In answer to Alfred - yes, it does in Lightroom's RAW processing. Adobe's negative clarity feature seems to detect and act on skin tones in a very useful way whilst it also seems to detect eyes and does not soften them. For a quick develop session, I find it very useful and is my 'go to" tool for cleaning up minor blemishes and blotchiness on a baby's face for example. Occasionally, I may go back in and paint some positive clarity back over the lips but again, this is seldom needed as the Adobe algorithm seems to also preserve sharpness on lips as well as the eyes ... although it is not quite as reliable as the eye preservation.
In answer to MBd, I wish I had had more time to perform 'proper" photography for my family - but I simply don't. The best I can do in very limited time slots is either seek a northish facing window and/or use a bounced flash with possibly a diffuser over the flash head.
Babies grow up so fast and whilst you can plan a shoot to some extent, the subject matter may not be his or her best on the day; typically blotchiness associated with teething, minor colds or tiny self inflicted scratches, or they're just simply tired and grouchy!
If you get 10 to 15 mins of co-operation from your subject you're lucky! From a capture of maybe 30 or 40 frames there's maybe 4 or 5 decent frames with eye contact and ideally a smile ... it's even more difficult when you have both parents in the frame as well!
Once the shoot is done, everyone wants to see the pictures and maybe put them on social media postings as soon as possible - this is where negative clarity in the RAW studio environment is a real time saver for me.
So in summary, yes of course there are other ways to achieve the same effect, but not as easily in my experience.
Happy new year to you all and thanks for your input.