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Eye Creams Decoded: What to Know Before You Buy

ABC News' Elisabeth Leamy and Vanessa Weber report:

Walk into any department store or drug store and you'll quickly realize that there are a lot of choices out there when it comes to eye creams. After all, who isn't looking to turn back the clock? Just last year alone, Americans spent $2.3 billion on anti-aging skin care products.  So we decided it was time to whittle down the choices - at least in the eye cream arena.

We assembled the "GMA" Eye Cream Dream Team made up of ten top dermatologists from around the country to come up with a list of the best products for the most common problems.

If You're Looking to Fight Wrinkles ...
There's only one word you need to know: Retinol. Retinol increases collagen and elasticity, and decreases fine lines. "If there was one ingredient that I would have to have on a desert island, it would be Retinol. It's the most important single ingredient for the skin," said Dr. Jeannette Graf.

If You're Looking to Fight Dark Circles ...
Unfortunately, these aren't as easy to tackle since so many things can cause them. Our dermatologists recommend looking for creams that contain a concealer, tint or brightener to help camouflage the circles.

If You're Looking to Fight Puffiness ...
One ingredient rose to the top of the dermatologists' questionnaire: Caffeine. And we don't mean you should drink it."You wouldn't think so because when you drink caffeine you think of getting all revved up, but it's actually very soothing to the eye area," Dr. Graf explained.

The doctors recommend pinpointing your skin issue before you start your search for the perfect eye cream.

So what products did the most dermatologists name?  Our dermatologists named SkinMedica more than any other high-end cream. The brand's TNS Eye Repair Cream "goes above and beyond many of the problems that many people complain about," says Dr. Doris Day.  "And I've seen really great results."

SkinMedica is available in some dermatologists' offices and retails for $95.  Dr. Day carries SkinMedica products in her office.  Her price covers the cost of the product and an administrative cost.

If that's a bit out of your price range, don't worry. Oil of Olay's Regenerist products are effective and cost around $22. And while Oil of Olay Regenerist was named more by our "GMA" Dream Team than any other brand, they also say Roc and Neutrogena are also good picks.

"I think what Olay has done very well is to stay current and... a lot of their data is published in peer reviewed medical journals and that is what I look for as a dermatologist," says Dr. Doris Day, who is a  member of the Olay Pro-X Scientific Committee but is not a spokesperson and has no financial ties to the company.

There's also the perennial - and unlikely -- celeb fave for puffiness: Preparation H. Yes, the hemorrhoid cream is often lauded as a wonderful eye cream by A-listers, and our dermatologists confirm that it works. It only costs $13.99 at drugstores. You just have to get over the fact that you're applying hemorrhoid cream to your face.

Of course, our dermatologists also remind us that the basics are extremely important. Remember to get plenty of sleep, drink lots of water and always apply sunscreen.

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