The Best Eye Creams for Sensitive Skin - The Dermatology Review

The Best Eye Creams for Sensitive Skin

SKIN CARE REVIEWS

05.27.21DISCLAIMER

The skin around your eyes is thinner and more delicate than the rest of your body. Along with being one of the first places that show telltale signs of age, such as crow’s feet, it’s also more sensitive and susceptible to irritation. While eye cream is a staple product in any skincare routine, it can be tricky to find the right formula if you’re dealing with sensitive skin. The last thing you want is to trigger any redness, itchiness, or inflammation, which in turn can exacerbate other issues such as dryness, puffiness, and dark circles. But just as there are products to tackle conditions such as back acne or facial wrinkles, there are soothing eye creams to address sensitivity while targeting other age-related issues at the same time.

Best Eye Creams for Sensitive Skin: The List 

Carrot & Stick The Eye Cream, $50

Burt’s Bees Sensitive Eye Cream, $10

Naturopathica Calendula & Butterfly Ginger Eye Cream, $72

CeraVe Eye Repair Cream, $11

Verso Eye Cream Extra Nourish, $60

Ren Clean Skincare Keep Young and Beautiful Firm and Lift Eye Cream, $44

Dr. Hauschka Eye Revive, $35

Eau Thermale Avène Soothing Eye Contour Cream, $27

Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Cream-Gel, $13 

RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Eye Cream, $22.69

Perricone MD Hypoallergenic Firming Eye Cream, $72

Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector, $43

LilyAna Naturals Eye Cream, $30

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Sensitive Eye Cream, $24.99

 

Why is the Skin Under Your Eyes Different?

The eye area is one of the primary sensory organs, and it’s more photo and environmentally sensitive than the skin on other parts of the body due to its thin, delicate nature. Perhaps you didn’t know that it’s thinner so it can provide room to cover the small fat pads that cushion and protect your eyes from trauma. While thicker skin is more resistant to fragrance, extreme temperatures, harsh chemicals, and UV rays, that’s not the case for the fragile skin around the eyes. 

Signs Your Under-Eye Area Is Sensitive

There’s a difference between occasionally experiencing inflammation around the eye area (seasonal allergies, perhaps?) and being sensitive to the touch. When you apply products, they likely burn or sting, and you may also have dry, flaky skin around the eyes. Perhaps you frequently get asked if you were crying or are tired due to visible redness, dark circles, and puffiness. 

How to Calm Sensitive Skin Around the Eyes

While sensitive skin can be more challenging to deal with, it’s not impossible once you get into a routine. 

 

Use Sensitive Skin Products  

Look for words such as hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and ophthalmologist-tested on the label, as they are typically more gentle. Even so, it’s always a good idea to conduct a patch test when trying a new product regardless of claims. 

 

Use Eye-Specific Formulas 

Even if your skin isn’t reactive, it’s still vital that you choose products specifically formulated for the eye area. No, your traditional face moisturizer won’t do because it contains higher levels of active ingredients — such as retinoids — that are too strong of a concentration for the delicate skin under the eyes.  

 

Protect With Sunscreen 

Many eye creams for sensitive skin also contain sun protection — they’re typically formulated so that they don’t migrate into the eye area. When it comes to all-over sun protection, zinc oxide sunscreens usually won’t irritate the eyes. Sunglasses (ones with wrap-around sides are the most effective) and a wide-brimmed hat are also extra (easy) protection measures. 

 

Always Remove Your Makeup

Removing your makeup is essential for skin health. Also, nighttime, when you’re sleeping, is when the skin repairs itself. With that said, makeup and impurities need to be removed entirely — including the eyes. If not, trace particles can cause further irritation and dryness to the sensitive skin around the eyes. Just be sure to use a light hand when removing residual product. Avoid any excess tugging and pulling. 

 

Gently Apply Your Eye Cream

As with removing your makeup, use a light touch when putting on your eye cream. Use your ring finger to apply the equivalent of a grain of rice to each eye — day and night. Gently spread the product evenly around the entire eye area, from the brow bone to the top of the cheekbone. Avoid getting too close to the rims of the eyes to prevent product seeping inside while you’re sleeping, which in turn will cause redness, tearing, irritation, and puffiness. 

 

Monitor Room Temperature

Aim to set the room temperature at 70-71 degrees Fahrenheit and maintain 60-70% humidity levels to keep your skin and eyes at optimal hydration levels. 

Best Eye Creams for Sensitive Skin 

Carrot & Stick The Eye Cream, $50
The best eye cream for sensitive skin doesn’t rely on harmful chemicals or common preservatives, emulsifiers, and thickeners — just like this one from Carrot & Stick. All of the brand’s products eliminate known irritants and pollutants that can compromise skin health and contaminate the environment. This revolutionary treatment uses highly effective botanical extracts to reduce signs of stress and fatigue, including eye bags and dark circles. The Persian silk tree has an anti-glycation effect that helps delicate skin around the lids feel tighter. St. Paul’s wort boosts the appearance of collagen and elastin, restoring vitality.

Burt’s Bees Sensitive Eye Cream, $10
The formula is 98.9% natural, so even the National Eczema Association approves. Cotton and rice extracts and aloe soften, calm, and soothe sensitive eyes, and it’s clinically proven to deeply hydrate sans any irritation. It’s ophthalmologist and dermatologist tested as well as hypoallergenic and effective for daily use. 

Naturopathica Calendula & Butterfly Ginger Eye Cream SPF 40, $72
Non-whitening (and non-irritating) micronized zinc protects the delicate eye area from dangerous UVA/UVB rays to protect from premature aging while calming calendula calms any sensitivity. If you’ve never heard of butterfly ginger, add it to your list of go-to skincare ingredients because it helps protect against environmental damage and awaken the look of tired eyes. 

Boscia Indigo Eye Cream, $38
The plant-empowered Boscia brand was designed with sensitive skin in mind. The best-selling eye cream color corrects, calms inflammation, brightens, and reduces the look of puffiness, thanks to the power of Wild Indigo. Hyaluronic acid delivers long-lasting hydration while improving the look of fine lines and wrinkles. 

CeraVe Eye Repair Cream, $11
This CeraVe eye cream is fragrance-free, non-comedogenic, and contains nourishing ingredients suitable for sensitive skin. It’s chock-full of ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide, all of which work to restore and maintain the skin’s natural protective barrier while making the eye area hydrated and smooth.

Verso Eye Cream Extra Nourish, $60
Sensitive skin is often accompanied by dryness and irritation, requiring an eye cream that cocoons the under-eye area like this one. This rich formula contains ceramides, fermented oat, yeast extract, vitamin E, and unique nordic oils that mimic the skin’s natural moisture barrier, providing hours of hydration and comfort.

Ren Clean Skincare Keep Young and Beautiful Firm and Lift Eye Cream, $44
This gentle eye cream is formulated with 100% plant and mineral-derived ingredients, so it’s an excellent option for those with sensitive skin. Despite being mild, it’s highly effective in diminishing fine lines and crow’s feet while making the skin around the eye area appear more lifted and toned. 

Dr. Hauschka Eye Revive, $35
While it’s not technically an eye cream per se, this ophthalmologist-tested eye tonic soothes irritation, puffiness, fatigue, and redness. The refreshing formula comprises extracts of eyebright, Anthyllis, chamomile, camellia, and fennel. 

Eau Thermale Avène Soothing Eye Contour Cream, $27
Formulated with Avène Thermal Spring Water, this lightweight eye cream was explicitly made for sensitive skin types — it’s non-comedogenic, hypoallergenic, and fragrance-free. Along with protecting against free radicals, deeply hydrating (thanks to hyaluronic acid), it also decongests the eye area, imparting a feeling of lightness. 

Cetaphil Hydrating Eye Cream-Gel, $13
This top-rated eye cream is hypoallergenic and remarkably gentle, making it the best eye cream for sensitive skin on a budget. While it’s small in price, it produces significant results in terms of moisture delivery, thanks to a hefty dose of hyaluronic acid to deeply hydrate and a vitamin complex and licorice extract to brighten. 

RoC Retinol Correxion Sensitive Eye Cream, $22.69
While eye creams formulated with retinol consider that the eye area is sensitive, this one takes things a bit further by catering to those who have sensitive skin in general. It’s dermatologist-recommended because it softens fine lines and wrinkles and reduces dark circles’ appearance sans any irritation. If your skin is ultra-delicate, always do a patch test regardless of how a product is marketed just to be on the safe side.

Perricone MD Hypoallergenic Firming Eye Cream, $72
You can trust that Perricone MD products are safe for sensitive skin because board-certified dermatologist Dr.Nicholas Perricone formulates them. This popular hypoallergenic firming eye cream is made with cutting-edge ingredients such as neuropeptides and tocotrienols to soothe and calm while addressing the signs of age. But what makes this eye cream stand out is the addition of oleuropein and hydroxytyrosol, two incredible (and somewhat rare) anti-aging ingredients suitable for sensitive skin.

Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector, $43
Clinique was founded back in 1968 on the idea that hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, dermatological quality products are the best for the skin. With that said, you can trust that this ophthalmologist-tested eye cream will immediately depuff and reduce dark circles in just 12 weeks without causing any irritation. 

LilyAna Naturals Eye Cream, $30
Some consumers may consider this product to be the best eye cream for sensitive skin  — it has around ten impressive reasons ranging from being sulfate- and phthalate-free to being void of colorants and petroleum. It has a host of natural, skin-friendly ingredients such as rosehip seed oil, hibiscus, rosemary leaf extract, vitamin C ester, and vitamin E to address dryness, puffiness, and loss of tone crow’s feet, and dark circles. 

La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Sensitive Eye Cream, $24.99
Even those with a fear of putting any products near their eyes will find that this French pharmacy favorite is gentle yet results-driven, thanks to soothing neurosensine, niacinamide (vitamin B10), and shea butter. It’s formulated to help restore vital moisture and repair signs of irritation around the eye area — including the lids. 

The Best Eye Cream for Sensitive Skin: The Bottom Line

While thicker skin is more resistant to fragrance, extreme temperatures, harsh chemicals, and UV rays, this is not the same for the fragile skin around the eyes, which is also more prone to age faster from sun damage than anywhere else on your body.

While eye cream is a staple product in any skincare routine, it can be tricky to find the right formula if you’re dealing with sensitive skin. The last thing you want is to trigger any redness, itchiness, or inflammation, which in turn can exacerbate other issues such as dryness, puffiness, and dark circles. But just as there are products to tackle conditions such as back acne or facial wrinkles, there are soothing eye creams to address sensitivity while targeting other age-related issues at the same time. 

THE BEST SKIN CARE LINES 2021

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Carrot & Stick

Carrot & Stick takes a tough love approach to skincare. What does this mean? It perfectly balances the power of plants with innovative science, offering the best of both worlds.Read More
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Formulyst

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Advanced Dermatology

The Advanced Dermatology skin care regimen addresses the most pressing aging concerns.Read More

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