Lightful C Vibrancy Eye Cream

0.50 fl. oz. for $ 35.00
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Brand Overview

M.A.C. Cosmetics Lightful C Vibrancy Eye Cream is a very good formula thanks to its blend of cell-communicating ingredients, antioxidants and anti-irritants. It's fragrance free, which is best for skin anywhere on the face, especially the extra sensitive eye area. If you've found your facial moisturizer isn't the right fit for the skin around the eyes, Lightful C Vibrancy Eye Cream is an exceptional alternative with qualities that put it above the average eye cream on the market.

We were pleased to see M.A.C. eschewed jar packaging, choosing a plastic, pump-style container to protect this products light and air sensitive ingredients from exposure or contamination by fingers or spatulas.

Better yet, the pump allows for precise dispensing of product, which is a nice touch, as smaller pump-style bottles aren't always the best behaved. (Who among us hasn't had the "oh darn" moment after squirting too much product out of a pump?)

Lightful C Vibrancy Eye Cream has a sheer, non-greasy finish that is ideal for those who are interested in a lightweight lotion rather than a richer texture moisturizer. However, if you have very dry skin around the eye area, you likely won't find relief here. The "vibrancy" part of the name may refer to the slightly luminescent finish. This effect is quite subtle, however, and isn't visible once you've applied makeup over it.

Taking a closer look at the ingredients, this lightweight cream contains quite a blend of beneficial antioxidants, cell-communicating ingredients and anti-irritants. Caffeine, sodium hyaluronate, ginko biloba, sodium PCA and several peptides are the most notable, along with a relatively unproven form of vitamin C (aminopropyl ascorbyl phosphate). We have to observe the irony that such a new, largely unstudied form of vitamin C would be chosen for a product calling out that very ingredient—you would think M.A.C. would have opted for magnesium ascorbyl phosphate or ascorbic acid—but fortunately, there is more than enough to like about this formula otherwise.

M.A.C. Cosmetics Lightful C Vibrancy Eye Cream has several good qualities, not the least of which is that it leaves out the negatives (jar packaging, fragrance, bland formulas) that are so common in other eye-area treatments. We should note that you may not need a special eye-area treatment, yadda, yadda, yadda, but we'll also note that beauty routines aren't always about necessity—see More Info for additional details. (After all, lipstick isn't necessary but you won't find us saying you don't need that anytime soon.) Sometimes, you just want something to pamper your eye area, and if that's you, then we'll happily say this earns our highest recommendation and is certainly worth considering.

Note: Smashbox Cosmetics' Photo Finish Hydrating Undereye Primer is literally the same product, with the M.A.C. Cosmetics version being about $15 less per ounce. Estee Lauder currently owns both companies, so it isn't surprising that the same formulas are replicated across the various brands they own.

  • Fragrance free.
  • Contains an excellent blend of reparative and anti-irritant ingredients.
  • Includes a potent array of antioxidants and cell-communicating ingredients.
  • Packaged to keep its ingredients from exposure to air, light and objects (fingers, spatulas, etc.)
  • None.
More Info:

Why You May Not Need an Eye Cream: There is much you can do to improve signs of aging around your eyes, but this doesn't have to include using an eye-area product. Any product loaded with antioxidants, emollients, skin-repairing and anti-inflammatory ingredients will work wonders when used around the eye area. Those ingredients don't have to come from a product labeled as an eye cream or gel or serum or balm—they can come from any well-formulated moisturizer or serum.

Most eye-area products aren't necessary because so many 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 a special eye-area treatment doesn't mean it's good for the eye area or any part of the face; in fact, many can actually make matters worse.

You would be shocked how many eye-area products lack even the most basic ingredients to help skin. For example, most eye-area products don't contain sunscreen. During the day, that is a serious problem if you aren't wearing it under a broad-spectrum sunscreen rated SPF 30+ as it leaves the skin around your eyes vulnerable to sun damage—and that absolutely will make dark circles, puffiness, and wrinkles worse. Of course, for nighttime use, eye-area products without sun protection are just fine.

Whatever product you put around your eye area, regardless of what it is labeled, must be well formulated and appropriate for the skin type you have around your eyes. You may prefer using a specially labelled eye cream, but you may also do just as well applying your regular facial moisturizer and/or serum around your eyes.

Jar Packaging: No
Tested on animals: Yes

A quick fix eye cream that reduces puffiness and under-eye shadows while imparting a bright natural radiance to the entire eye area. A potent addition of vitamin C gives skin its brightened effects. Perfectly primes the eye for makeup. Use regularly and see those instant benefits become more permanent. Newly packaged in a silver holographic pattern.

WaterAquaEAU, Butylene Glycol, Polyethylene, Polyperfluoromethylisopropyl Ether, Caprylic/Capric/Myristic/Stearic Triglyceride, Methyl Gluceth-20, Glycereth-26, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Cetyl Esters, Ethylhexyl Hydroxystearate, Dimethicone, Caffeine, Lecithin, Sodium Hyaluronate, Hypnea Musiciformis (Algae) Extract, Gellidiela Acerosa (Algae) Extract, Yeast Extract/Faex/Extrait De Luvure, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria), Ginko Biloba Lead Extract, Polybutene, Glycerin, Sodium PCA, Phytosphingosine, Aminopropyl Ascorbyl Phosphate, Trehalose, Dipeptide-2, Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Acetyl Hexapeptide-8, Palmitoyl Oligopeptide, Caprylyl Glycol, Hexylene Glycol, Sucrose, Silica, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Urea, Polymethyl Methacrylate, Glyceryl Polymethacrylate, Simethicone, PEG-8, Polyquaternium-51, Steareth-20, Sodium Hydroxide, Sucrose Stearate, Carbomer, Hesperidin Methyl Chalcone, Ascorbyl Tocopheryl Maleate, Phenoxyethanol, Mica, Titanium Dioxide (CI 77891), Iron Oxides (CI 77499).

M.A.C. Cosmetics At-A-Glance

What more can one say for this long-standing makeup line whose products have spoken eloquently for themselves for years? In many ways, M.A.C. Cosmetics is a pivotal line not only for makeup artists but also for any in-the-know cosmetics consumer. Although M.A.C. has several singularly outstanding products, they generally excel by virtue of the range of choices offered. The color selection for everything from lipsticks to foundations is exceptional. Most of the makeup brushes are beautiful, full, and soft, as well as properly sized to fit the contours of the face and eyes.

When it comes to skincare you may be tempted to dismiss the small assortment M.A.C. offers and skip right to their makeup with its well-earned positive reputation. But doing so would mean missing a handful of beautifully formulated products that are worth trying. By no means is M.A.C.'s skin-care line one-stop shopping (at least not if you have blemishes, skin discolorations, or require more than a couple options per category), but you'll find more than just the color products impressive here, and the prices aren't unreasonable either!

M.A.C.'s salespeople are often trained makeup artists, too. This is especially true in the freestanding M.A.C. boutiques, where the staff tends to be true makeup artists.

Note: M.A.C. sets itself apart from other beauty brands by staying ahead of the curve by launching a seemingly-constant rotation of impressive limited edition products, usually with fashion-forward themes. Though it's impossible to review every limited edition product, many of M.A.C.'s are as impressive as those in their permanent collection.

Strengths: Some impressive moisturizers; praiseworthy foundations in a mostly gorgeous range of shades; good concealers; several great powder-based products including blush, bronzer, and eyeshadow in various finishes; dizzying array of lipstick shades in mostly sumptuous formulas; several very good mascaras (regular and waterproof); top-notch makeup brushes; many of the Prep + Prime products work as claimed.

Weaknesses:A few products with high levels of potential skin irritants.

For more information about M.A.C. Cosmetics call (800) 588-0070 or visit www.maccosmetics.com.

About the Experts

The Beautypedia team consists of skin care and makeup experts personally trained by the original Cosmetics Cop and best-selling beauty author, Paula Begoun. We’re fascinated by skin care and makeup products and thrilled when they meet or exceed our expectations, but we’re also disappointed when they fail to perform as claimed, are wildly overpriced, or contain ingredients scientific research has proven can hurt skin.

Our mission has always been to help you find the best products for your skin, no matter your budget or preferences. Beautypedia’s thorough and insightful reviews cut through the hype and provide reliable recommendations for all ages, skin types, and skin tones.

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