We’ve taken the eleven that remain and grouped them based on type (day cream or night cream), and weight (light, medium, or heavy). To find the best eye cream for you, you might have to try a couple, to find out which one feel best to you — our testers can only take us so far when it comes to personal preference.
Eating too much salt can cause additional fluid retention in your body. It can also lead to other health problems, like a greater risk of heart problems and stroke. The current percent daily value for sodium is 2,400 milligrams (mg). However, the American Heart Association recommends limiting sodium to 1,500 mg per day.
This can have a potential dual effect on puffy eyelids. First, if dark circles are caused by a visible network of blood vessels under the thin eyelid skin, then making the vessels smaller might reduce the darkness.
Smoking depletes your body’s stores of vitamin C, which is the vitamin responsible for creating healthy collagen in your skin. If you smoke, you may deal with issues like wrinkles, discoloration, and even under-eye bags and dark circles.
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.
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.
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.
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.
“I’ve been fighting dark circles and bagginess under my eyes since basically forever. Over the years, I’ve tried more eye creams than I can count and can say with absolute certainty that this is the best of the bunch. It has visibly faded the darkness under my eyes and has a teeny bit of shimmer that makes me look alert and refreshed. It totally eliminates puffiness, strengthened and hydrated my delicate skin, while also obliterating the fine lines and wrinkles that have been trying to make an appearance there this past year. It’s definitely a splurge, but it lasts a long time.” —Meg Adams, engineering manager
The skin around your eyes is very thin, making them extremely sensitive. When skin here comes into contact with allergens floating in the air such as pollen, animal dander, or dust mites, swelling is the result. Adding to the puffiness are allergens that reach the eyes through your nose. 
Some say forgetting to wash your face may cause wrinkles or damage the skin in other ways. How exactly? When you sleep in makeup, you’re exposing your skin to free radicals. This has the potential to create what’s called oxidative stress, which may prematurely age your skin.
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.
Eyes are more prone to dryness, so it’s important to keep the eyelid and undereye hydrated. Dark circles or puffy eyes can develop as a result of poor diet, lack of sleep, allergies or genetics. And the eyes are usually the first to show signs of aging in the form of fine lines and wrinkles. The earlier you start addressing these issues the better, though it’s never too late to start using an eye cream or serum specifically tailored to your needs.
Testers generally preferred pump-tops over squeeze tubes or roller-balls. Clinique Pep Start had a roller-ball that turned squirt-gun on us unexpectedly and was difficult to control. Testers did like the metal ball of Botanics All Bright Refreshing Eye Roll-On, but reported that it was still a little trickier to apply than, say, a squeeze tube.
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.
L’Oreal Paris’ White Perfect Magic White Double Whitening Eye Cream claims to whiten the skin from the inside, helping fade dark circles. It helps brighten the under eye area and claims to show results with the first use. It helps inhibit the production of melanin, which curbs pigmentation problems.
Retinoids are related to Vitamin A, and they’re well-documented to help the skin slough off old cells and produce new ones. They vary in strength, and as cosmetic chemist and consultant Kevin Gallagher explained, their strength has an immediate trade-off: the stronger and more effective the retinoid, the harsher it is on skin. Retinoids can cause side-effects like peeling and redness at high enough doses. Over-the-counter retinoid creams typically use gentler forms — you’ll need a need a prescription for extremely potent wrinkle creams — but if you have sensitive skin, know that retinoids are more likely to cause irritation than peptides.
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.
“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
Common urban myths about how to reduce puffy eyes include putting cold spoons on your eyes to reduce the inflammation. It is claimed that the cold steel soothes the skin and reduces the puffiness and swelling. They even claim it will help tighten up the skin and relax the blood vessels. There is no scientific support for these claims. Another common remedy is to rest wet tea bags on your eyes to draw out the puffiness. You are supposed to soak tea bags in hot water and then let them cool down, and place them on your eyes for 15 minutes.  Some blogs claim that tea contains anti-irritant properties. This is not true. Tea leaf does contain antioxidants and caffeine; but certainly not anti-irritants.
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Excessive alcohol intake causes all kinds of body issues, including bloating all over. So it makes sense that drinking too much contributes to puffy eyes as well. “Alcohol can lower an anti-diuretic hormone in your body, which causes puffiness,” says Dr. McLaughlin. 
Vitamin D Depends on factors such as one’s exposure to UV light: 400 to 2,000 IU per day Reduces risk of nearsightedness, pink eye, keratoconus, and cataracts; strengths bones within body; improves skin Sunlight; limited amounts of fortified foods; fish; fish liver oils
There’s a third form of pink eye that can cause eye puffiness too: allergy-related pink eye, which tends to affect both eyes at the same time and typically causes watery discharge and itching in the corners of your eyes. If you also experience a runny nose or sneezing when you have pink eye, it’s probably allergy-related, says Dr. Manusis.
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]
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.
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One of the main causes of puffy eyes is aging. The skin under your eyes is extremely thin, which increases the problem of swelling that occurs as you grow older. Over time, the tissue in your eyelids can weaken. This can cause fat in your upper eyelid to descend, coming to rest in your lower eyelid. Fluid may also be more likely to get trapped in your lower eyelid, and this retention is known as edema. The thin skin around your eyelids can cause fluid build up to be very prominent, resulting in puffy eyes. Thanks to a revolutionary discovery of all-natural water pills that SwellNoMore has developed over the years, you can find relief and support from this problem.

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.
Artificial sweeteners have also been linked to body bloating, which will have an effect on your eyes as well. Go easy on the diet sodas and other products containing fake sugar substitutes, or give them up completely. You can also try easing the eye puff caused by this fake sugars by consuming more inflammation-fighting foods like berries, tomatoes, and ginger. 
Periorbital puffiness, also known as “puffy eyes”, or swelling around the eyes, is the appearance of swelling in the tissues around the eyes, called the orbits. It is almost exclusively caused by fluid buildup around the eyes, or periorbital edema. Minor puffiness usually detectable below the eyes only (although at times they could be present all around) is often called eye bags. Such transient puffiness is distinct from the age related and gradual increase in the size of the fat pad lying below the lower eyelids (suborbicularis oculi fat – “SOOF”) which can also be colloquially referred to as eye bags.[1]
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.
Outdoor precautions can include wearing face masks, especially when doing yard work during the spring and fall seasons. You can also ask your doctor to prescribe you antihistamine and decongestant medications to minimize the effects of allergy season.
Some eye cream types contain ingredients that help firm the skin, like caffeine, retinol, or vitamin C. These may temporarily provide a firmer look to the eyes. Those creams that help to lighten skin around the eyes, especially dark circles may contain ingredients such as hydroquinone or Vitamin K. Occasionally you’ll find creams that offer anti-aging or firming benefits and reduce dark circles.
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.
If you’ve been using eye cream daily for at least six months, and still haven’t seen a difference, there are stronger options you can try: cosmetic injections and prescription-strength retinoids are two common options. Both will require seeing a dermatologist or plastic surgeon for consultation.
The one moisturizing ingredient that our experts agreed was a must-have was hyaluronic acid (HA), and its salt — sodium hyaluronate. These molecules are found naturally in your body, primarily in your skin, but our bodies produce less as we get older. As a result, the skin around our eyes starts to look less full, leading to wrinkles that look deeper and dark circles that are more noticeable.
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 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.
The incorrect way of putting eye cream, or any type of cream, on and rubbing it in would be not to wash your hands before the process. Even if you are at home and didn’t go out, bacteria are already on your hands. That’s why we wash our hands before we eat.
Linda Daniels is a true creative force, having worked as a seasoned writer, editor and consultant in the fashion and beauty industries. Connect with Linda on Facebook for constant updates to her projects.
One of the most common home remedies, as mentioned above, is the temporary use of hemorrhoid creams and ointments to reduce the puffiness in eyelids. A common active ingredient in these preparations is phenylephrine, a medication that constricts blood vessels, reducing their diameter.
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.
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