Retinol eye cream continues to take the world by storm! Why? Because the eyes speak a universal language; with each conversation or interaction, our peepers draw the centre of attention – and now that masks are the new normal, our eyes are in the spotlight more than ever. So, for my second edit in my Retinol Reviewed series, I’ll be talking about the best retinol eye creams for everyone from beginners to experts.
You may think eye cream is just an extra step in your skincare routine, but the thin skin around the eyes is prone to a loss of elasticity, resulting in the development of hollow eyes, wrinkles and fine lines. On top of all of that, day-to-day stresses or a lack of sleep (or, in my case, both) can cause dark circles and puffiness. The good news? There are an array of eye creams scientifically formulated to prevent and repair the eye area; we can even find formulas infused with the holy grail of smoothing skincare ingredients: retinol. But what exactly does a retinol eye cream do?
What Does Retinol Eye Cream Do?
The powerhouse of anti-ageing, retinol, is a derivative of vitamin A; it works to effectively stimulate collagen production and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, while brightening the under-eye area for a youthful glow.
But you may be thinking, isn’t retinol too strong for the under-eyes? The answer: yes and no. Retinoids specifically formulated for the eyes usually contain a much lower concentration and are surrounded by soothing ingredients to make them more tolerable on sensitive skin. However, retinol should always be used with caution; I’d recommend slowly building up your retinol use over time, starting with one evening a week.
If you’re still nervous about using retinol, read our top tips below:
The Gentle Retinol Eye Cream For Beginners
Active Ingredients: 0.1% retinol, 0.2% caffeine and Thermal Spring Water
If you’re a retinol novice or you’ve never stumbled across this powerhouse active before, then the La Roche-Posay Redermic R Eyes is a great place to start. Redermic R Eyes’ comfortable cream texture relies on 0.1% pure retinol and 0.2% caffeine, making it the perfect retinol for brightening dark circles and energising tired eyes. Formulated under ophthalmological control with a high concentration of La Roche-Posay’s anti-inflammatory Thermal Spring Water, Redermic R allows sensitive skin types to enjoy the powerful and multi-functional benefits of pure retinol without the fear of irritation.
The Vegan Retinol Eye Cream For Naturalists
Active Ingredients: hyaluronic acid and phyto-retinol
Any vegan or botanical skincare lover will know the difficulty of finding natural eye creams that deliver the same powerhouse results as their science-driven counterparts. But the bareMinerals Ageless Phyto-Retinol Eye Cream uses a plant-based alternative to retinol to do just that; sourced from the Picao Preto plant, the natural retinoid delivers age-defying benefits without the risk of sensitivity, making it the perfect retinol to start off with in your 20’s. Infused with hyaluronic acid, the soft balmy texture melts into the under-eyes for a deeply nourished feeling and a smooth, plump look.
The High-Tech Retinol Eye Cream For Experimentalists
Active Ingredients: MATSU-ProSculpt Complex, KRENAI-TruLift and VP8
Infused with a trio of high-tech ingredients that sound like they’ve just rocked up off the Starship Enterprise, the Shiseido Vital Perfection Uplifting and Firming Express Eye Masks provide out of this world results. Ideal for anti-ageing fans looking to expand their love of retinol throughout the rest of their routine, the Shiseido Vital Perfection Masks work to deliver radiant, firmer skin within just one month.
Shiseido targets the signs of fatigue by using a retinol derivative to promote skin cell turnover and build your skin’s resilience; expertly blended with ReNeura Technology, the cream delivers 24 hours of under-eye hydration. This innovative design allows you to enjoy an evening of rejuvenation as it offers a familiar pampering mask experience and an unexpected science-driven formula, which awakens the sensory signals for a lifted eye contour.
The Powerful Retinol Eye Cream For Experts
Active Ingredients: 0.1% retinol, vitamin C, pro-vitamin B5, hyaluronic acid and niacinamide
Dermalogica has over 35 years of experience crafting professional high-performance skincare, so with the Dermalogica Age Smart Age Reversal Eye Complex you know you’re going to achieve maximum results. The powerful blend of 0.1% retinol, vitamin C and pro-vitamin B5 work together to ‘reverse’ multiple signs of ageing, including fine lines, uneven skin texture and dullness; so, those of you who are retinol fanatics can get the most from your beauty sleep.
But, the anti-ageing results aren’t the only perk of the Smart Age Reversal Eye Complex as the addition of hyaluronic acid and anti-inflammatory niacinamide strengthen the skin barrier and soothe irritation. So, you can continue to build your skin’s tolerance to retinol formulas.
Where To Apply Retinol Eye Cream?
If you’re using retinol for the first time, you’ll need to build up your skin’s tolerance. To do this, start by using retinol once to twice a week, increasing the frequency of use over time.
Start in the evening by cleansing the skin and applying three small dots to the under-eye area; work in the formula by patting the skin with your ring finger, moving from the outer corner inward. It really is that simple – just remember: cleanse, dot and pat.