Maybe your eyes are sore, red and bloodshot from spending hours on the computer or at the bar - or both, if your favorite bar has WiFi. Have you ever wanted to “taste the minty refreshment in your eyes”? Sure you have, and Japan has something for that: FX-Neo eye drops.
FX-Neo are made by Santen Pharmaceutical of Japan and are one of a number of minty, mentholated eye drops crowding the country's drug store shelves. The theory behind mint-enhanced eye drops posits that what's good for toothpaste, mouthwash, nasal sprays, chewing gum and breath mints is also good for your eyeballs and the sensitive, fragile corneas that cover them. In practice... well, let's just say the effect of FX-Neo on unsuspecting eyes can be shocking – as in, shockingly painful.
Regular users of these drops report, however, that the initial blindingly frosty blast of menthol soon fades, to be replaced by a feeling of refreshment and “bright-eyed” alertness. Sort of like running out of a steaming hot sauna and diving into a frozen arctic lake... if that doesn't wake one up, what will?
The manufacturer advises potential users of FX-Neo that “This is not a medical or pharmaceutical product”, which seems odd considering they're made by Santen Pharmaceutical. Caveat emptor, as they say!
Santen also suggests FX-Neo eye drops are “a perfect way to ease your crave for cigarette”, though the bio-science behind that claim is nowhere to be found.
Perusing the list of ingredients we find the following: Neostigmine Methylsulfate, Taurine, L-Aspartic Acid K, Maleic Acid chlorophenylamine, and Ypsilon Amino Capron Acid. Just what I want in my eye drops; lots and lots of acid... but they're beneficial acids, so not to worry.
Sante also markets FX-V+, which adds vitamin B6 to the volatile brew of acids ensconced inside an admittedly attractive eye dropper container. FX-V+ is rated as 5+ on the “feeling of coolness” scale... which only goes up to 5. Who designed this scale, Nigel Tufnel? FX-Neo rates a solid 5 out of 5, by the way, so if your eyes are needing that extra push over the cliff, you know what to do.
FX-Neo cooling eye drops come in 12ml containers and can be purchased online at both Amazon Japan ($11.49) and Compact Impact ($12.95). Amazon also offers FX-V+ for $27.00 per 12ml container. Update: These eyedrops are now available in the U.S. through thisFX-Neo eyedrops link.