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How to Buy Anti-Aging Eye Treatments

By Lisa Cohen LeeSHOP.COM Beauty Editor

Your eyes are the first spot you're likely to notice the signs of aging, such as crow's feet and crinkles at the corners, well ahead of the rest of your face. They also reveal what kind of night you had, via dark circles and puffiness (a few mojitos and not quite six hours of sleep, maybe?). That's why an eye cream is the iphone of skincare-you can't live without it, no matter how much you've been trying to avoid it. Once you start using one and see the results (in the form of brighter, perkier, firmer skin) then you'll never, ever want to give it up. Follow this primer to finding the right eye treat, and pretty soon, you'll see the light.

The Basics

Step 1GOAL: Look at your eyes closely, and assess what you'd like to accomplish: Are your eyes puffy? Do you have raccoon eyes even when you get a good night sleep? Do you notice crow's feet and lines underneath your eye? Or is the skin around your eye always dry? Once you determine what your eye gripe is, you can choose a formula that works to remedy it.
Step 2TYPE: Most eye creams are divided into two categories: preventative or treatment. A preventative cream will moisturize the delicate area around your eyes to stop creases from forming and will protect your skin with SPF. A treatment cream, gel or serum will work on improving the condition and look of your eye area, getting to the root of problem (lines, circles, puffiness) to make your eyes look brighter and younger. A few eye creams are one size fits all-they combine preventative ingredients with treatment, so you get the most bang for your buck.
Step 3 RESULTS: It will take time to see results from an eye treatment, and they vary depending on the percentage of active ingredients and the formulas. You won't be able to solve all your eye problems with a topical cream, but you can make them less noticeable. Here's what you can expect: reduced appearance of fine lines and a well-rested look, even with less than eight hours of sleep

The Lingo

Ceramide: Natural lipids found in skin cells that reduce with age. They help skin retain moisture by providing a protective barrier. Synthetic ceramides in skincare replace the lipids and fats that are lost and help plump up skin.
Peptide: An ingredient that stimulates collagen and brightens skin.
Brightening: A formula that diminishes dark circles and shadows; it may also contain light reflecting particles.
De-puff: An eye treatment that usually has an active ingredient that revs up circulation and reduces the puffy-look around the eyes.
Firming: A type of treatment that helps tighten sagging and slack skin.
Retinol: A derivative of Vitamin A; it's been shown to increase cell turnover and stimulate collagen to strengthen and repair skin.

The Experts

The editors at Oprah Magazine raved about Shiseido White Lucent Brightening Eye Treatment. "Shiseido takes a three-pronged approach to treating dark circles. Vitamins C and E stimulate circulation (to help diminish shadows), beech-tree shoot extract promotes collagen production, and a luminizing powder instantly makes the skin look more radiant."
Allure Magazine named Olay Definity Illuminating Eye Treatment in their Best of Beauty awards for Best Eye Cream for Dark Circles, saying this: "It has glucosamine to fade circles over time and mica to brighten immediately."

The Brands

Chanel This designer brand is known for cutting edge ingredients in their Precision skincare line, which include eye treatments.
ROC This French company uses retinol in most of their eye creams that work to improve skin's health and vitality.
L'Oreal The newest entry in this brand is the Skin Genesis Eye Serum, with hyaluronic acid to keep skin moisturized and strong.
Estee Lauder Eight different eye treatments and moisturizers define this venerable brand.

The Price

$: This price point has basic preventative moisturizers and treatments that get the job done effectively. Try Neutrogena Anti-Oxidant, Age Reverse Eye Cream, $19
$$: A higher price means a greater percentage of cutting-edge, active ingredients within the formula. Try Lancome High Resolution Refill 3X Triple Action Renewal Anti-Wrinkle Eye Cream, $55
$$$: At this range, expect to find higher-end exotic ingredients, elegant formulas and more immediate results. Try Sisley Eye and Lip Contour Complex, $180