Editor’s choice: 6 of the best eye creams for dark circles

Editor’s choice: 6 of the best eye creams for dark circles

Ask any skincare expert what beauty bugbear they’re asked about most often, and it’s safe to say that dark circles will come up top of the list. Whether as a result of sleepless nights, stress, diet, or simply genetics, battling under-eye circles seems to be something that most of us are faced with at some point in time.

What causes dark circles?

Dark circles can be attributed to one of two things: pigmentation or dilated veins. Pigmentation can be as a result of genetics (if your mom suffers from dark spots and pigmentation, it’s likely that you will too) or lifestyle factors, such as spending too much time in the sun. Dilated veins are typically as a result of various lifestyle factors: too little sleep, seasonal allergies, and a poor diet. Dark circles can also be down to the ageing process, your bone structure, and the fact that they skin underneath your eyes is incredibly thin.

Not sure whether your dark circles are caused by pigmentation or dilated veins?

The easiest way to determine whether your dark circles are as a result of pigmentation or dilated veins is to gently pinch the skin underneath your eye and lift it off the surface. If the skin stays brown, it’s likey pigmentation that’s causing your dark circles. If your skintone looks better when you do this, it’s likely that your issue is dilated veins. 

While it’s true that dilated veins are far easier to tackle than pigmentation, we’ve put several eye creams to the test over the past few months and we’ve rounded up some of our top picks to help you combat dark circles for good!

1. Mario Badescu Glycolic Eye Cream (R460)

If your dark circles are thanks so pigmentation, then this is the eye cream for you! It contains glycolic acid to exfoliate the surface layers of your skin, helping to reduce the appearance of pigmentation over time.( When using ingredients like glycolic acid around the delicate eye area, make sure that stick to product specifically formulated for use around the eyes).

2. Dermalogica Total Eye Care (R650)

Another great find for those who battle with pigmentation, this gentle, hydrating eye cream from Dermalogica boasts SPF15 to help protect the under-eye area from further damage. It also helps to reduce puffiness and conceals dark circles while treating them, for a wide-awake, bright-eyed appearance.

3. Guinot Anti-fatigue Fresh Eye Cream (R780)

This refreshing eye cream brightens and depuffs the under-eye area in an instant, with thanks to it’s cooling applicator tip. It’s fantastic for use after a long, sleepless night. Pop it into the fridge for an extra soothing sensation!

4. Placecol  Revitalising Eye Therapy (R225)

This nourishing formula simply melts into your skin (ideal for use before applying your concealer) and tightens and brightens the under-eye area in a flash. It’s high in antioxidants, so it’s great for reversing damage caused by free radicals. We also love the budget-friendly price point!

5. Optiphi Delta Eye Gel (R950)

New from Optiphi is their Delta Medical Skincare range, which is formulated for use by physicians, plastic surgeons, and dermatologists. The Optiphi Delta Eye Gel has been designed to reduce swelling and bruising, and works a treat on dark circles. It’s also great for use after dermal fillers and other skin therapies target at ageing. This is one of the fastest acting eye creams we’ve tried!

6. Colorescience Total Eye 3-in-1 Renewal Therapy SPF 35

And last – but certainly not least – is this fabulous find from Colorescience. This 3-in-1 formulation not only improves the appearance of dark circles, puffiness, fine lines, and wrinkles, but it also contains an SPF35 to help protect the delicate under-eye area from those harsh UV rays. Oh, wait – that’s not all (at the risk of sounding like a bad TV commercial). This beauty is also a really effective concealer, revealing a much brighter under-eye area in just one swipe and a little blending. (We also love to metal applicator tip – very soothing and refreshing!)


Do you battle with dark circles? Let us know if you’ve tried any of these eye creams and what your thoughts were. If you have any other recommendations we should know about, let us know – we’re always on the lookout for beauty products that truly deliver!




Banish breakouts this festive season

Banish breakouts this festive season

Reverse any party season skin damage with these top tips and must-have skincare products. 

Three weeks into December and we’ve already eaten our body weight in mince pies, spent far too much time in the sun, drank a few too many G & Ts… and it’s all starting to show, in the form of pesky pimples!

There’s not doubt that the festive season can wreak havoc on your skin, as late nights, heavy meals, and the hot, summer sun can result in oily skin, a nasty breakout, and even a few sun spots for good measure. 

We’ve been testing out a bunch of beauty products that promise to stop breakouts dead in their tracks… here are our favourites! 

 1. Dermalogica Blackhead Clearing Fizz Mask 

If you struggle with blackheads and congestion, you’ll absolutely love this unique mask. The active fizzing formula is designed to open your pores, decongest your skin, and target blackheads in just 3 – 5 minutes. It contains sulfur to keep your skin clear, while kaolin clay absorbs excess sebum  and purifies your skin. 

It activates upon contact with your skin and gently fizzes away, clearing out your pores for a brighter, more refined complexion. Use 2 – 3 times per week for best results. 

 2. SkinCeuticals Retexturing Activator

Battling with a dull, lacklustre complexion that feels bumpy to the touch? Add SkinCeuticals Retexturing Activator to your daily routine (apply it both morning and night after cleansing, but before applying your moisturiser). It contains Glycolic Acid, which is great for treating breakouts and exfoliating your skin – without causing any irritation. The result? Softer, smoother skin with fewer spots! It also contains  Hyaluronic Acid,  a natural humectant that helps the skin retain water – perfect during the hot, summer months! 

3. OptiPhi Classic Clarity Serum

This soothing spot treatment is fantastic for reducing the appearance of existing breakouts (and helping them to clear up faster), while preventing the onset of new breakouts. It helps to calm irritated and inflammed skin, while balancing sebum levels at the same time. Best applied to affected areas, but it’s also gentle enough to use all over you face. 

Don’t forget that your hormones and digestion are linked, so your skin is often a mirror of your gut. Try loading up on the following vitamins during the festive season to ensure that your skin is clear and glowing all summer long:

– Zinc: not only does this antioxidant help to fight free radicals (ie. helps prevent damage caused by UV rays and pollution), it also regulates oil production in the skin. Find it in seafood, lean meats, legumes, nuts (think cashew nuts and almond), seeds, eggs, and dairy. 

– Potassium: this helps to keep your cells hydrated, so your skin is moisturised from the inside (remember: lack of moisture causes your skin to produce excess sebum, resulting in breakouts. The key is to keep hydrated and ensure that your skin is moisturised at all times). Find it in bananas, oranges, potatoes, sweet potatoes, cooked broccoli, cooked spinach, mushrooms, and more. 

– Magnesium: this is an anti-inflammatory that will help to soothe irritated skin, while preventing inflammation and spot flare-ups. Find it in leafy green veggies, avocados bananas, raspberries, legumes (black beans, chickpeas, etc), seeds and nuts, broccoli, green beans, and seafood. 

Do you have any product suggestions that you swear by to keep breakouts at bay? We’d love to hear all about them – leave a comment and share your knowledge with other Beauty Warriors! 

BEAUTY NEWS | Legendary hairstylist Oribe Canales has passed away

BEAUTY NEWS | Legendary hairstylist Oribe Canales has passed away

On 17 December 2018, legendary hairstylist and brand creator, Oribe Canales, passed away at the age of 62. Members of the fashion and industry took to social media to pay homage to Canales. 

“ORIBE is one of the great ‘original’ hairdressers whose iconic status grew along side the supermodels of the 80’ and 90’,” wrote makeup artist and Canales’ long-time friend, Mary Greenwall, who was one of the first to break the news on social media. “He was a brilliant hairdresser and simply adored by all.” 

Oribe was a true trailblazer in the fashion world, having created hair styles backstage for some of the world’s top fashion designers during the ’80s and ’90s. This included Marc Jacobs’ famous grunge collection in the ’90s. 

Oribe also worked on a number of editorial shoots for some of the world’s top publications, including Allure and Vogue magazine, as well as working with celebrities like Jennifer Lopes, Cher, Kate Moss, Lady Gaga, and more. 

He founded his bespoke haircare collection, Oribe, in 2008. 

Feeling frazzled? Here’s your summer cure for a tired body

Feeling frazzled? Here’s your summer cure for a tired body

It’s that time of the year again. You know the one: the season when it seems that no amount of coffee or concealer can hide the fact that you’re feeling (and looking) completely shattered.

The late nights (whether spent at the office or the bar), tight deadlines, and hectic schedules are all starting to show – and it’s not a pretty picture. And just in time for the slew of office parties and your summer holiday… But is it really necessary to wait until your December break to start looking and feeling human again?

Dr. P Aesthetic Lifestyle Centre can help you address both looking and feeling tired through a combination of treatments. “It’s extremely important to look after yourself when your body is feeling stressed and overwhelmed,” explains Dr. Portia Gumede of the Dr. P Aesthetic Lifestyle Centre. “By relieving pressure internally and boosting the skin externally we can help you feel and look rejuvenated, so you can truly enjoy your holiday.”


Boost Your Skin

Volume loss is easily one of the biggest contributing factors to looking tired. Various factors like ageing, excessive weight loss, sun exposure and hormonal changes can contribute to volume loss in the face. When we lose volume, our skin starts to sag, fine lines appear and the area under the eyes becomes hollowed making us look tired. The cure-all for this used to be fillers and botulinum toxin injectables and these are still good options. Today, however, we are able to subtly address volume loss and rejuvenate the skin with Skinboosters™. The result is a fresher, brighter and more rested appearance. “Skinboosters™ are wonderful because the treatment works equally well on both male and female patients. The improvement is very natural and you’ll just look like you returned from a lengthy island holiday,” explains Dr. P.

Restalyne®’s Skinbooster™ is specifically formulated to work in the deeper layers of the skin. The micro-droplets of hyaluronic acid (HA), which are specially formulated for this treatment, are meticulously injected in specific areas to boost the skin. HA has an impressive water retention ability and through this, it’s able to plump up the skin, improve the appearance of sagging and address fine lines. The results are immediate and long-term, after a Skinbooster™ treatment patients look more rested, the skin appears hydrated, smoother, brighter and over time it will also become firmer and more rejuvenated.


Address fatigue internally

It’s one thing to look like you just returned from a holiday, but it’s quite another to feel as though you’ve just returned from one. Dr. P Aesthetic Lifestyle Centre aims to give their patients both of these results– because feeling rested will also naturally translate to your skin and only further boost results. When we’re stressed, sick or regularly over indulge, we place strain on our lymphatic system and it can become less responsive. The lymphatic system plays an integral part in keeping the body healthy by detoxing and removing harmful substances. When it’s not working as it should you will feel tired, struggle with headaches, water retention, increased weight gain, and cellulite will become more apparent. Lymphatic drainage is an effective and fantastic way to rejuvenate the lymphatic system and improve the health and wellbeing of a patient.

Dr. P Aesthetic Lifestyle Centre uses the BTL Lymphastim to encourage lymphatic drainage. The Lymphastim works on the principle of pneumatic pressotherapy and replicates the way a therapist would manually do lymphatic drainage. The mechanical massaging encourages the movement of lymphatic fluids and deeply stimulates the lymph nodes. Lymphatic drainage is a natural way to encourage detoxification in the body and boost the immune system. As the body gets rid of toxins patients may feel tired, but the long-term effects far outweigh the initial drowsiness. Ultimately patients feel rejuvenated and also find that problems such as indigestion, fluid retention, cellulite and poor circulation are improved.

Turns out you don’t need a holiday just quite yet – all you need is a date at Dr. P Lifestyle Aesthetic Centre! For more information or to book a treatment, call (010) 001 8557/8 or email info@drpaesthetics.com. You can also click here to visit their website.


About Dr. Portia Gumede

Dr. Portia Gumede obtained her medical degree from the University of KwaZulu-Natal in 2002. Her interest in dermatology and aesthetics led her to complete her aesthetic training at the renowned American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine. She recently attended the Oculo-Facial Aesthetic Academy in London to further her skills and training. In addition to starting her own aesthetic clinic, Dr. P as she is fondly referred to, serves as a national trainer for Galderma, a global leader in neuromodulators and dermal fillers.

What happens to your skin while you sleep?

What happens to your skin while you sleep?

During the day, your skin is hard at work actively fighting off harmful free radicals caused by environmental factors, such as sunlight, pollution, and even stress. But have you ever stopped to think about what happens to your skin while you sleep? 

Turns out that your skin shifts into repair mode at night, which helps to reverse any damage done during the day. This is why it’s so important that you remove all your makeup and follow a proper night-time beauty routine, as well as ensuring that you get adequate sleep. Here’s a closer look at exactly what goes down at a cellular level while you’re asleep:

Your skin’s cell turnover rate increases

Your skin’s cell turnover rate is roughly eight times faster at night than it is during the day. Any damage done to skin cells is also corrected at night, and your collagen production is boosted too! In a nutshell? The more sleep you get, the younger you’ll look!

TIP: A skincare product that contains ingredients that assist with cell turnover – such as retinol – will help reverse skin damage and prevent premature skin ageing. 

Your skin loses moisture at night

Trans-epidermal water loss (TEWL) refers to water that is lost through the epidermal layer and via evaporation. If you’ve ever noticed that your skin feels drier during the night or upon waking, this is likely due to trans-epidermal water loss. Help prevent TEWL by ensuring that you use a nourishing night cream that provides extra hydration while you sleep!

Melatonin production increases

According to Dermalogica, “Melatonin is a natural hormone and is believed to suppress ultraviolet (UV)-induced damage to skin cells and shows strong antioxidant activity in UV exposed cells. Hence, melatonin may counteract or buffer environmental stressors and could help to maintain skin integrity.”

Your skin is more receptive to active ingredients

Your skin is so busy fighting off damaging free radicals during the day, that it doesn’t have much energy left to repair said damage… until it gets dark, that is! At night, your skin shifts into repair mode and is able to absorb active ingredients better than during the day. Make the most of this receptivity by ensuring that your night-time skincare ingredients contain only the very best active ingredients available to you.

Our top pick

Dermalogica’s new Sound Sleep Cocoon (R1 295) was specially formulated to deliver active ingredients that hydrate, brighten and revitalise at night – when skin is best able to use them. This luxurious treatment gel-cream not only reduces the signs of skin fatigue while enhancing your skin’s vitality, but it also helps to promote a restful night’s sleep, with thanks to the encapsulated, motion-activated French Lavender essential oil with sandalwood and Patchouli. It also contains Tamarin Seed Extract to nourish, soften, and hydrate your skin, while Wu-Zhu-Yu Extract leaves your skin looking visibly radiant upon waking.

To use:

Simply smooth over face and neck as the last step of your night-time regimen, over your usual toner and targeted treatments. Allow gel-cream to melt into skin overnight. You can also layer Sound Sleep Cocoon over your preferred Dermalogica moisturiser to further enhance overnight hydration.

We’ve been putting this beauty to the test for the past two months, and we can safely say that it really works! We love that it’s also cruelty-free, vegan-friendly, and gluten-free!

Have you tried Dermalogica’s Sound Sleep Cocoon yet? Leave your review below… you never know! We may just send you a beauty treat to try as a thank you! 

Top tips to look fresh this summer!

Top tips to look fresh this summer!

Summer is setting in, which is evident with the late sun sets and rising temperatures. As exciting as this may be, maintaining the perfect Summer skin care regime may seem daunting.

As your skin starts to get more sun (which is great for all those selfies you will be taking), your skins molecular functioning will change drastically too. Evolve Day Spa shares some tips on how to take care of your skin by following the best skin regime for the hot, sunny months ahead.

Face care

During the hot, Summer months your skin may experience more oil than what it would in the cooler Winter months. You may find that you perspire more than usual, which is why it is important to cleanse your face twice a day. According to experts, the best way to keep your skin matte, yet moisturised is to cleanse twice daily with a foaming or gel-based face wash. First thing in the morning, to wash away the oil and perspiration that accumulates overnight, and then before bed, after thoroughly removing your makeup.

 Exfoliate regularly

Regular exfoliation enhances the removal of dry or dead skin cells that build up on the surface of the skin and is therefore one of the most important aspects of maintaining a healthy skin care routine. Exfoliation not only helps increase blood circulation in the face and body, but also helps to achieve a healthy glowing skin. Evolve Day Spa recommends visiting one of their branches to receive one of their fantastic exfoliation treatments such as the ZO Exfoliation Polish, valued at R1490.00. Some of the great benefits include; Magnesium crystals which provides impressive exfoliation benefits, the treatment instantly polishes skin to restore smoother texture and healthy glow and removes dead skin cells to prevent clogged pores.

Importance of SPF

Not only can UV rays accelerate skin ageing factors such as fine lines, wrinkles and sagging skin but is harmful to your skin at any time of the year, even more so in the Summer months when our exposure levels are higher. Evolve Day Spa suggests incorporating your sun block cream as part of your daily ritual. A minimum of SPF 30 should be used daily and on days where you spend most days in the sun, a SPF 50 should be used, and constant re-application is a MUST. Evolve Day Spa recommends Lamelle’s Helase (retail cost R500.00) SPF 50.

Drink lots of water

It is important to drink 6 – 8 glasses of water a day to avoid dehydration. Not only is it necessary for your overall health but it also plays a vital role for your digestion and circulation as well as maintaining your skin’s health and beauty.


About Evolve Spa Group

Founded in September 2017 by Nicole van Coller, CA (SA) and Kim Franco (Qualified Somatologist), the group’s focus sits firmly on assisting clients to live a healthy, well-balanced life through a holistic approach to wellness. Two spas comprise the group’s portfolio, namely Evolve Day Spa at Premier Hotel OR Tambo, and Evolve Day Spa – a hidden gem in Boksburg at The Terminal, Bartlett.

w:              www.evolvedayspa.co.za

e:               info@evolvedayspa.co.za

p:              011 894 6224 | 076 192 8505

f:               evolvedayspa

i:               evolvedayspa