Curated | The Ordinary

6/29/2017 11:10:00 am
The Ordinary has taken the skincare world a little aback – after years of the purest active ingredients only being available in complex, expensive formulas and brands, single active ingredients are now available to the everyday skincare aficionado. Having used the brand every day for a good few months now, here is my curation of my top picks. Let’s start with my skin type – pretty clear, very oily, and prone to scarring and discolouration, so my main focus is on balancing the skin and reducing any marks that may have cropped up.

High-Adherence Silicone Primer
Let’s cut straight to the good bit – I love this stuff. Silicones and me are not the best of buddies, but this doesn’t feel like a silicone feels, it reminds me of a gel-cream texture, that dries down from fairly wet to fairly matte on the skin. I have used, and will continue to use this every day as it makes such a difference to the longevity of the cosmetic products on my face. Yes, I still get oily – oily gals don’t just dry up overnight – but it takes longer, and the amount of oils that permeate my make-up are less and can be easily blotted away with a tissue, often without the need of a powder touch-up throughout the day. I infinitely prefer this to the High-Spreadability Fluid Primer, which felt more like your traditional silicone product, and slipped straight off my skin (probably perfect for gliding over drier complexions!).

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
Niacinamide – or Vitamin B3 – has long be touted for the brightening effect it has on skin, but the magic of this particular formula is it’s amalgamation with zinc to allow the skin to rebalance itself, whilst reducing blemishes and congestion. I bought this specifically for its brightening properties, only to notice quite accidentally (didn’t read the description thoroughly on the website) that extremely oily skin seems to be much more matte when I apply this.

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
I have loved and used peels since about the age of 22, mainly carried out by a professional, mainly a high percentage of glycolic – this at home version uses a mixture of AHAs and BHAs, described by the brand as a 10-Minute Exfoliating Facial. This potent carmine-coloured mixture – with AHAs to work on the topmost layer of the skin, and BHAs to work within the pores – uses a two-pronged exfoliation technique in one marvellous concoction to help brighten and clear the skin. Now, my skin is pretty hardy, fairly used to being experimented on, and definitely a graduate of the peel club. However, this stuff had a tingly, slightly uncomfortable feeling on the surface of my skin that I haven’t felt in quite some time. I wafted a piece of paper over my face to fan myself and grit my teeth; after the recommended 10 minutes I used a flannel to remove it, and lo and behold, smooth, soft, more radiant skin. This has become a staple in my skincare routine, and I can use it multiple times a week. Top tip – apply to dry skin for less of an uncomfortable stinging feeling and fan, fan, fan!

Advanced Retinoid 2%
Now, I love a retinol – as an ingredient I tend to see the fastest results from retinols, and love the effect they have on my skin, however the formula and feel can often be problematic. Packaged in a brown dropper-bottle, this comes out as a milky serum, easy to apply and soft on the skin. The website claims “This formulation combines two forms of next-generation retinoid actives in a combined concentration of 2% by weight” which I have no idea how true this is, but I can tell you the product works! Used at night – no need to use in the daytime – skin looks visibly younger in the morning. I can’t give you specifics, but there is a general luminescence and youthfulness to the complexion. The formula is gentle, doesn’t cause peeling on my skin as many others have, and adheres to the theory of low and slow when it comes to Vitamin A products. I will be repurchasing!

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5
Holding up to 1000 times its weight in water, Hyaluronic acid occurs naturally in the body and acts as a hydrator. A clear, sticky feeling serum, this is not one of those products that you realise is having an effect on the skin, until you stop using it! I use this even on my oily visage in the hopes of keeping dehydration at bay!

Salicylic Acid 2% Solution
A teeny tiny, unassuming pipette, this helps exfoliate the inside walls of pores to fight the appearance of blemishes and for better visible skin clarity with 2% Salicylic Acid and Witch Hazel. I specifically use this on any areas of congestion, or any spots that may crop up, and it seems to take them down a treat. Although tiny, this bottle packs a punch, and should last a little lifetime due to the small amount you need to use.