun experience to swim and not have to plan my meetings around if i swam earlier or not. Just couldn't face the stares when my eyes were bruised and covered in suction marks for the day.
The other day, after a two hour practice, everyone was comparing goggle marks. Some people commented that mine were the worst, which I dont deny. I'm trying to make it so I dont get them anymore, or so they're at least not so bad. I'm trying to decide between the Aquasphere vistas (which i dont find very pretty but if they work ill try them), and the swedish goggles (which a lot of reviews said leave no rings). Help?
I swim laps for fitness, and have become very concerned with the under eye damage that I believe can be caused by swim goggles. I am 31 years old and have lately noticed a darkness under my eyes that was not there a few years ago. Some may be the result of getting older and heredity, but I want to prevent any future damage that could result from the suction of swim goggles pressing against the delicate eye area. I am also wondering if sweedish goggles are a good or bad idea. They do not seem to use suction; however, the low profile fit means they would be sitting near the eye where the skin is the most delicate. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I would like to order my goggles from swimoutlet. I am not willing to give up swimming since the numerous benefits seem to outweigh the downfalls..but I am really worried about dark circles.
I'm so glad to have found this discussion- I too thought I was alone. I have tried two pairs of regular goggles, and now the Aqua Sphere Seal XP "Lady". I have ALREADY had plastic surgery on my upper and lower lids eight months ago, and so I am particularly concerned about not wanting to damage my eye area any further after making that investment. I am 50 yrs old, and usually swim 4 or five days per week. I just purchased the Aqua Sphere mask, and I don't think it's going to work for me either. I used to scuba dive, and even in my twenties I was always the person who still had a big mask print on my face five hours after diving. So I put on the Aqua Sphere and I find that it just has SO much suction, even without the strap over my head it is causing the skin on my face to wrinkle and the vein in my forehead to pop out. I tried relieving the pressure, but it just wants to lock back on. After fifteen seconds I already had marks on my face. No damage to the eye area maybe, but not comfortable, and I don't want to have a big mark on my face all day.
My next move is to attempt the goggle-free swim. Others here said they were going to try it, but no one has followed up on a report as to whether they made it work for them. I remember as a kid doing swim team, and we never wore goggles, and in the evening I would see halos around lights- due to corneal edema, I'm sure. My pool uses a UV filtration system, and reduced chemicals, so I'm hoping it will be bearable. I will report back in a week or so.
I found out that the Barracuda has problems with the nose piece go to
www.slate.com/id/2197095/pagenum/all#page_start. it gives a rating on a lot of goggles 10 being the best for no rings around the eyes and they give speedo speed socket a 9.
Like all of you above, I too have started to develop dark circles and bruising from my googles. I swim for approx 40 mins every day and have done for years. I'm 37 and I only noticed this problem in the last six months or so and it doesn't seem to matter what goggles I use. I think I've tried them all at this stage.
I emailed Speedo to see if they could recommend a pair. They suggested their BioFuse goggles. I had tried these and felt there was some improvement but the little lock that holds the strap in place broke after about 2 weeks.
My brother who is a Dive Master said that they put vaseline on their masks which acts as an extra seal when diving. He suggested that if I tried this, I might not need to have my goggles so tight. Hard to say whether there was any improvement but I now put vaseline under my eyes before getting into the pool.
I think I'm going to try a mask next but I imagine it might be a bit cumbersome. I put in fairly hard training sessions. I hope a mask won't feel big and awkward.
Anyway, I found Speedo very responsive and efficient in coming back to me and I suggested that their designers might think about designing googles for "older" people as the bruising problem seems to be quite common once regular swimmers reach a certain age. I got an email back from Customer Service saying that they had passed my mails on to the appropriate department.
Maybe, if more people were to send mails to Speedo, they might just come up with something!!
I've found that I get marks from the AquaSphere Seal XP "Lady" mask as well. In order for the suction to work and keep water out, it's inevitable that marks will appear. The good news is that the skin on the face/cheek is not as susceptible to soft tissue damage as the skin around the eyes and the marks don't seem to have long lasting damage. I doubt I'll ever wear goggles again and I have drastically cut down on swimming. I noticed my original post was almost two years ago and my bruising and swelling did eventually get better but it took a LONG time. I tried swimming without goggles but I wear contacts and since I mostly do open water swimming, keeping my eyes shut doesn't work (you gotta keep a look out for other swimmers!)
Thanks for the last poster for writing to Speedo....
I might try the newest mask out from AquaSphere. I agree that the mask is cumbersome but after what I went through with goggles, I'll put up with it.
buni1961, I'm so glad to hear you've had some success with the Aqua Sphere mask. I bought one today and I'm really excited about my swim tomorrow. I tried it on today (not swimming) and the suction is really strong. It stayed on my face without even putting the strap behind my head!! With suction that strong, it's bound to leave marks but I am optimistic that the marks will fade within a very short space of time given that there is more fatty tissue in the cheeks than the eye sockets.
I didn't buy the Lady mask; just the Universal. I will post again and let other posters know how it goes.
Isn't getting older an awful thing!!! When I was competing in my teens, I swam for 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the evening and never had goggle marks! I used to wear them really tight too. In the last 5 years or so, I noticed marks but it's only in the six months that actual bruising appeared. I looked like I'd taken up boxing!!
I now swim to keep the body looking a bit younger but lately, it has been making the face look 10 years older than I am. Catch 22! I was really sad that I couldn't swim during the day if I was going out at night. I too wear contacts so swimming without goggles is not an option. Even if I didn't wear contacts, I don't think I could swim without goggles. I have my face in the water constantly when I swim and it would just burn my eyes out.
I'm expecting a few strange looks when I wear the mask in the pool tomorrow but I don't care, it's better than looking 10 years older on land!! :-)
Thanks buni1961 for the original post. Only for you starting this chain, I'd have thought I was the only one and probably wouldn't have got so interested in finding a solution. I hope I've found it now. I'd be so upset if I had to give up swimming. It's been such a big part of my life for over 20 years.
I'll post again anyway and give a review of the Aqua Sphere mask.
In the meantime, I hope we can all find a way to keep doing the sport we love - without it adding years on!!
I should just add to my last post, that I didn't swim for about 5 days in a row recently and I had no under eye bags or dark circles. They totally disappeared. I see that some posters were talking about genetics and ageing and no doubt it's probably inevitable as we age but I definitely put it down to goggles at this stage.
I wonder do sportswear researchers and developers consult with medics and/or plastic surgeons at all..... Might be no harm if they did.
It would be an awful shame to give up such a fantastic way of keeping fit, healthy and in shape because it was, ironically, making you look older!!
I am determined to find a solution for us all - even if I have to patent an invention myself!!
Ok, so here's my follow-up report. I DID try swimming without goggles. And of course I did have to remove my contacts, but that wasn't a big deal. Here is why it didn't work for me: 1.) Less enjoyable because I couldn't see well (my daughter thought I should just keep my eyes closed under water- no that's just crazy), 2.) When I turn my head to the side to breathe I have to close my eyes, because the sensation of the water running over my eyeballs was uncomfortable, and I missed those glimpses above water, 3.) And this is the deal-breaker: I discovered there's something even more important than my vanity- My Vision! Later in the day my vison was blurry and my eyes were sore. I suffer from dry eyes anyway, and I could tell I had some corneal edema going on. This swimming without goggles thing was definitley not going to work out.
GOOD NEWS: I ordered two new pairs of goggles, and one just arrived, and I tried it this AM. It is the TYR Hydrovision. It has a wide phlangy skirt that rests down toward my cheekbones, but is still quite compact. It performed nicely, hardly any marks except a little forehead line. A little bit of leakage, but not bothersome to me. I am very pleased. I still have a Barracuda Wire Mask on the way, too.
I am so relieved that I can continue to look forward to regular swimming!
Agree with you, OKYes, it's nearly impossible to swim without goggles (or a mask) if you are used to using them.
Well my AquaSphere mask kicked the bucket after a year. I find they do last exactly a year and then start leaking. So I'm going to see what other masks are out there. I am of the opinion that any goggle I use is going to exacerbate the problem of the fat pads siting on top of where my cheeks used to be.
And yes, DailySwimmer....the getting older thing ain't easy. I take some consolation in knowing it happens to all of us but some seem to age more gracefully than others. I became a hardcore outdoor swimmer in my early 30's and continued until my early 40's. All that sun and goggle wearing didn't help matters NOW but man, I looked and felt great during those years. I always looked very young, up until about 47. The loss of youth and good looks is something we have to just have to accept.
I am so glad to have found this thread! I am 31 years old and have swam competitively my whole life and currently swim 3-4 times a week for an hour on a Masters Team. This past swummer I have really gotten into open water swimming, doing races that are 1-2 hours long and at the 2 hour swim I did last month my left eye was so sore under the eye and when I got back to my hotel I literally had a blister on my face, where my goggles had been. This "eye blister" was really painful and not very becoming. It took most of the day for the swelling to go down and I got some funny looks wandering around Chicago afterwards!! Now, I notice that my left eye is always sensitive when using my prescription goggles which are larger, and really with any of my goggles. It's an instant discomfort, but only on that side. The marks on my face also take hours to go away. I am going to try some of the goggles mentioned here and hope for the best. I thought perhaps it was allergy related, but I'm not having any other symptoms except the painful eye socket and major skin irritation. I too have people asking if I'm ok and telling that I look tired. No, instead of saying "did you sleep badly last night?" my coworkers just look at me and say, "oh she was swimming this morning." Great. I used to wear the swedish goggles as a kid and never had any problems. Getting old really is the pits!!
Thank you for this thread. I am 39 years old, and I've been a fitness swimmer x 2 years. I am also an internal medicine physician. Swimming has been the best exercise I've ever discovered, but I have significant swelling around my eyes after an hour swim. I've come to call the swelling, affectionately, my "goggle hickies." I wear contacts, and swimming without goggles would be inappropriate.
Just assessing the situation from a medical perspective, it seems to me that the swelling is somewhat reactive due to the pressure, but over time, I think that repeated pressure could cause some movement of facial tissue.
I have tried a variety of goggles, including several Nike & Speedo versions. For the past year, I've been swimming exclusively with Aquasphere Vistas for ladies. Initially, I did not have the marks--or, at least they were not as pronounced as with the Nike/Speedos. Over time, however, I still develop them, but not in the same places. Still under the eyes, though. All in all, Aquaspheres are more comfortable.
Recently, I tried a larger Aquasphere (name escapes me)--more mask-like, but not a true mask. They leaked--probably just too big for my face.
I am interested in this 1) vaseline idea, to reduce pressure; 2) speedo strapless goggles using adhesive, 3) TYR hydrovision, and the 4) Baracuda wire mask. Am interested in any follow up anyone has wiht use of these products, and I will post what I discover with them as well.
After typing 'why do goggles leave imprint in skin' I came across this site. My daughter who is 14 and of afro caribbean parentage, has this very same problem with the very dark circles around her eyes. My daughter has been swimming competitively for a couple of years and swims 1.5hr sessions, 3-4 times a week. She has had the dark circles for quite awhile, but it seems to be getting worse and now appears to be permanent. A teacher at school actually commented on whether she was OK as she thought she looked ill and tired. My daughter is now very conscious! I have lost count on the number of goggles tried! We will now investigate some of the suggestions listed above. Any other suggestions would be gratefully appreciated.
Like so many others I am glad to have found this site... I thought it was just me! And initially I thought I was just imagining that I looked like I had 2 black eyes.. I've also started to swim regularly after suffering a knee injury and it really makes me feel great when I go... but the dreaded "goggle eyes" are starting to worry me.. particularly as I swim in the morning and then head to work! Sounds like it is a combination of the goggles plus age (I am 41).... Am very keen now to try some of the other google/mask options that people have suggested before I next swim... No goggles isn't an option as I wear contact lenses, and to be honest, my vision is so poor that I'd struggle to find the edge of the pool if I didn't wear them! Thanks to those who have recommended brands/products and shared your research.. Will continue to check in to for further comments.. and in the meantime, hope I can find the products mentioned in Australia... (I am assuming all are widely available.) Thanks again - I am just relieved to find that I am not alone... and not imagining it!!
I am 61 and noticed over the past few years that the goggle imprint on my face after swimming has been lasting longer and longer as the years go by. The skin does not recover anymore and today, after six hours since the swim, I still have dark circles under my eyes and I am a bit sore under my left eye as well. I stumbled onto this site half an hour ago to see whether there is a miracle solution, so I can go out shopping without looking like a raccoon!
I am not sure whether I like the idea of larger goggles for pool swimming. Aren't they cumbersome for lap swimming, i.e. cause more turbulence when turning to breath?
I think the problem with the circles/bags under the eyes may have to do with fat loss on the face and reduced elasticity of the skin due to aging and genetics (as mentioned by a previous post). Just pinch the back of your hand and see how fast or slow the skin springs back. Mine has become a somewhat slow creeper and I suspect this is what happens under my eyes. Many 'bad' things can happen as we are getting older. May be we have to grin and bear it. At least we are keeping fit!
Dealers for Aqua Sphere products in Australia: http://www.aquasphereswim.com.au/
TYR Australia has a range of goggles too, but not the 'Hydrovision' style.
We are a bit limited with product choices in AUS. 'Barracuda Positive Pressure Goggles' are claimed to prevent, or at least reduce, raccoon eyes, but I have not tried them myself (yet), as I have to wear prescription goggles, but this is a product I will try at some stage or another (because of the 'leave no marks' claim).
I've read all the replies and it does make me feel better to know that I am not the only one with this 'problem'. Now I know that any woman (and man) my age with bags under her eyes must be a swimmer!
I talked to an elderly lady in her 80s who looks like late 60 (seriously!) and I am trying her advice: gently apply a tiny amount of good quality olive oil over the affected area every night. Blot off excess after a few minutes. It seems to plump up the skin a little. Use your regular moisturizer and sun screen in the morning.
I have tried the olive oil as well as a rich vitamin E cream with lanolin since I posted last. It works for me, that is, the bruising after swimming doesn't seem as bad as before and does not last as long as before. I apply a small amount of vit E cream under the eyes before I put my goggles on. I now use this cream as a daily moisturiser, morning and before bed, and it works well for my aged skin. It may be too rich for younger skin. I'm in Australia and the cream I use is manufactured here. "Australian lanolin moisturizing cream with Vitamin E" by G & M Cosmetics Pty Ltd. I think "Rosken Skin Repair with Vitamin E" may be similar. But it also may be the lanolin that does the trick. In Australia it is available from Coles, Woolworths and probably most chemists. After I put it on at night I apply a small amount of olive oil over the top of it under my eyes. The things we do for vanity.... :) The good thing about this cream is that it does not cost the earth.
Not sure these comments are answering my question. Let me go into a little more detail. My son is african american and swims all year. However, began to notice goggle marks from eye to eye also covering the bridge of his nose. This began obviously during outdoor swimming but now appears to be a permanent discoloration. Any advice to get rid of and then maintain so will not return?
Very interesting thread, I've read all your comments, if it helps, I've read great reviews on the US Amazon site about these "View Selene" also called "V-820" goggles designed by women, apparently 'NO' marks at all ???
I joined the club of goggle eyes. I've been swimming for about a year, twice a week, for 40 mins. I am 51 yrs old. Last Friday night, I swam. Saturday, I noticed the area below the eyebrow of my right eye, swollen;, Sunday, it got worse, now also the temple area was swollen, as well as under my eye. By Monday AM, I ran to the doctor. After many, many questions and examination, she concluded it was a bruise. It looked like someone had punched me on the eye, but it was only swollen, not black and blue. I have small face, so I've been using goggles kind of tight because otherway I get water. My husband mentioned a couple of times that I was wearing them too tight. I'm going to reduce swimming time to 30 mins. and I'm buying a mask. I've been using an ice bag twice a day, taking ibuprofin and it's getting better. I hope I don't keep the bag under my eye. Thanks for sharing. Love, Maria
Having just got into swimming at age 50, after 5 one-to-one lessons with a brilliant teacher in central London, I have been concerned about the marks caused by my Speedo goggles. I found this thread and became even more concerned!
After reading the comment from Catalina I immediately ordered a pair of View Selene goggles specially designed for women. I have just tried them out today and I am delighted and relieved by the result. I wore them for 25 minutes and they only left very slight marks which had disappeared when I looked 2 hours later. Definitely recommend them. I'm also trying to spend part of my time in the pool doing back stroke, without goggles. Hope this helps!
Amazingly, Mark Spitz trained and competed throughout his entire illustrious olympic career without goggles, ever!
Goggles will always cause "raccoon eyes" appearance. I've been a competitive swimmer my entire life, ocean surf lifeguard and triathlete. So be it, goes with the territory.
Are we swimming for vanity or for sport, health and fitness? What's the big deal? In America, people are so concerned and consumed with their looks, especially on their faces, most of the world, place their focus on overall health and well-being and not superficialities.
Don't focus on this......unless there is any sort of health issue involved and/or causing the problems, why make such a big deal over some rings under your eyes after swimming?
I have a friend who was involved in a car accident and had to have plastic surgery on her face, including the eye areas. She had to have some dermal filler injected used to help reshape/restructure her face from the damage done by the accident. Oh, I forgot to mention she was a former competitive swimmer......Well guess what, she refused to give up swimming, because of the accident and that she had filler around and under her eyes, every time she uses her swedish style goggles, she gets deep imprints because of the filler under the eyes becomes compressed. She doesn't care, she laughs about it............she is alive and she deals with it by living life and making life happen!
It's great and wonderful to be alive, being able to getting up each and every day and being able to swim, in the first place, enjoying and appreciating the more important aspects of life, life itself, embrace it and stop focusing on goggle lines, marks, etc!
Thanks for the tips but why or where are the old foam type of goggles. I want to avoid that bruising and goggle marks on the fat deposits. I train for an hr 5 days a week and don't think a bigger mask would suit the training. I'm getting fitter quickly but miss those foam backed goggles. I'm in Australia and train in the pool after some of those Olympic types...I can't see them with any of the foam type goggles either...maybe I'm just too old(49), and remembering about 15 years ago when they were on the market.
The foam backed goggles are still made by a few companies. I use the ones by Barracuda which are marketed with a "positive pressure" seal (aka ergonomic fit) rather than suction to keep them in place. I can't say I've ever had an issue with them. Got mine here: http://www.aquagear.com/barracuda-medalist/
Well, funny enough I just got home from an hour swim with my new goggles to Google my embarrassment. I finished my laps, and I finally felt so wonderful that I found an exercise that made me pain free, that helped my poor back, and my poor ballet ruined joints and my anxiety. To my horror, as I passed by the bathroom mirror, I saw that I had bruising, and red welts wear the goggles were. It looked as though I had been punched in the face several times. I was mortified. I covered myself with a scarf, I had to get home without scaring anyone. Now reading all of these posts, I am saddened, that, (I am 37) wearing goggles is not a good idea. Right? It is still painful--two hours later, and I can still see the dents...it is horrible.
Hi , I am 43 and started swiming for a thriatlon next year, but after my first swim the marks left under my eyes took 3 days to go away.i looked Like I have been partying for days without sleep!! I will not use googles again and will try a mask instead, any make in particular you could recommend ?
After sustaining injuries from decades of running, I took up swimming a couple of years ago. I am 56 and can relate to all of your comments and concerns about tissue damage around the eyes! Thank you to everyone for sharing your experiences and suggestions!
Thanks everyone for advice! Like many people here I thought I was the only one with this problem. I don't have swollen or bruised eyes. The marks usually dissapear in 15 minutes but my concern is about my eye skin condition. I feel like the gogles stretch the gentle and thin eye skin and affects the way it looks. Eye creams don't help. I will try a mask and hope it will help. Logically it should help :-) Really don't want to give up swimming and at the same time don't feel like sacrificing youthfull look...
Hi everyone. I just discovered this thread after googling "swimming no dark circles". Thanks to everyone for the comments and suggestions. Are there any updates on how the different goggles and masks and eye creams have worked? Or any new suggestions / products?
I came back to share this since I found some goggles that work for me! I was distressed a few months back to see that the raccoon eyes from my goggles were no longer going away in a few hours. I stopped swimming for three days and they were still there along with the big creases under my eyes from the goggles. I tried swimming with no goggles, but as I wear glasses, I kept bumping into the wall, and my eyes were terribly irritated from the chlorine. Finally, I ordered View Women's Selene goggles. I am from the US but live in the UK--don't know if they're available everywhere. But they work!!!!! They're bigger than most goggles, but not like a mask, and the material around the goggles flattens on your face (doesn't bit into it!) and the suction is gentle but effective. Plus, they don't fog! I'm going back to order several pairs in case they cease making them. Try them if you're stuck with marks. I'm thrilled that I can swim again.
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