To de-puff after watching a tearjerker flick or getting misty-eyed at a wedding, apply a cold compress to your eyes for a few minutes. A splash of cool water and a dab of concealer can also help you hide that you were crying (but concealer can’t do much for actually making your eyes less puffy, unfortunately).
You do a lot to protect your body from sunlight. Are you doing the same for your face? Too much sun can make the skin around your eyes sag or wrinkle. Use sunscreen, sunglasses, and hats to protect your face from harmful rays.
Also worth considering are NIOD Fractionated Eye-Contour Concentrate, and Eco Your Skin VOLUFILINE15 EYE ESSENCE. NIOD was the only true eye serum that made it to our list of finalists — it’s a liquid that comes in a dropper. It doesn’t absorb as quickly as Drunk Elephant or Mizon, with all of our testers reporting moderately oily residue. Eco Your Skin is heavier still — we almost bumped it into our “heavy creams” category. Its standout features is the size of its bottle. Unlike most of our finalists, which usually cap at 15 mL, Eco Your Skin comes in a 50 mL bottle. This helps explain its higher price tag ($70).
Some of the causes of this fluid retention are relatively harmless and unrelated to a more serious issue, such as not getting enough sleep or consuming foods with too much sodium. Other times, the puffiness is a sign something that needs to be addressed by a doctor, like an infection, says Randy McLaughlin, OD, a professor of optometry at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center.
While some degree of puffiness may be normal for a given individual, factors such as age and fatigue may make the swelling more prominent. The periorbital tissues are most noticeably swollen immediately after waking, perhaps due to the gravitational redistribution of fluid in the horizontal position.
It is very effective for eye puffiness and fine lines but not very effective for severe eye bags, dark circles, and deep wrinkles. There are many good customer feedback and testimonials but there are also negative ones saying it isn’t very effective. It is dermatologist tested and fragrance-free but some people may be allergic to certain ingredients of this eye cream. It is one of the most affordable eye creams on the market ($24.99).
The best thing for puffiness is to go cold. Tom Vichroski of CRDR Consulting, Inc., a member of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists, recommends cool ingredients — literally. Keeping your cream in the fridge is the equivalent of giving your eye area a cold shower and helps reduce early-morning puffiness.
“I have monster bags under my eyes every morning (#nightowlproblems), so I depend on this shea butter and caffeine-packed cream to help with both long term hydration and immediate results. I roll the cooling massage tool up and outward under my eyes to quickly de-puff, then lightly tap on the cream with my ring finger to nourish. It’s basically a masters class called Faking Sleep 101.” —Jen Mulrow, assistant beauty editor
Ingredients can vary depending on what type of issue the eye cream is trying to address. But there are some common components to keep an eye out for, including those that encourage collagen production, like niacinamide and retinol. Caffeine will help decrease puffiness by constricting blood vessels and light reflectors will illuminate those pesky dark areas.
Sleep problems, your period, your perfume, your diet soda habit—find out about these and other surprising causes of puffy, swollen eyes, so you can get rid of the puffiness fast and help prevent the blowfish look from returning.
“I’ve tried tons of eye creams that do literally nothing, based totally on the idea that they’ll help the situation in 10-15 years. Call it a flaw, but without results this year, I can’t commit. Belif’s eye cream doesn’t have that problem: this spin-off of its moisturizer leaves my under-eyes looking smooth and way less crepe-y within minutes.” —Rachel Nussbaum, beauty writer
Use this under-eye mask for 20 minutes right before bed, wake up, and you will see a difference in the brightness and texture under your eyes. This is a really great thing to use right before a big day if dark circles are an issue of yours. It also makes under-eye concealer glide on so well the next morning.
“I have pretty bad dark circles (genetics, unfortunately) and have tried everything from super expensive to drugstore brands. It wasn’t until this that I noticed a difference—literally, after a day of using it. It’s super lightweight and makes it looks like I hit snooze just a little longer each morning.” —Azadeh Valanejad, social video producer
Other times, puffy eyes are a symptom of an eye condition such as blepharitis, which is inflammation of the eyelids and base of the eyelashes. Most of the possible causes are discussed in this article.
If you don’t get enough sleep once in a while, try to resist the urge to try to rub your eyes awake in the a.m. This reflexive habit many of us have after a night of tossing and turning pulls the sensitive skin around the eyes and contributes to swelling.
Your doctor can also determine whether the swelling is being caused by a more serious problem. If you suffer from allergies, try to take precautions while indoors: keep air filters and air ducts clean, and vacuum often to remove dust and dander.
“Sometimes the sinus cavities behind the eyes become inflamed due to inhalation of the allergens through the nasal passages,” says Lisa Ellman-Grunther, MD, an allergist at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai in New York City, in an email to Health. If allergies are the reason for your puffy eyes, they’ll likely also be itchy and watery—another fun effect of allergens. You might also notice dryness and flakiness on the skin, particularly your eyelids, says Dr. Ellman-Grunther.
If you don’t have a cucumber on hand, wet some tea bags and place them in the freezer for 15 minutes, then lie back and apply them to your eyes for 15 minutes. In addition to cooling, the caffeine in black tea can also help restrict blood flow, thereby reducing swelling.
Looking for a retinoid-based eye cream? A medium-weight formula is best place to start if you have normal skin and no pre-existing texture preferences. These creams leave your skin feeling moisturized — you won’t be left wondering whether you remembered to put them on — but, at the same time, they aren’t unpleasantly greasy. After testing, two of our retinoid-based contenders fit this category: Kate Somerville Line Release Under Eye Repair Cream and Chanel Le Lift Creme Yeux Firming Anti-Wrinkle Eye Cream.
That said, there are still things you can do to reduce their appearance and slow the process down, such as not smoking—as the habit dries out skin and reduces collagen, both of which promote saggy bags. Eye creams can keep eye skin firmer for longer if used as a preventative treatment. Blepharoplasty, or eyelid surgery, can remove undereye bags, reports the Mayo Clinic.
Apply Preparation-H. Hemorrhoid creams such as Preparation-H help constrict blood vessels, which in turn reduces puffiness. Gently dab some on around the eye with your ring finger on days when you notice excessive swelling.
There are two types of alcohols in cosmetics. The good guys are the “fatty alcohols,” like cetyl alcohol. This group of ingredients soothes and moisturizes and is a great addition to many moisturizers. The “bad” alcohols include denatured alcohol, methanol, benzyl alcohol, and ethyl alcohol. These ingredients are sometimes added because they help active ingredients penetrate further into your skin — which sounds great, until you learn that bad alcohols achieve this by breaking down the outer layers of your skin. They can eventually hurt the skin’s ability to retain moisture. We took a hard line on these drying alcohols, cutting any products that included them.
Other times we get puffy eyes after sleeping. This can be caused by too much sodium in the diet, which causes water retention. Puffy eyes can also be caused by lack of sleep or excessive alcohol intake. Additional causes of puffy eyes include:
I just ordered the MK firming eye creme. I’ve used it before and my Arbonne one was leaving my eye area all dry. 🙁 In the mean time I found one by Aardvarkskincarethai. It uses natural ingredients and oils. Loving the difference so far!
The best eye cream smooths fine lines and lessens wrinkles, reversing the appearance of aging. It’s a drawn-out game: You’ll need to wear the cream daily and wait for months to see noticeable effects. But the unanimous consensus from our experts was that these creams do work. We found eleven formulas with the peptides, retinoids, antioxidants and moisturizers necessary to to get the job done. Six were tester favorites for their silky skin-feel and pleasant scent — we highlight these above — but we look at the entire list of eleven later in this review.
To reduce allergy-induced puffiness, try over-the-counter eye drops or a saline eye rinse, which wash the allergens out of your peepers. For irritated skin, lubricated ointments not only act as a barrier between the skin and allergens, but it also can soothe and ease redness. A nasal spray might help relieve sinus pressure and in turn de-puff your eyes.
I mix beeswax pellets with just a little bit of rosehip oil (don’t want it to be greasy) and some quality frankincense oil (I order my oil through Tropical Traditions). The beeswax doesn’t melt into my eyes quite as quickly as the coconut oil, thus it stays off my eyeballs and I don’t get blurry vision. I’ve come to know that using this at night before bed is the best way. During the daytime I mix frankincense with grapeseed oil (soaks in right away) and use it under my powdered mineral make-up and it works out fine. At night I want something heavier though, so I stay with the beeswax.
Vitamin A (Beta-Carotene) 0–4 yrs old 500 IU per day; 4–12 yrs old 1,000 IU per day; 2,300 IU for women and 3,000 IU for men per day Prevents night blindness; critical in function of eye; known to treat eye disorders such as pink eye, glaucoma, & dry eye syndrome Apricots; cantaloupes; carrots; pumpkins; spinach; broccoli
Yes, it’s expensive. But La Mer’s Lifting Eye Serum really does deliver, using kelp-infused actives and the brand’s Stretch Matrix Complex to lift, tighten and contour the area around the eyes. The formula is lightweight, gel-like and refreshing – apply to drooping lids to lift and smooth.
We made an exception for one product, Youth to the People, which comes in a jar but is one of the few paraben-free options we were able to track down. We take a closer look at parabens below, and while we don’t consider them a deal-breaker, we wanted to provide options for people who would prefer to avoid them.
Puffy eyes are usually only a temporary cosmetic worry, but occasionally, individuals become concerned about the cosmetic effect of periorbital swelling and seek surgical correction. Severe and persistent puffiness may be a sign of other serious medical conditions.
Becca Wilkinson has a creative “need” and will do anything to avoid laundry. She writes over at Cul-de-sac Cool about design, DIY/crafts, easy eats, family, funny experiences and of course, motherhood. Becca wants to spread happiness, helpful tips, pretty things and funny experiences throughout the land. She is the proud mother of three boys and married to her college sweetheart. In her past life she was a graphic designer. Becca has learned a lot these past years about juggling boys, blogging, family and suburban life.
And don’t forget this indirect way pounding one too many back can cause swollen eyes. Although alcohol is a depressant, it actually makes it harder to sleep for most of us, making us toss and turn or wake up in the middle of the night and not be able to go back to dreamland. A poor night’s sleep can cause fluid retention, leading to inflated eyes.
At Swell No More, we have finally developed a solid solution for reducing puffy eyes and bringing about several other beneficial results. Puffiness under the eyes is a common symptom of allergies, lack of sleep, stress and poor diet. Your eyes will become puffy when the skin around them becomes irritated or itchy. People who consume large amounts of alcohol and sodium before bed may also wake up with puffy eyes due to water retention. Stress may cause your skin and eyes, along with other parts of your body, to weaken and become susceptible to problems like swelling.
Our testers weren’t wild about these pigmented products, which don’t work with all skin tones and may look odd if not applied evenly and under makeup. But if you’re intrigued by optics, Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Eye Swirl and Olay Eyes Illuminating Eye Cream both rely on mica to help hide dark circles.
We all know that the skin under our eyes is extremely delicate. It is almost always the first to age and is about 0.5mm thick while the rest of our skin is about 2 mm thick. Under eye skin, or periorbital skin, becomes thinner much faster than it should when it is not cared for appropriately. With the hectic lifestyles and the constant pollution we’re exposed to, the skin deteriorates, showing the blood vessels under your skin more clearly. This causes the appearance of dark circles.
Wouldn’t life be so much easier without dark circles? Imagine not having to hear the words “You look so tired!” twenty times a day. You would no longer have to spend about 15 extra minutes on concealing while doing your makeup. In fact, you might even decide to say “Chuck it!” and go au naturale every now and then because, hey, your skin looks pretty damn good.
Eye care professionals recommend using a washcloth dipped in cold water, which has the same effect. The reason cucumbers are not recommended is that food sometimes contains bacteria. Putting a possible bacteria source directly onto the eyes can lead to eye infections. The same is true of tea bags.
Eye creams are usually packaged in very small jars and can cost anywhere form $13 for a 0.5 oz. jar at the local pharmacy to $100 per 0.5 oz. jar online or at a boutique store. That’s equivalent to $3,200 per pound!
We find the best of everything. How? We start with the world. We narrow down our list with expert insight and cut anything that doesn’t meet our standards. We hand-test the finalists. Then, we name our top picks.
There are many eye creams on the market that may help puffiness. Some ingredients to look for in an eye cream include chamomile, cucumber, and arnica. They contain properties that may reduce inflammation and tighten the skin. Caffeine in eye creams and makeup may also help reduce puffy eyes.