As beauty editors, we get bombarded with a ton of new products every day (we know—tough life.) Reviewed is a series where we report on some of the best products we've tried. Whether it's a drugstore lipstick that lasted all day or a hand cream that saved us this winter, you'll find all of our favorites in this column. Enjoy!
Hands down, the ominous dark circles loitering beneath and basically all around my eyes are one of my biggest complexion pet peeves. And while they'd already get an A+ for ceaselessly lurking, they're especially annoying after a spell of sleep deprivation, stress, a lackluster diet, wine… You catch my drift.
Despite the fact that the holidays are filled with blessed moments of relaxation and deliriously tasty food and drink, I'd be lying if I said some super-late nights, higher-than-normal blood alcohol concentrations, and the joys of family bonding don't do a number on my appearance. In fact, December's wear and tear typically show up right before my eyes in my bathroom mirror each morning the weeks proceeding—more precisely in the circles, lines, and puffy bags directly beneath my lash line. Ugh.
Any other year, I'd be so much more disturbed except for the fact that a few weeks before jumping ship—aka embarking on the travel circus that this past holiday season had in store for me—an all-natural, organic, and highly concentrated eye serum from Crop Natural came across my desk. (The beloved all-natural Australian skincare brand just launched in the U.S. last November.) So, being the under-eye dark-circle connoisseur that I am, I began dabbing without a second's hesitation. (Mind you, I wasn't wearing a stitch of makeup, so I knew my results wouldn't be skewed by any lingering concealer or foundation.)
After giving my ring finger the workout of a lifetime, I figured it would probably be a good idea to take a peek at what, just moments before, I had swiped all over my orbital bone and under-eyes. Happily, I was surprised. With hero ingredients like camellia, rose hip, pomegranate, vitamin E, and licorice root, the serum's goal is to brighten, firm, and ease any discoloration in the form of pigmentation and age spots. Plus, the recipe also exemplifies the brand's clear and transparent vision: 95% to 100% naturally derived ingredients, 100% organic agricultural ingredients, and no harmful additives, chemical processing, or synthetics. No, I'm not particularly plagued by age spots (yet), but there are those aforementioned circles to contend with, and in the last couple years, I've also noticed an increase in fine lines and crinkles below my bottom lashes and in the crow's-feet vicinity.
During my fast and furious application, I took note of the clear, ultra-concentrated formula that has a consistency more similar to a feather-light gel than the slippery serums I've become accustomed to, and I appreciated that the serum was instantly soaked up by my skin with zero stick factor. (I can't stand when my under-eyes feel tacky or on the contrary, slippery after applying a product.) What was really exciting, however, was that as I perused the label and double-checked the press release I had received about the brand, I began to feel a glorious tightening sensation around my eye area—not at all uncomfortable and, in fact, 100% satisfying. Minutes later, while examining my skin first feet, then inches away from the mirror, I noticed that not only did the area look brighter, but the slight lines and divets around my eyes had miraculously disappeared.
I've been using the serum for weeks now, and overall, my bags have been banished, and the contours of the region around my eye have been gradually toned and tightened. Suffice to say, I'm completely addicted. Applied two to three times per day, the smooth formulation lends itself gorgeously to pre-primer, concealer, and foundation coverage, which is my typical, day-to-day makeup MO. Plus, at $30 per bottle, which, ahem, is already a complete steal considering the impressive results, this antioxidant-loaded serum will also last forever. It spreads like a dream, and I don't kid when I say that you literally need a drop roughly the size of half of a pea to clear both eyes. Try it, and thank me later.
Next up: the best at-home peel for a radiant, soft-as-a-baby's-bum complexion.