Here at the Strategist, we think a lot about beauty products. We get excited about a face mask that makes your skin glow like a glazed doughnut or a dandruff-destroying, scalp massaging brush, and we obsess over Rio’s latest discoveries. And we want to talk about it with our equally obsessed readers — so we started The Beauty of It All, our Facebook group with The Cut, where members swap notes on new products and discuss old favorites, debate some of the trickier beauty questions (Can you use retinol with P50? Should you tell someone her lipstick is smudged?), and talk about their all-time favorite desert-island products. You can join the group here, but in the meantime, we want to highlight some of our readers’ sage advice. This week, we’re tuning into their conversation about under-eye retinols.
Recently, a Beauty of It All member posed a question: Does anyone suggest using retinol under the eye area? The question sparked a conversation about the well known anti-aging ingredient, which can help smooth lines and increase cell turnover, but is also known for its potentially irritating properties. While dermatologists say it’s safe to use retinol as an under-eye cream, the group weighed in with the recommendations they like to use on the sensitive area. Here’s what they said.
A couple of members sang the praises of Dr. Dennis Gross’s retinol eye serum. “I’m a fan of Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Ferulic + Retinol Triple Correction Eye Serum,” one person commented. “It’s pricey but a little goes a long way.” Another fan writes, “The Dr. Gross Serum has never irritated my eyes and I use it two times per day.” She also notes that you can use it on your eyelids. We’re fans of the brand, too — Rio once raved about Dr. Dennis Gross’s zit-arresting SpotLite, and we just heard from comedian Jacqueline Novak about the brand’s Daily Peel skin-care pads, which she says she likes because “they feel dermish versus like, some nonsense.” We get a similar vibe from the eye serum.
Another retinol eye cream that came up in the group was Trish McEvoy’s Beauty Booster formulation: “Use retinol eye cream because it’s formulated for that area,” suggests one commenter. “Trish McEvoy makes a great one.” This eye cream has dermatologist-approved ingredient hyaluronic acid, and is ophthalmologist tested, so you can rest assured it’s alright to use by your eyes.
Those who prefer a drugstore option might like this RoC eye cream, which one commenter wrote was a recommendation from her dermatologist. “My derm recommended the RoC Retinol Correxion Eye Cream as an alt to the $80 one he carries in his office,” she says. Like the Trish McEvoy cream (but a lot less expensive), it’s ophthalmologist-tested, and also hypoallergenic and noncomedogenic, which makes us think even those with more sensitive skin could give it a try.
Another member suggested a (very affordable) retinol alternative from the Ordinary. “I love their caffeine eye treatment,” writes one reviewer. One writer over at the Cut loved it, too. “Previously, I used Fresh Black Tea Age-Delay Eye Concentrate, but the Ordinary’s Caffeine Solution is the first eye-specific product I’ve ever used that actually seems to work; my eye area is less puffy and the skin tone is more even after a couple weeks of use,” she says.
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