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In the search for the best under-eye cream for men, SPY’s grooming editors and writers have tested dozens of popular eye products from brands such as Kiehl’s, Geologie, Disco and Peter Thomas Roth. For this Editor’s Choice feature, we’ve selected the very best under-eye creams of 2022. All of the products that earn our Editor’s Choice badge meet our strictest selection criteria, and we regularly consult dermatologists and grooming experts to make sure we’re recommending only the best possible options for our readers.
“You look tired.” Three little words that no one ever likes hearing. What’s even worse is hearing that phrase after you’ve gotten a full night of quality shut-eye. But when you’re prone to bags, dark circles and puffy eyes, sometimes no amount of sleep helps. For some people, they never go away, but instead, act as constant companions.
If you’re someone who bears these facial blemishes more often than not, then we highly recommend giving your peepers some TLC by investing in under-eye treatments that actually work. The best eye creams for dark circles can banish dark circles for good, and with regular application, you’ll never hear, “You look tired,” again. However, under-eye creams are just one effective treatment for dark circles, and you can also try eye patches, face masks, serums and roll-on eye sticks. The key is finding products with the right ingredients to restore the delicate skin under your eyes.
In this post, we’ll teach you how to get rid of bags under your eyes and how to fight dark circles. Plus, we’ll share the best men’s eye cream and under-eye treatments for your skin.
How To Get Rid of Dark Circles & Bags Under Your Eyes
The number one step you can take to fight dark circles under your eyes is 100% free — hydration.
That’s right, a tall glass of water is the best under-eye treatment for men, full stop. Your skin needs water to stay healthy, and that’s especially true of your under-eye skin.
The other most common causes for bags include allergies, lack of sleep, low collagen levels, smoking, and sadly, your genetics. However, the biggest culprit remains dehydration. Since the skin below your eyes is fairly thin, it requires moisturization to prevent constricted blood vessels from appearing. So, the main way how to get rid of bags under your eyes? Hydration, hydration, hydration.
But any fancy beauty brand can tack on a label on their product and call it an under-eye cream. Hence why it’s important to search for brands that use natural and skin-friendly ingredients to ensure the healthiest results.
To treat puffiness and dark circles under the eyes, look for these nourishing ingredients when shopping for the best under-eye treatments.
- Hyaluronic acid: One of the most powerful hydrating ingredients that moisturizes and plumps up skin
- Peptides: Made up of smaller chains of amino acids that tighten skin tissue
- Retinol: A vitamin A derivative that increases collagen and rebuilds thin skin
- Antioxidants: Protect skin from oxidative and sun damage, which can result in premature skin aging
- Caffeine: De-puffs skin and reduces the build-up of blood underneath the eyes
- Fruit and vegetable extracts: Help brighten and thicken skin by restraining enzymes that destroy collagen
Ranking The Best Under Eye Creams & Dark Circle Treatments for Men
While there isn’t one cure-all for how to get rid of bags under your eyes, there are plenty of great skincare solutions available, which we’ve outlined below, that will fight against the all-too-common effects of modern living. This list includes the best eye creams for dark circles, gels, serums, sleep masks and roll-on applicators. You can’t always win back your missed sleep, but you can target specific areas of your skin to at least look like you got your beauty rest last night.
1. Kiehl’s Age Defender Eye Repair
Kiehl’s is just one of those brands you take at face value, so when it claims to have a “lifting, anti-wrinkle, dark circle reducing eye cream” made specifically for men, expect high-quality results. The Age Defender features a rich blend of caffeine, linseed extract, Vitamin C, and mineral diffusers to bring down puffiness and brighten eyes. Consistency-wise, it feels more like a balm but less greasy. It absorbs quickly into your skin and provides a tingly sensation that reassures the user that Kiehl’s formula is going to work right away. There is also little-to-no scent, which is perfect for those with smell sensitivities.
2. Geologie Nourishing Under Eye Cream
For the grooming amateur who feels they require expert consultation to get their skin back on the track, Geologie was literally created for you. Our editors are big fans of Geologie, an innovative DTC men’s skincare brand, which has won numerous awards on SPY over the years. The online tailor-made skincare service helps subscribers identify their specific skin profile, then creates a personalized regimen of four products — a face wash, day cream, night cream and eye cream — based on their needs.
In our testing, this eye cream has proven to be one of the brand’s best products, and it brings together several coveted ingredients such as antioxidants, caffeine, hyaluronic acid, peptides and niacinamide to retain moisture, other and banish blemishes. I noticed how much firmer and softer the skin felt underneath my eyes after just a few days of use. You can purchase the cream individually for $45, though you’d be missing out big by passing on the 30-day trial, now just $10 for SPY readers.
3. Lumin Dark Circle Defense
4. Oars + Alps Wake Up Eye Stick
Oars + Alps is more than just a skincare brand that preaches “simple, natural, non-toxic, TSA-approved, feel-good skincare.” All of the brand’s portably convenient products are hits across the board, though if we had to pick just one, it’s the Wake Up Eye Stick that has us swooning with every roll across the lower eyelid. The fast-acting formula employs caffeine to waken dull skin from its slumber, while other unique ingredients like Persian Silk Tree Alpine Caribou Moss improve skin elasticity. There’s also something about the metal ball mechanism at the top that feels soothing when rolled across the skin. O+A gets props for packaging the product in an EDC, spill-proof design as well.
5. Cerave Eye Repair Cream
Cerave is known for being extra gentle, which is necessary when it comes to the super delicate skin under your eyes. This eye cream for dark circles is formulated with essential ceramides and hyaluronic acid to moisturize and restore the protective skin barrier. Those ingredients, along with the marine and botanical complex, reduces the look of dark circles and puffiness for brighter and smoother-looking eyes.
6. Brickell Men’s Products Restoring Eye Balm
For brighter, more energized eyes, Brickell’s Restoring Eye Balm is a potent, natural under-eye cream made for men of all ages. It reduces wrinkles around the eyes by strengthening the surrounding skin, along with bags, puffiness and dark circles. Fast absorbing and lightweight, the balm sinks into the skin’s surface and leaves no greasy residue or shine. Key ingredients include protein peptides to boost collagen production, hyaluronic acid for skin hydration and caffeine to increase blood circulation. We’re still in the process of fully testing Brickell’s popular eye balm, but it’s an “Amazon’s Choice” product and comes from a skincare brand we trust.
7. Disco Eye Stick
Disco is one of the best men’s skincare brands available today, full stop. Like Geologie, this DTC brand has won numerous awards on SPY over the years, and the brand’s under-eye stick is one of its most popular products This dermatologist-backed grooming company makes skincare products specifically designed for the pH balance of men’s tougher skin. The brand’s Eye Stick contains natural ingredients like caffeine and pine tree oil to tighten, strengthen and brighten the skin under your eyes. While we found this to be an effective under-eye cream for men, we did find the roller application to be a bit inconsistent.
Read More: The Best Disco Skincare Products, Reviewed
8. Supergoop! Bright-Eyed Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40
There are plenty of reasons people skip wearing sunscreen around the eyes. For one, it’s easy to forget. Second, it’s hard to find a sunscreen that won’t burn the super-sensitive area. Supergoop! Bright-Eyed 100% Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40 was created for exactly that reason. The only sunscreen active in this formula is non-nano zinc oxide, so it’ll never sting, burn or irritate eyes. Wearing sunscreen around your eyes is crucial because the skin there is the thinnest on the body, making it extra susceptible to UV damage, meaning fine lines and wrinkles. That’s why this is one of the best under-eye treatments out there when it comes to prevention. The formula has South African resurrection plant to deeply moisturize skin and boost elasticity, making it an incredibly effective anti-aging under-eye treatment.
9. Burt’s Bees Eye Cream for Sensitive Skin
FOR SENSITIVE SKIN
The skin around the ultra-delicate eye area is already sensitive, so for men and women who are already prone to irritation, it’s really hard to find an under-eye cream that won’t trigger a reaction. That’s where Burt’s Bees Eye Cream comes in, and it’s the best under-eye cream for sensitive skin. It’s dermatologist and allergy tested and specifically designed to avoid causing redness or irritation, earning a National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance. Clinically proven to deliver mega moisture, the fragrance-free, hypoallergenic eye cream is of 98.9% natural origin, infused with cotton extract, rice extracts and aloe vera.
10. Peter Thomas Roth Hyaluronic Cloud Eye Patches
Peter Thomas Roth’s penchant for premium skincare products can’t be denied. Those fortunate enough to have tested the company’s excellent Hydra-Gel Eye Patches know exactly what we’re talking about. These small gel cutouts deliver an incredible cooling effect to your lids that no slice of cucumber can match, which expedites the healing process to reduce swelling and smooth lines overnight. Marshmallow root extract softens the look of fine lines, while the ample amount of hyaluronic acid PTR employs gives the patches a watery consistency that feels refreshing when left on your lids for the recommended 10-15 minutes.
11. Dermalogica BioLumin-C Eye Serum
If you don’t like the sensation of eye cream, a serum is probably the best under-eye treatment for you. The super lightweight formula still does all the heavy lifting. Dermalogica’s is all about its potent vitamin C complex that fights premature skin aging caused by environmental stress and daily eye movements. The eye serum visibly firms, brightens and fights fine lines and wrinkles. Its formidable ingredients include polyphenol-packed Arjun tree extract and chia seed oil to boost moisture and elasticity, tremella mushroom and micro-algae for hydration, and Poria mushroom to get glowing skin.
12. Every Man Jack Age-Defying Eye Cream
Healthy, portable, and super affordable, EMJ’s topical is an ideal buy for self-conscious groomers who want to remedy fatigued eyes at any given moment, no matter the time or location. Billed as a triple-action eye cream, this product brings together a rich blend of antioxidants, vitamins, Green tea extract, and smoothening agents like aloe and cocoa butter to effectively moisturize and tighten skin.
A little goes a long way with just a pinky tip’s worth of application under each eye promising results in a few days. The tiny packaging is another facet that shouldn’t be overlooked, as it fits comfortably in any denim pocket or Dopp kit; you can sit it right next to your AirPods Pro case and still have lots of room to store other EDC essentials.
13. Jack Black Eye Balm De-Puffing & Cooling Gel
BEST COOLING EFFECT
Another reasonably priced, travel-sized option well worth a look, Jack Black’s balm blends together an assortment of advanced vitamins and soothing extracts that immediately go to work on damaged skin. It uses a non-sticky rollerball applicator that gently massages targeted areas, leaving the clear, lightweight gel to nourish skin with hydrating and healing properties. The size is perfect as well to take on the go when a quick fix is in order after a heavy night out during the workweek. Dab gently around the eye area in the morning or at night for optimal results. Ultimately, this men’s eye roller gel is seriously one of the best rolling options to consider
14. Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Sleeping Mask
The best men’s face masks are amazing for two reasons: they offer incredible skincare benefits and allow you to wear them in private without your bros judging you. If you’re fully committed to waking up with fresh-feeling and invigorating eyes, a touch of avocado and a heavy dose of retinol just might do the trick. Enter Glow Recipe’s special creation — a sleeping mask that feeds skin with anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties, while reducing the risk of irritation and sensitivity. Each jar comes with a tiny spoon that provides the right portion to spread across the face, creating a protective layer that nourishes until morning time.
15. Harry’s Brightening Eye Cream
Harry’s is best known as a DTC shaving company (and the maker of the best men’s razor in the world), but the company has expanded into skincare. We’ve tested the entire Harry’s line of skincare and hair products, and the brand’s brightening eye cream is one of the best. For guys looking to refresh sensitive under-eye skin while also covering up dark circles in the short term, this under-eye cream for men has a brightening effect that’s noticeable right away. Long-term, niacinamide, glycerin, seaweed and algae extracts help restore your skin. Although it’s lacking some powerful ingredients such as caffeine or retinol, it is one of the most affordable and easy-to-apply options on our list of the best under-eye creams for men.
16. RoC Retinol Correxion Anti-Aging Eye Cream Treatment
BEST RETINOL CREAM
When you need a serious anti-aging under-eye treatment, go for a retinol, like this RoC option. Beloved by dermatologists, retinol is a triple threat for the eye area because it tackles the biggest signs of aging: puffiness, dark circles and wrinkles. However, retinol can get a bad rep for causing dryness and irritation, but this hypoallergenic under-eye treatment was carefully formulated to make it gentle enough for daily use.
17. SkinCeuticals A.G.E. Eye Complex Anti-Aging Cream
Because women spend so much more on skincare, some of the most effective products and under-eye treatments are designed and marketed to women. However, guys will be amazed at how well these remedies can work on our skin, too. SkinCeuticals’ silky anti-wrinkle balm is probably the closest thing you can get to the fountain of youth in eye cream form. The premium skincare brand doesn’t cheap out on the ingredients, which is reflected in the price, using a powerful blend of proxylane, blueberry extract, flavonoids and synergistic peptides to improve the appearance of dark eyes. It accomplishes a lot, from reducing fine lines and puffiness to restoring skin elasticity. Our product tester also confessed to stealing a dab here and there from his fiancée’s jar to prevent crow’s feet before breaking down and buying a jar for himself.
18. Peter Thomas Roth Instant FIRMx Temporary Eye Tightener
Looking for more of a quick fix to appear younger ASAP? Use this instant eye tightener. While there are components to improve the look of under-eye bags over time, it also temporarily tightens, firms and smooths the whole eye area, minimizing the appearance of crow’s feet, fine lines, deep wrinkles and puffiness. The key ingredient is sodium silicate that provides an instant (but temporary) smoothing effect.
Updates: This article was last updated on June 22, 2022. During this round of updates, we cut our selection from 28 options to just 18 in order to prioritize the very best. During this update, we switched some of the best eye creams for dark circles around after further research and testing. For example, we moved Cerave Eye Repair Cream from #27 all the way up to #5 because it’s a consistent, trustworthy under-eye cream we can attest to. In addition, we moved Geologie’s under-eye cream from #9 to #2, Disco from #11 to #7 and more. SPY’s grooming writers and editors have tested dozens of under-eye creams for men, and for this update, we added Harry’s Brightening Eye Cream in the #15 position. Finally, we added a new frequently asked questions section to help guide our readers further in their quest to banish dark circles.
FAQs About the Best Eye Creams for Dark Circles
Although this question will vary in answers from person to person, we found that the best eye cream for dark circles is currently Lumin's Dark Circle Defense. We can attest that Lumin is a brand that actually works in our experience and that doesn't stop at the Dark Circle Defense. With an antioxidant-rich formula, niacinamide for skin strengthening and caffeine to further reduce puffiness, Lumin definitely has a product worth experiencing yourself.
A great under-eye cream should most certainly help, but the best way to get rid of dark circles is none other than water. No, we don't mean by rubbing water on the skin of your eyes (though we don't see the harm in that either), we mean keep hydrated. Keeping yourself hydrated does wonders for your skin and especially under your eyes. It's also simply important to keep hydrated so you can stay healthy.
Because eye cream for dark circles is typically on the lighter side, you're going to want to apply it toward the beginning of your skincare routine. Healthline tells us that the best time to apply is before your regular moisturizer or sunscreen for the best effect.