Cools and moisturizes the thin skin around the eye
Instant brightening effect under eyes
Lightweight, non-greasy formula
May require reapplication throughout the day
Small product size
Cooling properties are short-lived
Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer
We put the Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer to the test after receiving a complimentary sample from the brand. Keep reading for our full product review.
I'm always a bit cautious and selective when I introduce new products to my skincare regimen, since I have sensitive combination skin and easily react or break out from certain ingredients. However, due to recent pandemic restrictions, I haven’t had any fillers underneath my eyes in months. I noticed that regardless of how much sleep I get, my eyes always look tired—a solid reason for me to try out something new.
I have a four-step skin routine in the morning that I switch out every couple of months. Currently, I’m using a benzoyl peroxide cleanser as my skin is oilier in the summer, Biologique Recherche's Lotion P50 1970, The Ordinary's Hyaluronic Acid 2%, and Neutrogena's Ultra-Sheer SPF 70. To address my eye concerns, I decided to try Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer, which comes in a small, cylindrical container that fits in the palm of your hand. The product itself is a balm that you twist to apply, and claims to provide a cooling effect while reducing puffiness and dark circles with the likes of caffeine and vitamin C. So did this stick give my under-eyes the burst of energy they've been craving? Keep reading to find out in my full review.
Best for: All those who wish to refresh and brighten the look of the skin below their eyes with minimal fuss or in combination with other skincare products.
Uses: A cooling eye stick that moisturizes, brightens, and de-puffs.
Hero ingredients: Hibiscus, caffeine, vitamin C, and honey.
Byrdie Clean? No; contains PEGs.
About the brand: Kiehl’s began as an apothecary nearly 200 years ago in New York’s East Village. According to Kiehl’s, the brand honors its old-world beginnings with formulas that blend botanical ingredients with cutting-edge technology.
About My Skin: Combination skin with clogged pores
I have sensitive, combination skin, and my main concerns are occasional clogged pores and inconsistent texture and tone. I'm also easily irritated, and in many cases, can be allergic to ingredients in a wide range of products. This can result in reactions or breakouts, so I try to be careful with what I use on my skin.
The Feel: Lightweight and easy
To my delight, Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer feels lightweight and is emollient, but it doesn't leave a greasy residue. I also appreciated that the product is unscented. Although the product instructions suggest that you may need to rub in excess with your fingers, I found that my skin absorbed the product sufficiently when I applied it directly from the applicator.
The Ingredients: Heavy hitters for texture improvement
The product contains several ingredients that are known to improve the appearance, texture and tone of skin, including hibiscus, which is a natural source of alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA), a chemical exfoliant. As to the sensation I felt within moments of applying, that was “thanks to its immediate cooling formulation with caffeine,” according to Dr. Nancy Ilaya, Kiehl’s scientific director. “It’s also great for touching up during the day whenever eyes feel tired,” she adds.
The Results: Awakened, glowing eyes
Within moments of applying Kiehl's Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer, I felt a cooling sensation. About 15-20 minutes after I applied it, I noticed that the skin around my eyes looked more awake, with an increased glow. This product also didn’t get into my eyes, which makes it less irritating and a good match for contact lenses. I love the consistency of the formula, and since it created a glow, I extended it to my cheekbones to highlight and add a more contoured look to my features. I noticed that after several applications, the skin around my eye felt more hydrated and smooth to the touch without appearing to be oily—a major plus in the summer months.
The Value: Affordable, but small size
At $22, Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer represents solid value in a crowded eye care segment that has a staggering number of competitors at price points that can go into the hundreds. The product improves the look and feel of skin around the eyes and pairs well with other parts of your regimen, including SPF-infused moisturizers and makeup, which is increasingly part of the men’s beauty sector thanks to the fact that beauty routines don't have a gender and everyone should use the products that make them look and feel their best. The only concern is that you only get 0.17 oz. of product, so you may need to replace this more often than some other eye sticks, especially if you find you get the best results from reapplying throughout the day.
Similar Products: You have options
Milk Makeup Cooling Water: This eye stick from Milk ($28) uses caffeine, which is also the key ingredient in the Kiehl’s formula. With a 1.2-oz. container and a similar application process, the product promises the same de-puffing and cooling effects, all with the vegan formulas we've come to love from Milk.
Darphin Cooling Hydrating Stick for Face and Eyes: This face and eye stick ($25) also features de-puffing properties and promises “an instant burst of cooling hydration.” We like this one because it contains hyaluronic acid, known to increase skin moisture and reduce the appearance of fine lines.
Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer improved the look of my tired eyes. They felt recharged and well-moisturized, and the product complemented the rest of my skincare regimen without irritating my sensitive skin. In short, this eye stick is a nice addition for someone looking to nourish their eye area without a lot of fuss, but with noticeable impact. Beyond its intended purposes, the under-eye applicator also works for things like highlighting your cheekbones or moisturizing your eyebrows. While the product size may be small, you get impressive results at a fair price point, so it's definitely worth trying if you're on the market for a new eye brightener.
- Product Name Facial Fuel Eye De-Puffer
- Product Brand Kiehl's
- Price $22
- Weight 0.17 oz.
- Full Ingredient List Aqua / Water Butylene Glycol Bis-PEG-18 Methyl Ether Dimethyl Silane Sodium Stearate Sorbitol Glycerin Propylene Glycol PEG-150 Distearate Phenoxyethanol Caprylyl Glycol Escin Mel / Honey Caffeine Manganese Gluconate Sodium Citrate Sodium Dextran Sulfate Hibiscus Sabdariffa Extract / Hibiscus Sabdariffa Flower Extract