Monday, 2 April 2018

The Ordinary Skincare Review and Photos - Retinol 0.2%, Vitamin C Suspension and Salicylic Acid

The Ordinary Retinol, The Ordinary Salicylic Acid and The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension.
I'm no expert when it comes to Science in skincare and in general really, but what I can tell you is I take my skincare routine very seriously and if anything I use more products now then I ever used to. I'm also a total sucker for anything new, innovative and affordable which is why The Ordinary Skincare brand appealed to me after I initially heard about it through Fleur De Force.

Now while I can't tell you all the in's and out's about the science aspect of this skincare brand, what I can do is share with you my honest thoughts and basic facts on three of the products I've been testing and what they have done for my skin personally over the last three months. Also if you want a bit more info on The Ordinary Serum Foundation, then I have a review that I will link here if you're interested in that too.
Price 
One of the things that make The Ordinary stand out from a crowd is the insanely affordable price points and the best part is they don't skimp on quality either. Everything is under £15 but the majority of products are under £10. All products are Vegan and Cruelty Free.

Just to give you an idea of pricing I've listed down below what I picked up to try.
- Vitamin C Suspension 30% in Silicone 30ml £5.80*
- Retinol 0.2% in Squalane 30ml £4.20*
- Salicylic Acid 2% Solution 30ml £4.20*
- Serum Foundation 30ml £5.70
Packaging 
The Ordinary packaging is very simple as it's more about what's inside that counts. Although I have to say I'm a big fan of the packaging as it's informative, clean and crisp looking. 

Most products come boxed and are either packaged in a tube or in a glass bottle with pipette. 
I have to admit a lot of the terminology can be confusing if you're not familiar with the ins and outs of series skincare and their benefits. However, as I mentioned above the packaging is informative and there is a great deal of additional info on the Deciem website*. Nevertheless, if you're still confused on what would be right for you etc. then I recommend popping into one of their shops or concessions if you're in London as I can definitely say the staff know their stuff! 
So What do They All Do??
Vitamin C Suspension 30% in Silicone* - Vitamin C is one of those products everyone is going crazy for right now as it's a powerful antioxidant that can help with anti-ageing, brightening and defending the skin against free radicals. However, it's important to know that some Vitamin C skincare products are not as potent as others and so they may not work as effectively on the skin. This is why I like The Ordinary version because what you see is what you get. It's potent, water-free and silicone free.

Application
It is recommended you apply this in the evening and I totally agree because of it's water and silicone free formula this has more of a silky primer texture and so it does take a little time to sink in. I usually apply this a few hours before bed if I can as it can leave a nice yellow mark on your pillowcase if it's not fully sunk in! 

Initially, upon application, this does have a slight tingly sensation, almost like you want to itch your skin but this does go away after a few minutes,  however, if you need more info on how to apply this and what to expect then there again is plenty of info on the website here. Additionally, there is also 5 other forms of vitamin C that may be better suited if this isn't for you. 

Also it's worth noting this is not to be applied near or on the eye area.

Retinol 0.2% in Squalane* - Retinol and Retinoids are extremely hot skincare property too thanks to their amazing properties that can help with fine lines, wrinkles and photo damage. Years ago both, Retinoid and Retinol could only be accessed over the counter or prescribed by dermatologists but now thanks to The Ordinary you can now access many forms of both at insanely affordable prices. 

Application
As per the instructions I have been applying this at night and switching up my routine between this and the Vitamin C Suspension (The lady in the Covent Garden shop recommended I only use this 2-3 times per week). 

The 0.2% formulation is the lowest dose within the Retinol range and is water-free with a runny serum like consistency. Furthermore, just like the Vit C Suspension, I recommend applying this a few hours before bedtime as it can leave your pillowcase a tad messy the next morning. 

It's also advised that you apply this before more weightier skincare products and after serums. As I mentioned this is the lowest dose of Retinol available and so only a mild irritation may occur, however, the higher the dose the more irritation you will experience.

I hope that makes a bit of sense with regards to Retinol and Retinoids, I am still myself only getting to grips with a lot of these more potent yet highly effective skincare ingredients. But if like me you wanted to know more about what each formula does, then you can find everything you need to know here on the Deciem Website.

Salicylic Acid 2% Solution* - Salicylic Acid is known to help with spots, blemishes and can even aid in exfoliating the skin to reveal a more clearer complexion overall if used on a regular basis. Just like all the above products, this is not to be applied near the eye area and I also think an SPF is fundamental within your skincare routine if you are using any sort of acid, although I think this should be part of anyone's everyday routine whether you are using acids or not.

Application
You can apply this either at night or in the morning but I do prefer using this at night when my skin is clean and free of make-up. For spots and blemishes, you can dab a bit on to the affected area or if you want to use this for exfoliating the skin then you can add a small amount to the face just like you would a serum. (No rinsing required). 

I had been using this for two concerns, one if I had a spot I would dab a bit on the affected area and leave it to work overnight. And secondly, I had been using this all over my chin area as I was suffering from tiny red pimples under the skin. 

Please be aware this does cause a bit of irritation to the skin and so it is advised this may not be suitable for sensitive or overexposed skin, but as with all of these types of products, I think it's best to seek advice before investing in any type of acid or highly concentrated skincare formula.

Overall Results and Thoughts
Vitamin C Suspension 30% in Silicone - Although I can't see any major differences in my skin with this one what I can say is my skin does feel more refined and brighter overall and I do love the potency of this formula, so much so that I have my second tube ready to go, but... I cannot score this yet as I need more time to fully evaluate and explore other possible formulas within the Vitamin C range.

Finally I do realise this product won't be for everyone and I have to admit I wasn't a fan of the texture and how irritating it was on the skin initially, but as I mentioned above Deciem continue to evolve and produce even more Vitamin C options to suit the customer based on feedback, it's just a case of finding the right formula and level for you personally.


Retinol 0.2% in Squalane - Out of the three products I picked up, the Retinol was the one thing I was most excited for as I am at that age now where I feel like I need to turbo boost my skincare routine. My forehead is my main concern as thanks to years of unknowingly frowning when I'm stressed I have developed a few fine lines in this area!

The 0.2% I think was a safe option to start with but for me personally, I didn't experience any of the effects I was hoping for, so while I can't give you a definite answer to whether this has worked for me I can say this has helped a tiny but with less visible frown lines and a more smoother forehead! I will keep you updated on this one as I do want to test out the 0.5% formula to see how it compares before I give this a final scoring.


Salicylic Acid 2% Solution - I love the Salicylic Acid as this is was the one where I saw the most difference. As I mentioned above I had been using this in two ways firstly to treat some under the skin pimples and bumps I had and then on various rogue spots. 

I had only used this a hand full of times when I had the pimple concern and this really worked miracles at nipping the red bumps in the bud right away. My skin actually felt smoother and the bumps reduced in size right away and after multiple uses I'm happy to report they never returned again thank goodness! 

As for the spots I use this whenever I see one appear right away. This honestly helps to reduce the redness and to get deep into the root cause of the spot stopping it right in its tracks.The trick is to catch it early.

I award the Salicylic Acid a 4.9 out of 5.

Overall for me, I feel The Ordinary has revolutionised the skincare market with up to the minute science led formulas and exceptional price points and while I believe I've only touched the surface with understanding the brand and what everything does, I do hope I've given you an insight and slight grasp on what I've learnt on the products I picked up so far.

Lastly, if you're still totally bewildered on where to start and what's right for you then I recommend a trip to one of their London stores or concessions, a good read of their website or even a quick DM or tweet would be a great place to start as from my experience Deciem have been nothing but helpful.


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