“While technically not an eyes-only cream, I use Sunday Riley Tidal around my eyes and it’s pure gold. It’s very lightweight and doesn’t have a strong scent, which is great. It seriously pumps up the hydration in my face and around my eyes, and makes my skin super soft too.” —Nina Bahadur, branded content editor
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).
If your goal is to awaken and brighten the eye area – and whose goal isn’t to do just that? – try Origins’s GinZing Refreshing Eye Cream, which uses coffee beans, ginseng and magnolia extract to revitalise and refresh. Use it in the morning for an instant wake-up call.
We gave our remaining 21 products to eleven testers of various skin types, dry to oily. They applied each cream and waited ninety seconds — the amount of time manufacturers typically recommend waiting before applying other products. Then our testers noted how quickly each cream had absorbed into their skin, and whether it left behind any residue.
I’ve mentioned this product before as one of my favorite concealers for both under-eyes and blemishes. When I’ve used the Saint Laurent pen, I don’t need that much concealer, so I go in with just a touch of this, and buff it out with my fingers for a more natural finish.
Store shelves groan under the weight of creams and lotions made to reduce puffy eyes. Try them out to see if one works for you. Here’s one product to avoid: Don’t use old-fashioned hemorrhoid cream. It can irritate the skin around your eyes. Try a retinol eye cream instead.
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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.
Because the skin around the eye area tends to be thin and fragile, it requires products specifically formulated for that area. Your go-to moisturizer and serum may work wonders on the rest of the face, but they’re not the right consistency for the thinner skin surrounding the eye. In fact, heavy moisturizers can actually make eyes puffier.
Don’t like water? The good news is that all fluids count toward your daily total. Still, water is a low-calorie option. Try sparkling waters, flavored waters, or even water infused with fruit. Hot or cold herbal decaffeinated tea is another good choice.
Eating too many salty foods may be at the root of your under-eye bags. Salt contributes to your body’s fluid retention and can make you puffy overall. It may also lead to other health issues, like heart disease and stroke.
Can you wear retinoids during the day? Yes and no. Retinoids have an exfoliating effect on the skin, scrubbing away dead skin, and the more powerful they are, the more effective they are. This means that they can make your skin more sensitive to UV radiation, but it depends both on how sensitive your skin is, and the strength of the retinoid in your eye cream. An easy fix is to wear sunscreen overtop to protect your skin. However, we still recommend wearing these creams at night, because there is some research that sunlight can degrade retinols and make them less effective.
Often eye cream formulas have heavier moisturizing ingredients, and some night creams can be used safely around the eyes. You still have to be careful applying any of these creams since even if they don’t damage the eyes, they may still hurt if you get some of the cream in your eyes. Eye creams may also be sold as oils or serums instead of creams, which some people find easier to apply.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1.6 mg for adult males per day; 1.2 mg for adult females per day; 1.5 mg to 1.7 mg for pregnant or lactating women Prevents itchy eyes, which can cause puffiness; helps to maintain good vision Fish; egg yolks; brewer’s yeast; liver; whole grain cereal
A bad night’s sleep can lead to puffiness around the eye area in the morning – especially if you’re stressed. Stress causes changes to the salt balance in the body and if salt balances are off, your eyes can retain water as a result and swell.
Whether you choose a retinoid- or peptide-based product, take your time adding new ingredients to your skin care routine, particularly if you have sensitive skin. Starting by applying the cream once or twice a week, and give your skin time to adjust to the new routine. This is an easy way to check whether your skin is sensitive to the ingredients in your new eye cream — irritated skin will feel itchy and look red. Even if you don’t see irritation right away, keep an eye on your skin as you move from applying eye cream every few days to a daily routine. If you’re using a retinoid-based night cream, irritation or redness may be a sign to switch to a peptide-based day cream instead.
Fine lines and wrinkles come from both sun damage and your skin making less collagen as you age. Collagen helps maintain skin’s elasticity. Vitamin C, peptides, and retinol have boosted collagen production, studies of skin creams show. Ceramide and hyaluronic acid also help; these are moisturizers that help prevent water loss in the skin and improve elasticity.
“This Burt’s Bees eye cream is a staple in my morning routine. It’s powerhouse ingredient is Royal Jelly, which contains macronutrients, antioxidants and vitamins to really help fade out fine lines. I keep it in the fridge so that it wakes me up and reduces morning puffiness.” —Jill Amos, digital photo editor
Treat your allergies. Puffy eyes are often caused by allergies, which inflame the face and cause water to collect there. You might see a big difference if you treat your seasonal allergies with a good allergy medication.
Most eye creams being sold today make unsubstantiated claims like offering instant results and the like. There are hundreds of eye creams on the market with each one claiming to be the ultimate solution for signs of skin aging around the eyes.
The sodium and puffy-eye connection is simple: sodium causes your body to hold onto fluid, and that includes in the tissues surrounding your eyes as well. Sodium is the main mineral in salt, so salty foods such as chips and cold cuts are major swollen-eye culprits. But sodium is also hidden in tons of packaged products, including bread, soup, and frozen meals.
Elevate your head when you sleep. It’s not unusual to have puffy eyes upon waking. A possible explanation for this may be that when you are lying down for several hours in a horizontal position and then stand up, the fluid that was resting under your eyes is suddenly being pulled down by gravity. To reduce it, you can try using an extra pillow while sleeping so that the fluid is not as drastically drawn down when you get up.
In the United States, Congress passes laws to protect consumers’ health and safety. The Federal Food, Drug & Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) clearly states “articles…intended to affect the structure or function of…” skin are considered drugs, and as such, must get FDA pre-market approval before going to market. In addition, the manufacturer must prove safety and efficacy of that product. An eye cream, however, is not a drug—it is a cosmetic and doesn’t require FDA pre-market approval or need to demonstrate its safety or efficacy. Cosmetics are defined as “articles intended to be rubbed, poured, sprinkled, or sprayed on, introduced into, or otherwise applied…for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance.” By law, manufacturers of cosmetics, including eye creams, may claim that their product improves the appearance of the skin, as many well-formulated moisturizers temporarily do, but they cannot legally claim that their product actually alters the structure or function of the skin, as this would make the product a drug and require FDA pre-market approval.
Waking up with puffy, swollen eyes is a major bummer—especially if you need to arrive at work looking bright and alert, or you’re tired of masking the puffiness with makeup. Even worse is when the puff is accompanied by dark circles, redness, underye bags, and/or irritation. It’s not a pretty look, and it can do a number on your self-esteem.
[…] a big plastic tube. Next I use a 3 ingredient toner, followed by a super cheap and homemade eye cream, and moisturize with a custom oil blend that I just started using recently. Body Unburdened also […]