Eye creams are a divisive topic in the beauty industry. Experts are divided as to whether they’re necessary, with many arguing that your regular moisturizer more than does the trick, while others believe the delicate eye area deserves a bespoke approach with potent ingredients delivered directly.
Honestly, after the better part of a decade spent slathering on any number of eye emulsions, I’m of the school of thought that a little extra attention never hurt. Whether my moisturizer is capable or otherwise, I prefer to use a dedicated product to address my concerns, from fine lines to dark circles.
I also alternate between formulas for day and night, following the same philosophy as my day and night routine – brightening antioxidants for day, active ingredients at night. Or when I’m in between each, I just opt for a hydrating formula that covers all my bases.
I’ve tried dozens of options, but these are the best eye creams that actually work for me.
Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment with Avocado, $50, SHOP NOW
This was the first eye cream I ever tried, and I’ve used it off-and-on since. It’s the perfect entry-level eye concentrate, with most of my friends turning to this one in their 20s when hydration is the primary concern rather than heavy-duty wrinkle reduction. It’s a cult classic for a reason.
Kate Somerville Age Arrest Eye Cream, $88, SHOP NOW
Looking for the aforementioned heavy duty option to combat wrinkles and fine lines? This Kate Somerville eye cream is great for either day or night, thanks to its ability to tighten and tone any lax skin. The formula contains smart Nobel-prize winning technology to fight the signs of aging before they even surface.
Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Sleeping Mask, $42, SHOP NOW
This rich eye treatment is designed to be worn while you sleep so that your eyes look bright and fresh before your morning alarm. The gentle retinol works on combating all the free radical damage you accumulated during the day (it’s best not to think about it), while my personal favorite ingredient, niacinamide, works on any wrinkles looking to form.
innisfree Green Tea Seed Eye Cream, $24, SHOP NOW
Don’t sleep on this K-beauty brand, which offers powerful products at seriously affordable price points. This green tea iteration is my favorite from their range – it almost feels like a gel when you apply it. It’s super hydrating, with green tea seeds to impart a subtle radiance to shadowy circles.
Dr. Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Eye Cream, $69, SHOP NOW
I’ve tried several of Dr. Dennis Gross’ eye creams but to me, this one is top of the range. The powerful retinol smoothes and minimizes fine lines, while the ferulic minimizes the effects that often come with a retinol (such as irritation) and prevents sun damage. I use it at night, but it also works well for day thanks to the luminizing mica particles in the formula.
REN Clean Skincare Radiance Brightening Dark Circle Eye Cream, $49, SHOP NOW
This is my current favorite eye cream to wear during the day, as it gives my dark circles a boost of much-needed radiance. It’s creamy but still feels very light on the skin, making it a great base under my foundation or concealer.