10 Holy-Grail Eye Creams I'd Recommend for Dark Circles, Puffiness, and More

In the world of skincare, the basics are mostly considered to be cleansermoisturiser and SPF. Throw in a toner, exfoliator and the occasional face mask, and you're on your way to a well-thought-out routine. The question is should you also use an eye cream? "The skin around the eyes is thin and delicate compared to the rest of our facial skin,” explains renowned medical and cosmetic consultant dermatologist Anjali Mahto. "The eye area is also extremely active. We blink on average more than 20,000 times a day. Skin at this site is fragile and needs to be looked after appropriately.”


(Image credit: @TYLYNNNGUYEN)

But there has long been a question mark over eye creams and serums, with some saying that they aren't worth investing in. "Many facial moisturisers are suitable to use around the under-eye area, and you do not necessarily need a separate product, contrary to popular belief. Generally speaking, if a product is suitable for the face, it should be fine to use around the eyes,” says Mahto.

However, if your eye area has specific needs you want to address such as dark circles or dryness, Mahto says eye creams shouldn’t be overlooked, as they can be extremely beneficial. She explains, "Products containing retinol or other vitamin A derivatives can help with smoothing wrinkles around the eyes by boosting collagen, as can peptides. These ingredients can also help minimise dark circles by plumping up skin thickness if they are caused by thin, almost translucent skin exposing underlying vascular structures.

"Retinol-based creams may also help with dark circles due to increased skin pigmentation and vitamin K oxide can help with purplish discolouration from blood vessels. For dry, crepey skin around the eyes, products containing humectant ingredients like hyaluronic acid can give the skin a smoother, less lined appearance and increase comfort in the shorter term.” It’s important to add that wearing an additional SPF around the eyes is absolutely vital.

How to Apply Eye Cream

I, for one, am an avid user of eye cream thanks to its ability to instantly make me look bright eyed and bushy tailed, so I caught up with holistic skin specialist and facialist Nicole Campbell-Watson on her top tips for application.

"Place three small dots of the product under the inner corner of eye, middle of eye and outer corner of the eye. Gently smooth the product from inner to outer eye and then tap from inner to outer a few more times. This allows the product to penetrate effectively without over-massaging this delicate area and encourages lymphatic drainage,” she said. 

Without further ado, here is a selection of eye creams for every skin concern. They’re best sellers for a reason.

Best Eye Cream for Dark Circles

1. Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream 

Best Eye Cream for Puffiness

2. CeraVe Eye Repair Cream 

Best Eye Cream for Fine Lines

3. RoC Retinol Correxion Line Smoothing Eye Cream

Best Eye Cream for Brightening

4. Ole Henriksen Banana Bright+ Eye Crème

Best Drugstore Eye Cream

5. E.l.f. Holy Hydration! Eye Cream

Best Eye Cream for Very Sensitive Skin

6. Avène Soothing Eye Contour Crean for Very Sensitive Skin

Best Eye Cream for Mature Skin

7. Kate Somerville Line Release Under Eye Repair 

Best Eye Cream for Daytime

8. Medik8 Advanced Day Eye Protect

Best Eye Cream for Nighttime

9. Olay Retinol 24 Max Night Eye Cream

Best Eye Cream With Caffeine

10. The Inkey List Caffeine Eye Cream

Next Up: 20 Eye Creams That Actually Work on Dark Circles

Mollie Burdell is a freelance beauty editor, presenter and host. She trained as a makeup artist at the prestigious Delamar Academy, covering everything from prosthetics and theatre to TV and film, and then went on to graduate from university with a First Class Honours degree in journalism.After completing internships at Grazia, Look, Cosmopolitan and Stylist, she landed her first writer role at Superdrug's Dare magazine. Mollie then joined the Harrods content team as a beauty writer before being promoted to the deputy beauty editor. There, she developed the content strategy, tone of voice and creative identity for H Beauty—Harrods's standalone regional beauty stores. When she wasn't interviewing the likes of Gigi Hadid, Miranda Kerr and Regé-Jean Page, you'd find her on a live broadcast, hosting an event, shooting video content, reviewing the lastest beauty launch on social or crafting a magazine feature. She has also hosted and contributed to the LuxeGirl by SheerLuxe YouTube series.When Mollie isn't writing about beauty, you'll find her talking about it on a TikTok shop, dancing to pretty much anything with a beat, reading a crime thriller or performing a solo rendition of "One Day More" from Les Mis.