To say that buying skin care is difficult would be an understatement. Iâ€™ve often found myself needing a new moisturizer, dragging feet into the skin care aisles, trying to decipher all the bottles and potions, becoming confused, and walking away with a new lipstick and no moisturizer. The whole process of skin care purchasing is overwhelming and ranks up there with going to the dentist or working on a holiday, or any other “grr” moment you can think of.
For the past few year, I decided to learn more about skincare routines and skincare doâ€™s and donâ€™ts. From MakeupAlley reviews to actually researching completed studies, I wanted to become a more informed consumer. This skin care info-graphic has been in the draft stage for a while and itâ€™s now ready to share. And because Iâ€™m an attorney where graphs and flowcharts reign supreme, I thought to may as well put my “analytical skills” to work (not to worry, lovely, pretty photos will resume after this post).
Now, let me walk you through using this skin care guide and how-to:
Step 1: Skin concern - In my research, Iâ€™ve found that “universal” products do not tend to actually work. Skin care items that have targeted ingredients are more effective than the “do-all” items. For example, Iâ€™d rather pick a moisturizer that combats dry skin and wrinkles because the ingredients will be formulated and concentrated to target those skin concerns (if a moisturizer combats redness, impurities, pores, anti-aging, and dry skin then you should be skeptical). For Step 1, pick one or up to two concerns youâ€™d like to address.
Step 2: Stage in Routine - Here it is - the five steps in a skin care routine and the order in which to apply products (I needed it written down because I always forget). To continue with our example above, know exactly what step in the routine you are trying to find a product for. Are you looking for a treatment such as a serum or are you looking for a moisturizer? Skin care products are formulated based on a specific routine and their effectiveness depends on this routine.
Step 3: Personalize - This is an essential step with three major variables that will help narrow down your search. Consider price - if you have two products that fit step 1 and 2, pick the product that matches your budget. Consider skin sensitivity - many products will state if formulated for sensitive skin (also watch for language on the packet that informs how strong the product will be). Lastly, consider if youâ€™ll be using for the day time or night time - for example, a day time moisturizer should have SPF and a night time exfoliant could be left on the skin overnight.
Step 4: Dos and Donâ€™ts - The skin care market has a million and one products available - so narrowing down your best choice for you is the secret to finding the best skin care routine. If youâ€™ve gotten to Step 4, now is the time to make the final decision and walk to that register and walk out with a product. Consider the dos and donâ€™ts above - if a product has fragrance and other doesnâ€™t, pick the product without fragrance (sometimes listed as perfume) because fragrance is a known skin irritant. If packaging differs, opt for the sealed, closed container product because ingredients are more likely to be stable and thus more effective.
Skin care is unique based on each individual but there is a universal code and method for picking the best skin care products. Print this skin care aisle guide or pull it up on your phone next time you go shopping and the whole process will hopefully be much easier!
Do you have any other skin care process advice or tips or tricks when purchasing products? Iâ€™m still working on this chart and would love to update it in the future - let me know in the comments!