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The Eye Serum That Hides My Insomnia

a group of blue and white tubes
ELLE Loves: Summer Fridays’ Rejuvenating Eye SerumCourtesy Summer Fridays

At age 21, I was a doe-eyed college senior brimming with excitement to buy my first tequila shot. At 25, my focus shifted to nailing down my no-makeup-makeup look on Zoom, thanks to a global pandemic that derailed my plans to be “outside” post-breakup and, thus, led me to develop a mild addiction to tinted moisturizers. Fast forward three years, I’ve upgraded from tequila to gin, and I currently house about six tinted moisturizers in my arsenal. However, my priorities have shifted, and with one goal taking precedence over all: staving off any signs of aging that crop up on my face. Believe it or not, our facial skin isn’t as resilient as we assume; it readily reveals evidence of sleepless nights, neglectful skin habits, or the consequences of failing to change those pillowcases (it’s time!).

Eyes are typically the first to crack under pressure, a challenge I’ve tirelessly fought over the years with help from a myriad of eye creams, eye masks, and eye serums. I’ve dated quite a few formulas and have favorites, parted with a lot of disappointments, and ultimately, took a long break from eye products altogether. But the biological clock is ticking, and I don’t have time to worry about fine lines, puffiness, or darkness during a cost-of-living crisis, people! Then, along came Summer Fridays’ newest launch, offering a glimmer of hope that maybe I’ll have one less skincare concern to wrestle with.

A Summer Friday face is breathable but durable, dewy but not greasy, and topped off with an equally glowy lip. However, underneath it all, the brand has always prioritized a well-prepped base, from its mineral sunscreen to treatment serums and creams down to the viral Jet Lag Masque. Expanding the Jet Lag series a bit further, the brand is launching an eye serum equivalent to enhance your in-flight (or at-home) kit.

Jet Lag Overnight Eye Serum is every bit an offshoot of its masque predecessor—it features the same sleek blue exterior—but operates in a completely different way. Where nourishment is the main touchpoint in the mask, correction is the eye serum’s mission. The soothing, moisturizing properties in both formulations remain consistent via glycerin, yet the eye serum is packed with heavy-hitting ingredients that would make fine lines and wrinkles shriek in fear.

It features a blend of retinol.

I know, I know—retinol around your eye? As one of the finest anti-aging treatments, retinol targets a slew of issues at once, making it a star ingredient not only for your entire face (and body) but especially the under-eye area. Because of its strength, cushioning your skin with other nourishing additives aids in strengthening the area while addressing its major concerns. In this make up, the Jet Lag Overnight Eye Serum builds upon its MVP, glycerin, with ceramides to strengthen the barrier and retinol to tackle those stubborn signs of aging. I started by applying the serum two evenings a week before titrating up three. This serum is gentle and non-irritating, which is a major feat since past formulas gave me itchy, slightly bumpy under-eyes, or made my eyes tear up. I wore this comfortably to sleep without it irritating my eyes or seeping onto my pillows.

It has a thicker texture than a normal serum.

Upon first touch, the texture feels a bit thicker than what I expect a serum to feel like. While it’s not as heavy as the Jet Lag Masque, it could pass for one—just with better absorption, an airy, almost matte-like finish, and a soft blend down. Once it was fully applied, I felt how soft my under-eye was and stepped back to admire the subtle sheen it left behind. Another added bonus was how well it looked under concealer. Yes, it’s marketed as an overnight treatment, but sometimes, there are pros to defiance. All in all, the Jet Lag Overnight Eye Serum felt like a balm for my tired eyes, or even better, a warm embrace in a toasty blanket after a long day of laughing at TikTok’s, grimacing at inflation ruining everything, and whatever else a day as a 20-something adult brings.

Speaking of the cost of living, I must note that this eye serum costs a whopping $48. However, investing in the future you—with bright, youthful-looking eyes and a smile to match because you started using eye creams early enough—is immeasurable. And compared to the cost of invasive treatments, this is a steal! Admittedly, results take time to materialize (it’s been a few weeks, and I’m still loving it), but anything worth having is worth working for. It’s a good thing that the Jet Lag Overnight Eye Serum does all the hard work for you.

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