Criss-Cross Lines Under Eyes: How to get rid of wrinkles and creases. Or at least hide them.

by Linda Robison

Do you have tiny cross hatching creases under your eyes and the top of your cheeks? Try these tips to hide and smooth them.

Criss-cross lines under eyes: Hate them, right? Me too.

These little, tiny cross-hatching or crease lines usually start under the eye and can sometimes go all the way down to the top of the cheeks.

In this article, we'll explain what they are and what you can do to hide them or even get rid of them.

criss cross lines under eyes

Are criss-cross lines just under eye wrinkles?

Criss-cross lines are often referred to as under-eye wrinkles or fine lines. But they don't look like regular wrinkles.

To me, they look like a tiny road-map or a grid.

These creases are typically small and shallow lines that form under the eyes and sometimes extend outward and down to the cheeks in a grid-like pattern.

They have a cross-hatch or intersecting appearance, hence the name "criss-cross lines."😊

They're usually more noticeable when you smile, squint, or make other facial expressions.

Technically, these creases are called dynamic wrinkles because they become visible when you make facial expressions, such as smiling.

But, over time and with repeated facial movements, they can become static wrinkles. This means you'll see them all them time, even when your face is at rest.

Why do I have crease lines under my eyes

Criss-cross lines are not only caused by aging and thinning of the skin. They can be brought on by genetics, lifestyle choices, and skincare practices.

The most common reasons including:

Sun Exposure: Sun damage will almost always lead to the development of criss-cross lines.

Facial Expressions: Repeated facial expressions, such as squinting, laughing, or frowning, can cause creasing which contribute to the appearance of creases and lines.

How do you get rid of criss-cross lines under your eyes?

Getting rid of those cross-hatched under-eye wrinkles can be difficult, especially if you prefer natural, non-surgical, and budget-friendly approaches.

However, let's explore some available options that can offer at least some improvement for the under-eye skin area.

We'll look at a combination of quick temporary options, skincare practices, lifestyle changes,and non-surgical, in-office treatment options.

Fix crepey skin under eyes

1. Quick temporary fix

If you're looking for a quick fix to hide those criss-cross lines, you can try an lifting eye serum. This is one of my favorite beauty tips because I can see results in about 5 minutes and this serum doesn't irritate my eyes.

We all know under eye skin is delicate and as we age, that area gets drier, so finding a serum that isn't too strong or drying is important. 

I've been using this serum (called Easy Eye Solution) since 2012 and have yet to find one that works better. AND, trust me, I've tried them all!

See my comparison on how they work here

Cross-hatched lines under eyes before and after picture.

While you can see the difference between each eye - the change is more more dramatic in person than through a picture taken with a cell phone.

Criss cross lines under eyes and under eye puffiness before and after picture.

This picture shows the results I get when I use the Easy Eye Solutions Instant Tuck Serum! It also helps reduce puffy eyes too!

2. Start using retinol

If you've been keeping up with skincare trends, you've probably heard about the effectiveness of retinol creams and serums to improve and reduce fine lines and crepey skin. This makes them a popular choice for those seeking smoother and more youthful-looking skin.

Over-the-counter retinols are powerful, inexpensive, and really work. Plus, they have very little side-effects. But, they take longer to see results than prescription ones. 

The best type of retinol is retinaldehyde. It only requires a one-step conversion to retinol and works faster than the others. 

Retinaldehyde promotes the synthesis of collagen and helps restore the skin's support structure, making the skin appear smoother and firmer. This can help reduce the depth and visibility of fine lines under the eyes.

It also improves elasticity and hydration, so the under the eye area becomes more resilient and supple.

Suggestions: If you already have too many creams and lotions and are looking for a simple way to add retinol to your skincare routine, you can try a Zenmed Retinol Booster. This serum can be added to your favorite creams for an instant retinal boost.

3. Moisturize

According to Dr. Rajani, who specializes in aesthetics and skincare, using organic moisturizers that contain natural oils, ceramides, fats, and lipids can help improve the condition and texture of the skin.

In addition, it can have positive effects on the skin's hydration and barrier function.

Suggestions: Zenmed Omega Ceramide Elixer. Again, here is another product that you can add to your favorite moisturizer. I love to keep it simple and hate to buy yet ANOTHER cream.

You can add a few drops of this budget-friendly elixir to any cream or serum you currently use.

4. Exfoliate

Very gently exfoliate the under eye area. You can make your own by mixing sugar or baking soda with a bit of your favorite oil. Just be careful if you're using retinol, which can cause skin sensitivity. Test a small area first. 

And never exfoliate around the same time you use retinol products. Retinol products are best when used at night.

5. Facial exercises/massages

I know many people don't put much faith in massaging or exercising the face. But, I can tell you first hand, it does work to improve your complexion. Here's how:

Massaging stimulates blood flow, oxygen, nutrients, and collagen to improve the appearance of fine lines. It can also help relax muscles which can minimize the formation of dynamic wrinkles, which are wrinkles that form due to facial movements like smiling or squinting.

Also, and very important point, massaging the skin can enhance the penetration and absorption of skincare products, such as moisturizers and serums. This allows the active ingredients in the products to work more effectively.

If you don't want to use your fingers to massage the eye area, consider a heated vibrating gua sha device. It also helps improve absorption of products, increasing your results.

6. Sun protection

Yes, we hear this all the time.

But, did you know that over time, if you start using sunscreen every day, rain or shine, it's possible to reverse sun damage and lessen wrinkles?

But make sure your sunscreen is free from chemicals that could damage skin and has at least a PA+++ rating.

7. In office procedures for criss-cross lines under eyes

In-office procedures may seem like overkill for those tiny criss-cross lines under the eyes.

But, if it's something that really bothers you, make sure you consult with a skincare professional who specializes in the delicate skin around the eyes.

Botox? This may not be a good option for criss-cross lines under the eyes. Botox is best for the crow's feet area, not directly under the eyes. Injection directly under the eyes may do more harm than good.

Read about the 10 benefits and 4 mistakes of Botox.

Dermal Fillers: Fillers can help, but it's best for those with deep wrinkles who do not have issues with under eye puffiness. Adding fillers when you have significant puffiness could be a disaster. 

Your best bet is to consult with a qualified professional to see if this option is good for your situation.

Microneedling: This is a safe option for the delicate skin around the eyes, with minimal downtime and a lower risk of side effects compared to more aggressive treatments.

This cosmetic procedure that uses a device with tiny, fine needles to create controlled micro-injuries in the skin's surface. These micro-injuries stimulate the skin's natural healing response, leading to several beneficial effects that can help reduce lines around the eyes.

Laser: If you can afford it, this is the best option to quickly get rid of under eye lines.

The best type of laser for the eye area with small cross-hatched lines is a non-ablative laser. Unlike ablative lasers, which remove the top layer of skin, non-ablative lasers work by heating the underlying skin tissue without damaging the surface.

They're generally milder, have shorter recovery times, and carry a lower risk of causing pigmentation changes or scarring.

Final point: Criss-cross lines under eyes

It is possible to improve the appearance of cross-hatched lines under the eyes with care and patience.

Good skincare products, sun protection using a sunscreen with a PA+++ rating and massages can naturally improve the health of the whole eye area overtime.

Just remember, results will never be as dramatic as in-office laser procedure or dermal fillers. But, any improvement, even temporary smoothing of lines, is a good thing.