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How to Purchase your Skin Care Products

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Skincare has been around for thousands of years, with skincare routines having been practiced regularly and considered to be culturally significant.

This varies from the use of herbal remedies such as aloe vera, rosemary to clear breakouts during the medieval times and the use of broom stalks to cleanse the skin in the Renaissance era. Then followed the Baroque period, where saunas ‘sweat cleansed’ and milk baths were used for smoother, clearer skin- most of these remedies are used even today.

And now we have reached a new generation with a plethora of designers and brands, from Elizabeth Arden to Estee Lauder, to Clinique and Neutrogena. Each brand releases product after product, with new formulas and advanced application technology that caters to every skincare issue you could possibly have.

The skincare industry is packed, making it a daunting challenge to pick out the right product for yourself. Here are a few tips you can follow to ease yourself in when shopping the skincare aisles.

  1. Know Your Skin Type

When you get into skincare, it’s not just one product that you’ll use; it’ll be a minimum of at least three products and, from then on, the goods on your shelves just continue to grow. Before investing, you need to first know your skin type. This can be done either by yourself or a sales staff member at any store that sells skincare products. The best option is to visit a dermatologist to advise you accurately- they may charge a fee, but it’s worth getting an expert opinion in your skincare needs.

There are 5 skin types that you can identify your skin as:

A) Normal Skin Type: These are skin types that have an oily sheen that glazes your face but nor is it dry, causing cracked and flaky skin. Even if you do experience oiliness or dryness, it’s effortless to resolve. This skin type may exhibit a few fine lines and wrinkles.

This skin type does not require too many products. However, remaining consistent with a regular skin care regime can help prevent your skin from changing over time.

B) Dry Skin Type: This skin type may showcase patchiness, flakes, and cracked skin. Pores may be almost invisible, and you may have an incredibly dull complexion. Due to the cracked and flaky feel, your face may tend to be itchy, causing red patches. Lines and wrinkles may be clearly seen in this skin type.

To maintain this skin, the use of mild, gentle soaps or cleansers is recommended. Exfoliators should be used at a minimum. Rich moisturizers, ointments, and creams should be applied, especially after a shower.

C) Oily Skin Type: Oily skin types may contain visibly enlarged pores or a visible oily sheen. You may frequently experience a dull and shiny facial complexion. Those with oily skin types are extremely prone to blackheads, pimples, and other blemishes, due to the oil being able to seep into the enlarged pores easily.

Those with oily skin types need to be frequent with cleansing twice a day and exfoliating twice a week. You can go one step further and use a gentle exfoliator once, every day, after you cleanse. This will really help you to feel refreshed, especially if you perspire as well. To recover the dullness of oily skin, face masks, mainly sheet masks, should do the trick!

D) Combination Skin: As the term suggests, combination skin includes two or more different skin types that occur on different parts of the skin. Most often, the T-zone may be oily whilst the rest of the face may be dry. Most often, people confuse combination skin for oily skin and possibly end up getting the wrong products. So, it’s advised to understand your skin type properly before purchasing and ensure that, when you do, the products look after both the skin types without causing irritation.

E) Sensitive Skin Type- Sensitive skin types may show dry, oily and/or combination skin along with irritation and inflammation. Those with sensitive skin may often face a significant number of red patches, burns, rashes, and stings as a side effect to some products. Selecting skin care products for sensitive skin needs time and the right amount of consultation to prevent any aggressive side effects. 

Most often, dermatologists would prescribe you to clinically approved products. Although, purchasing them from aisles should not be a problem, so long you are buying them accordingly.

2) Know Your Brands

There’s no point in splurging £100 pounds plus on a Chanel face moisturizer when you can get a moisturizer for a much more reasonable price. 

Whilst you shouldn’t splurge too much, you shouldn’t spend too little either. You don’t want to buy products that are too cheap, only to potentially end up with an infected skin. Know your brands, your skincare types, your needs and then invest accordingly.

Some of the brands that I think offer quality products are:

1) Estee Lauder: This brand offers a multitude of luxury skincare products. Highly recognized for their cosmetics range, they do not in the least bit disappoint you with their skincare line. Their products have advanced technology, such as their Cleansing Balm, that transforms from a balm into a silky cleansing oil as you massage the product into the skin, ridding your face off any leftover makeup and dirt whilst hydrating the skin.

2) The Ordinary:  These are clinically based skincare products that focus on specific issues on your skin. They are known most for their oils and serums, for instance, one of their products: the Niacinamide 10% Zinc 1% Serum does a fantastic job in diminishing and preventing pimples. Their rosehip oil helps in calming redness, hydrates dry skin, helps treat scars (including ones due to breakouts) and burns. They also brighten skin and regenerate damaged tissue.

3) Clinique: A little more on the high-ended price range, Clinique offers a range of skincare products, most of which are non-scented. They have excellent moisturizers and toners and cater to all skin types, while also providing skincare treatments for skin recovery.

4) Pixi: This is a premium skincare brand that won’t burn your purse but may require you to budget yourself once a while. Pixi has a great selection of toners and serums that can have your skin looking rejuvenated after a good night’s sleep. They also do a good job with their eye patches that won’t make you look sleep-deprived for hours.

5) Neutrogena: A brand that’s more affordable, and works perfectly, this brand helps keep your skin radiant, healthy, and hydrated. It does well with its hyaluronic serums, moisturizers, exfoliators, eye creams and, most of all, their sheet masks.

Everyone has a skin type that requires specific treatment and products. Only through thorough research, trial, and error (unfortunately, this is something you will encounter), you’ll be able to find just what suits you.

3) Know How to Balance (Your Skincare Budget)

Once you have an idea of the brands that suit you best, it’s time to form your skincare allowance. The best way to go about spending reasonably is splurging on one product and balancing the budget over another, for example.

For instance, if your skin type is oily, you may prefer a good toner rather than trying to shrink pores. Splurge on a quality toner and ultimately, you may end up buying a not so expensive pore product. This product could be something you may not use much off either way but, something you may still require. Plan this out based on your skin needs and you’ll find yourself happy with your purchases, whilst also having saved a few pounds.

4) Establish Your Routine

Budgeting requires you to have a plan. Have your skincare routine in place, so you know what products you need to splurge on. Remember to keep your routine as simple as possible. It makes no sense to hoard a bunch of products, only to use just two of them- you will end up wasting a lot of time and money. The smaller number of products you have, the easier it will be to perform them regularly.

Now that you have an idea of how to go about choosing your skincare products, explore and have fun whilst you go about this process. Never invest in suspiciously inexpensive products as they may cause severe physical damages. 

You are going to experience unintentional splurges every now and then, but that’s the only way to go about choosing what’s best for you.

Take care and happy shopping!

Written by Michelle Almeida

Edited by Madeleine Gill

Madeleine and Hesther are your health & beauty editors

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