There’s something therapeutic about walking into a beauty department store and moving from counter to counter, patting and smearing creams and serums into our skin, but this experience will change considerably as stores begin to open post-lockdown. While e-commerce platforms may not be able to replicate that emotion, they definitely make shopping for skincare from our beds an easy experience. However, hitting buy without being able to try a product is risky business, especially when the product is high investment. Let this guide help you to make sure you’re spending on the right formulas for your skin.
1. Understand your skin
Nothing is worse than impulsively buying skincare because it’s on sale or because your favourite social media influencer or celebrity says it’s “perfect” for them. While makeup allows room for error when experimenting with new products, that’s definitely not the case for skincare. With makeup, you do need to be careful and ensure it suits your skin type, but apart from that any disappointment will come in the form of a product not delivering on its claims in terms of efficacy. On the other hand, the wrong skincare products can instantly mess with your skin barrier and leave it feeling more problematic than before. If you haven’t been able to identify your skin type or put a pin on your specific concerns, reach out to a dermatologist for an online consultation. A lot of dermatologists have taken to consultations via video calls due to social distancing rules. Make use of that option and zero in on what your skin needs.
2. Read, watch and comprehend
Where you get your skincare knowledge from is key. Just like you would research makeup products before investing in them, take the time out to explore your options online and read reviews of the best products for your skin type and concerns. Read credible skincare blogs, consider beauty editor and dermatologist suggestions in editorials and even take to YouTube and Instagram to watch beauty influencers swatching products so you can understand how they look and feel. Most importantly, stay away from marketing gimmicks and take recommendations from sources that you can genuinely trust. While not all sponsored posts on Instagram may be inauthentic, judge the genuineness of the account before you take the advice.
3. Search wisely
Whichever e-commerce platform you decide to use, be very specific in your search. For instance, if you’re looking for a gel-based moisturiser, head over to the subcategory, enter the term ‘gel moisturiser’ in the search bar and then go on to filter by selecting your skin type and other properties you’re looking for. Whether you sort your results low to high or vice versa, only do so for further research. It’s important that you do preliminary research to identify what you want to buy, then spot new options in your search and further look them up to compare what is the best product for your needs and budget. Follow this process for every product you want to buy, no matter the category.
4. Hunt for the best skincare deals and offers across the web
Narrowed down to what you want to buy? Great. Now enter that product name on Google and take a look at the e-commerce options that come your way. Compare prices across platforms to see where you get the best one and factor in shipping costs as well. If a particular online store has an offer with freebies, consider this too—you may just receive a sample of something you’ve wanted to try but didn’t want to already invest in. You want to be as careful as possible when your skin is in question: Only shop from credible and trustworthy websites, stay away from unauthorised resellers and let’s be honest, if an unverified seller is trying to sell a product to you at an unbelievably low price, there’s probably a catch. Don’t compromise on your investment for the health of your skin.
5. Splurge some, save some
Your entire skincare kit need not be made of luxurious products; you can always take your requirements into consideration and decide what you’d rather splurge on. If your skin tends to be extremely congested, a heavy-duty, deep cleansing face mask is of prime importance to you. If you have dry, parched skin, an intensely hydrating moisturiser is at the top of your list of needs. Prioritise what your skin wants and needs and spend on those products accordingly. A lot of brands provide small, travel-sized versions of their products, especially for those priced on the higher end. When in doubt about an expensive formula (or even a budget-friendly one), give it a shot after research by investing in the smaller sized packaging. You won’t regret it.
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