I am often asked which cosmetic products are the best to buy. It is a bit of a tough question because there both great products and junk products in every brand.
My standard answer has always been: if you find a product that works well for you – regardless of price point or brand – then that is the best product for you to buy. It is different for every person.
There are however, some products that are completely useless all the time and a great way to waste hard earned money:
1. Eye Cream – this is the greatest marketing coup ever achieved by the cosmetics industry. There is absolutely no research showing the eye area requires a different type of moisturizer than the rest of the face. In fact most eye creams are the exact same formula as the face cream to which they accompany.
2. Toners – mostly water – sometimes alcohol. These products do not in any way enhance the benefit of good skincare. If you apply moisturizer to damp skin (just out of the shower) the trans-dermal migration is identical to that when using a toner. As for the claims toners regulate the pH of the skin, I say just buy a good cleanser that will not disrupt the pH in the first place.
3. Eye Make Up Remover – a well formulated cleanser will do the exact same job and mL for mL will offer better value for the money. Eye makeup removers are basically light weight cleansing waters which come in small bottles and cost way too much for what you actually get.
There are many more useless products and many more are launched each day, but these three are heavily promoted, so don’t fall victim to wasting your cash on them.
@jakewilton09 contacted me to ask: “What is a good moisturizer?”
While it seems to be a fairly simple question, the answer is a little more complex than just naming a brand of skin care to use. There are a lot of variables to consider when deciding on a skin care program:
It is always best to seek the advice of either a cosmetic dermatologist or a paramedical aesthetician if you are unsure of your most specific needs.
There are, however, some basic principles to remember regardless of the variables:
1. Cleansing – a cleanser is the most important part of a skin care program. Cleansers should always be soap free and pH balanced between 6 and 6.5. The cleanser should be used every evening and should never make the skin feel tight or dry.
2. Toners are unnecessary – toners are mostly water (90%) and offer no real benefit to the skin. They feel great and are pleasant to use but for the cost, they really do not enhance the overall benefits of skin care products.
3. Moisturizer – a well made moisturizer can be used day and night. There is no need for separate products.
4. Extras are not required – additional items like serums, eye creams, neck creams and the like are all superfluous products designed to help you spend extra money. There is no research showing the eye area requires a different type of cream than the rest of the face.
5. Sunscreen – a good sunscreen is vital to the overall health of the skin.
6. Well formulated skincare should always be free from potential irritants (fragrance, dyes, drying alcohols, irritating plant extracts) and occlusive ingredients (mineral oil and petroleum based ingredients)."
I received a lot of email about my latest Byte Size TV segment explaining sun safety and how to protect your kids from the summer sun.
So for all who have been asking — and those who have not yet but are planning — here are my top picks for kid and family friendly sunscreens in no particular order.
1. Green Beaver Sunscreen SPF 30 $19.99 for 90 mL — available at health food stores and natural product stores online.
21% zinc oxide – so safe in fact it is perfect for toddlers, babies (older than 6 months) and the whole family. Great on dry skin and completely transparent with no white film.
2. Badger SPF 30+ Sunscreen $19.99 for 87 mL — available at health food stores and natural product stores online.
This sunscreen starts working as soon as it is applied. Most sunscreens take up to 30-minutes to become effective after application, not so with Badger. This sunscreen stays put even when working out (no dripping in the eyes) and continues to work in the water for up to 40 minutes.
3. GM Collin SPF 30 High Protection Cream $39 for 120 mL — available only at spas and dermatologist offices
This sunscreen is a great addition to regular skin care programs and is perfect for combining with foundations, moisturizers and for wearing as an alternative to expensive face creams.
I stock all three of these sunscreens in my own home and use all of them regularly. They certainly meet my criteria for quality products and they perform very well.