You may have noticed some posts from our friends at the Strategist on the Cut. They’ll be dropping in every now and again, sharing their expertise on the basics you don’t have time to research and the weird and wonderful things you don’t yet know you need.
Yesterday, Brandon Truaxe — founder of Deciem, parent company of crazy-affordable skin-care line the Ordinary — announced that the company would be shutting down for (at least) two months. This is sorry news for wallets everywhere: For the past five years, the Ordinary and Hylamide, Deciem’s other beauty brand, has consistently created some of the best inexpensive skin-care products on the market. Personally, I’m beside myself at the idea that I may have to say good-bye to my $10 marula oil, as I’m simply not in a position to consistently purchase Drunk Elephant’s $72 version. While I mourn, I’m also going to binge-buy my favorite Deciem products, while I can. I suggest you join me.
An OG from my very first Google doc, this serum has single-handedly helped me combat some of the most infuriating dark marks that my zits have left behind. It’s also helped me out with red patches. Last year, during a strange phase in which my skin was constantly blotchy, using this daily helped even out my skin tone in the span of a week.
I don’t know what exactly it is, but my skin really loves marula oil. The antioxidant-rich oil makes skin bright and glowy, and also helps speed along the healing process after I’ve picked at pimples. I also love the way my foundation glides onto my skin after I’ve put this product on. Usually, after I’ve applied this product, and have extra on my hands, I run my hands through my hair — it makes it perfectly shiny.
A friend of mine once raved about how rose-hip oil helped get her acne under control. So, I tried this affordable version from Deciem so that I could see how I liked rose-hip oil in general before I purchased the $88 Herbivore version people rave about on Reddit. Rose-hip oil contains small amounts of tretinoin, a retinoid that’s been proven to help some people out with acne, as well as linoleic acid, which can help reduce the size of blackheads. When I’m having a breakout, I apply this right before I apply moisturizer, and it tends to help get things under control, without making my face greasy. I liked this product so much that I never even ended up buying the Herbivore one.
This product is essentially a ten-minute acid mask. I definitely wouldn’t recommend it for anyone who isn’t accustomed to strong acids, but if you’re a Drunk Elephant Babyfacial or P50 person, it’s a truly phenomenal product. I use it twice a week, and I absolutely adore what it does for my overall redness and hormonal acne — the AHA exfoliates the top layer of your skin in order to make the texture look smoother and brighter. My skin always looks amazing right after I use this.
I haven’t tried this product because I am too obsessed with keeping my zits at bay to even veer into the world of anti-aging, but a former colleague of mine loved the way this tightened and plumped her skin. What’s special about this is that while it is packed with ingredients that purport to target wrinkles, sagging skin, and textural damage, it is also formulated to deeply hydrate the skin. And people are obsessed with it: As one MakeupAlley reviewer put it, “You’ll have to pry this product from my cold, dead hands.”
This product is marketed online as a vacation in a bottle, or in other words, a serum that makes your skin look glowy and healthy, and also gives you a very, very subtle tan. I tend to steer clear of self-tanning — I’ve had too many experiences where I’ve ended up looking orange, scary, and super dry and peel-y. This product is DHA-free. (DHA is the ingredient found in most self-tanners that makes you look tanner, but can also really dry out your skin.) If your skin is going through a sad, tired, or dull phase, sub this in for whatever serum you usually use (the serum step is the one before your moisturizer, in case you forgot), once a day for a few days. It will give you a healthy, well-rested glow.
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