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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.
There is significant variation in price in eye creams, and many come in very small bottles. Trying out a few before buying can help, and sometimes cosmetics companies will offer small samples. Especially when an eye cream is greatly expensive, it’s a great idea to see if it works for you, rather than plunk down a lot of money to get a product that doesn’t work very well. There are a few eye cream variants that are sold by prescription only. Anything containing hydroquinone may be available in certain countries only by prescription, and some countries ban its use because it may be connected with a higher incidence of skin cancer.
Next, decide whether you prefer a lightweight lotion that absorbs quickly — like Youth to the People (retinoid) and Botanics All Bright (peptide) — or a richer cream that lingers on the skin, like Skin Laundry (retinoid) or SkinMedica (peptide). If you’re not sure where to start, we’d suggest the medium-weight coverage offered by Kate Somerville’s Line Release retinoid cream or Mizon’s peptide cream.
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.
Biotique’s Bio Seaweed Revitalizing Anti Fatigue Eye Gel helps tackle puffiness and dark circles. Biotique claims that a little bit of product goes a long way. The formula contains seaweed extract along with almond extract, Himalayan water, honey, and nutmeg oil. It is rich in lipids, minerals, proteins, vitamins, and other detoxifying elements.
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.
“I’ve tried tons of eye creams that do literally nothing, based totally on the idea that they’ll help the situation in 10-15 years. Call it a flaw, but without results this year, I can’t commit. Belif’s eye cream doesn’t have that problem: this spin-off of its moisturizer leaves my under-eyes looking smooth and way less crepe-y within minutes.” —Rachel Nussbaum, beauty writer
Normal aging – As a person grows older, the skin around the eyes becomes thinner and may swell or droop. Further a gradual and generally permanent increase in the size of the suborbicularis oculi fat pad along with the thinning and weakening of the overlying musculature contributes to the apparent distention of the lower eyelids.
“I get dry skin on my eyelids—I think because the skin there is so sensitive already and when I’m putting moisturizer on, I tend to forget about my eye area. This fixes that. I especially like that it’s all-natural and I know exactly what’s in it, rather than some sort of ‘amazing vitalizing serum’ that has vague descriptions of what it actually does.” —Emily Geraghty, senior producer
Get some exercise. This improves circulation, which will help your body move fluid through your body, rather than letting it accumulate. If you have time, go for a run, do some yoga, or simply take a brisk walk.
Quitting smoking also helps with a host of other health issues. You can add years to your life, get rid of stained teeth, and reduce your chances of developing diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain cancers.
The main difference between Estee and Botanics is application style. The Estee is a thin, cream-based formula with a tiny pump, good for dispensing precise amounts of cream. The Botanics uses a squeeze tube with a metal roller ball. Testers reported that the roller ball felt wonderfully cool under their eyes, but this application style does make it trickier to tell exactly how much product you’re applying.
Bags under eyes are usually a cosmetic concern and rarely a sign of a serious underlying medical condition. At-home remedies, such as cool compresses, can help improve the appearance of bags under eyes. For persistent or bothersome under-eye puffiness, eyelid surgery may be an option.
At Swell No More, we have finally developed a solid solution for reducing puffy eyes and bringing about several other beneficial results. Puffiness under the eyes is a common symptom of allergies, lack of sleep, stress and poor diet. Your eyes will become puffy when the skin around them becomes irritated or itchy. People who consume large amounts of alcohol and sodium before bed may also wake up with puffy eyes due to water retention. Stress may cause your skin and eyes, along with other parts of your body, to weaken and become susceptible to problems like swelling.
Science has yet to discover a single ingredient that can reverse the aging process. Often “marketing tool” ingredients like caffeine, peptides, or collagen are added to an eye cream formulation to enhance sales. But there is no scientific evidence that these ingredients have any real benefit or that they can reverse the aging process. On the other hand, dermatologists say these breakthrough anti-aging products are the real deal. The ability of an eye cream to improve the appearance of skin around the eye is more dependent on the product’s ability to increase the water content of the skin, which is basically its effectiveness as a moisturizer.
Drinking more water and applying a cold compress can help shrink eye bags quickly, but the only way to reduce their appearance in the long term is to make a few lifestyle changes. This is especially true if your eye bags and dark circles are genetically inherited.
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.
Sleep problems, your period, your perfume, your diet soda habit—find out about these and other surprising causes of puffy, swollen eyes, so you can get rid of the puffiness fast and help prevent the blowfish look from returning.
Yes, the skin around the eyes is thin. But under a microscope, a skin pathologist cannot distinguish skin taken from around the eye with skin taken from high on the cheekbone. One might argue that the thinnest eyelid skin is more susceptible to the damage of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, but ironically, most eye creams don’t contain sunscreen.
You may consider also cutting back on alcohol to see relief. Why does this work? It’s a similar idea to drinking more water. Drinking alcohol contributes to dehydration, and dehydration may lead to bags and dark circles under your eyes.
Hyaluronic acid is most effective when it can get into the deeper layers of the skin — which is why it is a common ingredient for fillers and injections. But in topical creams, it often has a hard time getting past the outer layer of skin because it is comprised of fairly large molecules. As a workaround, the most effective eye cream will use sodium hyaluronate instead, a derivative that is more easily absorbed into the skin because it has smaller molecules. We looked only at products that contained sodium hyaluronate (although we didn’t ding them for including HA).
I always have these patches in my fridge to use when I’m feeling under-rested. Firstly, they’re cute and pink, and that alone makes me feel a little bit better after a late night out. But they’re also great for replenishing and brightening under-eyes. The box also comes with 60 patches, so you’re really getting your money’s worth.
Water.org is an international nonprofit organization that has positively transformed millions of lives around the world through access to safe water and sanitation. Founded by Gary White and Matt Damon, Water.org pioneers innovative, market-driven solutions to the global water crisis — breaking down barriers to give families hope, health and the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty.
“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
Bromelain, which is an enzyme found in pineapple, has a positive effect on reducing inflammation throughout your body, and can also assist in fighting bloating and puffiness. Another one of our remarkable ingredients is known as quercetin, which is a type of antioxidant that is naturally found in plant foods like leafy greens, tomatoes, berries and broccoli. This has been proven to bring longevity, heart health and better endurance to those who take it, and it has been linked to preventing certain cancers from developing within the body. These are just a few examples of the super-food ingredients our water pills stem from.
“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.
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.
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.