The 8 Best Under-Eye Masks That Will Brighten, De-Puff, and Zap Wrinkles

From holographic foil masks to cooling gel patches, bid puffy, dark under-eye circles farewell!

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If you're prone to dark circles, puffiness, or fine lines around your eyes, join the club. While you might credit these zombie-like side effects to lack of sleep, the problem could actually be hereditary, age-related, or caused by sun exposure. Not to mention, the skin around your peepers is especially thin, which allows blood vessels and veins to show through, producing bluish or dark circles, Jeremy Brauer, M.D., a clinical associate professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, previously told Shape.

Because the thin skin around your eyes is subject to more irritation, you absolutely want to make sure that any products you're using are designed specifically for the delicate area around your eyes. Great news: Gel eye masks and under-eye patches are actually a great way to target under-eye stress, says Morgan Rabach, M.D., co-founder of LM Medical in New York City and assistant professor of dermatology at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. (Psst, if you're not exactly sure how to apply eye creams, check out this guide by dermatologists.)

The skin around your eyes is different than any other skin on your face; it's thinner and has fewer oil glands, making it drier, explains Dr. Rabach. "Eye patches and masks will specifically be formulated for under-eye skin and can help plump, rehydrate and help dark circles under the eye." This is thanks to potent ingredients, including hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and retinol. Dr. Rabach notes that caffeine can also help reduce the appearance of dark circles and growth factors can help stimulate collagen.

Using under-eye masks once at least once a week can be moisturizing for dry skin and dark circles, and have anti-aging benefits to boot — meaning they can help slow the process of aging skin under the eye, points out Dr. Rabach. Ahead, scope out the best eye masks, according to customer reviews.

Peter Thomas Roth Hydra-Gel Eye Patches

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In addition to hyaluronic acid — a mega moisturizer —and plumping hydrolyzed collagen, these gold gel eye patches boast caffeine, which helps reduce the appearance of puffiness, and lavender to help calm and soothe the skin. These under-eye masks have earned an impressive 4.5 rating on Amazon, with one reviewer calling them a "miracle" for puffy eyes and dark circles.

"These are the bomb!! I had these for a year and didn't really try them in earnest. Left them on for 2-3 hours yesterday, and the wrinkled hollowed out circles under my eyes were gone! (I'm 55 so these wrinkles are not a temporary situation). I'm leery of product claims in beauty items but these suckers are worth their weight in gold! (See what I did there?)," said another.

Buy It: Peter Thomas Roth Hydra-Gel Eye Patches, $57, $75, amazon.com

Bliss Eye Got This Holographic Foil Eye Masks

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These foil eye masks aren't only cute and Instagrammable with their holographic star print, but they also contain potent ingredients to add moisture and offer a smoothing effect on skin. The cooling formula makes them especially refreshing in the morning when you're just waking up.

One reviewer wrote: "Not only are these under-eye masks adorable, but they're effective too! I use them in the morning on the weekends when I can take my time and enjoy a cup of coffee at home. They really do brighten the skin under the eye and take out some inflammation that naturally occurs when we sleep at night with our face smushed against a pillow."

Buy It: Bliss Eye Got This Holographic Foil Eye Masks, $20 for 5-pack, amazon.com

SkinMedica Instant Bright Eye Patch

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Dr. Rabach's favorite under-eye patch, these cooling gels feature baker's yeast extract and are packed with antioxidants from golden root extract to support skin moisture and help de-puff eyes. Apply the gel side down to the under-eye area, pressing firmly and smoothing out the edges. Leave them on for 15-20 minutes, gently peel off, and forgo rinsing. (

"Gentle, non-fragrant, easy to use, refreshing, relaxing and calming," noted a customer. "Definitely brightens the eye area. I shall keep these on hand for future use."

Buy It: SkinMedica Instant Bright Eye Patch, $48 for 6-pack, amazon.com

Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask

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Made with retinol and a technology from Shiseido called "Wrinkleresist24" (a combination of plant and algae extracts), these eye masks hydrate, brighten, smooth, and support cell turnover to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles around your eyes.

"These things are insane... I 100% noticed a huge difference on the first use. My under eyes looked more plump, youthful and my small fine lines were gone. Amazing and I will definitely be repurchasing!" raved a shopper.

Buy It: Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask, from $18 for 3- pack, sephora.com

Joanna Vargas Bright Eye Hydrating Mask

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AMAZON

Created by celebrity esthetician Joanna Vargas, this under-eye mask might be a splurge, but Vargas' products are loved by A-listers, models, influencers, and editors — so you know you'll be in good company. This mask targets under eyes, including crow's feet and even your eyebrow area, thanks to peptides and matrixyl, which mimics human collagen and stimulates collagen production to plump and minimize wrinkles.

One reviewer wrote: "I love to use this mask in the morning, especially after long nights. I can immediately see the area around my eyes brighten and it helps me look refreshed and awake, even though I don't feel it. It reduces puffiness and hydrates my under-eye area which allows my concealer to set very naturally. There's also a generous amount of serum in each package which I love to use all over my face and neck. I definitely recommend for a quick and lasting pick-me-up!"

Buy It: Joanna Vargas Bright Eye Hydrating Mask, $60 for 5-pack, amazon.com

Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks

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On top of de-puffing calendula and camu camu extract to brighten dark circles, these pretty gold eye gels also have hydrating hyaluronic acid and glycerin, so your under eyes are moisturized and smooth. Also nice: They're free of mineral oil, sulfates, paraben, and gluten, making them safe for even the most sensitive sin. (

"They perked my eyes right up and felt incredibly soothing," shared a customer. "I think keeping them in the fridge and then applying them would add to their refreshing nature. They are easy to remove from their packaging and come with plenty of extra serum that I rubbed into my neck and chest."

Buy It: Wander Beauty Baggage Claim Gold Eye Masks, $25 for 6-pack, amazon.com

Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Eye Mask

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Reviewers on Sephora say these under-eye masks work to combat fine lines, wrinkles, dryness, and redness in as little as 10 minutes — for real. Made with coffee seed extract to make your eyes look more awake and to smooth wrinkles, as well as squalane to help repair your skin's moisture barrier, you'll want to add these to your weekly skin-care rotation ASAP.

"This product works for me and my husband. He has puffy eyes and fine lines. I have fine lines that sometimes are more apparent (lack of sleep, water, etc.). This eye mask patch set really does the trick for me. They rehydrate and re-plump my under-eye area," said a shopper.

Buy It: Estée Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Eye Mask, $42 for 4-pack, sephora.com

Peace Out Puffy Under-Eye Patches

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Get ready for a powerhouse trio of ingredients. Together, caffeine, niacinamide, and hyaluronic acid minimize puffiness, brighten dark circles, and hydrate your delicate under-eye skin in just 15 minutes, according to the brand. (

One fan wrote: "As someone with genetically dark under eyes, I'm always looking for new eye products to try. These patches are one of the only brands I've tried that actually work for my skin. Not only do they leave my skin feeling refreshed, but I've noticed my under eyes slowly getting brighter as well."

Buy It: Peace Out Puffy Under Eye Patches, $25 for 6-pack, sephora.com

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