Purveyors of eye creams, as with other skin care products, make some bold promises: purchasing and using eye cream will reduce or even eradicate the appearance fine lines, wrinkles, dark circles, and bags under your eyes. But are they really just the same as your moisturizer - just more expensive?
Actually, no. Eye cream is different than a facial moisturizer, and yes, you do need it.
The skin around your eyes is different than the rest of your face - it is thinner, more fragile, often dryer and more prone to show signs of aging or fatigue. Many of our daily habits can contribute to dryness and evidence of fatigue around our eyes, including squinting, rubbing our eyes, and frequent eye movements. Fluids that collect under the eyes can contribute to puffiness and dark circles.
Quality eye creams address these unique issues and tend to be thicker in consistency, contain more oil than a traditional facial moisturizer, and are gentler than a standard moisturizer. Specifically formulated to nourish the sensitive skin around your eyes, these creams are rejuvenating, moisturizing, and strengthening.
A few ingredients to look for when selecting an eye cream:
- plant-based oils such as castor oil, baobab oil, macadamia oil, frankincense oil (rich and nourishing)
- peptide complexes (firming and "plumping")
- sodium hyaluronate (ultra-hydrating)
Always pay special attention to the order of the ingredients on your label. If the best ingredients are towards the bottom of the label, that means that they account for the smallest percentage of all ingredients and you may be paying for very expensive filler ingredients. Also watch out for "yuckies," including:
- parabens (a cheap preservative)
- mineral oil (a.k.a. "liquid petroleum,” “paraffin oil,” and “white mineral oil”)
- synthetic fragrances (an ingredient line that hides all kinds of sins)
- butylated compounds such as BHA/BHT (another nasty preservative)
- diethyl phthalate (scary alert: this ingredient can be hidden under "fragrances," another reason to avoid any product that is scented with anything other than natural essential oils!)
- propylene glycol
If you'd like to do more research on potentially toxic ingredients, check out these resources: