Don’t hold your breath; there is no shortcut to finding the right skincare products. However, there is a comprehensive list of dermatologically-approved tips and hacks that make the search less daunting. Thanks to cosmetic research and trials, the average consumer can now navigate the market without intimidation; this is to say, modern-day skincare shoppers are no longer bound to hyped branding but instead empowered to make individual skincare selections. Skincare shopping has never been easier thanks to the standardization of the International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients and consumers’ nudge towards informed consumerism.
Five tips for finding suitable skincare products
After years of trial and error, skin care experts have developed a fool-proof strategy to bag the perfect skin care products regardless of demographics. Ahead, we explore five life-saving tricks and how you can incorporate them into your next skincare shopping trip.
Identify your skin type.
Learning and understanding your skin type is the first step to finding the right skincare products. Universally there are about five skin classifications- dry, normal, combination, sensitive, and oily skin. Every skin type sports unique traits and needs; figuring out where you fall in these categories is half the job. That said, to identify your skin type, explore the characteristics of each group and compare them to your perceptible attributes. Alternatively, you could choose to consult your dermatologist for a professional opinion. (1)
Set your goals
What do you want to achieve with your skincare journey? Are you looking to fade your acne scars or balance your skin’s microbiomes? Perhaps you’re after that radiant, dewy glow or simply trying to smooth out those frown lines and wrinkles. Whatever the case, setting goals for your skincare journey is crucial; this will save you the hassle of browsing through millions of skin care products and formulas, tapering your choices to a selected few that align with your goals. Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that skincare goals will look different for every individual so let go of the pressure to conform to the mainstream hype.
You’ve identified your skin type and set your skincare goals; what’s next? Naturally, the next move would be execution- look to accomplish your skin care goals by finding products designed to address your area of concern. For instance, your goal would be maximum hydration if you suffer from dry skin. Dry skinned-individuals would begin their product hunt with oil-based cleansers and makeup removers to retain those natural oils before working their way up to Mojave Desert Skin Shield nourishing oils and moisturizers.
Skin care products often come packed with chemicals, and while most of these constituents are beneficial and nourishing to the skin, others are downright toxic. Before using any skincare product, you should check for active ingredients; you’ll find these listed on the product’s packaging. Make it your priority to research and understand how each ingredient works and whether or not it has contraindications to the rest of your products. For individuals with sensitive skin, steer away from fragranced products and harsh formulas like retinol. Oily-skinned consumers, on the other hand, should tone down on oil-based products and formulas.
Tip: Run your skincare ingredients against the FDA-approved list of chemicals as an extra safety measure.
Take patch tests
Don’t be quick to add to the cart; instead, get into the habit of carrying out patch tests. If you’re one to shop physically, visit your favorite beauty or department stores and request a tester. Ideally, these outlets provide product samples for customers’ trials. Take advantage of these try-out samples by applying a pea-sized amount of the formula on your inner wrists before your purchase. If you experience irritation within 3-5 minutes of the application, take it as a warning sign. Alternatively, virtual shoppers should go with small-sized volumes to avoid splurging on products that won’t correspond with their skin. (2)
Between beauty influencers hyping their favorite products and the endless sea of cosmetic formulas swarming the market, skincare shopping is a rollercoaster. Nevertheless, we still strive to achieve vibrant, healthy, supple skin, and while there’s yet to be a one-size-fits-all answer to this skincare frenzy, there are solid, reliable hacks to help make sense of it all. Regardless of one’s expertise in the skincare facet, building an individualized skincare regimen does not have to be as challenging; with the right tips, your skincare shopping trip should be effortless. Now that you have the guide, you’ll need time and patience to learn the ropes.