Eyes are the windows to the soul, right? Unfortunately, they can also be portals to everyday stress and strain.
For many of us, the second we feel a tinge of stress, anxiety, or fatigue, it’s immediately plastered all over our eyes like a mask. I call it Zorro face. I could be sporting an awesome Carol Young Undesigned dress, killer organic kicks and as much USDA certified lipstick as my pucker can handle. But if I’m tired, I might as well be wearing a black mask across my eyes.
Luckily, we can rescue our peepers with a variety of natural remedies. Drinking water certainly helps with hydration, and puffiness is best combated with chamomile, green tea or aloe. You can apply tea bags or cooled cotton pads soaked in chamomile, green tea and aloe vera gels. And don’t forget the old spa favorite, cooled slices of cucumber. Cucumber is known for its soothing properties and will help relax eyes, reduce redness and dark circles.
Not into DIY eye healing? I have some suggestions for gentle products you can buy.
First, the age old question: Gels or creams? Gels have a temporary tightening effect, and work well for younger skin since they aren’t as rich as creams – a necessity for mature skin. Gels tend to be more soothing and better at reducing puffiness. Creams are best for fine line reduction. (They plump the skin to reduce fine lines.)
Soothing Gels and Treatments
Best for Your Dark Circles: Dark Circle Defense by Tarte
In short, this product really works. I dabbed a couple swipes over my raccoon circles and they were immediately concealed. It contains finely-milled light refracting minerals which are said to brighten skin, help camouflage dark circles, puffiness, redness, fine lines and wrinkles. I love that this product is completely free of petrochemicals, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, dyes and talc. It does contain ingredients like titanium dioxide and iron oxides.
Best for a Night Out: Lifted by Tarte
Tarte combines firming with cover up. I dabbed a bit of this product on and immediately saw a reduction in dark circles. However, use it sparingly. I got a little too enthusiastic and noticed it flaking off towards the end of the night. It contains Firmitol, which is a clinically-tested, patented, multi-ingredient “performance matrix” combines ingredients like purslane extract, ginseng extract and centella asiatica extract for “an instant wrinkle reducing effect.” It also comes in a biodegradable tube. It’s not certified organic but it is free of petrochemicals, parabens, phthalates, sulfates, dyes and talc.
Most Soothing Gel: Herbal Recovery Eye Gel by Jurlique
Another hit by Jurlique, the Australian queen of the natural skincare! This gel is extremely cooling, light and gives you a mini-spa experience. If you have tired eyes, this is the product for you. It has a pleasant, vitamin scent and is deeply hydrating. It is also “rich in the living energy of arnica and eyebright which help to firm and brighten the delicate skin around the eye area.” Okay! I really like that this product is certified biodynamic from the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture of Australia.
Hydrating Eye Creams
Purely Age-Defying Eye Cream by Jurlique
This eye cream is really rich with a pleasant, floral scent. It made my skin a little pink upon application – but it lasts. Hours later, my undereyes were still extremely moisturized. Apparently, it is “rich in the living energy of Euphrasia and Arnica.” (Arnica is a natural herb known to help with dark circles and bruises.) This product is also certified biodynamic from the National Association for Sustainable Agriculture of Australia and contains natural, wild-farmed ingredients.
Relax Eye Cream by Lavera
This is another hydrating eye cream that will keep your peeps feeling moisturized. It also claims to reduce fine lines. According to Lavera, “In a 3 week test of 30 females with an average age of 42 years young, over 94% said the Intensive Repair Eye Cream visibly reduced small wrinkles and left the skin around their eyes looking well cared for and relaxed.” I don’t know about that, but it is BDIH-certified and contains several healthy plant extracts like tea tree oil, green tea and more.
Firming Eye Gels
Firming Eye Gel by John Masters Organics
This scentless gel is extremely tightening – so much so I was almost inclined to wipe it off after applying it. But if that’s what you’re going for, this is the product for you. It contains oat kernel extract which JMO claims firms and revitalizes while protecting against UVA rays. It is made with certified organic ingredients.
Zia Essential Eye Gel
Like the John Masters Organics product, this eye gel does all the things it promises – it immediately tightens and firms up your skin. It has a pleasant, slightly floral scent. It contains a blend of green tea, cucumber and seaweed. The predominating effect of this product is tightening rather than soothing. If you’re looking for the most organic, this probably isn’t the product for you. It does, however, contain some certified organic ingredients.
The Lip Balm by Revolution Organics
This product, yes, is a lip balm. But I was informed by the company’s publicist that it can be used as an eye treatment, so I gamely rubbed it under my eyes. It’s thick and if you’re looking for an intense, overnight hydration, it could be a good call. But it feels like exactly what it is – lip balm under your eyes. The product is free of synthetic chemicals, parabens, sulphates, artificial ingredients and petrochemicals. It is also USDA certified organic. And, might I add, a fantastic lip balm.