What are the Different Types of Eye Wrinkle Creams?

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  • Written By: Lisa Kaplan Gordon
  • Edited By: J.T. Gale
  • Last Modified Date: 24 August 2019
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Eye wrinkle creams are topical emulsions that promise to reduce or remove wrinkles in skin, primarily the face. In fact, many wrinkle creams do make skin look younger for a short while. Studies have shown, however, that even the most effective eye wrinkle creams only reduce the depth of wrinkles by 10 percent, which is barely noticeable by the human eye. Tests also have shown that the most expensive wrinkle creams are no more effective than the least expensive lotions.

In an attempt to look younger, consumers spend more than $1 billion US Dollars (USD) a year on wrinkle products that promise to make the skin look smoother and softer; some products even call themselves face-lifts in a jar. Anything from Crisco to petroleum jelly can call itself a wrinkle cream. Most manufactures of wrinkle creams are careful to market their products as cosmetics, which are permitted to claim they only reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Once a product claims to reduce wrinkles by changing the structure of skin, however, then it is considered a drug and, at least in the United States, the manufacturer must able to prove scientifically whatever health claims are made.


Wrinkles and creases appear when age, health, and environmental factors collide to make skin drier, thinner, and less elastic. Time is the prime culprit in creating wrinkles. Sun damage, constant muscle contractions, genetics, smoking, and dehydration also are contributors.

Prescription eye wrinkle creams, called topical retinoids, are derived from vitamin A and help stimulate skin cell renewal. Tretinoin and tazarotene are two types of topical retinoids that can reduce fine wrinkles, roughness, and age spots. Common side effects of retinoids include redness, dryness, itching, or burning. Topical retinoids must be used with sunscreens and protective clothing to decrease side effects. Other prescription eye wrinkle creams contain alpha hydroxy acids, which enhance exfoliation, peptides, anti-oxidants, and sunscreens.

Most non-prescription eye wrinkle creams contain lower amounts of the active ingredients in prescription creams. These creams can be effective in reducing the appearance of wrinkles. The creams usually are not as effective, however, as their prescription counterparts.

Consumer Reports rocked the wrinkle cream world in 2007 when it compared the results of a $335 USD per ounce wrinkle cream with a $19 USD per ounce lotion and found that luxury products did not work better than drugstore products. The visual difference between the two price point creams was so minimal that most women could not judge the effects of the products they tested.


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Post 7

I tried a retinoid eye cream, but I had to stop using it. My skin was too sensitive to tolerate the side effects.

It made my delicate undereye skin peel. It also made it turn red. I looked like I had terrible allergies or had been crying for hours.

The day after I stopped using it, I went to the lake with friends. I thought since I did not have it on my face at the time, then I didn't have to worry about sun sensitivity. I was wrong.

The area under my eyes burned like it never has before. Even through my sunscreen and shades, the sun reacted with the medication, which must have lingered in my system.

Post 6

@Oceana – I use a caffeinated wrinkle cream, and it is one of the best eye creams for wrinkles that I have ever tried. The caffeine comes from coffee and green tea, and it gets rid of the puffiness that shows up after a night of crying or sleeping too late.

The caffeine isn't what works on the wrinkles. This cream also includes antioxidants, vitamins, and moisturizers. The caffeine is merely for the puffiness and dark circles.

It's great to have a cream that works for so many eye issues at once. The moisturizers reduce the wrinkles right away, while the healthy ingredients do their work over time. The caffeine is really only necessary when I have had a rough night, though.

Post 5

Has anyone here tried caffeinated eye wrinkle creams? I have considered using one, but it just seems like a bit of a contradiction to me.

Caffeine can dehydrate your skin. It can make wrinkles appear even deeper. So, why would an anti-wrinkle cream include it as an ingredient?

It is my understanding that it is supposed to perk up tired eyes. I just wonder if a cream that contains it can function as an anti-wrinkle cream, because of its dehydrating quality. I would hate to use it and find that it actually makes me look older!

Post 4

My mother uses a generic brand eye cream that costs only $5, and it has kept her from getting dramatic wrinkles around her eyes. She looks much younger than sixty, and she only has fine lines under her eyes.

She always told me that the secret to avoiding wrinkles is hydration. She said that as long as I used some type of moisturizer on my skin and drank plenty of fluids, I wouldn't have to worry about premature aging.

I think she is right. I am thirty-three now, and this method has kept wrinkles away from my undereye area all this time. I am going to stick with the cheap brand of eye cream, even when I get much older.

Post 3

This is an interesting article and I've learned a lot from the comments too!

I don't have any serious wrinkles as of yet, just a few fine lines. I do have issues with baggy eyes and dark circles though. My experience with eye creams is that they do work well with fine lines and de-puffing and brightening the eye area. Most importantly though, they help prevent wrinkles.

I have a friend who is the same age as me and has already started getting some deep wrinkles and the crow's feet around her eyes and she has never used an eye cream in her life. So I cannot believe that anti-wrinkle eye creams make no difference. They absolutely

do! And quality matters. I don't get the same results with pharmacy brands that I do with some of the high-end cosmetic brands.

I don't mean to play the devil's advocate. I just really think that a quality eye wrinkle cream helps treat and prevent wrinkles, that's all!

Post 2

@anamur-- Yes, I've used a prescription retin-A cream and it really does work much better than eye creams on the market. I actually asked my doctor to start me on it because I had a lot of blemishes from past acne. I used the lowest dose for three months and I saw an improvement with not just my blemishes but with my wrinkles too.

What these prescriptive eye-creams do is that it renews skin and promotes collagen production. Renewal gets rid of blemishes and collagen gives more elasticity to the skin so that there are less wrinkles. Of course, I'm not 100% wrinkle-free after using them, but I still think that they're the best eye wrinkle creams out there.

The low dose retin-A creams don't cost that much. If I had to compare it with pharmacy brand eye creams, I would say that the most expensive retin -A eye cream is twice as much as the most affordable pharmacy brand. But considering the results, it's worth it!

Post 1

I'm not sure if I should be happy or sad about these results. I've been using affordable eye wrinkle creams since my mid 20s and I have not seen much benefits aside from the creams simply moisturizing my eye area. I've always wished that I could afford more expensive eye creams because I thought that they worked much better. But learning from the article that they do not work better than pharmacy brands makes me both happy and sad.

I'm glad that I haven't tried to purchase expensive eye creams which would have given me the same results, but I'm also upset that most anti-wrinkle eye creams on the market do little for wrinkles.

I have never tried prescription retinoid eye creams though. Has anyone tried them? How do they work and what is the cost like?

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