Whether it's due to binging back-to-back episodes of the latest must-watch show on Netflix, being woken umpteen times during the night by a newborn or simply not being able to switch off when you climb into bed at the end of the day, there are some mornings when most of us will wake up to find ourselves looking absolutely shattered. For me, personally, puffy under-eyes have always been the biggest tell-tale sign of my tiredness, but more recently, a new symptom has come to join them: under-eye circles. Yes, I've truly been blessed.
While there is some good news in the fact that there are things that you can do to get rid of dark circles if you're facing them permanently, if you're dealing with darkness on more of an ad-hoc basis, then it can be trickier to know how to combat them.
Some days, I just won't bother to disguise them (looking at a dark circle never killed anyone as far as I'm aware), while other days, I'll be reaching for the concealer as my first port of call. But what about on days when I can't be bothered to apply a full face of makeup but still want to minimise the signs of tiredness?
I've got two words for you: eye cream. Turns out that if you find the right one, this little pot of moisturiser can actually do wonders for minimising dark circles under your eyes. But while there are tons of formulas out there (including celebrity-approved lotions and purse-friendly serums), choosing one that will actually treat, minimise and even prevent dark circles can be a bit of minefield.
Luckily, I've done the hard work for you. Keep scrolling to shop the 15 best eye creams for dark circles.
Stateside, one of these cult eye creams sells every three minutes, and I can confirm that it's worth the hype. Vitamin C is a key ingredient in the prevention of dark circles, but this also contains brightening banana powder to brighten and colour correct the eye area if they've already formed. Genius.
This is one of my favourite ever eye creams. It has a pink tinge to it which helps to visibly brighten tired eyes and uses energising caffeine to wake up the skin and reduce the appearance of dark circles.
This is a preventative eye cream rather than a quick fix, so it's one that I'll use during particularly busy weeks at work or when I'm heading to bed later than usual. It works overnight to repair the visible impact of lack of sleep (aka dark circles and puffiness) while protecting the delicate eye area from UV rays, pollution and even the blue light from your phone.
The name says it all with this one—it's a rescue remedy for your eyes when you're truly knackered. Alongside vitamins A, C and E, it contains cell-energising peptides to improve the plumpness and bounce in your skin to help your eyes look wide awake. Plus, I love how cooling it feels when applied.
This two-in-one treatment promises to reduce the appearance of dark circles in four weeks—pretty impressive. But even if you don't remember to use it regularly, it has an amazing light-reflecting quality that helps to diminish darkness and instantly brighten from first use. Plus, you can use it to smooth and plump your lips too!
More of a gel than a lotion, I keep this affordable eye treatment in the fridge for mornings when both puffiness and dark circles have greeted me. It has a roller-ball applicator, which instantly calms and soothes the area while skin-brightening hibiscus diminishes dark circles.
It might look basic, but many a beauty editor has raved about this eye cream before it landed in the UK recently. In fact, it's an innovative blend of ceramides and hyaluronic acid, which not only reduce darkness but also improve your skin's barrier to prevent them from reforming. It's got a beautiful, lightweight texture too.
This vegan-friendly eye cream contains a high potency dose of vitamin C and specially formulated light diffusers to treat dark circles and reduce their appearance. I've genuinely found that using this regularly makes my whole eye area look brighter and smoother (and I'm less inclined to reach for a concealer).
While it's described as a lotion, this is far from a traditional eye cream. It's actually a water-like blend of aloe vera, witch hazel and cornflower extract, which you pour onto cotton pads and press onto your eyes to treat and calm. You can even use it at night to remove eye makeup.
I love, love, love this gel-textured eye cream. It contains a caffeine complex to reduce puffiness but also does an amazing job at tackling the appearance of tired eyes. Bonus points for how cooling and soothing it feels on sleepy peepers.
You might have heard about IT Cosmetics for their cult CC cream, but its skincare offering is decidedly underrated. This contains all the good stuff (vitamin C, caffeine, cucumber extract and hyaluronic acid) as well as a "dark shadow minimising" blue tint, which is the magic tool for disappearing dark circles.
If it's good enough for Victoria Beckham, it's more than good enough for me, and this dark circle-diminishing under-eye cream comes courtesy of VB's very own facialist. It contains makeup technology to provide immediate brightness and instantly disguises dark circles.
This little eye cream is pretty nifty because you can actually apply it under or over your makeup. So if you find yourself feeling or looking totally tired during the day, you can just pat it on to brighten tired eyes.
Yes, this is a pricey duo, but if you deal with dark circles on the daily, then I'd highly recommend it. Proven to visibly brighten eyes in 28 days, it comes with a morning balm to tackle dark circles and puffiness and an evening eye cream to plump and restore the skin overnight. The applicator feels incredible too.
If you're looking for an eye cream to target occasional dark circles, then you'll love this K-beauty treat. It's lightweight, packed with refreshing fruit extracts and leaves you with illuminated, healthy-looking under-eyes.