As a beauty editor I get a lot of questions from friends, like' what's the best way to treat back acne?' or 'which is the best red lipstick shade?'. When it comes to skincare questions, like 'what's the ideal skincare routine to tackle blemishes?' I find that I always end up recommending the same brand for a whole host of issues. That brand is The Ordinary.
The reason that I find myself sending my friends to The Ordinary skincare is that it's one of the best affordable skincare brands out there. It's gained an incredibly loyal customer base, because of its effective formulas that focus on specific ingredients. And because the products really do work.
Despite the fact that I am constantly trying new products out, I often find myself going back to some of my favourite products. When my skin is having a flare-up, I know which ones will be able to calm it down straight away. They're also my favourites when I travel. The packaging is compact and neat - ideal for weekends away or those pesky under 100ml rules.
There's something for every skin concern in its collection. I've rounded up my absolute favourite products that feature in my everyday skincare routine to tend to my dry, and often dehydrated, skin.
The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, £11.50
The one product that I use every single day, without fail, (bar my best facial sunscreen) is a hyaluronic acid serum. My dry skin needs it. So I use this as my first serum step, followed by a more active serum. This one has low, medium and high-molecular weight HA which means it penetrates all layers of the skin fort better hydration.
The Ordinary "Buffet", £14.30
There are so many fans of The Ordinary "The Buffet". It's definitely one its bestselling and most-loved products. The reason why it's such a hit? I love it because the combination of ingredients inside make it excellent for firming, which I find I am relying on much more now that I'm in my mid 30s.
The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5.60
When I get my period, blemishes appear out of nowhere overnight. They always settle on my chin, with a couple on my forehead. When that happens, I reach for this. The niacinamide helps with congestion and the zinc calms down any inflammation and redness.
The Ordinary AHA 30% BHA 2% Peeling Solution, £6.30
This is a fantastic product. And I'm not the only one who thinks so. This is another bestseller for the brand. This is a facial in a bottle. But be warned, it's punchy. It's similar to Drunk Elephant's Baby Facial, but a lot more affordable. It's a strong acid exfoliating treatment that I only use around once every fortnight. If you're a dab hand at acids, then go wild. But if you have sensitive skin, it's probably not for you.
The Ordinary 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil, £9
Rose Hip Seed oil is one of those wonder products that I always keep to hand in my beauty cupboard. If I've gone a little too heavy with my acid treatments or when the really cold Winter weather sets in and my skin starts to suffer, this is what I opt for. I use it mostly at night before bed as the last step. It's super nourishing and helps restore skin.
The Ordinary Lactic Acid 10% + HA, £6.90
When my skin is dehydrated (I know, because I get a lot of creasing and tightness on my forehead) I use lactic acid. It's a bigger molecule than glycolic acid so it really gets to work at refining the surface of my skin. This allows my hydrating products to work at all levels.
The Ordinary Vitmain C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%, £6
I couldn't do a list of favourite Ordinary products and not include one of its Vitamin Cs. This is my go-to. I suffer from pigmentation on my cheeks and across my nose. I use this at night on alternate days to my retinol and it helps even out dark spots and pigmentation.
Give these a try, I promise you won't be disappointed.
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Katie Thomas is the Senior Beauty Editor at Marie Claire UK. With over 10 years of experience on women's luxury lifestyle titles, she covers everything from the best beauty looks from the red carpet and stand out trends from the catwalk, to colonic irrigation and to the best mascaras on the market. She started her career on fashion desks across the industry - from The Telegraph to Brides - but found her calling in the Tatler beauty department. From there she moved to Instyle, before joining the Marie Claire digital team in 2018. She’s made it her own personal mission to find the best concealer in the world to cover her tenacious dark circles. She’s obsessed with skincare that makes her skin bouncy and glowy, low-maintenance hair that doesn’t require brushing and a cracking good manicure. Oh and she wears more jewellery than the Queen.
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