Part of Estée Lauder’s bestselling Advanced Night Repair range, the sciencey-sounding Eye Concentrate Matrix uses that same anti-ageing technology to target fine lines, wrinkles, puffiness, dark circles and dryness while you sleep. The serum texture makes it a pleasure to use, too.
“I’ve got plenty of undereye concerns that need correction: puffiness, dark circles, and an general look of exhaustion are pretty much regular fixtures on my face. After tapping a single pump of Auto Correct under both eyes with my fingertips, there’s noticeable deflation and lift to my sleep-deprived skin in under 5 minutes. I still use concealer, but I don’t have to layer it on the way I used to.” —Amber Rambharose, beauty editor
There was no single “correct” set of results. You might prefer a lighter or heavier lotion based on skin type or personal preference — one that soaks in quickly and leaves no trace, versus one that absorbs slowly and leaves behind a luxurious spa feel. There are, accordingly, lighter and heavy creams. So we asked our testers to rate how quickly each product absorbed, and split the results into light, medium, and heavy coverage. We also kept an eye out for any uniformly negative side-effects, dinging a few formulas that received repeated complaints from testers about being sticky (yuck) or overly drying. Even though one tester found SkinMedica to feel luxurious, all other testers described it as “gloopy,” or like the sticky feeling that comes from “pulling a sticker off and leaving goop behind.” Revision received similar complaints.
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Too much cell phone or tablet usage right before bed can cause eye fatigue and puffiness the next day. Yellow tinted computer glasses help to reduce this effect. For long term, reduce device time right before bed.
Hemorrhoid cream may do more harm than good, however, especially when used on the sensitive skin around the eyes or eyelids. Some hemorrhoid creams contain steroids, which can cause or worsen cataracts and glaucoma if used near the eyes. The eyes may also become irritated after using such creams.
Skin lightening creams contain an ingredient called hydroquinone. This ingredient interferes with the production of melanin in the skin. This can help reduce the appearance of dark bags or under-eye circles.
A glass of wine is fine, but don’t overdo it. Why? Booze can pull the water out of your skin. Once you weaken the delicate area around your eyes, it’s more likely to sink into a pouch. If you do tie one on, drink water before you go to bed and use a moisturizer around your eyes.
We gave preference to creams that came in pump-tops or squeeze tubes rather than jars. Retinoids degrade when exposed to light and oxygen, becoming less effective, and peptides may also be susceptible to oxidation, so the less contact your eye cream has with air and sunlight, the better.
While certain home remedies such as soothing cucumber slices — or even anti-hemorrhoid creams such as Preparation H — may temporarily relieve puffy eyes, a more long-lasting solution depends on the underlying cause.
I am a huge fan of coconut oil and make all my own hand and face creams with it. We live by “if you wouldn’t put it in your mouth why would you rub it into your skin and into your blood stream?”. For some reason the cream will go bad though if left on the counter. It takes about 2 months or so but it will go dark and break up around the edges. It must be because it has had things added. So its important to only make what you will use.
Get enough sleep. If you have puffy eyes all day, it could be that you’re simply not getting enough sleep, or the quality of the sleep you are getting is poor. Puffiness under the eyes is a common symptom of sleep deprivation. Aim to get 7-8 hours of sleep every night.
The solution here is a no-brainer: turn in earlier, so you can get 7-9 hours of sleep each night, and create a bedroom environment that’s conducive to catching zzz’s, says Dr. Jaliman. That means not eating or watching too much TV in bed, so your mind associates the bedroom with sleeping only. And no gadget-reading in bed either. The blue light from many digital devices is a sneaky culprit that keeps your brain wired.
Although cucumbers do reduce puffy eyes, it is the coldness of the cucumber that does the trick, not the cucumber itself. Coldness is known to constrict blood vessels, which reduces the flow of fluid into soft tissues.
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.
The world is a much brighter place without dark circles (pun intended). With this list of products, you do not have to deal with puffy eyes or dark circles anymore. Have you used any of these under eye dark circle removal creams? Tell us about your experience in the comments section below.
Puffy, swollen eyelids and dark circles under the eyes can occur when you have an eye infection such as pink eye. These swollen eyes are caused by inflammation associated with the eye infection, which directly affects the neighboring eyelids. Also, dry eyes can cause general puffiness and swelling.
“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
We also used Paula’s Choice Ingredient Dictionary (a cosmetic ingredients database) to identify products that contain known skin sensitizers: These ingredients include things like lemon or mint — compounds that smell great and are totally fine for occasional use. But if you’re using a skin sensitizer on a daily basis for months at a time, your skin may develop an allergic reaction. We found 44 sensitizing ingredients in our remaining eye creams.
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Our skin is constantly shedding old cells and regrowing. Beginning in our twenties, however, this regeneration process slows down by as much as 30% to 50%: Skin can take twice as long to replace damaged cells, resulting in a less youthful appearance. To avoid this slow-down, the most effective eye cream will encourage your body to produce collagen (a building block for new, healthy skin). There are two ingredient types that promote collagen growth: peptides and retinoids.
An eye cream is a specially formulated moisturizer that in most cases has been tested as effective to use near the eyes, and that won’t damage the soft tissue around the eyes or cause eye irritation. Many of these creams are made with special ingredients that help either reduce the look of wrinkles around the eyes, provide anti-aging benefits, or help to reduce darker skin tone around the eyes. Some products offer more than one benefit, but all benefit claims have to be taken with a grain of salt, since cosmetic companies are quite well known for making inflated claims about their products.
If your pink eye is triggered by a viral infection, you might also have cold symptoms, explains Kira Manusis, MD, an ophthalmologist at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai, in an email to Health. “In such cases it can be associated with an upper respiratory infection,” she says. “It often starts in one eye and spreads to the other.”
A good way to start choosing an eye cream that will be right for you is to read independent customer reviews of products. You may also get recommendations from friends, or ask your dermatologist what he or she recommends. Aestheticians and make up artists can be another excellent source for discovering which eye creams might truly deliver on their promises.
These options include chemical peels, laser skin resurfacing procedures, certain cosmeceuticals (prescription skin products) and eyelid surgery known as blepharoplasty. Blepharoplasty involves removing extra fatty tissue and excessive skin from upper and lower eyelids, as well as tightening skin and muscles to reduce puffiness and wrinkles.
Although eye creams may seem like they are expensive for the amount, they last a long time. A little goes a way. You only need a pea sized amount. Apply it with your ring finger with light patting and let your skin absorb it well.
Someone suffering from severe allergies may benefit from prescription-strength antihistamines, while someone suffering from a skin disorder that is affecting the skin around the eyes may benefit from topical creams.
Those who prefer to use organic or natural skincare products should try Uma’s Absolute Anti Aging Eye Oil, which blends oils such as rose, frankincense, geranium and sandalwood all harvested on the family-run company’s own estate. The luxurious formula absorbs quickly, and has noticeable effects on puffiness.
Khadi’s Under Eye Gel works on your delicate under-eye skin to improve its appearance by fading dark circles and reducing puffiness. It also claims to significantly reduce the appearance of fine lines while rejuvenating your skin.
Persons who suffer from diseases such as hypothyroidism may benefit from a daily dose of levothyroxine (synthetic thyroid hormone). Again, talk with your doctor about possible causes and treatments for puffy eyes.
@serenesurface– I don’t think that’s a good idea. I tried it before. I used my facial cream under my eyes and it caused little white spots under my eyes. I found out later that the skin under our eyes is very thin and delicate. The rest of our face is not like that. So creams that work for our face, won’t work for the area around our eyes. Moreover, the skin under the eyes tend to have more issues like wrinkles, puffiness and dark spots. So it needs special care and it needs a special cream to take care of those problems.
First things first. “The skin around the eye is very thin and sensitive and will not always tolerate the same products that your cheeks and forehead can tolerate,” says Dr. Tsippora Shainhouse, MD, FAAD, a board-certified dermatologist in Beverly Hills and clinical instructor at the University of Southern California. The best eye cream should make your skin feel younger, not red and itchy.
Fluid retention – Many conditions (including pregnancy and hormonal variations with menstruation) can lead to the retention of fluid, particularly in the subcutaneous tissues. These conditions can cause swelling around the eyes to be more prominent. (This cause can by partly alleviated by raising the head of one’s bed.)
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).
This home remedy will help tighten the skin around your eyes and relax the blood vessels which will relieve tired and puffy eyes. Simply chill 5 or 6 metal spoons in the fridge for approximately 15 minutes and then hold the rounded side against your eye for a few minutes until the spoon becomes warm.
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.
Too much salt in your diet can cause your eyes to puff, as excess sodium levels can lead to bloating and fluid retention. If you think too much salt may be the cause of your swollen eyes, simply cut back on foods that contribute to fluid retention, such as pre-packed, frozen and canned foods as sodium is often added as a preservative to these foods.
Apart from aging, the other main culprit behind skin damage is the sun — which is why our faces and hands tend to look more aged than our chests or backs. Sunscreen is your biggest ally here. All of our experts agreed that you should wear sunscreen on a daily basis to prevent sun damage. But since the vast majority of the products we found didn’t contain SPF, we couldn’t make this a requirement. (Out of our starting list of 404, only eight advertised sun-blocking properties, and onlyMDSolarSciences made it all the way to our list of finalists.) If you do need a sunscreen recommendation, we’d suggest checking out our review of the best sunscreens.
Vitamin K 90 mcg per day for adult women; 120 mcg per day for adult men; 10–20 mcg per day for infants; 15–100 mcg per day for children and teens Regulates blood clotting; used in creams to reduce puffy and aging eyes Spinach; swiss chard; kale; broccoli; avocado; grapes; kiwi; soybean
“I don’t have terrible dark circles, but I do often end up watching Netflix way later than I should. On those mornings after, I reach for this. It’s got a peachy hue to counteract that blue-ish tinge, botanicals to de-puff, and a firming complex that leaves a fine film under your eyes, so your concealer doesn’t settle into any lines. It’s like Spanx for your eyes.” —Lindsay Schallon, senior digital beauty editor
The truth is that only very few are actually effective and some may even contain harmful ingredients. When you’re in the market for an eye cream, you need to be very careful and learn about the ingredients to look for in eye creams that are clinically proven to be effective and safe. You can also use customer feedback to gauge the effectiveness and safety of the eye creams you’re considering for purchase.
“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