By Gritty Pretty

Spoiler alert: Eye creams are a good idea as early as your 20s.

This is the sage advice of skincare specialist and and founder of Double Bay Skin Clinic, Melanie Grant.

“My philosophy on skincare is that prevention is always best,” reveals Grant. “The skin around the eye is very delicate and prone to ageing, so eye cream use can be beneficial from as young as 20 years old. For the sake of adding an extra 30 seconds to your regime, it’s well worth it”.

Fact: there are little to no oil glands in the eye area so it’s one of the first places you’ll see lines – all the more reason to treat that area with something luxurious and highly moisturising. Beauty is as much about enhancing as it is preventing, and eye creams a major part of that, operating to stop crow’s feet, dark under-eye circles and sagging in their wrinkly tracks.

And since they’re the most darn expensive – and smallest – pots at the beauty counter (because of their effectiveness and potency), it’s important to know what you’re investing in and buy the right (read: “best”, “most effective”, “ultimate”) one.

Here, you’ll find a list of exactly what you should be looking for:

HYALURONIC ACID for plumping, hydration and locking in moisture.

RETINOL to stimulate cell turnover and collagen around the skin; it gently exfoliates the delicate skin around the eye and helps to thicken the skin that way.

PEPTIDES which also stimulate collagen if you’re sensitive to retinol.

VITAMIN C to maintain elasticity and prevent further free-radical damage.

VITAMIN E to moisturise as well as soothe dry, irritated skin and protect from free radicals.

If you’re more into natural ingredients, look for…

RESHAPE OIL & ALOE VERA for nourishment and hydration

BLUEBERRY EXTRACT & COENZYME Q10 antioxidants for fighting free-radicals

ARNICA & CAFFEINE for de-puffing

VITAMIN K & WILLOWBARK for brightening

Grant also recommends steering clear of synthetic fragrance and fragrant plant oils as these can irritate the delicate eye area and be downright painful in your eyes. All good eye products will be fragrant-free; this is what separates them your everyday moisturiser – eye creams have much gentler formulations making them suitable for use on such sensitive and think skin.