Expert advice on caring for the skin under your eyes

The skin under your eyes is fragile and requires additional care. Supplied image.

The skin under your eyes is fragile and requires additional care. Supplied image.

Published Feb 16, 2024


The area under your eyes is usually where the tell-tale signs of ageing shows.

Dermatologists believe that this is because the skin around your eyes is far more delicate and thin, making them susceptible to wrinkles, fine lines and dark circles.

But skin expert Natasha Davel from skincare brand Fundamentals Skincare believes that gaining a better understanding of how to treat and care for your eye area is one of the best ways to slow down premature ageing

“The skin thins as we age, due to a loss of dermal collagen, and the already thin areas of skin, in particular, are usually the first areas to become apparent,” she said.

Davel added that most people start to have less collagen and elastic fibres in their skin as it ages, and that this very thin skin shows the signs of ageing quicker than other parts of the face.

“That thin skin is also why the area is more sensitive to sun damage, pollution, and oxidative stress, all of which can contribute to sagging skin and wrinkles.”

“Keep your eyes from ageing before their time by committing to layering on a wrinkle-specific eye cream, using a gentle yet effective eye mask to reduce puffiness and dark circles, and of course, upping your sun protection game,” concluded Davel.

The skin under your eyes is fragile and requires additional care. Supplied image.

Vital information on eye care

For optimal eye skin conditions, Davel recommended using a morning and night eye cream, coupled with a rejuvenating eye mask twice a week or when needed.

“You want to layer on the eye cream which will help target eye wrinkles, including crow’s feet, while also introducing ingredients that increase elasticity and firmness, as well as antioxidants that can nourish and protect the area.”

She added that because the skin around the eye area is sensitive, thin and delicate, it is essential for eye creams to be gentle and safe.

“For this reason, it’s not always a good idea to just use a standard anti-ageing cream around the eyes as it may be too potent or potentially irritating for the skin,” added Davel.

She suggested instead opt for an eye cream that is specifically designed for wrinkles in the area.

“This will help ensure the active ingredients in the formula are at appropriate concentrations for the skin.”

An ingredient list for youthful eyes


Davel said that a firming yet gentle ingredient is peptides, which can support the body's natural production of collagen.

"Many peptides have been developed specifically to be used around the eyes.”

She said that peptides are small amino acid chains that are pivotal in skincare for their role in stimulating collagen synthesis and addressing the breakdown of collagen associated with ageing.

“Serving as messengers, peptides encourage the skin to rebuild its collagen matrix, combating fine lines and sagging,” she said.

And with various types offering specific benefits like moisturising and antioxidant effects, peptides like tetrapeptide-11, and acetyl tetrapeptide-9 are popular for enhancing collagen production and reducing wrinkles.


This skincare ingredient, known as the “baby-sister” of retinoids, has a range of anti-ageing benefits for the skin.

One of the reasons that it is so popular in the skincare community is that it does not contain the photo-sensitivity and irritation profile which is typically associated with retinoids.

“It can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, help restore firmness, refine skin texture and even out skin tone,” said Davel.

She added that bakuchiol helps to calm skin, which makes it a good option for those whose skin shows signs of sensitivity.


Niacinamide is also commonly included in skincare formulas for its skin-brightening, collagen synthesising and hydrating properties.

Davel explained that when it is used as part of a skincare routine, the skincare ingredient can help make the skin appear smoother, softer, and more radiant.

The skincare expert also suggested using a powerful and deep penetrating eye mask that has ingredients like ascorbic acid, hydrolysed collagen and glycerin.

“These ingredients combined together make the perfect formulation for brighter, younger looking eyes or even used separately can make a huge impact in your skincare routine.”