It’s a brand new year and, as many beauty blog feeds will attest, hydration is the cure-all to any post-holiday season skin woes, like eyes puffy from too much partying and too little sleep. I know that drinking water and clocking a minimum of eight deep, restful hours of sleep work like magic, but I’m also relying on the new batch of eye masks to refresh my look.
Eye masks are quick, absorb easily into skin, and actually help reduce inflammation and swelling, which causes that dreadful post-party puffiness in the under-eye area. What’s more, today’s eye masks aren’t just eye creams slathered onto an expertly cut cotton patch. The juiced up serums are actually clever cocktails made of skin plumping ingredients (like the viscous hyaluronic acid, which has the unique ability to attract and retain more than 1,000 times its weight in water–1,000 times!) to supply crinkled skin with much needed moisture and instantly perk up a complexion.
Not everyone can get their hands on the under eye pads Diddy snagged from Milan while prepping for the Golden Globes last year. Luckily these re-energizing masks are here for the rest of us to enjoy:
Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask ($63)
These retinol-rich sheets are totally safe for sensitive skin. The cotton pads stay put (really!) while you do you thing and leave skin looking supremely smooth. Don’t rinse ’em off. Pat the serum into the skin to get the maximum benefits of protein-rich algae extracts.
Rodial Dragon’s Blood Eye Mask ($39)
Yes, Dragon’s Blood extract is a real thing; the gooey red sap is found in the Sangre de Drago tree and works to repair skin by creating a second layer of protection under the eye area. Keep this one on a bit longer (20-30 minutes) and you’ll see it does rid the appearance of fatigue.
WEI Tibetan Chrysanthemum Correcting Eye Treatment Pads ($60)
This is an herbal option. The pads are soaked with soy, raspberry, and green tea leaf extracts to lighten dark circles and hydrate. The masks have a pretty scent and I did feel a cooling sensation (a good thing!) during the 10-minute application. I’m guessing you would have to use these a few times to help with discoloration, which explains the 10-pack box they come in.
Elemis Pro-Collagen Hydra Gel Eye Masks ($85)
Made with seawater and yuzu and plankton extracts, these treatments are like Botox in a box. The translucent pads have a gel-like consistency, which gets a bit sticky when applied. The results were intense to the point that I ‘m now Googling to find out if the serum comes in a bottle.
Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels ($30)
A little model birdie told me she swears by these on set while an insider at Beauty Collection told me they’re a top seller. Free from parabens, petroleum, mineral oil, chemical sulfates, and phthalates, the pads are steeped in Icelandic glacial water, Arctic cloudberry, and cranberry seed oils, which explains the gel consistency. The pads peel off easily and are a smart, cost-effective way to refresh your skin quickly.