A comprehensive guide on the best eczema-friendly eye creams and what you should buy.
|Product Name||Ranking||Key Ingredient||Fragrance/ Alcohol-free||Skin Type||National Eczema Association Approved||Price|
|CeraVE | Eye Repair Cream||
|3 Types of Ceramides; Hyaluronic acid; Niacinamide||Y/Y||All||Y||Check Here|
|Hada Labo Tokyo | Age Correcting Eye Cream||
|Super Hyaluronic Acid™; Caffeine; Camapu extract; Pink Silk Tree Extract||Y/Y||Dry/ Combination/ Sensitive||N||Check Here|
|Burt's Bees | Sensitive Eye Cream||
|Citric Acid; Lactic Acid; Rice Extract; Aloe Vera||N/Y||All (incl. Sensitive)||Y||Check Here|
|Drunk Elephant | C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream||
|5 types of Vitamin C; 8 types of Peptides; Ceramides||Y/Y||Sensitive||N||Check Here|
|La Roche-Posay | Toleriane Ultra Eye Cream||
Best for Ultra
|Niacinamide; Neurosensine; Citric Acid; La Roche-Posay Thermal Water™||Y/Y||Dry/ Ultra Sensitive||N||Check Here|
How to Pick the Best Eye Cream for Eczema?
Finding good eye creams in itself can be difficult. With numerous factors to consider such as the ingredients, skin type, and packaging, it’s not hard to see why people take a lot of time looking for the right one.
This makes things extra challenging for those with sensitive skin or eczema.
Eczema is a condition that causes the skin to become itchy, and inflamed. Contrary to popular belief, this condition is actually an umbrella term for a total of seven different skin conditions. The seven types of eczema are as follows:
- atopic dermatitis
- contact dermatitis
- dyshidrotic eczema
- nummular eczema
- seborrheic dermatitis
- stasis dermatitis
Each one of these types is characterized by their different appearances. However, the one common thread that links all seven types is that they are all caused by genes and can be triggered anytime.
According to the National Eczema Association, over 31 Million Americans alone live with eczema.
A person who has eczema may have inherited an over-reactive and hostile immune system. As a result, their body quickly rejects foreign substances by releasing histamine which boosts blood flow and causes inflammation.
People with eczema are extremely skeptic about skin care products, and may prefer DIY eye creams for good reason. Common ingredients like essential oils and lanolin can easily trigger an eczema flare-up. This makes finding the best eye cream for eczema easier said than done.
Despite that, those who have eczema can still enjoy the freedom and benefits of using skin care products like eye creams.
For people living with eczema, here are some important things to consider when choosing the best eye cream:
Is it approved by the National Eczema Association (NEA)?
The National Eczema Association is a non-profit organization based in the US. They are committed to being the voice and the hub for Americans affected by the said condition. The organization was established back in 1988 and has since then functioned as the authority when it comes to eczema.
This organization is known for the NEA Seal of Acceptance™ program. A Seal of Acceptance™ recognizes the capacity of products to provide benefits and improve the quality of life for people with eczema.
To get the approval of the organization, a product must go through a screening process. In this process, NEA will review the sensitivity, ingredients, and formulation of the product. NEA has a list of ingredients that trigger eczema that they use to inspect each product.
For people with eczema, the Seal of Acceptance™ translates to safety. On the other hand, a product that has not been approved by NEA provides a risk of eczema breaking out due to potential irritants.
The National Eczema Association is a US-based organization which is why many Asian beauty brands that can be used for eczema have not been recognized. Just to be sure, always cross-check against the list of trigger ingredients before buying any product.
To find out whether the eye cream you’re eyeing is approved by NEA or not, simply head on to their approved products page. Alternatively, you may also look for this seal on the product:
What are eczema-friendly ingredients?
The National Eczema Association has a whole list of ingredients known to trigger eczema. As of writing, there are 44 ingredients on the list divided into two categories: Ingredients to be Avoided and Ingredients not Allowed.
Thankfully, there are still common eye cream ingredients that are beneficial to your eyes and, at the same time, friendly to those with eczema.
Let’s go over them one by one.
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a naturally present substance in the human body, particularly in the fluids of the eyes and joints. The substance acts as a cushion and lubricant due to its natural ability to hold water. In fact, according to research from Dermato Endocrinology, HA molecules can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water.
We need to be careful when applying eye cream as the under-eye area has very thin and delicate skin. Because of that, moisture can be easily lost which results in fine lines and wrinkles under our eyes. Because of HA’s ability to hold water, it helps improve skin elasticity and minimise fine lines and wrinkles.
Ceramides are lipids which are naturally found in our skin. In fact, it composes a majority of the outermost layer of the skin called the stratum corneum. This layer holds your skin cells together, serves as a protective barrier, and keeps water inside the skin.
Unfortunately, as we age, our ceramide levels decrease as well. More than that, according to the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, ceramides are decreased in the epidermis of patients with eczema. This leaves the skin more vulnerable to reactive chemicals and wrinkling caused by the lack of moisture. Thus, it is especially important to start using eye creams as early as possible.
Hydrated skin helps to prevent the harsh effects of eczema such as flaking, scaling, and fissures. Furthermore, moisture gives the skin a barrier of protection and helps the skin to fight bacteria or fungi that may cause skin infections.
Peptides are short links of amino acids that serve as precursors to bigger proteins like collagen and elastin. These three components provide the structure and much-needed elasticity in the skin to minimize wrinkles.
Peptides play a very important role in collagen production. To be more specific, they stimulate the skin to start producing collagen again. As we grow old, collagen production naturally slows down which is all the more reason to apply peptides to your skin.
Research from the Society for Applied Microbiology suggests that peptides may be used to treat eczema.
The study tested out peptides against yeast-inducing eczema. Out of the 21 they tested, six peptides successfully killed the yeast without damaging human skin cells. This means that there is a chance peptides can be used to instantly end eczema breakouts.
Niacinamide is a form of Vitamin B-3. This component helps build keratin to help the skin stay firm and healthy. It is also an attribute for growing the ceramide layers that we discussed earlier.
More than anything else, niacinamide is known to reduce inflammation in the skin by regulating blood flow in the affected area. This means that a healthy dose of niacinamide in the skin can lessen the swelling effects of eczema attacks.
Ingredients to avoid for eye creams for Eczema
Eczema is caused by an immune system that hyper-reacts to particular substances. As we saw earlier, NEA has created a full list of substances that may trigger an eczematous reaction from the skin.
As eye creams are applied extremely close to the eyes, triggering eczema in that sensitive location may also cause other eye infections such as Conjunctivitis, Keratitis, or Keratoconus.
Some people may prefer to use natural & organic eye creams but you have to pay extra attention for the presence of trigger ingredients. To be on the safe side, here are some common ingredients in your eye creams, serums or gels that you should look out for:
Fragrances/ essential oils
Fragrances or essential oils may contain synthetic substances that can trigger eczema. NEA reported that 8% to 15% of eczema patients are allergic to fragrances. Fragrances and essential oils contain alcohols that are not supposed to be inside the body so the natural reaction of the skin is to reject it.
To be more exact, there are six triggering chemicals that are commonly found in fragrances and essential oils:
- cinnamic alcohol,
- cinnamic aldehyde,
When checking for eye creams to use, be sure to check the product’s ingredients list for these substances.
Topical lanolin is often used as a moisturizer to prevent dry, rough, and scaly skin. Emollients like lanolin contain oils that add a silky layer on top of the skin which results in that smooth and moisturized effect. This makes them a staple ingredient for many moisturizing creams.
As good as lanolin may seem, several studies have pointed out that it triggers atopic dermatitis. In 2017, a Dutch study which tested out lanolin on 1000 children living with eczema showed a reaction 66% of the kids.
The exact reason why Lanolin triggers eczema has been a long debate in the medical field. However, after several studies, it has been suggested that impure Lanolin may contain more than 3% of wool alcohol. Lanolin alcohol is also currently listed by the Contact Dermatitis Institute (CDI) as an allergen.
Hygiene is key
Jar-type packaging that is opened widely encourages users to scoop the cream using their fingers. As a result, bacteria from the fingers may transmit to the cream causing it to be contaminated. This is extra dangerous to those with eczema as bacteria may cause irritations to become infected.
As mentioned earlier, eye creams contain hyaluronic acid, ceramides, peptides, and many more active ingredients. Exposing these ingredients to air and light causes them to break down, thus rendering the product useless.
Air-tight and tinted packaging are obvious counters to the problem of oxidation and light-sensitivity. A non-jar packaging (pumps or tubes) that has these two considerations will help prolong the shelf life and effectiveness of the cream.
5 Best Eye Cream for Eczema
CeraVE Eye Repair Cream
- Formulated with three essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) and Hyaluronic acid for brightening and intense hydration
- patented MVE controlled-release technology to eliminate the need for reapplication
- Niacinamide for reduced puffiness
- Accepted by the National Eczema Association
- Suitable for all skin types
The CeraVE Eye Repair Cream is the best overall eye cream for people with eczema. Its key ingredients are potent for hydration and well-known anti-aging substances. The product also has the NEA Seal of Acceptance™ which means it is free of common eczema triggers.
Headlining its array of features is CeraVe’s patented MVE controlled release technology and triple ceramide formula.
The MultiVesicular Emulsion or MVE is a technology that allows CeraVe’s products to slowly dissolve into the skin. As a result, the product’s ceramide formula is gradually released over time, which eliminates the need for reapplication. Plus, you’ll be ensured that the product is doing its work throughout the day.
The triple ceramide formula, on the other hand, restores the stratum corneum — the skin’s natural protective barrier. It does this by adding more of the three essential ceramides (1, 3, 6-II) onto the said layer.
Hyaluronic acid is known for its capacity to hold water. With proper hydration, the area under the eyes will appear plumper and brighter, thus lessening our dark circles. The addition of Niacinamide’s anti-inflammatory effects should tone down the puffiness in the area as well.
Multiple user reviews have confirmed that the product really helped with hydrating the area under their eyes. Some people have noticed their dark circles gradually fade as well
Hada Labo Tokyo Age Correcting Eye Cream
- Formulated with Super Hyaluronic acid for lightweight but intense hydration
- Clinically tested to reduce crow’s feet and dark circles
- Formulated with Caffeine and Camapu extract for smoothing and firming skin around the eyes
- Can be used as both a night cream and a day cream
- Suitable for all skin types except for those with oily skin
Hada Labo Tokyo Age Correcting Eye Cream is the strongest competitor against CeraVe for the top spot in this list. The product boasts a blend of unique ingredients to lessen crow’s feet and remove dark circles for brighter skin.
Headlining its key features is Hada Labo’s patented Super Hyaluronic Acid (SHA). Hydration is key for people with eczema. This is where Hada Labo’s effectiveness shines through the competition. Hada Labo’s enhanced version of Hyaluronic acid has two times the moisture-retention capacity as ordinary HA. As a result, SHA can improve the skin’s elasticity and suppleness twice as much as the usual HA.
According to a study by Hada Labo, the product also reduces crow’s feet, wrinkles, and fine lines by 78% in just three weeks. The same study stated that dark circles are reduced by 91% in 4 weeks.
This effect is attributed to the product’s Camapu Extract, Caffeine, and Pink Silk Tree Extract. These three ingredients are rich in enzymes that tighten the skin by preventing collagen from breaking down.
This cream can be used during the day or the night. It is suitable for those with eczema since it does not contain any fragrance, parabens, or dyes.
Users with oily skin should take note that this eye cream has Squalene and Butylene Glycol – two highly comedogenic substances.
Burt’s Bees Sensitive Eye Cream
- Contains Citric Acid to fight free radical damage and increase skin elasticity
- Contains AHAs for brightening dark eye circles
- Accepted by the National Eczema Association
- Suited for all skin types but specifically made for those with sensitive skin
At $9.96, Burt’s Bees Sensitive Eye Cream has to be the best budget pick for those with eczema. Despite the low price, this eye cream packs in a unique blend of natural ingredients. In fact, 98.9% of its ingredients are of natural origins, making it a great choice for those who get irritations from synthetic compounds.
This NEA-approved eye cream contains AHAs like Citric Acid and Lactic Acid. Both of these are examples of weak acids or acids that are not reactive or corrosive. This makes them safe to use, especially for those with sensitive skin or eczema.
Citric Acid is naturally found in fruits like lemons and limes. In skincare, it is known for its antioxidant properties and its ability to increase epidermal thickness thus eliminating wrinkles and lines in the process.
Lactic Acid, on the other hand, is found in milk. It is also found in our body since it is the byproduct of carbohydrate breakdown. This compound is best known for its anti-aging properties. To be more exact, lactic acid helps to exfoliate dead skin cells from the epidermis. Thus, revealing new and brighter skin cells in the under-eye area.
Other than those two mild acids, the cream also contains rice extracts and aloe vera. Rice extract is famously used in Japanese skincare products. This extract is rich in inositol, an antioxidant with the ability to bind water and keep the skin moisturized. Aloe vera is well-known for its intense hydration abilities. It contains natural Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and enzymes to help the skin to maintain its suppleness.
The eye cream was specifically made for those with sensitive skin but can be used by all skin types. For those with eczema, it won’t irritate your eyes and the tube packaging ensures good hygiene as well.
Drunk Elephant | C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream
- Five forms of Vitamin C for all-around skin protection and brightening
- Eight peptides for firmer and younger-looking skin
- Contains potent anti-aging ingredients such as antioxidants, ceramides, and plant oils.
- Certified cruelty-free
- Made specifically for sensitive skin
For those who have a little more budget to spend, the Drunk Elephant | C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream is the one for you. As the best premium option in this list, this eye cream combines cutting-edge synthetic ingredients with the best of what nature can offer.
To start off, it makes use of the Power 5C Vitamin Complex which features five different forms of Vitamin C. Vitamin C is one of the most versatile vitamins for your skin. It has been proven to thicken the dermis for protection and diminish fine lines. It also inhibits melanin production to lighten up hyperpigmentation and even out skin tone.
Vitamin C is better absorbed when combined with antioxidants that help them pass through the skin’s layer. Thankfully, Drunk Elephant has enzyme-rich substances like Vitamin E, superoxide dismutase, and cucumber extract in their formula. Not only that, these enzymes also act as exfoliators that break down keratin proteins to cause dead skin to gently slough off and reveal new and healthy skin cells.
Drunk Elephant | C-Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream also contains eight peptides. If you can recall, peptides are the building blocks of collagen and elastin — two important compounds to maintain the skin’s natural hydration and structure.
For best results, leave the product in the fridge. This allows the cream to cool down and provide a more soothing treatment. As per Drunk Elephant, 100% of users interviewed felt hydrated and soothed after doing this.
Drunk Elephant made this cruelty-free eye cream for those with sensitive skin. It does not contain any known eczema triggers. All in all, users have been really positive about it being effective and safe even if it hasn’t been approved by NEA.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Eye Cream
- Contains Niacinamide and Neurosensine to tone down puffy eyes
- Has citric acid to increase skin elasticity and reduce wrinkles
- La Roche-Posay Thermal Water to soothe inflamed skin and prevent discomfort
- Oil-free and non-comedogenic
- Airtight packaging to avoid contamination and longer shelf life
- Made for ultra-sensitive and dry skin types
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Eye Cream is the best pick for those with ultra-sensitive skin and rightfully so. This eye cream has 0% preservatives, paraben, alcohol, and fragrance. Furthermore, according to La Roche-Posay, the product has been tested on allergy-prone skin.
The product contains Niacinamide and Neurosensine which helps eczema patients’ easily reactive skin. These two anti-inflammatory ingredients are crucial in soothing sensitive skin and reducing puffiness around the eyes.
This eye cream also features the signature La Roche-Posay Thermal Water. This mineral-rich water has been studied for its soothing properties and positive effects on the skin. More specifically, a study published by the Dove Medical Press stated that thermal spa waters have been especially good for those with chronic inflammatory skin. This is attributed to the water’s anti-inflammatory and anti-irritant potential.
This ingredient has been exclusively used by the La Roche-Posay Thermal Center in Europe since 1905. The institution has been using thermal water to treat various skin disorders, accepting over 7500 patients every year. By 1975, the La Roche-Posay Thermal Water was introduced as a key ingredient for the institution’s line of skincare products.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra Eye Cream is packaged in an airtight pump. This prolongs the shelf life of the ingredients and prevents contaminants that can irritate the skin further. However, some user reviews reported problems with the ease of use and durability of the pump. So you may consider transferring the eye cream into another container to ensure you can enjoy the product fully without the frustration.
If you’ve enjoyed our picks for eczema-friendly eye creams and want to find out more, be sure to check out our top 10 favourite eye creams!