Our Picks of the Best Eye Creams Under $30 To Visibly Diminish Dark Circles
Whether caused by too many sleepless nights in a row or passed down from mom and dad, dark circles can plague even the most glowing complexions. Here, we share what can cause under-eye shadows, the different types of dark circles, and our picks of the best eye creams for dark circles—all $30 or less! Plus, a step-by-step tutorial to help you hide pesky dark circles while you wait for your eye cream to do its thing.
What Can Cause Dark Circles?
Like most skin concerns, dark circles don’t have one concrete cause. Everything from genetics to lifestyle can come into play when looking for reasons you may have noticeable under-eye shadows. Below we list a few of the more common factors that may cause noticeable dark circles.
Take a look at your mom and dad, do one (or both) of them have dark circles? This could be the reason you do too. Like eye color, height, and so many other physical features, dark circles can be passed down genetically by our parents. Unfortunately, there’s not too much you can do about your gene pool, but there are steps you can take to visibly diminish the appearance of your dark circles, including trying one of the affordable eye creams we share below!
Named by the Mayo Clinic as one of the most common causes of dark circles under the eyes, fatigue can often be an easy factor to pin-point. If you’ve had a few too many sleepless nights in a row—think: those first years with a new baby, finals week, big deadlines at work, and so on—chances are that lack of rest could be showing up on your complexion in the form of shadows under your eyes. Thankfully this is often easier to correct than some of the other causes.
Wrinkles, fine lines, dark spots—all visible tell-tale signs of aging skin. But, did you know that dark circles make an appearance on that list as well? The Mayo Clinic notes that sometimes what can appear as dark circles are actually shadows due to puffy-looking eyelids or hollows that develop under the eyes, and that these issues can unfortunately appear with age. What’s more, as we get older our skin naturally loses its stores of fat and collagen which can cause the skin to appear thin and less plump—and can cause the reddish-blue blood vessels under your eyes to be more visible.
Puffy, watery eyes that itch are unmistakably a sign of allergies, which can strike us at any time depending on what it is we are allergic to. Take care not to rub or scratch at your eyes when you’re experiencing allergies, as this action can cause your dark circles to look more noticeable.
UVA and UVB rays are public enemy number one when it comes to our skin. Not only can the sun’s harsh rays cause sunburns and certain skin cancers, they can also contribute to the signs of premature skin aging and visible dark circles. Since sun exposure prompts your skin to produce more melanin, the thin and delicate area under your eye may appear darker and shadowy.
Types of Dark Circles
Ever notice how some people have dark circles that look blue while others have dark circles that appear brown and still others can look purple or reddish in tone? That’s because there are different types of dark circles that we can have and spotting the one you have can help you make the best choice when it comes to selecting an eye cream.
The type of under-eye shadow you have is typically linked to the cause of those dark circles. For instance, blue-toned dark circles are often caused by lifestyle factors like a lack of sleep or allergies. Reddish and purple-toned under-eye shadows are often a result of aging, since the skin thins with time and causes the blood vessels to become more visible. Finally, brownish-colored dark circles are very often caused by genetics or those harsh sun rays we spoke about earlier.
Our Picks of the Best Affordable Eye Creams for Dark Circles
Once you determine the possible factors for your noticeable dark circles, it’s time to address them! If you’re not getting enough sleep, hit that snooze button; but also start to incorporate an eye cream into your skin care routine. Yes, yes we know, often the creams, gels, and serums available to diminish the appearance of those dark shadows—the ones that really work—are typically on the pricier side. But, thankfully, you don’t always have to pay an arm and a leg to achieve a brighter-looking eye contour. The following eye creams for dark circles are all $30 or less and rank as some of our top picks-from the L’Oreal portfolio of brands of the best eye creams for dark circles. Find one to use in your skin care routine:
THE BODY SHOP MOISTURE WHITE SHISO 2-IN-1 BRIGHTENING EYE CREAM
The most expensive eye cream on our list is actually a two-in-one product, which makes it worth the extra dough. This double-duty eye cream from The Body Shop helps to brighten the look of dark circles while targeting the signs of fatigue around your eyes. Plus, the metal applicator creates a cooling sensation, which is a great way to wake up tired eyes in the morning.Store it in the fridge for an extra refreshing effect!
L’ORÉAL PARIS AGE PERFECT EYE RENEWAL EYE CREAM
With its antioxidant-rich formula, you can target five signs of aging at once thanks to this eye cream from L’Oréal Paris. Not only does it help to visibly reduce the appearance of dark circles, but it also reduces the appearance of puffiness, helps with under-eye bags, minimizes the look of crow’s feet, and smooths out visible crepiness that can often occur in the eye contour. Morning and night, gently pat a small amount of the eye cream around your orbital eye area, using your pinky or ring finger, until it’s completely absorbed.
L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Eye Renewal Eye Cream, $24.99 MSRP
KIEHL’S EYE ALERT
Long flight? Late night? If your dark circles are calling for an energy boost, this is the eye treatment for you! Formulated with extracts of cooling cucumber alfalfa, and a blend of vitamins and caffeine, the treatment helps hydrate and energize the delicate skin around the eye area and helps skin appear firmer with a diminished look of fine lines. Pat it around and under your eyes morning, night, and as needed throughout the day.
Kiehl’s Eye Alert, $22.50 MSRP
GARNIER SKIN RENEW ANTI-DARK CIRCLE EYE ROLLER
Like a side of instant gratification with your eye cream? You’ll love this eye roller from Garnier that helps to correct the appearance of dark circles with just a little bit of pigment—faking it until you make it is always an acceptable solution. Use in the mornings, alone, or under your favorite under-eye concealer.
Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Dark Circle Eye Roller, $12.99 MSRP
How You Can Help to Hide the Appearance of Dark Circles
Like all great skin care products, it will take some time before you start to see visible results from your eye cream. While you’ll want to have patience, we know how badly you want to stop looking in the mirror only to have your dark circles staring back at you. In the meantime you can help hide the look of dark circles by following the three simple steps below.
Step 1: Color Correct
Reach for pink or peach-tinted color correcting concealers and apply them under the eye in an inverted triangle shape. Use a blending sponge and tap to blend.
Step 2: Foundation
After you’ve applied your color correcting concealer, go over that with your foundation. Liquid formulas work for this trick as they are blendable.
Step 3: Concealer
The pièce de résistance in this tutorial is a creamy concealer a shade or two lighter than your skin tone. Apply it in that same inverted triangle shape and using your blending sponge, tap to blend well
With these tricks in your back pocket—and a great eye cream in your skin care regimen—you'll be well on your way to helping your dark circles look less noticeable!