Vichy’s claims for LiftActiv CxP Eyes Anti-Wrinkle Eyelid Lifting Care ($28.95) are nothing if not bold. It is supposed to correct wrinkles, lift (“intensively”), fade dark circles, drain lymphatic canals, boost collagen and elastin as well as multiplying cells. Who knew that glycerin and silicone could do so much. Actually, they can’t. And blink and you might miss the few ingredients that add any value to this eye cream.

LiftActiv CxP Eyes goes for the feel good factor by majoring on a silicone and the emollient hydrogenated polyisobutene, both of which make the skin feel silky to the touch but don’t do a whole lot for its condition. They also make wrinkles appear less obvious, but the real trompe l’oeil is polymethyl methacrylate, a kind of plastic. Typically, this has been used in cosmetic surgery, where it is suspended in biological fluid and injected under the skin to reduce wrinkles. More recently, it has been to cosmetics to make them easier to apply smoothly, and to cover up, or fill in, wrinkles.

To be fair to LiftActiv CxP Eyes, dry skin will appreciate the glycerin. The best ingredient, escin, is tucked away after some of the preservatives. Escin, which is a saponin found in horse chestnut and is responsible for extracts of that plant being able to strengthen veins and capillaries by blocking an enzyme called hyaluronidase, which can breakdown of proteoglycans (part of the structure of capillary walls). Caffeine is a useful antioxidant and adenosine is an anti-inflammatory.

Even if these ingredients were enough for you to give Vichy LiftActiv CxP Eyes the benefit of the doubt, you probably shouldn’t close your eyes to some of the preservatives. Fairly high up the ingredients list is triethanolamine. This is a very strong irritant and toxin that is best used, if at all, in rinse off products. Making the lone paraben look relatively benign, there is also phenoxyethanol and sodium benzoate. The thing about sodium benzoate is that it doesn’t play nice with vitamin C, an interaction that will make it carcinogenic. Unfortunately, there’s vit C here too.


Water, Dimethicone, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Polymethyl Methacrylate, PEG 40 Stearate, Cera Alba (Beeswax) (Beeswax), Potassium Cetyl Phosphate, Stearic Acid, Sorbitan Tristearate, Triethanolamine, Caffeine, Methylparaben, Silica, Sodium Benzoate, Escin, Phenoxyethanol, Adenosine, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Tocopherol Acetate (Vitamin E Acetate), Poloxamer 338, Ascorbyl Glucoside, Hydrolyzed Rice Protein, Dextran Sulfate.