Three eye creams, one from Honest Company, one from Biossance, and another from Supergoop, on a tan and beige background.
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Being a new parent is incredibly rewarding, but it’s also (understandably) exhausting. During those first few months, you’re sure to get your share of late nights, early mornings, and little-to-no rest in between, which can leave you rocking some heavy bags and dark circles under your tired eyes.

As it turns out, there’s a good reason why they call it “beauty sleep.” There are several restorative processes that occur both mentally and physically while we sleep, explains Brendan Camp, MD, a Manhattan-based dermatologist at MDCS Dermatology.

“Camp says that when we don’t get enough sleep, we affect our body’s ability to produce collagen, restore the skin barrier function, and process fluids appropriately. Sleep deprivation can cause blood vessels under our eyes to dilate and cause a blue or purple appearance.”

There are many skin care products on the market that are designed to help with dark circles and puffy eyes.

There’s not a ton of research out there about what ingredients are and are not safe to use on your skin while breastfeeding, especially in topical eye creams which are used in such a small quantity. This study from 2017, which was focused primarily on cosmetic surgery and chemical peels during pregnancy and postpartum, found little evidence that topical absorption could have an effect on breastfeeding babies.

Information on salicylic acid is also limited, however, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), products that contain this ingredient are considered safe, as it’s “unlikely to be appreciably absorbed or appear in breastmilk.”

All of these products were given the thumbs up for breastfeeding mothers, because we prefer to play it safe.

For this list, we took dermatologist recommendations and pored over customer reviews. Most of these products focus on natural ingredients, such as rosehip oil, aloe vera, and shea butter, for added peace of mind.

We reached out to the board certified dermatologists to get their feedback on the most effective under-eye creams that were formulated with ingredients that were considered to be safe for nursing mothers. We factored in online reviews, opinions of experienced parents and manufacturer information regarding features and capabilities.

Price guide

  • $ = under $10
  • $$ = $10–$30
  • $$$ = $30–$50
  • $$$$ = over $50

Best for sensitive skin

CeraVe Eye Repair Cream

Price: $$

This eye cream contains hyaluronic acid, which can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water, as well as ceramides, which help plump the skin and smooth the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Another ingredient worth mentioning is niacinamide, which has anti-inflammatory properties that help cut back on redness, notes Rina Allawh, MD, a dermatologist at Montgomery Dermatology in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.

“She says that the product is ideal for sensitive skin and won’t cause any problems with the skin.”

“CeraVe’s eye cream has mostly rave reviews, especially since it’s designed for sensitive skin and is on the lower end of the price range. Some people complain that the formula is greasy and not good for makeup on top.”


  • The cream is tested for eye diseases.
  • The formula has a hydration boost.
  • niacinamide helps reduce redness.
  • It is nongreasy and fragrance-free.


  • If it is applied over a skin problem, it may burn.
  • The cream may not be the best for sensitive skin.

Botanics 80% Organic Hydrating Eye Cream

Price: $$

The star ingredient in this cream is rosehip oil, which is used to soothe and hydration the eye area. Almond oil, olive fruit oil, and shea butter are some of the ingredients. It can be used during the day and night.

“It is fast- absorbing, so you don’t feel oily under your eye area, which is useful if you apply any makeup on top. Other reviewers said that it was definitely a good product, but they didn’t see a big difference in their dark under-eye circles.”

It is great for sensitive skin because it is formulated without the chemicals that are found in skin care ingredients.


  • The cream should not leave a greasy smell.
  • Shea butter, rosehip, and olive oil are included.
  • The formula is designed to be used daily.


  • The package is less than 1 ounce and is made of cream.
  • If alcohol gets in your eye, it may be annoying.

Best budget

Preparation H with Aloe

Price: $

“If you have a poor night’s sleep, putting hemorrhoid cream under your eyes can help reduce the appearance of crow’s feet.”

Allawh says that preparation H helps reduce under eye puffiness and contributes to the tired appearance. This easy trick can help you maintain your well-rested look.

A word of caution for this inside beauty hack: key ingredient in Preparation H is witch hazel, which can actually dry out the skin. Allawh recommends starting with a small test spot on your hand to check for any irritation reactions, especially in those with sensitive skin.

Steroids can cause the skin under the eye to thin over time. If you want to use it more frequently, you should consult with your healthcare professional.


  • This cream can be used for many things.
  • It is affordable and comes in a tube.
  • It is eligible for both the HSA and the FSA.


  • The cream is not designed for under-eye use.
  • “Some people don’t like the scent.”
  • Overuse of a steroid can cause skin to thin over time. It is advisable to consult your provider before implementing this on a regular basis.

Best splurge

Drunk Elephant C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream

Price: $$$$

This cream provides a trio of fatigue-fighting ingredients: peptides, vitamin C, and cucumber extract. “Peptides are short-chain amino acids that are used as the building blocks of proteins like collagen and elastin,” explains Camp.

Vitamin C is your go-to ingredient for those pesky dark circles, thanks to its brightening benefits, and cucumbers help rehydrate and soothe the skin with their naturally high water content, explains Joshua Zeichner, MD, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center.

The half-ounce bottle of Drunk Elephant is a bit of a splurge because they are on the expensive side, but they are well loved by those who use them. Some reviewers say the bottle ran out quickly, and others say it worked better in the fridge.


  • It contains eye-brightening vitamins.
  • It is gentle enough for daily use.
  • The cream is safe for sensitive skin.


  • This option is expensive for an eye cream.
  • It is in a small container.

EltaMD Renew Eye Gel

Price: $$$$

This eye gel works hard on your under-eye area to reduce the appearance of dark circles and fine lines. Allawh says that it contains an ingredient called HDI/trimethylol hexyllactone crosspolymer which helps to lighten the skin and reduce the appearance of fine lines.

It contains vitamins C and niacinamide to help reduce redness and reduce under eyes. She recommends using this eye gel twice daily.

A lot of people like this product, but it is on the pricier end of the list. It also contains retinyl palmitate. If you have an infant, small amounts and with no direct contact with the infant should be fine, though providers advise pregnant and breastfeeding women to avoid it. This is a better option for parents who use formula.


  • “It doesn’t leave a greasy mess.”
  • It has a high level of hyaluronic acid.
  • Free-radical damage can be prevented with the help of Antioxidants.


  • This eye cream is expensive, especially for an eye cream that is less than 1 ounce.
  • It may be hard for people with sensitive skin.

Best botanical blends

100% Pure Coffee Bean Caffeine Eye Cream

Price: $$

The cream was designed to shrink puffy eyes. It contains vitamins C and rosehip oil, which help replenish lost skin cells.

According to the author, the key ingredient is aloe, which is used for burns and inflammation, and may have a soothing effect for dry skin around the eyes.


  • The company says the cream is made with natural ingredients like caffeine.
  • It has been shown to be effective in reducing dark circles.
  • It can be used in the morning and evening.


  • It is fairly expensive for an all-natural product.
  • It has a scent that could be hard to smell.

Honest Beauty Deep Hydration Eye Cream

Price: $$

You may already be a fan of the baby-friendly brand Honest Company, founded by actress and mompreneur Jessica Alba, but you may or may not know that they sell a wide array of skin care products for parents, too!

One of Honest Beauty’s most popular products is their Deep Hydration Eye Cream, which contains hyaluronic acid to draw water back into the skin and a soothing botanical blend that includes chamomile and calendula, which can help calm and soothe tired-looking skin.

Reviews are mixed when it comes to how well sensitive skin meshes with this product, even though the cream is fragrance-free. Some folks were happy with the results, and say a little goes a long way, making it a good choice for the price. Others said they had a bad reaction to this cream and it irritated their skin.


  • It is approved and tested for skin diseases.
  • The cream is free of harmful ingredients.
  • The formula has natural ingredients.


  • Some consumers reacted poorly.
  • Some consumers may not like it because it glides on more like a cream.

emerginC Rawceuticals Eye & Lip Craft

Price: $$$$

This is another splurge-y option but definitely hits the mark if you’re looking for something that’s all-natural. Rawceuticals uses a cold-press method to process fruit, vegetables, and seeds while retaining the nutritional integrity of the ingredients. The result is a balm of sorts, which warms to the touch for application.

This specific blend includes cocoa butter, coconut oil, and carrot seed oil, which a 2019 study suggests might be a beneficial ingredient for skin rejuvenation.

Our market editor is currently testing this product and says that the cocoa butter and carrot seed oil combo is definitely moisturizing and feels nice on the skin. But the consistency is definitely on the greasy side, so it’s not great for wearing under makeup. It also has a very distinct, earthy scent, so if you’re smell-averse, this might not be a great pick for you.


  • The under-eye cream is thicker in consistency because it is pressed.
  • It is designed to work for all skin types.
  • The cream can be used twice a day.


  • “It doesn’t absorb quickly into the skin.”
  • “It won’t have as long of a shelf life as some other eye creams because it’s free of Preservative.”

Best for the entire face

Biossance Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream

Price: $$$

This eye cream is designed to brighten your skin while you’re (hopefully) asleep, taking advantage of the time when your body is already rejuvenating. The ingredients list is simple, with two main ingredients — squalane, a human-made lipid that’s based on the squalene your body naturally produces, and marine algae. These work to hydrate, firm the skin, and stimulate collagen production.

The reviews are mostly positive for this eye cream, with folks saying they experienced brighter, more moisturized skin after using it. Though it’s not intended to be used on your entire face, Dr. Camps says there’s nothing in the ingredient list that would make it harmful to slather all over, especially since it’s fragrance-free.


  • It is formulated without harmful ingredients.
  • It starts working quickly after absorbing into the skin.
  • It is ideal for most skin types.


  • It may not be ideal for people with sensitive skin.
  • Some reviewers say it takes too long to see results.

Acure Radically Rejuvenating Eye Cream

Price: $$

The natural ingredients in this cream, including edelweiss extract and chlorella, provide hydration without causing irritation, which makes it a good choice for use on the face.

It is free of a lot of potentially harmful chemicals found in skin care products. It is cruelty-free.


  • “It won’t be likely to cause irritation.”
  • It is safe to use on the entire face, so you can use it as more than just an eye cream.
  • “It doesn’t leave a mark on the skin.”


  • Some reviewers think it has an unpleasant smell.
  • It may take a while to see an improvement.

Best cream with sunscreen

Supergoop! Bright-Eyed 100% Mineral Eye Cream SPF 40

Price: $$$

“SPF is important for your skin on cloudy days, and especially for your delicate under-eye area, which has a lot of skin on it. The SPF cream is made with zinc oxide, which can protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays.”

“To use, apply at least 15 minutes before you leave the house and don’t forget to reapply every 2 hours to make sure you’re protected throughout the day.”


  • “It has a 40 SPF so it protects the skin from the sun’s harmful rays.”
  • It is safe for breastfeeding.
  • It starts working quickly after absorbing into the skin.


  • It may not be ideal for people with sensitive skin.
  • It is not easy to blend in with other sunscreens.

“It is important to remember that skin care products may not work for everyone. We read reviews for each product included in the list, and every single one had a mixed result, as everyone’s skin is different.”

Choosing products can involve some trial and error, so you should check out the products before you make a decision. If you have any skin conditions or sensitivities, it is always a good idea to speak with your doctor before trying a new skin product.

Do eye creams help with wrinkles?

Wrinkles can be improved by using eye creams to address skin changes around the eyes. Eye creams can improve hydration and appearance.

“Camp says that ingredients such as hyaluronic acid can help smooth out the appearance of fine lines. The creams help plump the skin to minimize the appearance of fine lines and wrinkling. The creams don’t make the wrinkling go away, just decrease how obvious it is.”

Can eye creams help remove dark circles?

Dark circles under the eyes can be caused by a variety of factors, including lack of sleep. Camp says that there are some things that can be considered as age, an increase in melanin in the skin, and an increase in superficial blood vessels that impart a blue or purple color to the skin.

Mineral ingredients like mica can blur the appearance of dark circles. He says that the under-eye skin can look healthier and smoother by reflecting light from the skin. Dark circles can be addressed by increasing the production of collagen and protecting against the effects of free oxygen radicals.

Can eye creams help get rid of bags under my eyes?

The bags under your eyes are not just the result of lost sleep, but also of swelling in the lower eyelid skin, which can be caused by natural aging. Camp says certain ingredients that help with swelling are available.

He says that some eye creams containCaffeine which helps address swelling and dark circles by decreasing blood vessels and making them less discolored.

Is it safe to use an eye cream every day?

Eye creams are safe for everyday use. Camp notes that certain ingredients can be very annoying. He recommends gradually using an eye cream that contains these ingredients, so as not to cause a rash or irritation.

There are many eye creams that are safe for breastfeeding or expecting parents.

Knowing your skin type and how your skin responds to certain ingredients will help you avoid a potentially unpleasant reaction. Should you experience any negative skin changes or side effects from using a new eye cream, you should consult a board certified dermatologist.