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Do eye rollers work

November 11, 2012 Reviewed by Marta 6 Comments

Looking for the next fad to replace vibrating foundation and mascara, cosmetic companies such as Garnier and Olay are bringing out eye rollers. These are gels or creams in applicators that come equipped with a device that is supposed to massage puffyness, dark circles and wrinkles away. We rolled our eyes in the direction of Olay Regenerist ($20.69), Garnier's new Skin Renew ($13) and First Aid Detox ($24).

Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller is actually pleasant to use. It is rather relaxing to roll the large ball (think roll-on deodorant) over the eyelids. Nonetheless, I still felt a stab of concern that I could be pulling at the delicate eye area skin in a way that my pinky never would. Despite the name, Skin Anew did not de-puff and my under eyes aren't even very puffy. I found of plenty of other reviewers saying they, too, were disappointed.

This is a little surprising because the main active in Anti-Puff Eye Roller is caffeine, a vascoconstrictor, caffeine tends to reduce puffiness, if only temporarily. By increasing blood flow and increasing the lipolytic effect, it blocks enzymes and decreases triglycerides breakage. This anti-inflammatory impact makes a difference when it comes to eye treatments. By constricting the blood vessels in the delicate eye area, caffeine can help temporarily reduce puffiness. Another good ingredient is escin. This is a saponin from the seeds of horse chestnut and it is supposed to strengthen veins and capillaries by blocking an enzyme called hyaluronidase.

A mystery ingredient is guanosine. This could be one of a number of things, including bird poo. Guanasine is one of the molecules in DNA. It can also be called guanine and was first isolated in 1844 in the excreta of seabirds. We know that in Japan, there are facials using the droppings of birds. Somehow, I can't see Garnier going to such exotic lengths. Guanine is also the name given to a pearly colorant used in shampoos and other cosmetics. Much more like it.

Olay Regenerist Advanced Anti-Aging Eye Anti-Aging Roller has three little "micro-rollers" and I would go so far as to say that they hurt, particularly under the eye, as they dispense a rather sticky gel. Kudos does go to Olay for using the power peptide Matrixyl, along with caffeine and vitamin E. The rest of this potion is a mediocre mixture of fillers and parabens.

First Aid Detox has Matrixyl's even more potent sibling, Matrixyl 3000. There are several other welcome ingredients as well, including antioxidant tea and wheat protein, plus anti-inflammatory licorice. Unfortunately the design of the applicator does not live up to them. The roller is set a little too deep and the result is that the edge kept scratching my skin. The potion is not dispensed evenly and sometimes doesn't come out at all.

Ingredients in Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller

Aqua/Water, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Caffeine, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Escin, Guanosine, Hydroxyproline, Biosaccharide Gum 1, Sodium Hyaluronate, Xanthan Gum, Aluminum Hydroxide, C13 14 Isoparaffin, Disodium EDTA, Laureth 7, Mica, Polyacrylamide, Caprylyl Glycol, Methylparaben, Phenoxyethanol, Imidazolidinyl Urea, FIL

Ingredients in Olay Regenerist Advanced Anti-Aging Eye Anti-Aging Roller

Water, Glycerin, Isopropyl Isostearate, Capric/Caprylic Triglycerides, C12 15 Alkyl Benzoate, Squalane, PEG 100 Stearate, Cyclopentasiloxane, Glyceryl Stearate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Caffeine, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Polysorbate 80, Palmitoyl Pentapeptide 4, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Carbomer, Acrylates C10 30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Aminomethyl Propanol, Benzyl Alcohol, Methylparaben, Ethylparaben, Propylparaben

Ingredients in First Aid Detox

Water (Aqua), Glycerin, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel ) Water, Butylene Glycol, Sodium Hyaluronate, Camellia Sinensis (White Tea) Leaf Extract, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Palmitoyl Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Sodium Polyacrate, Ethoxydiglycol, Polysorbate 20, Caffeine, Menthyl Lactate, PEG-12 Dimethicone, Aminomethyl Propanol, Carbomer, Benzoic Acid, Caprylyl Glycol, Phenoxyethanol, Mica (CI 77019), Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891)

  • May 30, 2014

    by marta

    Matina, it could be worth doing that with First Aid. But none of these live up to a good eye cream such as the ones in our updated Five Best Eye Creams:

  • May 28, 2010

    by Angela

    My husband had severe bags and drooping under his eyes. They really made him look old. One day he saw the Olay roller in my potions bag and asked about it. I told him to use it because I had just started a new regiment for facial needs. He used it for 3 to 4 days and there was a significant difference and now it looks like he took 10 years from his eyes! He is going to replace the roller when it runs out, he is really impressed and so am I.

  • February 11, 2010

    by deborah rodell

    I too fell for the sale price and the hoopla. This product did not work. I gave it 2 weeks, of dedicated use. Nothing, Nada, Nyet, Zero. Please ladies stay with the updated 'Five Best' eye creams. Otherwise you will be throwing good money after bad. Plus it felt sticky and was cumbersome to hold. While I was purchasing mine a woman started to complain to the cashier that her roller kept sticking. That should have been my first clue. Not for this slow learner. Guess what? My roller stuck more times than rolled. Do not buy. Cheap product, cheap packaging.

  • November 18, 2009

    by Matina

    Do the Olay regenerist and First Aid detox work though? I suppose you could just apply to your finger and the put on your eyes as long as they work!

  • November 18, 2009

    by Junko

    I tried the Garnier Nutritioniste Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller (before this post) and found that it Didn't Work. Don't waste your money on this one !

  • November 13, 2009

    by Jonathan

    I love the Crystal Clear Eye roller. its about 90 pounds. Have you tried it?

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