I have never been a proponent of a separate eye care routine. To me, that has always seemed unnecessary for anyone who has a solid skincare routine already established. While I will 100 percent maintain that I don’t think you need a dedicated eye cream, I’ll admit that I have been experimenting with some eye-specific skincare recently.
I don’t have eye wrinkles yet, but I do have visible veins on my eyelids and undereyes. Since I’ve kicked my anti-aging routine up a few notches, I decided that I wanted to try The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG Eye Serum to see if it made a visible difference.
Did it? Let’s discuss!
The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG Eye Serum Review
On the Deciem website, they claim that this serum “reduces the appearance of eye contour pigmentation and puffiness.” Regular use of this serum is supposed to smooth, tighten, and brighten your undereye area.
Who can benefit from this serum
Anybody who has dark circles or chronic puffiness around the eyes could benefit from trying this serum!
Who should skip this serum
As always, if you’re sensitive to any of the ingredients listed below, skip this product. If you have sensitive eyes, be sure to patch test and proceed with caution.
Finally, if your dark circles are genetic (e.g., you have deep eye sockets, or your dark circles don’t respond to any other topical treatments), you likely won’t see improvement with this serum. The same goes for eye puffiness. If your puffiness is unresponsive to things like cooling packs and other topicals, it may just be natural fat deposits under your eyes.
The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG Eye Serum Ingredients
Here’s the full list of ingredients:
Water, Caffeine, Maltodextrin, Glycerin, Propanediol, Epigallocatechin Gallatyl Glucoside, Gallyl Glucoside, Hyaluronic Acid, Oxidized Glutathione, Melanin, Glycine Soja (Soybean) Seed Extract, Urea, Pentylene Glycol, Hydroxyethylcellulose, Polyacrylate Crosspolymer-6, Xanthan Gum, Lactic Acid, Dehydroacetic Acid, Trisodium Ethylenediamine Disuccinate, Propyl Gallate, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Benzyl Alcohol, 1,2-Hexanediol, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Caprylyl Glycol
You can check the full CosDNA analysis here.
As the name suggests, the two heavy hitters in this serum are the 5 percent caffeine and the EGCG.
Topical caffeine can help tighten the skin and diminish the appearance of the blood vessels under the eyes, which can contribute to dark circles. It can penetrate the skin enough to reduce any puffiness in the area as well.
EGCG stands for “epigallocatechin gallatyl glucoside,” which is a compound derived from green tea leaves. It’s great for helping the skin retain moisture, and studies have shown that it also has excellent antioxidant capabilities. In some cases, it can also help with hyperpigmentation.
It also contains a whole host of plant extracts to support soft, hydrated skin.
Potential Red Flags
This serum contains urea and lactic acid, both of which could potentially cause irritation or sensitivity for some people. CosDNA has also flagged benzyl alcohol as a possible irritant.
Overall, if you’re unsure, just go slow and patch test! The skin around your eyes is thinner and typically more sensitive than the rest of your face.
How The Ordinary Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG Eye Serum Performs
Before testing this serum, I always felt like topical caffeine was mostly a gimmick. I believed that it might have some slight effect on tightening the skin temporarily, but that was about it.
As it turns out, I was right about the tightening effect but wrong about the rest of it being gimmicky! I was very surprised the first time I applied this serum around my eyes. The tightening effect was noticeable and immediate. I was shook. (Yes, of course, it was temporary, but still!)
I’ve been using this serum morning and night for about two months, and I can say that there has been an improvement in my undereye situation. I didn’t have any deep wrinkles or bruise-like dark circles, but I was starting to notice fine threads of wrinkles and blood vessels that I hadn’t been able to see previously. They haven’t gone completely yet (fingers crossed), but I can tell that my undereye skin is much healthier and a bit brighter thanks to this serum.
The serum itself is surprisingly viscous. You only need the tiniest amount for both eyes, so this small bottle is going to last for the rest of my life at this rate. It has no detectable scent (thank goodness), and it spreads easily with no tugging. My only minor complaint is that it can be a little sticky after application, so you need to give it a few minutes to dry down if you’re using it in the morning.
Out of curiosity, I’ve also been applying this product to the random furrow wrinkle that I’ve developed between my brows. I wondered if it might tighten or smooth it out any. So far, there hasn’t been any permanent improvement, but it does always feel a little tighter and less severe when I put this serum on it. I’ll take it!
The Ordinary is a brand that can be very hit-or-miss for me, so I always go into my testing with some apprehension. In this case, the 5% Caffeine + ECGC serum is a winner for me. I like the instant gratification of being able to feel the tightening of my undereye skin, and I can see enough noticeable improvement in how my eye skin looks and feels that I want to keep using it.
I like the instant gratification of being able to feel the tightening of my undereye skin, and I can see enough noticeable improvement that I want to keep using it.
When you consider the crazy low price point and the fact that I’ve barely made a dent in this bottle after two months, I wholeheartedly recommend adding this product to your routine if you’re curious about it.
I know I’m late to the “caffeine in skincare” game, so if you’ve had good experiences with it, tell me what to try next in the comments!