For most of us, the thought of getting a wrinkle is as distant in our minds as scoring VIP Beyoncé tickets at the Barclays Center: it’s almost impossible. But in actuality, developing puffiness, dark circles, and dryness is more common than you think. The skin around our eyes is very fragile and if not properly taken care of it will wreak havoc when we’re older. (Wrinkles included.) To give us the real deal and help decipher the facts, we asked Seven Brown, internationally licensed esthetician, and consultant at the Harlem Skin Clinic to weigh in. So the next time you shake your head at eye creams, hopefully you’ll think twice.
Vibe Vixen: So what’s really the deal with eye creams? Why should we use them?
Seven Brown: Eyes are an engaging part of our personalities and focal point of the face that needs special attention. The skin surrounding the eye is thin and somewhat fragile, which requires special care and the right ingredients for proper maintenance. Eye creams can provide that, but look for things that have hyaluronic acid for hydration, retinoids for the fine lines of crows feet, or arnica that reduces swelling and heals bruising.
VV: How important are the creams?
SB: Eye creams are a necessity because they can address a range of conditions. They can add moisturize, hydrate, renew, soften dark circles, reduce puffiness, mitigate aging, and destroy the evidence of fatigue. Additionally, they make a difference if you are serious about confronting the signs of aging. Finally, cream doesn’t have to be your only choice—look for gels when you’re young or have oily skin. In colder climates or for drier skin, try a balm.
VV: Let’s talk about the signs of aging. At what age should women begin to care for their eyes?
SB: Chronological age has its place but isn’t the only factor. In a perfect world, you should start between the ages of 25 and 30. However, if the signs of environmental aging (sun damage) are visible, don’t be afraid to start sooner.
VV: Ok, so now that we understand its importance, can you suggest eye creams that can be purchased in drugstores?
SB: The cost of a good eye cream starts at $9 in drugstores. At that price you can find great brands like Burt’s Bees. While drug store brands provide some results—the more sophisticated brands deliver better results. In a department/specialty store the sky is the limit—it can go upwards of $300 plus.
VV: Ok, we have the cream. Now what?
SB: Creams should be applied with the pinky finger on the bone just below your eye. Eye products tend to travel so applying to close can get them in your eye instead of under it. Contact wearers especially want to be careful—an application to close may cause your eyes to tear if you aren’t careful. Also, the order of application for topical products goes from lightest to heaviest, which means use eye cream before your moisturizer.
VV: Can women ever over apply product?
SB: Absolutely. If the cream is too rich or over applied incorrectly it can clog the follicles and cause milia (tiny bumps) on top or under the eyelid. You only need a tiny amount (one pump) on tip of your finger for each eye. Once you start to see positive results from an eye cream, how important is it to continue to use it? As with anything maintenance is important for continued results.
So there you have it ladies. For services by Seven at the Harlem Skin Clinic book online here. Enter the code “VIBE” during the month of February to receive 20% of services or products.
Photo credit: Seven Brown