The skin around the eyes is more fragile, more prone to dryness, and quicker to show age and fatigue. Squinting and constant movement of the eyes also hasten the appearance of lines and wrinkles, and fluids collect under the eyes and cause puffiness and dark circles. Eye creams can address some of these issues.
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.
Ooh I will definitely have to try this! I have pure vitamin E oil (rather than the capsules) on my Amazon wish list to add on for next time I need to spend $35 to get free shipping ? And I always have coconut oil.
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.
The compounds of hydrangea root (also a key ingredient in our product) have been used to treat autoimmune diseases like arthritis. It is used to kill parasites, as a diuretic and blood cleanser, and to remove calcification to treat bladder and kidney stones. Hydrangea root has also been used in traditional medicine to remove calcium stones in the bladder and kidneys and remove calcification in soft tissue. Decalcification of soft tissue is important because it allows beneficial components to enter and clean cells of viruses and other harmful substances.
The good news: when your period nears its end, the swelling should subside, whether it’s around your eyes or elsewhere. Until it does, you can reduce the eye puffiness by holding a cold compress to the eyes for a few minutes and drinking lots of water (which helps flush out excess fluid your system is holding on to). Dr. Jalimon also suggests looking into eye creams and serums with caffeine, which can reduce the appearance of swelling.
How does retinol help with eye bags? When applied to the skin, this ingredient can improve collagen deficiency. You may find lower concentrations of retinol in different OTC products, but stronger creams require a prescription from your dermatologist.
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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.
“After my roommate literally gasped when I told her I didn’t use an under eye cream, I decided I better go out and find one. This Ole Henriksen ultimate lift eye gel cream has convinced me to never go back to the dark side. My eyes feel less puffy and squint-tired as soon as I apply it.” —Tess Kornfeld, editorial assistant
Reduce stress. High levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, can lead to a number of physical symptoms including swollen or puffy eyes. Try yoga, controlled breathing exercises, or meditation. All of these help moderate stress and are thought to help improve overall circulation. [8]
You may have noticed that common cucumber and tea bag treatment methods are not mentioned here. This is because these items are not recommended by eye care professionals. Cucumbers are over 90 percent water, and the rest is mainly inert fiber.
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.
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All of our consulting dermatologists and cosmetic chemists agreed that there is not currently enough scientific data to conclude whether parabens are actually harmful. That said, they encouraged those wary of parabens to seek out alternatives. The challenge is that there aren’t many. We could only find three paraben-free options, after nixing other potentially harmful ingredients: Both of the glittery Olay eye creams are paraben-free, as is Youth to the People’s medium-weight night cream. There’s also a fourth, if you can find it: Perricone MD Cold Plasma Anti-Aging Eye Treatment. But it’s not widely available from retailers like Amazon, Ulta, or Sephora, and we weren’t able to bring it in for testing.
Apply something cold to your eyes. Eye puffiness is a buildup of fluids in the tissues around your eyes, and like other types of swelling, it can be reduced with the application of a cool compress of some kind. Chilled cucumber slices are the perfect size and shape for your eyes, and the ascorbic acid in them works well to temporarily reduce puffiness. Lie back and place them over your closed eyelids for 15 minutes, or until they grow warm.[1]
“I’m one of the people who thinks eye creams are kind of BS—a regular light moisturizer does that trick just fine for me—but I’ve recently noticed how damn puffy my area looks. Blame it on December cheer, an excess of salt, and not enough water, but I started using this collagen-rich gel—which I keep in the fridge—and found it actually works to de-puff and hydrate. It also promises to blur fine lines, which I didn’t experience yet, but I’m planning to stick with it, mainly thanks to its powerful helix complex—an organic compound rich in allantoin, collagen, elastin, and glycolic acid.” —Perrie Samotin, digital deputy editor
If you’re tired of plain water, infusing it with fresh fruit is a great way to stay hydrated and refreshed. Try adding your fruit of choice to a custom water bottle for infused water that lasts all day long.
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.
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.
To do this, put a stack of books or other wedge under the feet of your bed on the side where you rest your head. If you notice a difference in how often or how severe your eyes get puff up, consider a more stable solution like bed risers.
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.
Sleep with a few pillows under your head to avoid fluid settling around your eyes. If you’re unable to sleep at an angle on a wedge pillow or stack of pillows, try raising the head of your bed a bit for the same effect.
As a moisturizer, an eye cream may increase water content of skin and temporarily improve the appearance of the skin. But so will many well-formulated facial moisturizers for a fraction of the cost. Consider trying these home remedies for puffy eyes and dark circles instead, and make sure you’re educated on the secrets the beauty industry doesn’t want you to know to avoid getting swindled in the future.
Hypothyroidism and Hyperthyroidism – Facial puffiness and periorbital swelling occur due to infiltration with the mucopolysaccharides hyaluronic acid and chondroitin sulfate,[4] pulling fluid into the interstitial space by osmosis.
Certain personal care products, like soaps, makeup, or hair dyes, may be allergens. If you’re having trouble identifying the cause, consider keeping a diary to see what substances or other things cause the most reaction. If this is a chronic problem talk to your doctor about allergy testing.
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.
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.
Try a neti pot. Use this gizmo, which looks like a small teapot, to pour salt water into one nostril and let it drain out the other. It sounds weird, but it might help flush out all that extra moisture in your sinuses from seasonal allergies, colds, or infections.

And of course you can always cheat and use the “Secret to the Stars” which is SwellNoMore, the #1 Natural Dietary Supplement formulated specifically to reduce puffy eyes. SwellNoMore quickly draws out retained fluids and reduces tissue inflammation commonly experienced around the eyes and face. It is doctor trusted and guaranteed to work within 1-3 days. Visit swellnomore.com and say goodbye to puffy eyes for good.
You may notice puffy eyes as you age or for a temporary reason, such as lack of sleep, poor diet, or seasonal allergies. Adopting healthy lifestyle habits may improve your puffy eyes in just a short period of time.
If you have pink eye, you would think you’d know it—this super contagious eye condition usually causes the mucus membranes that line your eyes to turn pinkish-red and swell up, releasing discharge as well.
Those are the slogans you’re likely to find plastered on eye creams sold in department stores, local pharmacies, and online. And although many of us want to know how to prevent and treat wrinkles, as a dermatologist, I will tell you that no amount of money you spend on eye cream is going to keep fine lines around the eyes at bay forever.
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.
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.
“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
“When choosing products, try to use products that are fragrance-free,” says Dr. Jaliman. When you spritz on perfume in particular, aim it away from your face to keep scented particles as far from your eyes as possible.
Consume cabbage or cranberry juice. Both are diuretics, which will help you “evacuate” some excess fluid.[6] Don’t turn to caffeine as your diuretic of choice, as it can interfere with sleep and bring back the puffiness.
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!
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