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The 5 Best Eye Creams (Oils, Serums & More)

The desert-island must-have skincare item of every makeup artist we’ve ever met, eye cream makes a huge difference in how you look, particularly if you pat it on in the mornings before makeup or SPF. And clean, non-toxic versions, free of texturizers and fillers not to mention irritants, are often the most potent and effective.

The first place on your face to show age, a late night, or inflammation of any sort, the skin around your eyes is famously thin, irritable, and devoid of smoothing, plumping, youth-extending oil glands. Eye creams—or gels, serums,or even oils—are a way to (temporarily) get the skin around your eyes back on par with the rest of your complexion, and for this, we love them. Eye cream won’t permanently lift, brighten, de-puff, smooth wrinkles, plump crepiness—no cream will, and even plastic surgeons and dermatologists have limited options around the eye, though well-done Botox, certain fillers, and surgical fat removal and lifts do have more noticeable and long-lasting results than topical treatments.

So whether clean/non-toxic or chemical/synthetic, eye cream is more about the moment than the long game (The chemical/synthetic versions, however, bring potential irritants, endocrine disruptors, and more right to one of the most vulnerable areas on the body, so their negative consequences are arguably more long-game in nature.)

Though it’s wonderful use before bed, there are several reasons why eye cream does its very best work in the morning: Patting it lightly under and around your eyes gets circulation going to help de-puff, and the moisture sinks in to plump up skin, smoothing wrinkles and crepiness. It makes a bare face look better, and it makes any makeup you use—especially foundation, BB cream, or concealer—look significantly more natural. Make sure to give it a few minutes to sink in before applying anything over it, and a few more before doing eye makeup, to minimize smudging. Here, our all-time five favorite formulas, by type:

Cream

goop by Juice Beauty Perfecting Eye Cream

goop, $90

The Perfecting Eye Cream deeply hydrates, soothes, and firms the delicate eye area, visibly reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Richly emollient, it increases elasticity and plumps skin for a more youthful appearance. Formulated with olive butter, sandalwood nut oil, and powerful peptides, this high-tech formula delivers immediate and ongoing results.

Lavido Alert Eye Cream

goop, $49

This delicate, water-based miracle-worker is spiked with plant-based hyaluronic acid and a complex of anti-aging natural oils. It fights puffiness, dark circles and fine lines—plus it’s great under makeup.

Gel

Tammy Fender Awakening Eye Gel

goop, $84

The eye area is always the first to give away a sleepless night or stressful day; this hydrating gel targets the delicate area with a combination of cooling elderflower, anti-inflammatory chamomile, and de-congestive green myrtle.

Oil

French Girl UNDER EYE OIL – NÉROLI

goop, $34

This miracle under-eye elixir is actually an oil that sinks right into the delicate under-eye area and immediately starts to work, reducing inflammation and smoothing fine lines, and brightening for a plumped, healthy glow. Made with skin-perfecting fatty acids and soothing, anti-aging essential oils (argan, jojoba, olive, camellia, rosehip, pomegranate, evening primrose, chia seed, ylang ylang, and rose geranium among them), it comes in a rollerball that cools the skin to further reduce puffiness, feels incredible, and fits easily in a back pocket or makeup bag—genius.

Mask

Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Eye masks

goop, $10

These eye masks are incredibly potent: They revive and lift your whole eye area in a matter of 10 minutes. Made with an algae biomatrix of antioxidants and nutrients to reduce fine lines and wrinkles, they leave the delicate skin around the eye area visibly refreshed, brightened, and smoothed. This one comes in a single-use pack.

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