Eye creams are an absolute necessity for most of us as we get older. However, seeing eye to eye on the best cream, gel or serum isn’t always obvious and finding the right one can be a challenge. Although there are eye creams that purport to be all-rounders that can tackle everything from dark circles to wrinkles, my advice is to decide what condition is your priority and choose an eye cream that is best formulated to tackle it. Here are some ideas:
Best for dark circles
There are some specific ingredients that can be of some help and they are a key feature of some the newest, good quality eye creams. They include Hesperidin methyl chalcone, Bioskinup Contour 3r, Haloxyl and Eyeseryl. Read more on the causes of and solutions for dark under eye circles. Eye creams that major on these actives and have had readers reporting results with dark circles include Hydropeptide Dark Circle Concentrate ($60 and winner of the 2011 Five Best Eye Creams for Under $65); Your Best Face Correct ($150 in the TIA shop), Skin Nutrition Eye Reconditioning Cream ($110 ), Belli Eye Brightening Cream also gets good reports relying mostly on arnica and panax ginseng as does IQ Derma RestorEyes ($85).
Best for puffy eyes
If you are saddled with bags then keep an eye out for Eyeseryl. This is tetrapeptide-5 and it is supposed to reduce water retention and ensure lymph drainage, while protecting collagen from cross-linking and causing baggy eyes. Additionally, it reduces leaking of fluids from the capillaries into the tissue, which can cause puffy eyes. Bioskinip Contour 3r reduced eye bags by 50% in a trial, according to the manufacturer. Eyeseryl can be found in ReLuma’s eye cream ($81 in the TIA shop) as does YBF Refresh ($80 in the TIA shop) - read a review of them tested side by side, while Chella Anti-Fatigue Eye Mask Kit ($45) has Bioskinup, Sevani Ageless Eyes ($54 in the TIA shop) got a good review from our puffy-eye prone 30-something tester and Beautisol Eye Want is good at de-puffing in my experience. Our reviewer also got great (as in eliciting comments from husband) results with LiftLab’s Lift & Firm Eye Cream ($95)
Best for crepey lines
Delicate eye area skin seems to be prone to a specific kind of dry wrinklyness that is known as crepeyness. Slathering on a rich moisturizer isn’t necessarily the answer, at least not for me. I was only able to actually eliminate crepe (probably my most successful anti-aging experience to date) when I made the investment in Your Best Face Correct. Although this eye cream is formulated to be an all-rounder, eliminating crepey wrinkles is what it does best.
Best for firming
The hunt is still on for the ultimate firming and lifting eye cream, but in the meantime there are some that give noticeable results. Users of SenZen Double Dose eye cream ($84) report firming and hydration. I should point out that some people found it initially hydrating and then drying. My take on it is that if you want firming, give it a try and add in a little of your regular moisturizer if needed. If you are on a budget, try Reviva Labs DMAE Firming Eye Serum. Don’t expect miracles, but it is a good maintenance product for a mere $19. LiftLab’s Lift & Firm also does what it says on the tin (note that testers have said it takes two-to-three weeks to get results).
Best for hydration
The eye area’s delicate skin can become easily dry and malnourished. The trick is to find hydrating eye creams that aren’t too heavy and play nice with makeup without pilling. La Vie Celeste’s eye cream ($60 in the TIA shop) is a good choice as it leaves the skin with, in the words of one reviewer, a “creamy matte finish”. Dark circles will appreciate the brightening effects of bearberry with a natural alpha arbutin. Smoothing, brightening and moisturizing effects were experienced by our tester with Juice Beauty’s Stem Cellular Repair Eye Treatment ($45).
Best for crow’s feet
Paradoxically, I’ve not yet found an eye cream that does a really good job on crow’s feet. So I recommend getting out the heavy guns – serums and even the PaloVia at home laser device. Our testers absolutely raved about the results they got with PaloVia ($499), although the treatment is not for the faint of heart. I’ve recently been using Skin Nutrition’s Night Cream ($75 in the TIA shop) with very good effect, inspired by our tester’s before and after pictures. I’ve also had good results with BioEffect, ReLuma Serum and the new formulation of Your Best Face Control.
Applying eye cream
My esthetician, Ildi Pekar, taught me to apply eye cream with a gentle circular motion that starts at the outer eye, travels under the eye towards the nose and then over the lid. In other words, the opposite direction from your wrinkles.