Did you know that in the US over 6,000 people a year are hospitalized as a result of a packaging injury? In the UK, the annual cost to the National Health Service around $25m. If you don't believe me when I say that opening a box can be hazardous, then take a trip to Costco. I recently did (my first since arriving in the US nine years ago) and bought, along with extremely large jars of things that I didn't really need such as capers, a couple of things from Costco's own cosmetic line, Kirkland Signature by Borghese.

The packaging is conceptually curious - an inflexible cardboard panel into which is set a kind of molded plastic bubble that houses the product (I chose the Age-Defying Protective Eye Cream for $26.99) - and nearly lethal in practice. I didn't actually cut myself in the process of getting at my pot of eye cream but I did work up a muck sweat wrestling with the damn thing. A variety of tools were called into service with little avail. Neither scissors, teeth or a bread knife could make a dent although both me and the packaging looked as if we'd been backed over by a truck. In the end, I raided by husband's tool box and found a small saw. True story! It did the trick.

Even though Costco's packaging is both consumer and environmentally unfriendly, I was determined to make friends with the eye cream. The price was good (although it should be pointed out that it comes in a Liliputian - compared to everything else at Costco - half ounce pot) and many of the ingredients were good enough to pass muster.

After two weeks of testing, I gave up. The skin around my eyes began to look a tad dry and crepey. Far from 'Age-Defying', Kirkland's eye cream was age-advancing. Why this should be is almost as perplexing as how to unpackage it without becoming unhinged. The ingredients are, if not standouts, anti-aging stalwarts at the very least. Rice bran, wheat bran and green tea are good antioxidants. Ceramide has been shown in some studies to help rebuild and restore the epidermal barrier, strengthening the skin’s appearance and maximizing its moisture levels. It even has a botanical that is new to me: menyanthes trifoliata leaf extract. This alone could be worth getting to know better since it is supposed to be a scavenger of peroxynitrite, a free radical that creates lipid peroxidation.

There is nothing to dislike (except the inclusion of every paraben known to man), but somehow me and Kirkland's eye cream were't compatible. But I guess I should have known that when I needed power tools to facilitate the introduction.

Water, C12-15 alkyl benzoate, cetearyl alcohol, yeast extract, hydrolized rice bran protein, stearyl ethylhexanoate, butylene glycol, aloe barbadensis leaf extract, octyldodecyl erucate, ceteareth-20, sweet almond seed extract, soybean seed extract, camellia oleifera leaf extract, wheat bran extract, menyanthes trifoliata leaf extract, ceramide-3, panthenol, allantoin, propylene glycol, squalane, carbomer, bisabolol, glycyrrhetinic acid, glyceryl polymethacrylate, trisodium EDTA, cholesterol, lecithin, triethanolomine, phenoxyethanol, methylparaben, butylparaben, ethylparaben, propylparaben, isobutylparaben