Give Your Eye Area a Spa Treatment With the 16 Best Eye Masks

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Eye Masks for Dark Circles

Byrdie / Chloe Jeong

"Mask" is kind of a loose term these days. There are PPE masks, cloth masks, and various types of skincare masks, like sheet masks and leave-ons. And then you've got eye masks. According to Dennis Gross MD, board-certified dermatologist and the co-founder of Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare, eye masks are similar to face masks in that they offer a treatment boost for your skin.

Additionally, Dr. Gross notes, "Eye masks are used infrequently compared to a cream." Think of it like a trip to the spa for the windows to your soul—not something you do every day but a nice refresher when you need it most.

Most masks come in the form of little patches that you place over your under-eyes to address dark circles and puffiness. "I think these are a great option to put in the refrigerator and apply first thing in the morning after a night of salt-rich snacking or alcohol to reduce puffiness," says Claire Wolinsky, MD, a New York dermatologist specializing in facial rejuvenation.

There are also little pots and tubes containing gels, creams, and balms you can apply all around the delicate eye area morning, night, or whenever you feel like it. These tinctures tackle other eye-area woes, like dryness, fine lines, crepiness, and hyperpigmentation. With pointers from skincare experts in mind, we rounded up standout options for every concern, skin type, and budget.

Ahead, the best eye masks out there today.

Best Overall: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Eye Mask

4
Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Eye Mask

Courtesy of Sephora

What We Like
  • Reduces under-eye bags

  • Intensive formula

  • Noticeable results

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

Our number one pick comes from the queen of cosmetics, Estée Lauder. From the beloved Advanced Night Repair line, these eye patches get to work while you get your beauty sleep.

They simultaneously hydrate with squalane and hyaluronic acid, soothe with chamomile, and battle puffiness with caffeine and coffee extract. "Caffeine constricts blood vessels and can therefore reduce the amount of fluid accumulating," explains New York dermatologist Hadley King, MD.

The high concentration of ingredients makes for a truly effective product, delivering plumper, calmer, more radiant skin with each application. This eye mask is so good, in fact, that you only need to use it once a week to reap the benefits.

Active Ingredients: Caffeine, coffee extract, squalane, chamomile, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Hydrating, depuffing, smoothing, soothing | Size: 8 patches (4 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

estée lauder advanced night repair concentrated recovery eye mask

Byrdie / Leigh Weingus

What Our Testers Say

I was happy to find that these eye masks did nothing but hydrate my under-eye area, and I never experienced any irritation.” — Leigh Weingus, Product Tester

Best Budget: e.l.f. Cosmetics Charcoal Hydrogel Under Eye Mask

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Reduces under-eye bags

  • Large patches

What We Don't Like
  • Results aren't dramatic

For something more budget-friendly, your best bet is the e.l.f Charcoal Hydrogel patches. They’re powered by charcoal, which is thought to help purify the skin, though more research is needed to back up those claims. Still, they also hydrate, boost radiance, and soothe with green tea, lavender, and allantoin.

Active Ingredients: Green tea, lavender extract, charcoal, allantoin | Benefits: Depuffing, plumping, boosting radiance, soothing | Size: 6 patches (3 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Drugstore: Yes To Cucumbers Depuffing Undereye Masks

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Reduces under-eye bags

  • Good for sensitive skin

What We Don't Like
  • Contains fragrance

Yes To Cucumbers makes the best eye masks from the drugstore aisle. These green patches are saturated with verdant ingredients, like aloe, green tea, and yes, cucumber, all of which offer soothing and depuffing benefits.

Active Ingredients: Aloe, green tea, cucumber | Benefits: Soothing, depuffing, smoothing, plumping | Size: 16 patches (8 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Splurge: 111Skin Sub-Zero De-Puffing Eye Mask

What We Like
  • Improves elasticity

  • Softens fine lines

  • Minimizes dark circles

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Contains fragrance

Want to give your eyes the top-shelf treatment? 111Skin won't let you down. The Sub-Zero Eye Mask doesn't waste time cooling and calming stressed under-eyes. Thanks to researched-backed ingredients like CoQ10, peptides, and red algae, you can also count on improved elasticity, less visible fine lines, and free-radical protection.

Active Ingredients: Coenzyme Q10, peptides, red algae, collagen | Benefits: Cooling, smoothing, depuffing, firming, softening | Size: 8 patches (4 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Dark Circles: Bliss Eye Got This Under Eye Mask

Bliss Eye Got This Holographic Foil Eye Masks

Courtesy of Bliss 

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Minimizes dark circles

  • Reduces under-eye bags

What We Don't Like
  • Contains fragrance

Dark circles got you down? This serum-rich eye mask is formulated not only to reduce discoloration but also to depuff under-eye bags and leave firmer skin in its wake.

Active Ingredients: Glycerin, fermented yeast, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Depuffing, smoothing, firming | Size: 10 patches (5 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Brightening: Peter Thomas Roth Potent-C Power Brightening Hydra-Gel Eye Patches

What We Like
  • Minimizes dark circles

  • Reduces hyperpigmentation

  • Boosts collagen production

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

Board-certified dermatologist Marie V. Hayag, MD of Fifth Avenue Aesthetics stands behind Peter Thomas Roth's Potent-C Eye Patches. "The caffeine helps constrict blood vessels to reduce the appearance of circles and puffiness," Dr. Hayag tells Byrdie.

"Vitamin C helps reduce the appearance of darkness and also helps increase collagen production," she adds. "Ferulic acid and vitamin E help stabilize vitamin C (which is quite unstable and oxidizes easily when by itself), so it can provide its benefits."

Active Ingredients: Vitamin C, caffeine, ferulic acid | Benefits: Boosting radiance, smoothing, depuffing | Size: 60 patches (30 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Depuffing: Versed The Fix Emergency Eye Mask

Versed The Fix Emergency Eye Mask

Courtesy of Dermstore

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Reduces under-eye bags

  • Generous amount

What We Don't Like
  • Results are temporary

"[With] provitamin B5, caffeine, cucumber, and vitamin E, this gel eye mask nourishes and hydrates the delicate skin around the eyes," says celebrity aesthetician Joshua Ross of SkinLab. "Cucumber juice cools and depuffs, and caffeine calms swelling and redness."

Active Ingredients: Caffeine, cucumber juice, vitamin E, panthenol | Benefits: Depuffing, smoothing, soothing | Size: 1 ounce | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Hydrating: Tarte SEA Pack Your Bags Undereye Patches

Tarte SEA Pack Your Bags Under Eye Patches

 Courtesy of Sephora

What We Like
  • Reduces crepiness

  • Fragrance-free

  • Good for sensitive skin

What We Don't Like
  • Results aren't dramatic

Tarte's ultra-gentle, fragrance-free patches replenish parched skin with glycerin, peptides, and coconut oil. After one use, you can expect a hydrated, plumper under-eye area.

Active Ingredients: Glycerin, peptides, coconut oil, algae | Benefits: Hydrating, plumping, soothing, smoothing | Size: 4 patches (2 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Exfoliating: Marla Rene Beauty & Co. Illumineyez Eye Mask

Marla Rene Beauty & Co. Illumineyez Eye Mask

Marla Rene Beauty & Co.

What We Like
  • Gentle formula

  • Improves elasticity

  • Generous amount

What We Don't Like
  • Unhygienic container

Though exfoliating your delicate eye area might seem like a recipe for irritation, the Illumineyez Eye Mask takes a super-gentle approach. It calls on papaya and pomegranate enzymes to slough away dead cells, then plumps the baby skin underneath with hyaluronic acid.

Active Ingredients: Fruit enzymes, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Exfoliating, smoothing, hydrating, plumping | Size: 3 ounces | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Firming: Dermalogica Stress Positive Eye Lift Mask

What We Like
  • Leave-on formula

  • Improves elasticity

  • Noticeable results

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

If you're dealing with crepey eyelids or general loss of elasticity, go with Dermalogica Stress Positive. Containing fermented yeast and gallic acid, this powerful potion delivers noticeably firmer skin while lifting and boosting radiance around the eye area.

Active Ingredients: Fermented yeast, gallic acid, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Firming, lifting, smoothing, depuffing, boosting radiance | Size: 0.85 ounces | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best K-Beauty: Benton Snail Bee Ultimate Hydrogel Eye Patch

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Softens fine lines

  • Generous amount

What We Don't Like
  • Some people may have allergic reaction

There's no shortage of amazing Korean eye masks out there, but Benton's Snail Bee Eye Patches stand out from the rest. As the name suggests, this treatment contains snail mucin (a natural source of hyaluronic acid) and healing bee venom to plump, soothe, and repair the skin while softening the appearance of fine lines.

Active Ingredients: Snail secretion filtrate, bee venom, hyaluronic acid, seaweed extract | Benefits: Hydrating, soothing | Size: 60 patches (30 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best With Caffeine: Skin Camp Magic Eyes Collagen Hydra-Gel Eye Mask

Skin Camp Magic Eyes Collagen Hydra-Gel Eye Mask

Courtesy of Skin Gym

What We Like
  • Budget-friendly

  • Improves elasticity

  • Reduces under-eye bags

What We Don't Like
  • Results aren't dramatic

We're also big fans of Skin Camp Magic Eyes. The kicker is caffeine, which offers a temporary pick-me-up by minimizing under-eye bags while leaving the skin firmer and supremely hydrated.

Active Ingredients: Collagen, caffeine, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Depuffing, hydrating, plumping | Size: 2 patches (1 pair) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best With Vitamin C: Elina Organics Leave On Under Eye Recovery Mask

Elina Organics Leave On Under Eye Recovery Mask

 Courtesy of Elina Organics

What We Like
  • Contains 30% vitamin C

  • Reduces hyperpigmentation

  • Can be applied to entire eye area

What We Don't Like
  • Unhygienic container

  • Small amount

Containing a whopping 30% vitamin C, plus kojic acid from white truffle extract, this leave-on mask isn't messing around when it comes to boosting radiance around the eye area and reducing hyperpigmentation.

Active Ingredients: Vitamins C and E, white truffle extract, mango butter, ceramides | Benefits: Boosting radiance, hydrating | Size: 0.2 ounces | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best With Retinol: Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Sleeping Mask

Glow Recipe Avocado Melt Retinol Eye Sleeping Mask
What We Like
  • Leave-on formula

  • Softens fine lines

  • Noticeable results

What We Don't Like
  • Unhygienic container

"I love this because the retinol is encapsulated, therefore it is not irritating," says skincare authority and expert cosmetic injector Kristina Kitsos. "Also, the avocado oil, avocado extract, and coffeeberry are packed with antioxidants that help fight wrinkles and protect the skin from a number of different environmental pollutants."

Active Ingredients: Retinol, avocado oil, coffeeberry | Benefits: Smoothing, retexturizing, hydrating, depuffing | Size: 0.5 ounces | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Sensitive Skin: Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks

What We Like
  • Good for sensitive skin

  • Reduces under-eye bags

What We Don't Like
  • Results aren't dramatic

"Wander Beauty Baggage Claim contains hyaluronic acid and glycerin to smooth thin, sensitive under-eye skin," offers Dr. Wolinsky. However, she says those with particularly reactive complexions should use eye masks with caution to avoid irritation.

Active Ingredients: Panthenol, aloe, copper peptides, jojoba, glycerin, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Soothing, smoothing, hydrating | Size: 12 patches (6 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

"Anyone with sensitive skin should look for a mask with the fewest ingredients and consult their dermatologist before using a new product." — Claire Wolinsky, MD, New York Dermatologist

Best Before Makeup: KNC Beauty All-Natural Retinol-Infused Eye Mask

KNC Beauty
What We Like
  • Award-winning product

  • Contains retinol

  • Star-shaped patches

What We Don't Like
  • Contains fragrance

Looking for a product that makes you look rested even when you're not? KNC Beauty's Star Eye Mask is your new best friend. These cute but effective shooting star-shaped patches combine retinol, collagen, licorice root, and hyaluronic acid to plump, boost radiance, and hydrate the skin before you put on makeup.

Active Ingredients: Retinol, collagen, aloe, licorice root, hyaluronic acid | Benefits: Smoothing, plumping, hydrating, boosting radiance, soothing | Size: 10 patches (5 pairs) | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Final Verdict

When it comes to eye masks, Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Eye Treatment is a reigning champion. With weekly use, you can expect reduced puffiness, smoother skin, and an all-around radiant eye area. On a budget? Your best bet is e.l.f. Cosmetics Charcoal Hydrogel Under Eye Mask (view at Amazon), a hydrating and soothing solution that won't run you more than a few bucks.

What to Look for in an Eye Mask

Antioxidants

According to board-certified dermatologist Corey L. Hartman, MD, some of the best ones to look for if you’re after brightening benefits include vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E, and coffeeberry.

Caffeine

Another one of Dr. Hartman’s suggested ingredients, this is commonly found in all kinds of eye products, thanks to its ability to constrict blood vessels, tamping down puffiness and dark circles.

Moisturizing Ingredients

Any type of product that’s going around the eye should contain moisturizing ingredients because the skin in this area is innately drier, Dr. Hartman explains. Ingredients to look for include glycerin, hyaluronic acid, aloe, and other humectants.

FAQ
  • What are the benefits of eye masks?

    "Eye masks sit on the skin and are very hydrating and nourishing with beneficial ingredients," explains Ross. Containing soothing, tightening, and exfoliating actives, most are meant to address under-eye concerns, like dark circles, puffiness, and hyperpigmentation.

    "Like face masks, eye masks are a great treatment boost," says Dr. Gross. However, since they aren't meant for daily use, he notes that eye masks "should never take the place of your daily topical."

  • How do you apply eye masks?

    With eye patches, you'll want to place the tapered end underneath the inner corner of your under-eye area, carefully smoothing the wider end toward your temples. With a balm or gel, you can typically apply it like regular eye cream, tapping it gently over the entire eye area, including the eyelid, and up to the brow bone.
    Most eye masks should be left on for about 15 minutes, then rinsed off. However, some gentler formulas can be left on overnight.

  • How often should you use eye masks?

    "Eye masks are used infrequently compared to a cream," Dr. Gross tells Byrdie. That said, the frequency of use really depends on the formula, as well as your skin type and specific concern. 

    Some eye masks will yield results with weekly use, whereas others may be more effective if used two or three times a week. "Also, I would advise to only try one new mask or product at a time in case of an irritation or allergy," says Dr. Wolinsky.

Why Trust Byrdie?

Byrdie contributor Theresa Holland is a copywriter and editor specializing in commerce, lifestyle, and wellness. For this story, she interviewed four dermatologists, an esthetician, and a cosmetic injector for product recommendations and insight into how eye masks work and what ingredients to look for. From the above brands, Theresa is particularly fond of Estée Lauder, Peter Thomas Roth, Wander Beauty, and Benton.

Meet the Expert

According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find enough eye masks from Black-owned and/or Black-founded businesses to meet this percentage. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at contact@byrdie.com, and we will evaluate the product ASAP.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
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