ANTI-AGEING EYE TREATMENTS

Ah, eyes. Windows of the soul, and all that – but often the first place to show up signs of ageing, which many women we know find really distressing. We always like to say: when someone looks at you, they’re not noticing your wrinkles. They’re looking at your actual eyes. (And hearing your voice, and clocking those nice earrings.) But that doesn’t obviate the need for an eye cream – and the good news is, most eye creams do more than tackle wrinkles, nowadays, with formulas that address dark circles, wrinkles, skin fragility and dryness. A tall order? Not if the winning products below are anything to go by. But what we would say is: THESE ONLY WORK IF YOU USE THEM. Twice a day. Religiously. But our Beauty Bible testers are always asked to follow instructions, and that’s why they so often see great results. Use sporadically, and you might as well not bother. (There. Beauty rant over.)

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GOLD AWARD – Caudalie Premier Cru The Eye Cream

The ‘Premier Cru’ name is a nod to Caudalie’s heritage: this French beauty house has its roots (literally) in a vineyard outside Bordeaux owned by co-founder Mathilde Thomas’s family, and all of the products are powered by vine-derived ingredients. In this impressively high-scoring product those include antioxidant grapeseed polyphenols together with ‘Stabilised Vine Resveratrol’ (to stimulate collagen and elastin production), and Viniferine: a vine-sap extract. Inside the gold pump-action glass bottle, you’ll also find caffeine to minimise dark circles – and testers' experienced astonishing improvements, here –while hyaluronic acid and avocado butter hydrate, plus soft-focus powders which work instantly to brighten the area. Caudalie not only suggest also using this on the lip contour, but tell us it works as ‘a subtle highlighter on cheekbones’.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

"This product is excellent, truly excellent. I did as instructed and pitched it against my long-term, high-end eye cream and I can honestly say it blew it out of the water. Price- wise, this is a third of the price that I normally pay and so much more effective.  There’s only 15 ml but it spreads a long way so you only need a minimal amount" • "I’m not sure if there’s a lightening agent in it but this really came into its own with reducing dark circles – which are almost impossible to combat, yet this truly works' • 'Its promise was to hydrate, promote smoother and firmer skin around the eyes, improve dark circles and reduce puffiness and it really did live up to those claims' • 'I really enjoyed using this product; skin felt moisturised and comfortable, good base for make-up. After six weeks, finer lines were improved and seemed to blur; wrinkles less prominent, eyes brighter, puffiness reduced and dark circles reduced – and it did seem to lift the eye area' • 'I can’t believe how good this eye cream is – I didn't need to use concealer at all.  It’s amazing before make up. Improvement right away then after six weeks of using, OMG the effect on dark circles but also eyes brighter, crêpiness and wrinkles fainter, and I received compliments. Women with dark circles must try this' • 'A lovely product to use. I was very pleasantly surprised; it was easy to use and after a few weeks of use I felt my eye area looked smoother and the dark circles and crêpiness had diminished.'

£49 for 15ml - click to buy

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SILVER AWARD - L’Occitane Immortelle Divine Eyes

From the super-popular, Beauty Bible Award-winning Divine collection comes this gel-cream, in a small yellow rounded glass bottle with a pump-action top. Along with the signature immortelle oil (from Corsica’s ‘everlasting flower’), find myrtle oil, buckwheat wax and ash tree extract, to target dark circles. A high concentration of omega-3 and -6 fatty acids deliver instant comfort, and in L’Occitane’s own trials, dark circles, bags under the eyes and fine lines showed improvements in just seven days. How does that compare to our own testers’ experiences…? Here goes.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

"This was my miracle product out of all the products I tested – I can't praise it enough.  This targets dark circles, puffiness, dehydration and fine lines. – usually only one of these are met, but this had an immediate effect, plumping up fine lines and brightening eye area - and after six weeks I was really impressed.  Lines definitely finer, area looks brighter, crêpiness improved and I was really impressed with the effect on dark circles. I currently have pneumonia: my dark circles were almost purple and everyone commented on the severity of them. Well, within two days, they had gone – I know that is hard to believe but I am being completely honest' • 'A noticeable improvement straight away. It was easy to pat on to the fragile eye skin and sank in easily; after six weeks, the fine lines were less noticeable and my skin felt better. Eye area looked nourished and replenished so it looked younger. People have said I look well and relaxed, which pleases me' • 'I love L’Occitane as a brand and the eye cream suited me; I loved using this – the pump action bottle was handy and you only need to use the tiniest amount of product' • 'Consistency was very light which I much prefer, as I am prone to puffy eyes. It sank in perfectly – better than any eye cream I’ve ever tried; the moisture stays with you most of the day and is a perfect base to apply concealer' • 'This is normally more than I would pay for an eye cream; however I am impressed with the results and a little goes a long way, so I would buy it as a treat for myself' • 'I was amazed at the difference to fine lines and wrinkles.  My eyes had a plumper more youthful look and I saw a great improvement in crêpiness. I also had compliments on how well I was looking. This cream really is a miracle for the eyes – I don't know how I have gone without it up to now.'

£58 for 15 ml - click to buy 

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BRONZE AWARD - Emma Hardie Age Support Eye Cream

Something from our fab facialist friend Emma Hardie, here, who knows a thing or two about firming up the face. This is noticeably richer than the Gold and Silver Award-winners in this category. Offered in a screw-top pot, the luscious cream features soothing and nourishing moringa, rosehip and evening primrose oils, with skin-plumping hyaluronic acid and some patented ingredients, for a lifting effect. It also sets out to improve circulation, thereby reducing puffiness and dark circles – but all of its actions will be enhanced by Emma’s suggested application technique, which involves tapping movements, as detailed on the back of the (slightly over-large) box. Testers would have liked a spatula, NB.

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'I would absolutely buy this product again – this is without doubt the best eye cream I have used. Absorbed quickly and gave perfect base for makeup. Lines looked softer immediately and after six weeks, there is a definite improvement in the texture of the skin round my eyes: wrinkles less prominent, less puffiness, and skin looks a lot smoother. I have had comments about how well I look and this despite the fact I don't sleep well' • 'Love this cream. I have tried lots, all expensive, and none has worked as well as this. The fact that it soaks in so quickly and I can apply make up and get ready immediately is great. I really can’t praise it enough' • 'A nice eye cream with good result within 10 minutes of applying. I often wake with quite a crumpled face in the mornings and this eye cream did help smooth and fresh my eye area quite successfully. It certainly helps make my eyes look less tired after each use' • 'Lines were slightly improved around my eyes but needed daily application. Helped my eyes look more awake.  I don't suffer with puffiness, but it did help my under eye area look firmer.  Nicely hydrating which helped as I have dry skin, which tends to exacerbate the wrinkles' • 'Claims to be "super-hydrating, to help plump and hydrate" and I would say it lives up to this' • "Make-up went on well on top; I think using this cream helped stop make up settling in my lines' • 'Very good base for concealer, which sat on top nicely and lasted all day. Fine lines were fainter, eyes looked brighter, puffiness was reduced, and there was a positive effect on crêpiness.'

£41 for 15 ml - click to buy

BEAUTY STEAL AWARD -  SenSpa Wonder Eye Cream

Good eye creams are rarely inexpensive – but this is the exception that proves the rule. Testers got reasonable results from this little multi-tasker. It’s not glamorously-packaged – comes in a slimline, no-frills tube – but the lightweight cream (almost more of a serum) dispensed from the nozzle sinks in fast, delivering its all-natural cargo of ingredients that include cooling cucumber extract, collagen-promoting green algae and antioxidant edelweiss. Again, tap to apply – and a small amount is needed (the equivalent of a grain of rice, for each eye). 

OUR TESTERS' COMMENTS:

'Very easy to dispense; simply squeeze the tube and you get the right amount from the nozzle. I liked the cream-gel texture, which was absorbed rapidly but enough time to pat gently around the eye area. I was really surprised at how tight my eye area was after the first few applications, but then it’s targeting puffiness and loss of firmness… I don't usually like products that make my skin feel tight but this was an exception as I could feel it working! Definitely reduced puffiness quickly. I grew to love this product!' • 'Very good base for make-up. I wear a waterproof concealer from a stick and that glided over the top with no problems' • 'I used this day and night and actually preferred it to a high-end brand I had been using as it did a better job. I particularly liked the way the cream soothed puffiness; after a late night I even double-layered it as an eye mask to great effect! My new favourite eye product.' • 'Improved the slight crêpiness near the bridge of my nose I felt my eye area didn't get so dry, eyes looked brighter and puffiness reduced.  I have already bought more." • "I do suffer from tired eyes after a long day staring at a screen and I felt applying this before bed gave them a boost. I also have a problem with puffiness but a conscious effort to drink more water in conjunction with using this product did seem to reduce that. I also noticed a reduction in my dark circles. with less of a bruised look' • 'Fabulous product that really helped with my dreaded puffiness around the eyes.  Brilliant for pepping up tired eyes if you need to look particularly great for an evening function.'

£7.99 for 10 ml - click to buy