Back in 2017, another Beauties’ collaborator wrote an article on her experience visiting the Deciem Store in Toronto and made a review of a few of their products. Fast forward 4 years and I’m now a huge fan of the brand as well. Whenever someone asks me about my skin care routine I get utterly excited and start babbling about The Ordinary products. DECIEM, the mother brand, has always had a controversial philosophy and it’s known for its No B.S. approach to skin care and other hygiene products. They are intensely focused on ingredients, percentages, and formulations; which I really appreciate.
The Ordinary’s introduction was revolutionary amongst other skin care brands, thanks to its democratic approach to skin care. It is no secret that in the cosmetics’ industry, profit margins are simply insane. The Ordinary offers high quality ingredients at an extremely low point price (between $8-$20 CAD). They’ve achieved this mainly thanks to their massive manufacturing capabilities, the elimination of intermediaries and distributors, and the almost nonexistent efforts in advertising. In this article I will give you my personal opinion on the products that I’ve tried*, as well as what I like and dislike about this popular brand.
Crédit Photo : Lucía Ortega @Luuortt
*The products I have purchased from DECIEM have been selected considering my needs, reviews from friends, customers, and vloggers who are estheticians.
100% Marula Oil
This could possibly be my favorite product ever. I purchased it to use as a hair serum, but ended up using it as a main component in my skin care routine. The formulation has one ingredient: Organic Marula Oil. I apply it every single night mixed with my face cream in turn, and apply it on my face and neck. I do get a shiny look, but my face looks and feels freaking amazing in the mornings.
This serum had amazing reviews all over the internet, and since I love serums more than face creams, I did my research on peptides and decided to give it a try. Peptides are short chains of amino acids that when applied to the skin they help to hold water which makes them amazing humectants. It has also been studied that they help reduce fine lines and since I was looking to incorporate anti-aging agents into my routine, this was the perfect way to start.
“... it combines a comprehensive array of studied technologies to target multiple signs of aging at once.“
I apply it day and night before my moisturizer. It focuses on holding hydration deep in the skin. Right away what I liked the most was its lightweight texture -in a watery way more than an oily way-. It has no fragrance and it absorbs very quickly into the skin... BONUS POINTS! So far, I haven’t seen any noticeable changes, which is not a bad thing considering my skin is very well off. I did notice that it feels a bit tight if I don’t apply any oil or moisturizer after, but other than that I think it’s OK. What I want is for a routine that feeds my skin with what it needs at my age -I’m 28 years old- and that's what I'm getting from this serum.
Crédit Photo : Lucía Ortega @Luuortt
Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA
I always have face cream in my skin care routine because I like mixing it with serums, or oils so that is easy to apply. In this case, this moisturizer did the trick, it was not greasy or heavy and it absorbed quickly into the skin. To be quite honest, I prefer a moisturizer that feels more on the jelly side rather than the creamy side, but that’s just my personal choice.
Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution
Glycolic Acid is one of the most powerful chemical exfoliants that work to dissolve dead skin cells. Meaning that most skins can be very sensitive to it as it tends to be irritating. Nevertheless, this is one of my favorite products. I use it on my face once every two weeks before my night skin routine as a mild cleanser. I never really wash my face with products except to clean up makeup, so using this toning solution gives me the feeling that I have a brand new skin layer ever couple of weeks.
Mainly I use the glycolic acid toning solution to exfoliate body areas where I want to decrease the appearance of scars. I apply it after the shower, directly in my bikini area, my legs, and sometimes my belly. In my opinion, it has done a fantastic job of clearing out my legs from marks.
Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion
Retinol and retinoids are “royal ingredients” when it comes to active ingredients that help with anti-aging. It’s claimed to reduce wrinkles, leaving the skin smoother and bouncier. One of the ways it does this is by inhibiting collagen from breaking down and also promoting its production. There are some side effects to retinol such as skin flaking and irritation, which is why I was scared of trying it at first.
Granactive retinoid is “a highly-advanced form of retinoid that offers a better effect against signs of aging than retinol...without the irritation associated with retinoids (including retinol).” (The Ordinary website) I’m not going to lie, the first week after using it my skin did feel a little bit irritated and I panicked. After some MORE research, I decided to only apply it once or twice a week. My skin does look plumper and brighter and I really like the oily texture because it feels very moisturizing to my skin. I will keep on using it and I recommend it as a product you must have in your skin care routine.
Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG
After reading the mixed reviews for this product, I decided to purchase because: 1. The price is pretty budget-friendly and I had an extra 30% off, and 2. Because I needed something that reduces puffiness in the morning. This product claims to reduce pigmentation under the eyes and puffiness, but I’m sad to report that this product did none of the above. I disliked the heavy jelly-like texture that leaves a white cast around the dropper and when applied under the eyes it feels like dry glue. It does not mix well with other products and people will notice if you cried (been there).
Hyaluronic Acid is a great humectant because it absorbs water from the air into our skin. Originally I wanted to incorporate HA into my routine, but after reading a whole lot of reviews I was more inclined to try this product first.
Marine Hyaluronics brings together lightweight marine-derived water reservoirs that attract and hold water like hyaluronic acid (HA) but are lighter than HA in texture and feel. (The Ordinary website) All marine derivatives in Marine Hyaluronics are sourced sustainably. Wouhou!!
The texture of this product is extremely runny and watery. It might be complicated to apply at first, but once you learn that it’s easier to apply a few drops directly into your face, it’s easier. I’ve noticed how right after absorption, my skin feels super plump and moist, yes moist like a banana bread. This is one product that I know I will repurchase in the future.
What I don’t like about The Ordinary:
1. They claim to be completely fragrance free, although I’ve found that a couple of their products do have a certain kind of fragrant component. I rather stray away from those.
2. As a skin care routine brand, their products work more as supplements than as fully rounded products. You have to pick and choose the benefits you are looking, which means you could end up purchasing several products that you could've found in one product that contains many active ingredients.
Crédit Photo : Lucía Ortega @Luuortt
Why I love The Ordinary and why I keep on purchasing from them:
1. They’re extremely ingredient conscious and formulate products in the safest way possible.
2. They place their efforts where I can appreciate it: E-DU-CA-TION. The website might be a nightmare for some, but for me, it’s gold information on the things that really matter.
3. Glass packaging and minimalistic presentation. Plastic can be recycled up to three times, whereas glass can be recycled ‘till the end of times. And for the minimalistic approach, I personally like the simplicity and find it more aesthetically pleasing.
4. Brand's ethics that stray away from consumerism. They are invested in guiding people to make smart, conscious decisions, and I’m all for that.
5. Most importantly, The Ordinary sets itself apart from the companies that try to sell you miracle solutions at incredibly high prices. They just flat out put themselves out there and offer the highest technology in active ingredients the most sustainable way possible.
Should you have any concerns or questions about the effect of some of the ingredients named in the article, do not hesitate to take a free appointment for a skin consultation at the Lab. Honest and practical advice, just like your online best friend who is also a beauty expert! ;)