When you have no idea what to buy to begin with, what ends up happening is you end up purchasing skin care based on how fancy the name sounds, the shape of the bottle or how “beautifying” the formula claims to be. Cosmetic companies rely on the public’s ignorance for profit; it’s the cornerstone of their market. I’m not saying that all cosmetic companies are poisoning the public by any means, in fact, most brands do offer some great skin benefiting products. But there is a large chance that a good chunk of your products at this very moment are breaking good health guidelines for your skin. These could even be products you love. If you have skin care products rotating in your routine that break some of these rules I’m about to tell you, there is a high chance you are doing more harm than good and what’s the point in that?
But thats why I am here. As your self proclaimed all things beauty guru, I can give you some simple tips to boost up your skincare game. Once you implement some of these basic rules, you will be reaping the benefits in no time which means smoother, calmer, younger looking and acting skin.
Always remember, fragrance isn’t skincare
Whether it’s lemon, lavender, menthol, rose, ginger, patchouli or anything else companies can squeeze into the bottle, it is absolutely doing more harm than good. Fragrance (natural or not) is one of the most common irritants in products today and can cause puffy irritated eyes as well as inflammation under the skin. The type of inflammation that’s caused may not be visible at first, but believe me, it’s there and it’s reeking havoc that you will find years down the line. Another concern is that certain fragrance can cause what is called “photo damage” which basically means that when applied to the skin, it can make you more susceptible to UV damage. Talk about scary. But the good news is, for every product you have that has fragrance, there are many that don’t and are formulated better.
Two types of packaging that you need to always avoid is clear/translucent packaging and jar packaging. Poor packaging is very common among cosmetic brands because they are looking at it through a marketing stand point. But what’s pretty may not be practical. If the product in these containers actually have active ingredients formulated in them, they would be destroyed over time whenever air or light touches them. This goes for any type of exfoliating ingredient, retinoids, hydroquinone, antioxidants etc. Thats right, your $250 department store creme that’s housed in a beautifully decorated jar is completely pointless (it probably was before anyway, but we can get into that later). Look for dark, opaque squeeze tube or pump style packaging that has proper seals around the edges so air can’t destroy what’s in there. You should also be aware that even the cleanest of hands harbor bacteria and that jar you scoop out of is likely a petri dish by the end of its life.
Quit buying marketing instead of technology
There isn’t one ingredient alone that can turn back time. If you want to see real improvement in your skin, its going to take a well formulated routine, not a single “miracle” ingredient. A lot of these “patented” formulas haven’t been properly tested and have little evidence to back up claims. I’m sorry, but La Mer’s Miracle Broth is nothing more than marketing. Everyone should have a routine that has a balance of gentle exfoliants, skin identical ingredients, antioxidants and most importantly, proper sun protection.
Proper sun protection is a huge failure of the skincare industry
I’m not saying there isn’t a plethora of well formulated sun screens out there. There are a lot. My problem lies with how they are marketed and sold. An indisputable fact is that every single human being needs to protect their skin from UV rays because not only will that prevent aging, it will more importantly prevent skin cancer.
Shame on them. SPF seems to still be an after thought and higher SPF is still sold separately from a lot of day creams. A lot of brands for go SPF all together too; probably because they know the general public doesn’t care. I am here to tell you though, if you don’t protect your skin from the sun(rain or sunny weather), any effort of younger looking skin is a waste of time. You might as well smoke and wash your face with bar soap at this point. Not only should your day moisturizer have an SPF (25 or greater) but it’s a smart idea to layer on more sunscreen via make up primers, foundations, and powders. More is always better.
Check the quality before buying
There are websites out there that do a great job classifying and rating products both in drugstore and department stores. My two favorites are paulaschoice.com and acne.org. Both of these websites follow the same guidelines as I do as far as skincare goes and both use real researched science to back up their claims. Don’t spend another penny until you look up what you are buying. Your wallet and skin will thank you.