6 Best Vegan Eye Creams

Here’s our quick beginner’s guide to vegan skincare, plus our favourite vegan eye creams for every skin type.

Product Name Ranking Key Ingredient Fragrance & Essential Oils/ Alcohol-free Skin Type Price
First Aid | Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream Best Over-all Peptides; Niacinamides; Vitamin A; Vitamin E; Green Tea Y/Y All Check Here
BIOSSANCE | Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream Strong Runner-up Peptides; Marine Algae; Squalane Y/Y Dry/ Mature Check Here
Bliss | Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream Best Budget Niacinamide; Vitamin C; Vitamin E; Squalane Y/Y All Check Here
Dr. Dennis Gross | C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream Best Premium Niacinamide; Vitamin C; Vitamine E; Ceramides; GABA Y/Y All Check Here
Bull Dog | Age Defence Eye roll-on Best for Men Vitamin E; Rosemary leaf extract; Echinacea Y/Y Mature Check Here
Alchimie Forever | Rejuvenating Eye Balm Best Lightweight
Formulation
Grape Seed Extract, Bilberry extract; Vitamin E; Vitamin K; Jojoba; Cocoa Butter Y/Y Dry/Sensitive Check Here

How to Pick the Best Vegan Eye Cream?

Delving into the world of vegan eye creams can be confusing. More often than not, this confusion stems from how words like “natural,” “organic,” or “clean” are used interchangeably with “vegan,” even though they all mean different things. For instance, some buyers might think that eye creams containing ingredients sourced from nature, such as honey, beeswax, or snail mucin, are vegan. However, this is a popular misconception.

 

Vegan refers to products formulated without animal extracts or by-products.

 

If you’re entirely new to vegan eye creams, here are a few tips that can help make it easier to determine if an eye cream is vegan or not:

  • Familiarize yourself with the differences between “natural,” “clean,” “green,” “organic,” and “vegan.”
  • Check if the products you’re interested in have a Vegan Society, Cruelty-Free International, Cruelty-Free and Vegan, or Certified Vegan logo.
    Official logos for Cruelty-Free International, The Vegan Society, Certified Vegan, and Cruelty-Free and Vegan (From:Crueltyfreeinternational.org, Vegansociety.com, Vegan.org, PETA.org).

    Official logos for Cruelty-Free International, The Vegan Society, Certified Vegan, and Cruelty-Free and Vegan (From:Crueltyfreeinternational.org, Vegansociety.com, Vegan.org, PETA.org).

  • Peruse the brand’s website to see if their skincare products uphold vegan standards.
  • Check the ingredients list. Only having the word “vegan” on the packaging isn’t a guarantee that a product is 100% vegan. Without the logo of a certifying organization, it’s impossible to verify that the product adheres to vegan standards as it claims.

If you’ve already set your sights on certain vegan eye creams, here are five things to check for before sealing the deal:

Superstar eye cream ingredients

In addition to being vegan-safe, you’ll want your eye cream to contain other components that will make your eye area look and feel amazing. Here are four ingredients to look out for:

Vitamin E

Oxidative stress is one of the primary factors that speed up skin aging.

When left unchecked, it can cause collagen breakdown, inflammation, and wrinkles, to name a few. Vitamin E, an antioxidant with photoprotective properties, helps combat these effects. Due to its fat-solubility, vitamin E can permeate the skin’s inner layers more effectively to address dryness, hyperpigmentation and hasten wound healing.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a water-soluble antioxidant abundantly found in the human skin. It has an essential role in aiding collagen synthesis and neutralizing free radicals. It also addresses hyperpigmentation by regulating the production of melanin.

Both vitamin C and vitamin E work exceptionally well together. When combined, both antioxidants protect against UV damage and decrease the skin’s sunburn reactivity.

Peptides

Peptides are short links of amino acids that form the foundation of bigger proteins like collagen & elastin.

When existing collagen in the skin breaks down, peptides act as messengers that signal cells to start collagen production. Peptides in eye creams function the same way when applied to the skin – they stimulate collagen and elastin production, keeping our skin soft and supple while minimizing wrinkles.

Niacinamide

Niacinamide is a topical form of vitamin B3 popularly known for its skin brightening effects.

This water-soluble vitamin improves skin barrier function by stimulating the synthesis of ceramides and boosting skin cell turnover. This enhances the skin’s elasticity and ability to retain moisture. Furthermore, it minimizes hyperpigmentation, discoloration (blotchiness and sallowness), and fine lines and wrinkles.

Plant-based squalane

Squalene is a naturally-produced lipid found in our skin’s sebaceous glands and makes up around 10% of human sebum. It protects the skin by reducing the effects of oxidative stress while also keeping it soft and moisturized.

The amount of squalene our skin produces diminishes with age. The good news is many skincare products contain a hydrogenated form of squalene called “squalane” (with an ‘a’).

Squalane is usually derived from plant sources like rice, sugar, and olive oil. However, some squalane variants are taken from animals. Shark liver, in particular, is rich in squalene. Sadly, many brands opt for this variant because it’s 30% cheaper than plant-derived squalane.

Unfortunately, there is no clear-cut way to determine whether a product contains plant-based or animal-based squalane. According to a 2015 study done by Bloom Association, this is because skincare brands are inconsistent in how they market the ingredients in their products.

Some brands try to pass off animal-based squalane as a “natural ingredient,” while others don’t publicly disclose where they sourced their squalane. In other cases, some brands are unaware they’re being supplied with a blend of plant- and shark-derived squalene.

If there’s a vegan product you like but you’re unsure of its authenticity, you can always get clarification by sending the company a query through email or social media.

Skin type suitability

Just because a product is vegan doesn’t mean it’s automatically good for your skin. The effectiveness of vegan eye cream is still dependent on your skin type.

Eye creams for dry skin are usually thicker or creamier. They saturate the skin and form a film over its surface to prevent moisture loss. For this reason, eye creams for dry skin contain a greater amount of emollients like seed butter, oils, or beeswax.

When applied to oily skin, the above formulation would be terribly comedogenic. The overactive sebum production in oily skin makes it prone to clogged pores. Using a thicker eye cream can exacerbate this and potentially cause breakouts. As such, eye creams for oily skin tend to be thinner, more lightweight, and have a gel-like consistency that quickly sinks into the skin.

Sensitive skin types tend to be more reactive to certain ingredients, making them prone to redness and inflammation. Irritation triggers for sensitive skin include denatured alcohol, fragrances, and essential oils, so it’s good to keep an eye out for these ingredients when choosing an eye cream.

 

To help you figure out which ingredients are safe for your skin type, just type the name of the eye cream in SkinCarisma’s search bar. The website will give you a full rundown of each ingredient, including functions and skin safety ratings.

Packaging

Packaging plays an important role when it comes to the hygiene and shelf life of your eye creams.

Little tubs, pots, or jars leave your eye cream exposed to air when opened, causing oxygen-sensitive active ingredients to degrade over time. Transparent packaging can also expose the product to light, affecting photosensitive components and rendering them less effective. This is especially important if you are looking to DIY your eye cream.

To prevent this from happening, opt for opaque tubes, roll-on applicators, or airtight pump bottles. If your favourite eye cream comes in a jar, make sure to use a small spoon or spatula when handling the product to avoid contaminating it with your fingers.

Roll-on applicators are particularly beneficial. They deliver the product straight to the eye area while minimizing wastage and eliminating unnecessary handling. The metal roller ball tip is also cooling and can help de-puff the eye area as you’re massaging the product into the skin.

6 Best Vegan Eye Creams

First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream

Best Overall
First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • Peptides to smooth fine lines and wrinkles
  • Alpha Arbutin and Niacinamide for skin brightening
  • Homeostatine for skin firmness and elasticity
  • Bisabolol and Green Tea extract for skin calming
  • Vitamin A and E to fight free radicals
  • Best for all skin types
  • Irritant-free

The First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream is formulated with a potent mix of key ingredients designed to address five common aging signs. It comes in hygienic tube packaging and is highly-rated on Amazon, making this our Best Overall pick for vegan eye creams.

This eye cream’s unique 5-in-1 formulation targets five signs of aging skin. Peptides plump the skin and minimize fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen production. Plant-derived Alpha Arbutin and Niacinamide tackle dark spots, uneven skin tones, and dark circles. And Homeostatine, an active complex made with Andean Tree and Marine Seaweed extracts, improves skin firmness, thickness, and elasticity.

The First Aid Beauty 5 in 1 Eye Cream is also formulated with vitamin A and E, which fights free radicals. Bisabolol, found in chamomile, has humectant properties that help keep the skin moisturized. Together with Green Tea extract, both ingredients help calm and soothe the sensitive skin around the eyes.

 

According to First Aid Beauty, this eye cream is gluten-free, nut-free, oil-free, nano-free, and dermatologist tested. It’s also certified 100% Cruelty-Free and Vegan.

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BIOSSANCE Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream

Strong Runner-Up
BIOSSANCE Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

BIOSSANCE Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • Peptides and Marine Algae to smooth wrinkles
  • Paracress extract for youthful-looking skin
  • Squalane and Panthenol for moisturization
  • Formulated without artificial ingredients
  • Best for dry or mature skin

The BIOSSANCE Squalane + Marine Algae Eye Cream is a potent eye cream featuring pink marine algae, a unique anti-aging ingredient. Despite being a top winner at the 2020 Allure Best of Beauty Awards, we’re ranking this eye cream as a Strong Runner-Up due to its jar-type packaging.

The combination of a Tripeptide Complex and Marine Algae delivers intense hydration that keeps wrinkles at bay. The Tripeptide Complex keeps the skin firm and plump by stimulating collagen production, while Marine Algae prevents the occurrence of Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) responsible for speeding up collagen degradation. According to a study done by Biossance, the two ingredients can minimize wrinkles in seven days.

The eye cream visibly lifts the eye area with the help of Paracress extract, a plant-derived ingredient with anti-aging and muscle-relaxing properties. The addition of Squalane and Panthenol also provides skin-soothing and long-lasting hydration.

 

According to Biossance, their products are produced in a My Green Lab Platinum-certified facility. This means that their products are developed at a facility that meets 70% of the green lab best practices established by My Green Lab.

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Bliss Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream

Best Budget
Bliss Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Bliss Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • Niacinamide for skin brightening
  • Vitamin C and vitamin E for younger-looking skin
  • Squalane for moisturization
  • Multiple plant and fruit extracts
  • Formulated without artificial ingredients
  • Best for all skin types

The affordably-priced Bliss Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream comes packed with excellent anti-aging ingredients. It boasts a high user rating on Amazon and comes in a hygienic pump, making this our pick for Best Budget vegan eye cream.

This eye cream is enriched with vitamin C and E, which protect against free radical damage and enhances collagen synthesis. This powerful combination boosts skin radiance, giving you brighter-looking eyes.

In addition to addressing dark spots and uneven skin tone, Niacinamide also helps keep the skin moisturized. Sugar-derived Squalane complements this by improving the skin barrier and minimizing moisture loss.

The Bliss Ex-glow-sion Radiance-Boosting Eye Cream also contains a multitude of plant and fruit extracts. Rosemary, Lavender, and Green Tea extract does wonders for inflammation-prone skin, and Cucumber And Pear extract nourishes skin against dryness and flaking.

 

Bliss is 100% cruelty-free and PETA-certified. Currently, 90% of Bliss products are vegan, and they’re steadily working towards becoming a completely vegan skincare brand in 2021.

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Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream

Best Premium
Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • 3-O-C (Ethyl Ascorbic Acid) and GABA (Gamma-aminobutyric acid)
  • Niacinamide for skin brightening
  • Vitamin E, Ceramides, and Collagen for firm skin
  • Formulated without artificial ingredients
  • Best for all skin types

The Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream contains a potent mix of ingredients that hydrates, firms, and brightens the under-eye skin. This eye cream is also formulated using dermatologic knowledge and technology, making this our top pick for Best Premium vegan eye cream.

The eye cream is enriched with 3-O-C, a more stabilized form of vitamin C. This means that the vitamin C is less susceptible to breaking down with light and air exposure, allowing it to permeate the skin deeply. Together with Niacinamide, both ingredients improve skin texture and tone, giving the skin around the eyes a more vibrant glow.

GABA, an amino acid, addresses fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen and hyaluronic acid production. And the combined benefits of Vitamin E, Ceramides, and Collagen hydrates and strengthens the skin barrier, preventing moisture loss.

 

The Dr. Dennis Gross C + Collagen Brighten & Firm Eye Cream is a product of a dermatologist-founded brand. They are cruelty-free and vegan, and also a member of PETA’s Caring Consumer Project.

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Bulldog Age Defence Eye Roll-On

Best for Men
Bulldog Age Defence Eye Roll-On (From:Amazon).

Bulldog Age Defence Eye Roll-On (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • Vitamin E for moisturization and photodamage
  • Rosemary leaf extract for anti-inflammation
  • Echinacea to smooth wrinkles
  • Formulated without artificial ingredients
  • Best for mature skin

The Bulldog Age Defence Eye Roll-on is a no-fuss, no-muss eye cream that comes in a handy roll-on tube and addresses three aging issues in men. It was a winner in the 2014 Men’s Health Grooming Awards and is our top choice for Best for Men vegan eye cream.

The eye cream contains Vitamin E, which effectively safeguards the fragile eye area from free radical damage due to sun exposure. It also has moisturizing properties that help improve skin texture and under-eye darkness.

The Bulldog Age Defence Eye Roll-on contains Rosemary extract, a powerful antioxidant with antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that help address under-eye puffiness. It also consists of phenol-rich Echinacea, which targets fine lines and wrinkles, leaving the eyes looking more youthful and rested.

 

The Bulldog brand is vegan and certified by Cruelty Free International. They keep plastic microbeads and artificial colors and fragrances out of their products and opt for sustainable packaging derived from sugarcane and bamboo.

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Alchimie Forever Rejuvenating Eye Balm

Best Lightweight Formulation
Alchimie Forever Rejuvenating Eye Balm (From:Amazon).

Alchimie Forever Rejuvenating Eye Balm (From:Amazon).

Key features:

  • Grape Seed extract for prevention of premature wrinkles
  • Bilberry extract and Alfalfa (Vitamin K) for brightening dark circles
  • Jojoba and Cocoa Butter for moisturization
  • Vitamin E for protection against free radical damage
  • Formulated without artificial ingredients
  • Best for dry or sensitive skin

The Alchimie Forever Rejuvenating Eye Balm is a 2-in-1 product that targets wrinkles and dark circles. The balm itself is non-greasy and lightweight, making it perfect for sensitive skin. It’s also ideal for use under makeup, making this our top pick for Best Lightweight Formula.

This eye balm contains Grape Seed extract, a powerhouse antioxidant that’s 20 times more potent than vitamin C. It has wound healing and photoprotective properties that improve skin density and reduce fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes. Dark under-eye circles are also diminished with the help of flavonoid-rich Bilberry extract and Alfalfa.

Jojoba and Cocoa Butter provide rich moisture for dry and dehydrated skin, minimizing crepiness that worsens even the smallest wrinkles.

 

Alchimie Forever is a dermatologist-founded skincare brand. They are vegan, cruelty-free, sulfate-free, gluten-free, soy-free, GMO-free, dye-free, and nano-free. In addition to being certified by both PETA and Cruelty Free International, they also follow REACH guidelines.

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