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Will an eye cream really get rid of dark circles?


That would be a ‘yes’ from me. I started using eye creams in my late teens. I saw them as preventative (on top of indulging my inner product junkie) and have used them day and night ever since. God only knows what I’d look like now if I hadn’t! #Yikes springs to mind….

When there’s a wedding on the horizon, you seriously start to think about your skincare regime and whether there’s more you can do to score a flawless face. Top of my wish list, following years of rubbish sleep then pre-wedding stress was to brighten up my dark under-eye circles. My long-standing eye cream habit had done a pretty good job on lines – and really, a few laughter lines are cute – but channeling Uncle-Fester-in-a-white-frock wasn’t the look I wanted for my wedding day. So, to save a small fortune on photo retouching…. Let’s start with

Why me?

It could be that they’re hereditary, (sorry) particularly if you have darker skin but other factors that can unleash your inner raccoon include lack of sleep, a poor diet, a lazy cleansing routine, stress, ‘the pill’ and even the time of the month. Sound familiar? Add sun damage and the fact that as we get older, the skin thins causing the blood vessels to show up more, it’s no wonder that ‘Fest’ has a seat at the top table. But you can brighten up those dark circles, and here’s how…

Cure them 

“Because the skin around your eyes is much thinner and more delicate compared to the rest of your face, it’s particularly prone to issues like wrinkles and dark circles,’ says Kirsti Shuba, co-founder of Katherine Daniels Cosmetics. Kirsti suggests you invest in an eye cream containing an anti-inflammatory to brighten up the eye area plus you could also look out for products containing peptides to encourage collagen production and Vitamin C to curb melanin formation (the culprit of that bruised look.) Use your ring finger to gently pat it around the orbital bone, starting at the outer corner and working inwards.

I LOVE everything about Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair Eye Synchronized Complex II, £42. A cooling creamy gel, it’s skates across the skin without dragging and works overnight (though I use it in the mornings too) to bring about less line-y, less baggy and therefore less sleepy looking peepers. This eye cream has become top of my dark circle slaying list but to keep it on it’s toes I give other eye creams a go too. I’m currently using Katherine Daniel’s Multi-Tasking Eye Balm, £35.50. An all-round anti-ageing eye cream, I like the thicker consistency which feels intensely packed with skin goodies. It leaves skin feeling softer, tighter and smoother thanks to a cocktail of peptides which targets wrinkles and reduces dark circles. A beauty editor pal of mine has been raving about The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% +EGCG. Apparently it’’s ordinary by name but not by nature. She said she’s never witnessed such visible results. It works on pigmentation and puffiness so you’re left with lighter, brighter and tighter eyes. Oh, and it’s only £6! What’s not to love? Kirsti suggests keeping your eye products in the fridge for maximum bag-shrinkage benefits and treating the skin to a mini massage as you apply them. Talking of the fridge, you could always try a dark circle remedy straight off your shopping list. Lemon juice soaked cotton wool balls, crushed mint leaves mixed with tomato juice, chilled green tea bags or castor oil mixed with fresh cream….. Home remedies are not for me but some people may like to give them a whirl.

Cover them

If the de-circling effects of your refreshed skincare regime haven’t had long enough to kick in, your only option is to hide them. I’d recommend that you do your eye make-up before applying your base so that any shadow spillage won’t scupper – and darken – the very tops of your cheekbones. Stick to light shimmery eye shadows with no heavy liner along your lower lashes and waterproof mascara too. The right under-eye concealer will lift and brighten your whole eye area (and knock years off you) but I’m quite into layering foundation and corrector first then using as little concealer as possible to hide what’s left. I’m always wary that overdosing on concealer runs the risk of drawing attention to exactly what you’re trying to hide. I think Bobbi Brown’s Corrector, £19.50 is really clever. When skimmed under the lower lashes, it magically neutralises the darkness to lift the whole eye area before concealer goes on plus it protects the delicate under-eye skin too. With foundation on top, there’s a lot less left to cover.  As far as concealer goes, choose one that either matches your foundation or is slightly lighter and apply it using your fingers or a brush to gently press and roll it onto your skin. Look for a shade with a hint of pink, peach or orange to neutralise those dreaded dark circles. Some months ago, I was sent no dark shadows, £12.50 to try and I’ve used it every day since.  What I like about it is how seamlessly the light texture blends and how it doesn’t sink into fine lines. The pen applicator makes it really easy to apply and best of all, it’s waterproof, which is a dream for brides. Over on the more luxurious scale, you can’t go wrong with Elizabeth Arden’s Ceramide Lift and Firm Concealer, £21. Dark circles are sent straight into hiding under this super-blendable creamy formula which smooths out fine lines too. Insta-glam!

So what do you use to hide dark circles? Please tell me in the comments below

Sarah x

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    4 years ago : MirkaReno
  • I’ve only just started using an eye cream – and I’m 27!!!!! Am hoping I’m not starting too late. Better late than never eh??? The wedding is in four months. Fingers very tightly crossed! xo

    5 years ago : sheebs
  • Life is so unfair. I mean, I love makeup but wish it didn’t have to work so hard at hiding the effects of my late nights. Good post – I’ll try the tips. Thanks xx

    5 years ago : dizzygirl
  • OMG! You gotta try Nivea Cellular Anti-Age eye cream. It’s dirt cheap but calms dark circles and fades fine lines sooooo well. Dvxx

    5 years ago : dizzygirl
  • I really rate an Origins eye cream called Mega-Bright which uses vitamin c to keep dark shadows at bay. I suffer terribly but have noticed that this eye cream plus some concealer (I like Nars) works really well. Great post. x

    5 years ago : katie
  • Anyone else unable to get the image of uncle fester in a wedding dress out of their minds? Hilarious! Reading lots of your posts you’ve got a great sense of humour. A real girl’s girl xx

    5 years ago : Livvy
    • Aww shucks! Thanks Livvy. What a lovely thing to say xx

      5 years ago : Sarah Green
  • Great ideas and ones that are so important, esp if you’re a b2b x

    5 years ago : Kendall
  • Yep, late nights, sleeping in makeup, a bad diet. I’m guilty of the lot. This is a great read which I will be following xo

    5 years ago : Khalia
  • Whoop! My eyes need this post! Thanks xx

    5 years ago : Georgia
  • Love this! I’m in desperate need for something g for my dark circles. I alwYs struggle to find products that actually do work so thanks for the recommendations Nikki

    5 years ago : Nikki