It’s easy to fall into the trap of expensive beauty products. We think paying a premium makes the formula better at solving our skincare woes, from puffy under-eyes to dark circles. But luxury skincare doesn’t always outshine budget-friendly alternatives. Take, for example, Amazon’s best-selling eye cream: It’s not a department store find, but rather a drugstore staple, the CeraVe Eye Repair Cream ($11, was $14; amazon.com).
The affordable pick clawed its way to the top of the competitive list with a simple yet effective formula developed with the help of dermatologists. Like all CeraVe products, its core ingredients are ceramides, a lipid naturally found in the skin that depletes over time. The cream restores 3 of these ceramides, which helps strengthen the skin’s natural barrier. This not only helps better protect the epidermis from pollution and environmental stresses, but it also locks in moisture (along with the help of hyaluronic acid and niacinamide).
Although this process might not *seem* special, the upgraded moisture retention is actually what gives the eye cream its anti-aging benefits. The extra boost of hydration plumps the skin to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles—kind of like adding water back into a dehydrated fruit. And the effect lasts all day thanks to a built-in multivesicular emulsion technology that periodically releases moisturizing agents over a 24-hour time period.
But less noticeable fine lines aren’t the only perks shoppers saw from applying the eye cream daily: They reported a drastic decrease in puffiness, under-eye bags, and dark circles (even when hereditary), along with an overall brighter complexion. Yep, all the benefits you’d expect of a luxury pick for less than $15.
cerave-eye-cream , $11 (was $14), amazon.com
Better yet, the gentle formula doesn’t use any weird or questionable ingredients to make a noticeable difference. It’s not only hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and non-comedogenic (i.e. it won’t clog pores), but it’s also ophthalmologist-approved for safe use around the eyes. In fact, 49 reviewers with sensitive skin gave the clean formula a perfect review, proclaiming there were zero negative side-effects.
There’s a reason that reviewers say they come back to this product over and over again even after trying other pricier picks. It’s simple, effective, and, most importantly, affordable. And with so many rave reviews—889 to be exact—who wouldn’t want to give this affordable swap a try? Below, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites:
“As I am getting older, I constantly look for ways to maintain that youthful glow,” wrote one reviewer over 40 years old. “I don't know what rock I was hiding under to not have known about this eye serum, but it has been doing the work. I have been using this for two weeks. That raccoon effect that I feel like I get is almost gone [and] my complexion around the eyes is evening out.”
Another agreed: “I've been embarrassed for years about the bags under my eyes, but with two preschoolers at home, stress, and mild insomnia, I didn't see a way out. This is like a little miracle tube. I use it before bed and in the morning, too. I've gone from looking like there are bruises under my eyes to looking normal again. It's worth every penny.”
And finally, one reviewer summed it up best: “It does what it says, and at a fraction of the price.”
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