To help you uncover what’s behind your puffy eyes, we spoke with a team of doctors, including a dermatologist, ophthalmologist, allergist, and optometrist. Read on for the reasons why fluid accumulation happens and how to combat it—and wake up looking fresh, gorgeous, and like yourself again.
“Retinol is one of my personal favorites,” Farris says. But it can be harsh on some skin. RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Eye Cream ($22.99) contains a gentle dose of retinol along with hyaluronic acid.
Combining two powerful anti-ageing actives, Dr Dennis Gross Skincare’s Ferulic + Retinol Eye Cream is a potent formula devoted to firming, brightening and tightening the delicate eye area. Use every evening for the best results – the effects are cumulative as well as immediate.
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.
But sometimes it’s hard to tell, especially if your pink eye (aka conjunctivitis) is caused by a virus rather than a bacterial infection. Viral pink eye is often accompanied by a watery, clear discharge and can be relatively mild. Bacterial pink eye, on the other hand, is characterized by a yellowish-green discharge, and there might be a lot of it.
This happens because aging processes cause thinning of the membrane or “septum” that ordinarily holds back fat in both the upper and lower eyelids. As the membrane thins, the fat herniates and pushes forward. This is when bags or bulges start forming under the eye.
L’Oreal Youth Code Eye Cream is one of the Top Rated Eye Creams of 2018 – another impressive eye cream formulation that addresses the different signs of skin aging. It is from a well-known skin care brand and it contains clinically proven ingredients for addressing aging signs around the eyes.
If you suspect you may be anemic, it’s a good idea to visit your doctor. Your doctor will check this with a simple blood test. You may need special iron supplements to get back on track. For mild cases, increasing your dietary intake of iron may help.
The flip-side is that retinoids may work more quickly than peptides, although “quickly” is still relative. At high concentrations, you’re likely to see improvements in wrinkles, skin thickness, and skin elasticity within 4 months, but be prepared for a longer wait time with most over-the-counter creams. Just as wrinkles don’t appear overnight, happen overnight, even the best eye cream can’t fix them overnight.
Bags under eyes — mild swelling or puffiness under the eyes — are common as you age. With aging, the tissues around your eyes, including some of the muscles supporting your eyelids, weaken. Normal fat that helps support the eyes can then move into the lower eyelids, causing the lids to appear puffy. Fluid also may accumulate in the space below your eyes, adding to the swelling.
Using these products occasionally is fine, but relying on them for days on end isn’t a good idea. “Using [over-the-counter eye drops and nasal sprays] for too long can make the problem worse and cause dependence,” warns Dr. Ellman-Gunther. “You should always confirm with a doctor what’s safe to use and for how long before using over the counter products for more than a few days.” Talk to your doctor about prescription meds as well.
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Lightweight night creams absorb quickly: After a minute or two, it might be hard to tell you’ve put anything on. We’d recommend this category for people with oily skin — or for anyone who doesn’t like the texture of heavy lotions.
This is my favorite under-eye product, and don’t make me tell you again why I love snail so much! Its regenerative properties not only work wonders on blemish scars, but also help with any kind of hyperpigmentation, including dark under-eye circles. It’s also super beneficial for helping with wrinkles and dryness. I keep these in the fridge, so they’re nice and cold when I use them — adding another level of luxury to the experience.
A similar action takes place in the eyelids. The closed, non-blinking eyelids during sleep potentially can swell in certain people prone to this problem. So in the mornings, you could wake up with unusually puffy, swollen eyelids. As soon as you open your eyes and blinking begins, some of this swelling can diminish in an hour or so.
As we get older, our skin regenerates more slowly, loses elasticity, and can appear sunken. Moisturizing helps skin look fuller — minimizing wrinkles — and gives it the water it needs to repair and regenerate itself.
Put down that salt shaker! Water will always find its way from parts of your body that are low in sodium to those that have the most. The area around your eyes is a prime example. That’s why a dinner loaded with salt often results in morning-after puffiness.
Puffiness is a buildup of fluid and blood under the eyes. Some studies show that caffeine can help circulation, which could reduce puffiness. Other studies show that cold temperatures are just as effective to treat puffiness. That’s why some people refrigerate their eye creams.

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.
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While it’s hard to totally avoid allergens, reduce your exposure and prevent eye puffiness by staying indoors as much as possible—especially in fall and spring, when trees and plants release more pollen and symptoms can get worse. Keep windows shut, change into another outfit when you come in from outdoors, and consider getting an air filter to cut down on pet dander in your home.
@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.
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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.
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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! 
Perfect for those mornings where you wake up feeling less than bright-eyed, Clinique’s Pep Start Eye Cream is a lightweight formula which instantly awakens the eye area, depuffing and diminishing dark circles as it hydrates.
I made this today and didn’t do any measuring, I also used the vitamin E oil not capsules. It is a bit hard verses creamy so I will see. I was using straight coconut oil, can’t wait to see how this does. I wish this was day or night use, i know it said you could use it in the morning, but if it’s also a makeup remover I can’t see putting on under my eye makeup.
Eye cream with high acid content may make skin more vulnerable to the sun. If you’re using a product with acids, make sure to protect your eyes and skin during the day with a high SPF sunscreen, and with sunglasses. Other eye creams tend to skip compounds that make the skin more vulnerable and lean heavily on moisturizers.
“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
Why Are My Eyes Puffy? ↓Who Gets Puffy Eyes? ↓Which Symptoms Are Associated With Puffy Eyes? ↓What Are The Treatments and Home Remedies for Puffy Eyes? ↓When Should I Seek Medical Attention For My Puffy Eyes? ↓How Can I Prevent My Eyes From Becoming Puffy? ↓Talking to Your Eye Doctor ↓
Vitamin C Depends on factors such as one’s weight, activity level, metabolism, age, and ailments: 2,300 to 9,000 mg per day Maintains body’s collagen; reduces effects of certain allergens that may cause puffy eyes Fresh fruits and vegetables; citrus fruits such as oranges and lemons; rose hips; green peppers; acerola cherries
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