I’m always skeptical of anything that claims it can get rid of the dark, sleepy circles beneath my eyes. It really is an awfully bold statement to suggest that a single product could do away with the telltale signs of exhaustion I’ve been cultivating for the past twenty-something years.
That said, you can probably see why I haven’t been in the business of putting these products to the test. I didn’t want to set myself up for disappointment or disillusionment, and anyway, I’m not particularly concerned with my totally fine, if tired, undereye area. I am a human being living a life. So what if my face shows light signs of wear? Not to mention the fact that when I look more beat than what I consider acceptable, I turn to plenty of makeup, not “cooling eye gels.”
But then I tried cooling eye gels. Bored at home on a Saturday afternoon and insufficiently socialized because my boyfriend wouldn’t stop playing chess on his phone, I dug out Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels ($30) from the depths of my beauty closet aka the plastic bin on the floor of my actual closet. I pressed them on my undereye area as instructed (as well as the undereye area of said boyfriend, who was vulnerable to all kinds of beauty torture in his prone state).
I spent about ten minutes eating cheese and crackers before peeling off the patches. They clung to my skin so well going on (no slipping, no sliding) that I was afraid the removal process would actually be painful, but my fears were invalid: They came off effortlessly and left behind the same refreshing feeling that I felt while they were on my face. Thanks to the circulation-improving ginkgo biloba extract, I felt marginally more awake, as if just experiencing the cool sensation on my skin were enough to jolt me from my lazy afternoon fog. Very nice!
A look in the mirror confirmed that my undereyes seemed brighter and clearer, and the purplish darkness I’m prone to had, indeed, been diminished by the gels. The area seemed in line with the rest of my face as opposed to puffy and swollen, and my premature crow’s feet had been rendered barely visible. I liked what I saw, and thanks to the “cooling eye gels” I formerly had no faith in, for one whole day I enjoyed the luxury of looking perfectly awake rather than perpetually half-asleep. The bad news is that now I’m totally hooked.