The Best Eye Creams For Dark Circles - by San Diego Magazine
Skincare products number in the millions and bring in global revenue in the billions. Then we have influencers galore telling us about the best skin care products on the market, even if they’re less than honest. Enter the de-influencer era, where influencers are telling us what products not to get. Now there’s a lot of confusion over which products to try, especially when it comes to the best eye creams for dark circles.
Whether you are wondering which skin care products work best for a specific skin type or which products to avoid, it’s often only by trial and error that we end up figuring it out — and that can be incredibly expensive and hard on our skin. When switching products repeatedly over a short time, pores can enlarge or dry out and the skin can become irritated. Not a good look, especially when it’s the delicate area under the eyes.
That’s why we’re here to recommend skincare products for dark circles based on quality ingredients, ethical company practices, and quality testing. Dark circles can be one of the most noticeable types of hyperpigmentation and create noticeable contrast when there’s too much of a tonal difference around the eyes.
Our goal? To help consumers make a good choice with their skincare products the first time around and save money and time and avoid any unnecessary skin irritation.
Under-eye skin discoloration is really common. It doesn’t discriminate by age, gender, or race — anyone can experience dark undereye circles and may feel the need to find a product that alleviates the effects.
It’s important to address the issue early on. The skin surrounding the eyes is more sensitive because it’s thinner. It needs an extra dose of premium ingredients to prevent dark circles from forming.
Causes of Dark Circles
What causes dark circles to begin with? A few different things. Sometimes it’s as simple as not getting enough sleep. When the superficial, thinner layer of the skin gets duller and paler, it reveals the darker tissues and blood vessels below the surface. That’s why many dark-circle eye creams contain caffeine. It constricts blood vessels, making them less visible while simultaneously increasing circulation and minimizing the dull pallor.
But there are other causes, too — like age, smoking, iron deficiency, alcohol, dehydration, hormones, genetics, nutrition deprivation, and diseases.
When the dark undereye circles aren’t related to an underlying medical condition, there are quality skin care products to use that can alleviate the dark color and brighten skin with a noticeable difference almost immediately.
30 of the Best Eye Creams for Dark Circles
1. The Restorative Eye Stick by Blue Atlas
This skincare product has one goal: to get rid of dark circles under the eyes in the most effective way possible. It’s packed with all the best, naturally-derived ingredients to do the job.
The formula is full of vitamin C that supplies dark circles with antioxidants that fight off the effects of free radicals and brighten the skin. This is important for dark circles because free radicals can change the chemistry of molecules in the skin like lipids, proteins, and DNA, causing premature wrinkles and cell breakdown.
It also has healthy doses of algae extract. Algae supplies dark circles with cellular support. Encouraging the production of collagen and hyaluronic acid, it helps the skin with anti-aging and moisture retention — both important for healing dark undereye circles.
2. Drunk Elephant C Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
The saying “less is more” is definitely not an adage that suits the C Tango Multivitamin eye cream by Drunk Elephant. It’s more like “more is more” with five types of vitamin C, eight peptides, ceramides, plant oils, and cucumber extract all combined to fade dark circles, tighten skin, reduce wrinkles, and make delicate skin stronger.
It’s fragrance-free, vegan, and cruelty-free, and it does not contain silicones.
3. SkinMedica Instant Bright Eye Mask
These gel patches are incredible. They’re made from hydro-gel technology that cools the skin upon application. They rest perfectly in half-moon crescents under the eyes to address dark circles head-on as Rhodiola Rosea root provides antioxidants that reduce hyperpigmentation.
They’re good for all skin types and rejuvenate skin by increasing moisture retention with the power of Baker’s Yeast.
4. Biossance Squalane + Peptide Eye Gel
Sugarcane-derived Squalane hydrates dark circles, leaving them refreshed and moisture-rich in this deliciously plant-packed gel eye cream. Acetyl tetrapeptide-5 and acetyl hexapeptide-8 are active ingredients that reduce puffy skin while the Swiss apple stem cell extract works its magic to decrease the look of fine lines and deep wrinkles. Dark circles don’t stand a chance with a healthy dose of caffeine and antioxidants combined to target them immediately.
This peptide-rich eye gel is cruelty-free, vegan, non-toxic, paraben free, and goes on extra soft to smooth irritated skin.
5. Fleur and Bee Eyes Eyes Baby Anti-Aging Eye Cream
It’s all in the eyes with Fleur and Bees’ Eyes Eyes Baby Anti-Aging Eye Cream. On-lookers won’t be able to look away when your skin is left glistening from the dewy effects of this luscious, antioxidant-rich cream. It’s got olive oil-derived squalane, organic aloe, caffeine, vitamins B3 and E, organic green tea, and organic gotu kola — delivering special treatment to dark circles under the eyes for a revived, fresh look.
Added bonus: this cream is developed in a cruelty-free way, it’s vegan, and it uses non-toxic premium botanical ingredients.
6. Naturally Serious Zero Baggage Anti-Dark Circle Eye Cream
Using sodium-phytate extracted from natural plants and caffeine, this creamy eye treat restores skin tone and de-puffs the thinner skin under the eyes. Then the apple extract and hyaluronic acid plump the skin, create a stronger moisture barrier, and smooth out unwanted wrinkles and fine lines. It’s like a mini makeover for the eyes.
7. Naked and Thriving Glow Triple Boost Eye Cream
Revive eyes with this antioxidant-packed night cream that supports the skin barrier by aiding the microbiome in maintaining balance within the skin. Watch as the dark circles under your eyes brighten while the skin plumps and softens as wrinkles are ironed out thanks to premium ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, squalane, coconut, and shea butter.
This cruelty-free, vegan, and sustainable company prides itself on creating products for reducing dark circles that add to a healthy planet instead of irresponsibly taking from it. This company spends months to years developing its skincare products to ensure they meet the Leaping Bunny Certification standards.
8. Athar’a Moroccan Coffee Eye Cream
Clean, clean, clean — that’s what is delivered with this powerful exotic skin essential made from natural, organic, vegan, and paraben-free ingredients. Organic Moroccan coffee, organic Moroccan Argan oil, shea butter, avocado, and green tea extract unite to reduce the look of dark circles under the eyes and offer the skin the rejuvenating nutrients it needs.
This special formula specifically targets dark circles on mature skin to increase moisture, hydration retention, and elasticity while reducing puffiness. There’s also a high amount of vitamins and antioxidants that defend the thinner skin around the eyes from free-radical damage, which is needed as we age.
It’s top-rated for a reason!
9. Boscia Indigo Eye Cream
Wild indigo, hand-picked fucus algae, and hyaluronic acid are the perfect trio in this incredible eye cream for dark circles. The benefits are almost too numerous to list, so we’ll stick with the highlights.
Indigo offers a nitrogen-rich ingredient that gets rid of toxins and decreases inflammation. Fucus algae signals to enzymes to support elastin and collagen production, and hyaluronic acid aids the skin in its ability to retain moisture. Dark circles fade away as the trio works its effective strategies on the delicate skin surrounding the eyes.
10. Nuxe Organic Anti-Puffiness Anti-Dark Circles Reviving Eye Care
What do you get when you use an environmentally friendly extraction method, buckwheat, and botanical caffeine and put them into a smooth, soothing balm? The perfect cream to reduce dark eye circles and puffiness. The Nuxe Organic Anti-Puffiness Anti-Circles is certified organic and operates on a level of impact that makes it more than worth a try.
11. 100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream
Caffeine does wonders for so many things, including the eyes. Dark circles will fade away as the potent caffeine from green tea and coffee deliver antioxidants and vitamins to brighten and tighten the delicate eye skin. To smooth things over, the silky rosehip oil moisturizes the deep crevices of the skin surrounding the eyes while encouraging cell turnover. There’s also vanilla planifolia, which adds to the rosehip oil’s efforts to moisturize the skin.
Use in the evening to let the incredible effects of these premium ingredients soak into the skin during sleep.
12. Mad Hippie Eye Cream with Peptides Kakadu and Licorice
There are just so many powerful peptides woven into the recipe of this effective eye cream. From Matrixyl Synthe 6 to Syn-Eye, skin gets rejuvenated as the peptides target the undereye area. It also contains hesperidin, which evens out tone and brightens under the eyes in partnership with the peptides.
But there’s so much more, like Licorice, vitamin C, ceremide, argan oil, and caffeine. It’s almost like this formula pulled premium ingredients from every other eye cream out there and united it into one master recipe.
It’s vegan, cruelty-free, and paraben-free and there are no synthetic fragrances, additives, or petrochemicals.
13. Lab-1003 Eye Serum with 5% Caffeine + 5% Niacinamide
This is another caffeine-based serum. The premium ingredients encourage blood circulation in the eye area, which decreases dark discoloration. It also contains two different types of vitamin B, which also affect blood circulation by targeting the smaller blood vessels surrounding the eyes.
14. The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% EGCG
The Ordinary is known for its pure ingredients and minimalist approach to skincare. While this caffeinated solution has minimal ingredients, there’s still maximum output with results. Dark circles and puffy eyes are reduced with the effects of caffeine and epigallocatechin gallatyl glucoside that’s been purified, leaving skin bright, refreshed, and smooth.
It’s silicone-free, nut-free, vegan, cruelty-free, and alcohol-free so our skin can be toxin-free.
15. Versed Vacation Eyes Brightening Eye Gel
With this anti-dark circle eye gel, our skin gets to feel a fun cooling sensation upon application. As the gel seeps into the skin, several nutritious, premium ingredients work wonders on dark circles. There’s vitamin C, coffee extract, ginseng root extract, and niacinamide — all working together to support the skin barrier, brighten dark areas of the skin, increase circulation, and extract the liquid that makes under eyes puffy.
It’s paraben-free, silicone-free, sulfate-free, vegan, and cruelty-free and makes our skin look and feel beautiful.
16. A.G.E. Eye Complex for Dark Circles by Skinceutucals
Great for mature skin, this eye cream targets crow’s feet, puffiness, and dark circles all in one creamy application. The power lies in what the blueberry extract, proxylane, and complex flavonoids and peptides offer.
The blueberry extract supplies antioxidants that protect the skin and target wrinkles. The proxylane supports cell synthesis and replenishes moisture. The mixture of flavonoids and synergistic peptides reduces the look of dark circles while also helping the skin stay taught.
While it might all sound too good to be true, it’s worth it.
17. Paula’s Choice C5 Super Boost Eye Cream
Created with a lightweight formula, the C5 Super Boost Eye Cream is great for oily skin types. It comes with an increased vitamin C composition that effectively targets dark circles. There are peptides that aid in firming loose skin, hyaluronic acid to help the skin get moisturized and stay that way, and vitamin C for brightness. On top of these incredible ingredients, there’s also ginger extract, which decreases discoloration and puffiness.
This eye cream was made with dark circles in mind. Creators put together some of the best bioactive ingredients when creating this master eye cream so our skin could thrive and restore its normal tones.
18. Farmhouse Fresh Full Moon Dip Illumination Mousse with Peptides + Retinol
What describes this beautiful, whipped face cream best? Maybe “delightful,” but it’s also effective. So delightfully effective? Just wait until you pop open the lid and you’ll see exactly what we mean. But it’s the aftereffects that make this creamy face mousse stand out. Filled with minerals that reflect light, our skin is left with an afterglow on par with that trending dewy hue we all crave. How is this possible? It’s all in the premium ingredients.
Let’s start with retinol. It’s leveled up due to the time-released molecules. This keeps the skin happy instead of irritated while skin tone is evened out. The advanced peptides firm the skin, non-comedogenic jojoba oil moisturizes the skin, vitamin E supplies its antioxidant properties for protection, and the cucumber extract improves texture.
19. Herbivore Supernova 5% Vitamin C + Caffeine Brightening Eye Cream
Aside from the color of this face cream looking beautiful and joyful, the quality ingredients packed inside will leave our skin just as beautiful and joyful. But don’t let the light bright color fool you. This face cream contains 5% THD vitamin C, caffeine, and turmeric so dark circles are decreased and the skin is left bolstered with the nutrients it needs. We get to experience a more even skin tone, de-puffed under eyes, and a brightness that creates a fresh, awake look.
This face cream is clean, vegan, cruelty-free, natural, and plant-based and honors the company’s core sustainability ethics.
20. Alpyn Beauty Wildcrafted Actives Line-Filling Eye Balm With Bakuchiol and Caffeine
This face cream is perfect for people who are sensitive to retinol. By replacing retinol with the plant-derived alternative called Bakuchiol, the cream offers more gentle results. But that doesn’t mean it’s not effective. It also contains caffeine to de-puff the skin under the eyes and vitamin C to minimize the effects of dark circles.
Skin also gets protection from the ample antioxidants in the formula — firmed with caffeine and algae — and wrinkles softened with the Bakuchiol vitamin A.
21. All-Day Brightening Duo Spot Check and Eye Elixir
Why do good things always come in twos? This incredible skincare duo works in tandem to reduce dark circles, decrease puffy areas, and decrease blotchy red spots. Skin is left ultra moisturized and extra smooth, pores are minimized, and it gets enhanced with a dewy glow. The premium ingredient lineup creating this perfect formula includes niacinamide, hyaluronix (their patented formula), white shiitake extract, caffeine, squalane, and activated vitamin C.
It’s scented like melon and cucumber and starts as a serum but ends up with a creamy texture once it sets. The ingredients are paraben- and sulfate-free, and there are no synthetic dyes.
22. Nuria Defend Triple Action Eye Cream
We have to start with the smell — mulberry and cucumber. Yum! But the rest is pretty amazing, too. This eye cream is perfect for reducing dark circles and fine lines and is formulated with ancient Korean knowledge of skincare. It uses ginseng to reduce those unwanted lines that lead to deep wrinkles, cucumber for nourishment, and mulberry root to brighten dark circles. The plants in this formula are ethically sourced and manufactured with carbon-neutral intentions.
23. Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Cream
Glow Recipe does just that, makes the skin glow. It uses the nourishment from avocados to supply the skin with vitamins E and C, minimizing the appearance of fine lines and protecting the skin against free-radical damage. The encapsulated retinol gets slowly released, creating a gentle experience as it firms the skin. There’s also niacinamide and coffeeberry that work together to brighten dark circles and calm the skin.
This vegan, cruelty-free product is free from mineral oil, silicones, alcohol, synthetic dyes, and synthetic fragrances.
24. Geologie Dark + Puffy Under Eye Cream
This eye cream does two things well — it reduces dark circles and decreases puffy skin. How does it do this? With 2% kojic acid — a melanin inhibitor — and 2% hyaluronic acid, this product provides moisture and decolorization relief. It also makes use of caffeine, plankton extract, shea butter, niacinamide, and coconut alkanes to round out moisture retention and supply the nutrients the skin needs most.
Dark circles become a thing of the past as the premium ingredients infused into this product’s recipe glide over the skin, leaving it brighter and more refreshed than before.
25. Advanced Repair Eye Cream by Gopure
It’s the small details that make applying this eye cream an experience. Everything from the small spatula used to gently dollop the cream under the eyes to the rich ingredient list makes it worth the buy. It reduces dark circles with powerful peptides that target hyperpigmentation, but more specifically, blue- and red-toned hyperpigmentation. See? The small details are so specific, which makes this product so unique.
There’s also Oleoactif, which minimizes puffiness and plumps wrinkles. But since everything is covered with this one incredible product, they added Syn-Coll to increase the skin’s elasticity. Refreshed, rejuvenated, firmer, more radiant — all words that can accurately describe the skin after using this eye cream.
26. Farmacy Wake Up Honey Eye Cream
There was a moment in time when putting honey on someone’s face was considered good skin care. Things are slightly more refined now. Using honey and its incredible skin-nourishing properties in a formula is way less sticky. That’s why when using this eye cream, it gives off all the benefits and none of the messy cleanup.
There’s vitamin C, which brightens the dark circles alongside the encapsulated caffeine and the cranberry peptide. And of course, there are the buckwheat-honey ingredients that soothe, smooth, and hydrate dry skin like nothing else.
This is a clean skincare product made with sustainable packaging.
27. Naturopathica Vitamin K Brightening Eye Complex
Dark circles get brightened with this delicate eye cream that’s chock full of vitamin K — yes the same vitamin K that’s so often found in a healthy salad. It’s like a salad for the skin. There’s also horse chestnut flower extract that partners with vitamin K to brighten skin and bring down the unwanted puffy effects of an early morning. Niacinamide moisturizes wrinkles, decreasing their appearance and leaving the skin healthy and satisfied.
This cruelty-free skincare product is wonderfully massaged into the undereye area of the skin. Use circular motions to blend it into the pores as the vitamin K sinks in and creates a “microcirculation” under the surface.
28. Active Intensive Spot Corrector by Gopure Actives
There’s nothing like the perfect applicator to make applying the perfect eye cream that much better. The Spot Corrector eye cream can be gently rolled over the dark circles, letting the rich nutrients glide effortlessly during the application. It’s full of clinically tested ingredients meant to decrease dark circles and brighten the skin under the eyes — but it can be extended down to the neck. It’s just so good that it can be used everywhere.
The key ingredients in this formula are synovea, mitostime, vitamin C, vitamin E, and SymWhite. They work in unison to alleviate oxidative stress, moisturize dry areas, tone, brighten, and increase collagen production.
Gopure is a clean skincare brand that wants more for skincare products today. They formulate their products without fillers, toxic chemicals, or synthetic fragrances and strive towards bettering the environment.
29. R. D. Alchemy Eye Cream Complex
This amazing eye cream is formulated to target the triple threat — crow's feet, dull pallor, and dark circles. It’s a thick, creamy moisture-based eye cream that tightens skin and leaves it refreshed. It’s full of antioxidants, hyaluronic acid, collagen, peptides, ceramides, and herbal extracts that target and alleviate dark circles. Vitamins A, C, and E increase collagen production while the caffeine and herbal extracts tighten the skin and reduce wrinkles.
R. D. Alchemy is organic and toxin-free and uses natural plant ingredients to create an optimal skin-rejuvenating experience.
30. Kinship Brightwave Vitamin C Energizing + Brightening Eye Cream
A perfect eye cream for those experiencing dark circles and dryness, the Kinship Brightwave Vitamin C Energizing + Brightening Eye Cream works wonders due to its high-impact ingredients. Vitamin C Ester is an antioxidant that protects the thin skin under the eyes from free-radical damage.
The chaga mushroom illuminates puffiness and revitalizes energy. Red algae contains something called taurine, which is an amino acid with a few brightening tricks up its sleeve. And there are probiotics specially curated by Kinship to keep the skin barrier strong.
This amazing skincare product is vegan, clean, cruelty-free, and packaged with sustainable methods.