Best for travelling/tired eyes
Lierac Diopti Calm - £17.50 - Selfridges and good chemists
This is my go-to whenever I'm getting on a plane/just got off a plane/doing long distance rail/road travel. It's moisturising, cooling and hydrating - which is what you want taken care of in those circumstances. Great after a long hard day's work.
Good for dryness/moderate wrinkles
Origins Plantscription - £35.00 - all Origins stockists and online
Origins newest eye cream is a lovely light texture, absorbs really well and is really good under makeup. Good for dark circles. One gripe - I would like it in a tube or pump dispenser please. The texture is such that it can be accommodated thus, so a pot seems unnecessary in 2011. Good, affordable cream though - so don't be put off.
Best for baggy/puffy eyelids
Perricone MD Acyl-Glutathione Eye Lid Serum - £95 - Harrods and Selfridges from January 2012
If you are a 'woman of a certain age' (me) and have noticed that along with everything else - your eyelids are rapidly heading south (me) this new serum from Perricone is brilliant. It instantaneously tightens the lid area - I noticed a difference across the lid within around 25 seconds. The only area it did not affect was the fatty deposits in the outside folds of the lid (I know - gross) but the only thing that can treat those is a knife. And I'm not quite ready for that yet.
Best Value for Money and Packaging
Monu Collagen Eye Cream - £22.50 - Monu Shop.co.uk
This is joint first for packaging. Light, controllable pump, small enough for travel and handbag - perfect. I would recommend this as a good cream for someone in their mid 20's/30's. Contains arnica, marine extracts and evening primrose oil - great feel on the skin - this is my 'I don't really have any one major concern today' cream.
Best for older, wrinkled, dried up eyes - The 'I'm older, more wrinkled and can afford it' cream
Chantecaille Nano Gold Energizing Eye Cream - £230 - SpaceNK
OK - firstly - yes it's £230. No I did not buy it. I had a handful of samples. But let me tell you this: if you can afford it, and you are older and suffer from a typical crêpey, ageing, dry eye - then this should be your first port of call. This feels like luxury on the skin - you do not need this is if you are under 35/40 (younger if you smoke) - but if you are my age or older this is divine. Absolutely divine. Contains gold particles and is massively anti-inflammatory and healing - when I put this on my eyes literally go 'aaaahhhhhhhhhh'. Bliss. If you can afford it.
Best Feel on the skin and Joint Best Packaging
Kate Somerville Line Release Under Eye Repair Cream - £123.00 - SpaceNK
This is my current favourite. Perfect packaging - including a window on the side to see when you are running out - which by the way - is one of the MOST requested things from customers on the shop floor - why more brands don't offer this I do not know - controllable dispenser and airtight. I look forward to cleansing so that I can apply this. Makes my eyes glow, gets rid of my lines and visibly reduces puffiness. Again - it's not cheap - but if you are in your 40's and your eyes show it - this is really wonderful. A joy to use.
Lancome Renergie Eye - £44.50 - all Lancome stockists
Mum's favourite. In her words - 'Amazing - If I can see a difference then it bloody well works miracles! Makes my eyes smoother, calmer and the concealer helps my dark circles.' Mum may not look it but she's in her 60's and suffers from a chronic illness so this is pretty much the word of Jesus. Recommended and much loved.
A couple of points worth mentioning:
- Most reputable brands provide samples - in the case of Chantecaille and Somerville, Harrods, Fenwick, Liberty and SpaceNK have samples - if you are spending that much - try it first!
- If no samples are available and you are at the counter - squeeze some out and put it on your eyes over makeup - at least you'll know if you are allergic before you buy...
- Once again - stay away from mineral oil. Makes your eyes puffy and congests the area. If you are prescribed a heavy cream for dermatitis/eczema that contains a lanolin that is different - but it's too heavy in normal circumstances
- Don't forget the previous advice about bismuth oxychloride - avoid if you are prone to allergies
And a final word on the cost of skincare products in general. I'm constantly asked for recommendations for 'something cheaper' by some readers. I don't generally blog about cheaper products (for facial skincare) because I don't really use them.
I read some of the same people on twitter saying they have bought a new dress/pair of shoes from New Look (for example) and saying 'it was only £25.00!' Why won't you spend that on your face?
Here's my theory: Spend on your skincare what you would spend on a good pair of shoes or a good handbag and you'll be ok. People tend to have shoes and handbags relevant to their financial situation.
Clothes and accessories come and go but you only get one face.
The above is a mixture of products bought by me, available over-the-counter samples and PR samples