Do you know how to apply eye cream the right way? FYI, when I say eye cream, I mean any cream you use on the eye area. Truth is, eye cream is just a facial moisturiser in a smaller jar. Those special ingredients for the eye area? Mostly hype. If caffeine worked, no one would have dark circles anymore… Why pay twice for the same thing? Pick a fragrance-free moisturizer and use that all over. That’s what I do. It’s always worked well for me – and it saves me quite a bit of money, too.
But, doesn’t matter what product you use, you need to be careful how you use it on the eye area. If you’re too forceful, rub too hard, or use too much product, you may end up with premature wrinkles and milia seeds (those little white bumps on the eye area that are terribly hard to remove). How do you prevent these little annoyances, so you can get smoother, brighter eyes that make you look younger? Here’s how to apply eye cream the right way:
How To Apply Eye Cream: A Step-By-Step Guide
- Wash Your Face: This should be a given, but I’ll mention it anyway. Cleansing creates the foundation for a good skincare routine. Now all that dirt, grime, and makeup are off your face, nothing will stand in the way of your eye cream. It’ll be able to sink into your skin, just like it should to work its magic. I don’t care how tired you are or how late you came home at night. If you skip this step – or use a wipe that doesn’t remove anything! – you’re sabotaging your skincare routine.
- Use A Grain Of Rice: The more the merrier doesn’t apply to skincare. There’s only so much skin can absorb. You know what that means? If you use too much product, you’re not going to get double the moisture. The extra is just gonna sit on the surface, doing nothing. Besides, if you use too much eye cream, you risk getting milia seeds, and those little things can be a royal pain to remove. Use only a small amount, no bigger than a grain of rice.
- Three Dots: Now that we’ve got that grain of rice… oops, I meant grain of eye cream, apply three dots to your undereye area: one in the inner corner, one in the middle, and one in the outer corner. This makes spreading the cream so much easier and ensures that every part of your undereye area gets its fair share.
- Use Your Ring Finger: Did you know your ring finger is your weakest finger? That’s why it’s so great at applying eye cream. “I recommend applying eye cream with your ring finger, which provides the least amount of pressure on the skin, and gently patting the cream into the skin,” says dermatologist Dr. Caroline Robinson. Awesome, right? FYI, tugging and pulling your eye area leads to wrinkles. That’s the LAST thing you want to do.
- Pat From The Inner Corner Outwards: I used to apply eye cream in any random direction. Surely, that doesn’t matter, right? Wrong. It’s best to pat the cream from the inner corners of your eyes inwards using circular motions. Why? It helps smooth out wrinkles.
- Pat, Don’t Rub: In case you missed the step above, I said pat, NOT RUB, the cream. This is so important because rubbing can pull at the skin, and, in the long run, cause wrinkles and other kinds of damage. Don’t do it!
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When Should You Use Eye Cream?
For best results, use an eye cream both mornings and night. Double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Jaimie DeRosa shares that “for those who are using an eye cream specifically to get more brightening or reduce puffiness, those creams are best used in the mornings.” If you’re using a separate eye cream, apply it before facial moisturiser.
Best Tips To Maximise Results From Eye Cream
Now you know how to apply eye cream the right way, I bet you’re curious to know best practices so you can maximise results. Here are the best dermatologists-approved tips for eye cream application:
- Don’t get too close to the lash line: Don’t you hate it when your eye cream gets into your eyes? So painful! To avoid that, board-certified dermatologist Nicole Hayre recommends applying eye cream “no closer to the lash line than 2-3 millimeters. This will help to prevent ocular irritation. The cream will naturally spread onto the rest of the lid when you blink.”
- For oily skin: Look for oil-free eye creams that won’t make your under-eye area even oilier. The extra grease won’t look good and may even get into your eyes!
- For sensitive skin: Look for formulas without fragrance or fragranced essential oils that can unnecessarily irritate the sensitive eye area.
What Ingredients Should You Look For In An Eye Cream?
Eye creams are mostly moisturisers – facial moisturisers in a smaller jar. But a good formula does more than make your eye area soft and smooth. A good eye cream can also prevent wrinkles, brighten up dark circles and remove puffy eyes. Here are the best ingredients to look out for in an eye cream to make it worth the splurge:
- Antioxidants: Vitamin C, Vitamin E, resveratrol and other antioxidants fight free radicals that cause premature wrinkles.
- Retinoids: Retinol, granactive retinoid & co stimulate the production of collagen and reduce crow’s feet.on
- Caffeine and vitamin K: They target blood vessels to increase circulation and reduce swelling and puffiness.
- Hyaluronic acid, natural butters, and oils: They deeply hydrate skin, leaving it softer and smoother.
What Are The Best Eye Creams?
If you can use your facial moisturiser as an eye cream, do that. It’s what I’ve been doing for years and it works like a charm. But if the skin on your under-eye area is different from the skin on the rest of your face, or you simply love using a separate product for the eye area (even though there’s NOTHING that can get rid of dark circles – don’t believe the hype!), here are the best eye creams on the market at the moment:
- CeraVe Eye Repair Cream ($15.99/£11.00): It has a huge dollop of niacinamide, plus ceramides to strengthen your skin’s protective barrier and hyaluronic acid to hydrate skin. Available at Boots, Dermstore, Ulta and Walmart
- Dr Dennis Gross Ferulic + Retinol Triple Correction Eye Serum ($71.00): A retinol serum with a dash of licorice extract to lighten dark spots. Overall, a well-rounded eye cream that moisturises skin, fights wrinkles and makes dark circles less obvious. Use it no more than 3 nights a week. Available at Cult Beauty, Harrods, Selfridges, Sephora, Skin Store, and SpaceNK
- Mad Hippie Eye Cream ($25.99): This unassuming eye cream contains literally everything you eye area needs: shea butter and squalene deeply moisturise and plump up skin; antioxidants like Vitamins C and E to prevent wrinkles; chamomile and other skin soothing agents reduce irritations; caffeine helps with dark circles (but only if they’re caused by leaky blood vessels). Available at iHerb and Ulta
- Paula’s Choice Resist Anti-Aging Eye Cream ($37.00/£32.00): Its rich texture is super moisturizing and makes even the driest of skin types soft and smooth again. Plus, it’s loaded with antioxidants and soothing ingredients that fight free radicals and reduce inflammation. Available at Dermstore, and Paula’s Choice
- Supergroup! Bright-Eyed 100% Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40 ($40.00): This eye cream has sunscreen built-in and is enriched with mica to brightens up dark circles look smaller. Plus, it’s hydrating enough for most skin types. Available at Blue Mercury, Goop!, Nordstrom, Supergoop!, and Ulta
The Bottom Line
There you have it, all the best tricks and tutorials on how to apply eye cream to maximise results, according to dermatologists. Bye bye puffiness and dark circles!