While Kiehl's Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Eye Cream does contain ingredients that are beneficial for normal to dry skin, it is still a basic formula composed mostly of thickeners, standard emollients, water-binding agents, and more thickeners. The waxes, fatty acids, and silicone that make up this product can be found in many drugstore moisturizers. There isn't anything wrong with these ingredients, but they aren't powerful in any way and certainly aren't worth the price.
On a separate note, a product labeled an eye cream may not actually be necessary for you—see More Info for details you should consider before shopping for one.
If you do want to spend the money on a separate eye-area moisturizer or treatment to fight wrinkles, you deserve one that packs in as many beneficial ingredients as possible. What it should contain are proven antioxidants and cell-communicating extracts, rich emollients (if you have dry skin around the eye area), sunscreen, if you plan to apply the eye cream during the daytime, and it must be packaged to help keep the light- and air-sensitive ingredients stable.
This eye cream does contain some beneficial ingredients, including a tiny amount of hyaluronic acid, caffeine, and other antioxidants. As for the two ingredients that are called out by Kiehl's—calcium PCA and copper PCA—they have no published research (that we could find) demonstrating their benefit for skin. Even if these were brilliant ingredients for the skin, Kiehl's includes such tiny amounts that they're seemingly more for show than effect.
While this product promises powerful results, the jar packaging weakens the formula. This is frustrating, as it seems evident that Kiehl's knows the importance of protecting these ingredients from light and air exposure given that they use tube and pump bottles for other formulas in their line. See More Info for additional details on the problems with jar packaging.
One last note: This eye cream is practically identical to the Kiehl's Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Cream for the face, save for the price—Kiehl's charges you almost three times as much for the Powerful Wrinkle Reducing Eye Cream as they do for the version packaged for the face. Do we really need to go on? Rather than consider this average, over-hyped formula, take a look at any of the better-formulated options in the Best Eye Moisturizers section of Beautypedia.
Why You May Not Need an Eye Cream: Most eye creams aren't necessary. That's either because they are poorly formulated, contain nothing special for the eye area, or come in packaging that won't keep key ingredients stable. Just because the product is labeled as an eye cream doesn't mean it's good for your eye area; in fact, many can actually make matters worse.
There is much you can do to improve signs of aging around your eyes. Any product loaded with antioxidants, skin-repairing ingredients, skin-lightening ingredients, anti-inflammatory ingredients, and effective emollients will work wonders and those ingredients don't have to come from a product labeled as an eye cream.
You would be shocked how many eye creams lack even the most basic ingredients to help skin. For example, most eye creams don't contain sunscreen. During the day that is a serious problem because it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage and this absolutely will make dark circles, puffiness, and wrinkles worse!
Whatever product you put around your eye area, regardless of what it is labeled, must be well formulated and appropriate for the skin type around your eyes! That may mean you need an eye cream, but you may also do just as well applying your regular facial moisturizer around your eyes.
Jar Packaging: The fact that this cream is packaged in a jar means the beneficial ingredients won't remain stable once it is opened. All plant extracts, vitamins, antioxidants, and other state-of-the-art ingredients break down in the presence of air, so once a jar is opened and lets the air in, these important ingredients begin to deteriorate.
Jars also are unsanitary because you're dipping your fingers into them with each use, adding bacteria, which further deteriorate the beneficial ingredients (Sources: Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2007, pages 818–829; Ageing Research Reviews, December 2007, pages 271–288; Dermatologic Therapy, September-October 2007, pages 314–321; International Journal of Pharmaceutics, June 12, 2005, pages 197–203; Pharmaceutical Development and Technology, January 2002, pages 1–32; International Society for Horticultural Science, www.actahort.org/members/showpdf?booknrarnr=778_5; Beautypackaging.com, and www.beautypackaging.com/articles/2007/03/airless-packaging.php).
Contains a combination of micronutrients, Copper PCA and Calcium PCA. Significantly improves wrinkles, texture and elasticity; Formulated for the delicate under-eye area.
Aqua/Water, Glycerin, Cyclohexasiloxane, Propylene Glycol, Cetyl Alcohol, Stearyl Alcohol, Squalane, Stearic Acid, Palmitic Acid, PEG-100 Stearate, Cera Alba/Beeswax, Glyceryl Stearate, Nylon-12, Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate, PEG-20 Stearate, Phenoxyethanol, Butylene Glycol, Methyl Methacrylate Crosspolymer, Caprylyl Glycol, Panthenol, Tocopheryl Acetate, Clophenesin, Caffeine, Sodium Hyaluronate, Calcium PCA, Acrylates Copolymer, Adenosine, Sodium Hydroxide, Hydroxypalmitoyl Sphinganine, Copper PCA, Alteromonas Ferment Extract, Corallina Officinalis Extract.
Kiehl’s has been around for quite some time, with its origins in a New York City-based pharmacy established in 1851. The brand is perhaps best known for its apothecary-style packaging and its best-selling (and celebrity favorite) Lip Balm #1.
Though the brand claims its products are made with the finest naturally-derived ingredients, most of its formulations include synthetically-produced ingredients as well. Like most skincare companies the line contains both good and not-so-great offerings; Kiehl’s main misstep is that many of its products contain fragrance ingredients that could irritate skin, particularly sensitive skin.
Note: Kiehl's is categorized as a brand that tests on animals because its products are sold in China. Although Kiehl's does not conduct animal testing for its products sold elsewhere, the Chinese government requires imported cosmetics be tested on animals, so foreign companies retailing there must comply. This requirement is why some brands state that they don’t test on animals “unless required by law.” Animal rights organizations consider cosmetic companies retailed in China to be brands that test on animals, and so does the Beautypedia Research Team.
For more information about Kiehl's, call (800) 543-4572 or visit www.kiehls.com.
The Beautypedia and Paula’s Choice Research teams have one mission: To help you find the best products for your skin, whether they’re from Paula’s Choice or another brand. By combining efforts, we’re able to share scientific research and remain committed to the highest standards based on our decades of experience objectively reviewing thousands upon thousands of skincare and makeup formularies in all price ranges.
Beautypedia cuts through the hype to bring you product insights and recommendations you won’t find anywhere else!