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Best Pick: PlaceWhiter Medicated Whitening Eye Cream

PlaceWhiter Medicated Whitening Eye Cream from Meishoku is fantastic but in a different way than intended by the manufacturer. According to the blurb, the Japanese eye cream helps brighten dark circles, minimise fine lines, plump up the skin, and nourish dry, ageing skin. It seems to do just about everything but the dishes and all for the budget-friendly price of around ¥1,000 for a whooping 30g tube.

Let’s get straight to the point. On a basic level, this is a no-frills cream that is rich, heavy, and robust-feeling. It’s gentle to your delicate undereye skin if you err towards flare-ups and it feels instantly comforting if your skin there is chronically dry. The formula contains placental protein, vitamin E, Job’s tears, collagen, and rice bran oil to deeply nourish the skin and keep it plump, which in turn help make fine lines just a tad less apparent. As for dark circles, it makes zero difference even on a superficial level.

Best Pick PlaceWhiter Medicated Whitening Eye Cream (swatch)
While this is marketed as an eye cream, it makes a far better barrier cream for the entire face. The emollient base act as a physical “barrier” to protect the outer layers of the skin from environmental stressors that can result in dryness, rosacea, inflammation, and so on. I find it especially helpful on (dangerously) smoggy days or during dramatic weather changes. Rich, heavy face creams sometimes lead to milia when applied too close to the eye area whereas using this all over hasn’t caused any. It doesn’t make the skin a greasy mess either.

Meishoku’s PlaceWhiter Medicated Whitening Eye Cream is available at most drugstores in Japan. It’s rich, thick, and great for dry skin (or skin that’s about to be severely dry due to the bitter cold or severe air pollution). It’s OK as a basic eye cream, but great all over to stave off dryness. The slim tube is the perfect portable size for cold-weather outdoor activities and short trips. It costs ¥820 from Amazon Japan. You can also find it online for around US$12–14 from Stylevana and YesStyle — both ship from China (Hong Kong).

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