Pros: Works Great and is widely available
Cons: Price is a little steep
I recently developed extremely dry eyes related to a condition known as ocular rosacea. This promoted me to visit my optometrist, who gave me a host of free samples from brands like GenTeal, Refresh, and even a steroid treatment. While most of these drops did an adequate job relieving my irritated eyes, none of these treatments, whether they were over the counter or prescription, relieved my dry eye symptoms as well as Systane.
What is Systane?
Systane is an over the counter eye drop that is formulated to relive the symptoms of dry eyes, itching of the eyes, redness, etc. etc. Systane is a liquid (a gel formula is also available) that is a safe to use for virtually all types eye conditions and can also be used in conjunction with contact lenses.
How well does Systane work?
Unlike the other treatments that I had tried, Systane was able to relieve my dry itchy eyes almost immediately. Effectiveness of the product also lasts much longer than the competing brands, especially when compared to GenTeal, which seemed to lose its effectiveness in less than an hour. With Systane eye drops I can simply add 2 drops to each eye and be free of eye discomfort for at least 8 hours. That said, I only have to use Systane once in the morning and once at night. Systane also works great for removing eye redness. Aesthetically, the most annoying issue with ocular rosacea is its tendency to make for very bloodshot eyes. With just 2 drops of Systane the whites of my eyes become... well... white.
Having ocular rosacea hasn't just been a literal pain in my eyes, it was also starting to affect my vision. Before I started using these drops, my eyesight was getting so bad that I was starting to have problems seeing at night. Even during the day colors seemed washed and backgrounds were mostly a blend of unintelligible objects. So why am I jabbering on about my vision? While Systane doesn't claim to improve vision whatsoever (in fact it probably doesn't in most cases) it has helped my eyes heal enough to give me back my 20/20 vision. Just two months prior to using this product I had 20/50 and was supposed to be wearing glasses or contacts. I can't even describe how nice it is to see things so vividly again without the use of glasses, contact, or the expensive lasik eye surgery that I would have had if my doctor didn’t deny me the surgery due to my eye’s poor health.
The only slight rant that I have with Systane eye drops, especially with the gel formula, is that it does tend to make my eyes blurry for about 30 seconds. Though the final payoff in eye comfort is tremendous for just a few seconds of blurry vision, you might want to consider this if you are using these drops while driving. But I digress, these eye drops work wonders for long road trips where the eyes tend to feel like shards of glass, albeit you have a few minutes to allow your vision to recoup before getting back on the road.
Ease of use:
Systane (unless you buy the disposable packets, which I have never tried) is in a conventionally shaped eyedropper, so it is used like any other eye drop. The major difference with Systane is that it doesn't burn my eyes whatsoever. With most over the counter eye drops the burning is so bad at first that it actually makes my eyes even redder due to them making my eyes water for a good half hour.
Active Ingredients: Polyethylene Glycol 400 (0.4%), Propylene Glycol (0.3%)
Inactive Ingredients: Boric Acid, Calcium Chloride, Hydroxypropyl Guar, Magnesium Chloride, Potassium Chloride, Purified Water, Sodium Chloride, Zinc Chloride
Systane eye drops can be purchased at virtually any large retail store where eye drops are sold, including online drug stores, i.e. Drugstore.com. Systane is available is many different sizes, ranging from 5ml-30ml. There are also individual single-use vials available. Systane ranges from around $10 for the .5 ounce bottle to $13 for the full one ounce bottle. Though Systane is a bit more expensive than competing eye drops, this product is well worth the few extra bucks and when it comes to your eyes, money, especially a few bucks, shouldn't ’e the deciding factor.
Systane has been an eye saver for me. Though a bit pricey for a non-prescription eye drop, Systane liquid drops work great. There is no burning when applied to the eyes and I don’t have to go to my pharmacy every time I need a new bottle. I don’t just recommend Systane for those who have severe dry eyes, I recommend these drops to anyone who would like to maintain good eye heath. Note: if you find that you like Systane eye drops you may also like the gel drops which can be used at night.
Want to read about an even better formula? Click here for my review on Systane Ultra High Performance. SYSTANE ULTRA HIGH PERFORMANCE