Preparation H

While there are many eye serums and other products that are specifically designed to target the skin in the eye area, some people swear by other products that are originally intended for other use. One of those products is Preparation H, which you probably know is a product that cures hemorrhoids in the rectal area. This is not a treatment that I recommend, and if you do I urge you to exercise extreme caution, but I’ll go into detail on the philosophy behind why others choose to use it.

preparation h under eyes
Good for hemorrhoids, but avoid use in the eye area

This is not a product for everyday use if you decide to apply it in the eye area, rather it is more sporadic occasions. When your eyes are particularly puffy and inflamed, Preparation H can help reduce the swelling and restore your eye area to its natural state in short order because of its anti-inflammatory properties. After all, its main purpose is to reduce painful swelling in the area it is designed to be applied on, so the theory behind using it around the eyes is that it should serve the same purpose there.

Taking a look at what Preparation H is formulated from, it is easy to see why I don’t recommend applying it to the sensitive skin around your eyes. There’s a reason why it is designed and marketed for hemorrhoid relief. The main ingredient is phenylephrine which reduces the size of your veins. This is how it destroys hemorrhoids, by cutting off the blood flow and decreasing swelling. This same thing will happen when applying it to your face, diminishing puffiness caused by the veins under your eyes.

Hydrocortisone is a drug used in a variety of products that you use regularly and is included in Preparation H to relieve the itchiness that accompanies hemorrhoids. However, it is has a thinning effect on the skin when applied regularly, and the skin around your eyes is, by nature, already thin and sensitive. While it may have a soothing effect, repeated use of a hydrocortisone in this area can lead to weakened skin that can lead to fine lines and wrinkles as I talk about on this site.

burning eye irriation
Be careful to not get this product in your eye

While these skin care ingredients in general are not a bad thing and can provide relief for swelling and itchiness and general discomfort, they are just too strong to consider putting in the under eye area and it is my recommendation to do so with caution. Be sure to apply only a small amount of it and be sure to avoid getting any in the eye itself, as doing so can cause extreme irritation and discomfort. While supermodels have been touting the benefits of Preparation H under the eyes before a photo shoot or runway show to get rid of any puffiness around their eyes, there are much better products on the skin care market that are designed specifically for the eye area and are a much safer alternative. A product that can break up a hemorrhoid is simply too strong of a compound to risk putting around your eyes.