One mistake made by many when they embark on a skincare journey is setting up unrealistic expectations for the skincare products we use and for our skin to meet. The blame does not lie solely with us, as the results we anticipate are primarily dictated by the way things are marketed to us.
If you were to walk into your local beauty retailer and see a new spot treatment advertised as the next best thing for fading hyperpigmentation at record speed, you might believe it enough to purchase the product, only to possibly be let down when it doesn’t do what’s advertised on the tin.
You’re not at fault. You believed the claims made by a reputable company, which is perfectly normal since these companies have set themselves up as certified industry professionals who know the ins and outs of skincare.
So how do you avoid the consequences of unrealistic expectations from skincare products and save yourself the disappointment and wasted funds? Here are some tips.
The results we anticipate are dictated by the way things are marketed to us. So how do we avoid the consequences of unrealistic expectations from skincare products?
Do Your Research
Always make sure to put in the time to research any products on your wish list and determine if they’re worth the purchase. Don’t get sucked in solely by quippy marketing, flashy packaging, and influencer endorsements. Look up the list of ingredients and pay special attention to the actives, the real stars of the show.
For instance, the SkinCeuticals H.A. Intensifier serum, which I reviewed not too long ago, promises advanced hydration thanks to its 1.3% hyaluronic acid. This assertion is one that tracks, as it is well known that hyaluronic acid is one of the best choices for anyone seeking to hydrate their skin since it can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water.
Find Ingredients For Your Skin Issues
There’s also the question of whether the products you choose are suited to the problems you want to tackle. Basically, choose skincare products based on how closely the benefits of their active ingredients match the goals you’re trying to meet.
If you’re in need of acne control, you should look out for products that heavily feature centella asiatica, benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and aloe to treat and calm your skin. These ingredients work better for acne than, say, ceramides, which, while beneficial to the healing process, don’t have as much impact on acne as the aforementioned ingredients. Having realistic expectations in this sense means understanding how different ingredients work for various skin issues and picking the right skincare combination for your objectives. Long story short, don’t purchase a peptide serum expecting great results for your acne.
Level Up as Needed
Another thing to consider is how powerful some ingredients are in comparison to others that impart the same benefits. Think about, for instance, using niacinamide products to target hyperpigmentation and other signs of an uneven skin tone. Yes, this ingredient will lighten dark spots to a certain extent, but the results you get won’t be as dramatic as when you use vitamin C or an alpha hydroxy acid for the same purpose.
So if you’ve been buying multiples of the same brightening spot treatment or serum without any visible results, it might not be that the product itself is a dud, but just that there are limits to how much plant extracts and synthetically derived vitamins can do compared to acids.
Have Some Patience
In addition to all the other factors, it’s important to give your skin time to adjust to the changes that are being made, for the products you’ve introduced to begin to work, and for your skin to go through its natural turnover cycle to reveal the new layer of healthier skin. Some products, like cleansers, can yield immediate results, such as skin that is visibly less stripped and dehydrated by harsh surfactants. Others, like exfoliants and serums, can take anywhere upwards of two weeks.
Consistency and patience are key. The journey towards healthier skin is more like a leisurely walk than a sprint. Think of it as the building blocks of a lifelong habit, rather than a quick fix, and focus on nourishing your skin rather than on aesthetics.
Have you ever been disappointed by unrealistic expectations from a skincare product? What was it and what happened?