Eye creams can be confusing - do you even really need one? And if you do, how on earth do you find the best eye cream for you, with so many of them on the shelves!
Not all eye creams are equal, so here’s what to look for...
We’re here to help.
First up, not everybody needs an eye cream. If the delicate skin around your eyes appears to be benefiting just fine from your daily moisturising routine, then that may be enough. Carry on doing what you’re doing!
The need for a specially formulated eye cream comes when the skin around your eyes starts to behave differently. Being thinner than the rest of the skin on your face, the eye area can become drier more quickly (even if you tend to have oily skin) and more prone to signs of ageing.
Then of course there’s pigmentation (dark circles), puffiness, irritation and more. That’s when you need an eye cream to target your specific skin concerns.
Not all eye creams are equal however, so here’s what to look for...
If your under eye area looks like it’s living beneath a permanent shadow, you need to look for ingredients that’ll brighten it up. Caffeine (when applied topically, not so much when slurped in coffee!) is a popular and effective ingredient for this, as it stimulates sluggish circulation and blood flow, which can be a cause of dark circles. During the day, look for eye creams which contains ‘optical brighteners’, pigments which reflect light to give the illusion of brighter skin.
TIP: There’s science behind putting cold tea bags on your eyes! Full of antioxidants and caffeine, they’ll pep up the skin under your eyes to help diminish dark circles.
Cooling eye creams, serums and gels are the best remedy for puffy eyes, which work to soothe the skin around the eye and reduce the build-up of fluid in the area. Look for eye creams that have a rollerball applicator which can help to gently massage the fluid away, plus soothing ingredients like cucumber and vitamin E. Puffiness can also be the result of a lack of sleep, alcohol consumption and skin dryness, so if the problem refuses to go away, you may need to address your lifestyle habits too.
TIP: Keeping your eye cream cool in the fridge can help to soothe both puffiness and irritation even faster!
ANTI-AGEING FOR FINE LINES
If you’ve started to notice fine lines forming around your eyes, it’s time to invest in a preventative anti-ageing eye cream. Look for one that includes an SPF for day time, to protect against sun damage - a huge cause of early ageing - as well as skin plumping ingredients such as vitamin A and Hyaluronic Acid. Opt for moisturising creams or serums that team these ingredients with ceramides, which help to lock in moisture and keep the area well hydrated.
TIP: Leaving eye make-up on overnight can make fine lines worse by sitting in the lines, and drying out the skin. Use a good eye make-up remover to get rid of all traces before bedtime.
ANTI-AGEING FOR WRINKLES
If you already have deep set lines or wrinkles, you need an eye cream that minimises the appearance of these, while also slowing down any further signs of ageing. Look for super-hydrating ingredients such as retinol - a powerful anti-ageing derivative of vitamin A - and more gentle neuropeptides, which both stimulate the body’s production of natural collagen and elastin, to plump up and smooth the skin. Wearing an eye cream containing SPF is important during the day too, to prevent further ageing from sun damage.
TIP: If you struggle with under-eye make-up, try mixing a little concealer with your eye cream to make a lighter concoction that’s easier to blend, and keeps skin hydrated all day
If you’re in need of an eye cream but tend to react to many skincare ingredients, look for natural alternatives. Shea butter and coconut oil are excellent natural moisturisers which will keep the skin plumped and hydrated, while vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin E are all powerful natural anti-agers.
TIP: Popping cucumber slices over your eyes really can help to soothe irritated eyes naturally, especially if you use them freshly chilled from the fridge.
TRY: Simple Kind To Eyes Soothing Eye Balm, £3.49