First, let’s unpack this hack—what is a bruise cream anyway? By “bruise cream,” she means a vitamin K cream—the lesser-known vitamin is hailed for wounds and skin injuries, as research shows that it significantly reduces healing time of skin, eases redness, minimizes swelling, and soothes inflammation. It’s also been shown to help with blood clotting and reduce the severity of bruises—which is why the vitamin is formulated into many bruise-reducing balms.
So let’s dive into the burning question: Can a vitamin K cream get rid of dark circles? Well, yes and no. While it seemed to work for this TikTok user in a major way, “not all dark circles have the same cause,” notes dermatology resident physician Muneeb Shah, D.O., in a duet video.
Dark circles can crop up for a variety of reasons, including prominent blood vessels, increased melanin production, or fat loss as you age. And all these factors require different plans of action: Increased melanin production may respond well to brightening actives, like arbutin, kojic acid, vitamin C, and niacinamide; for fat loss, you can attempt to “plump” the hollowed area with hyaluronic acid and ceramides.
Finally, for expanded blood vessels, you’ll want to look for ingredients that constrict those channels (like caffeine) or stimulate blood flow to prevent it from pooling—like, yep, vitamin K. That’s why you can find the vitamin in a slew of eye creams (check out our list of favorites here), or you can grab a proper bruise cream that, as the user notes, may be a touch easier on your wallet—like this budget-friendly option.