I have a confession to make – I have too many skincare products. As a matter of fact my issue goes beyond having too many skincare products. I’ll admit it – I’m a skincare product hoarder. Not only do I always want to try something new, I am willing to try almost any skincare product that someone gives me.
At the moment my small bathroom holds the following products: two full size bottles of two different skincare cleansers (daytime and nighttime cleansers), a salicylic acid toner, two different body moisturizers (one with spf, one without spf), a benzoyl peroxide lotion, three different antioxidant serums, two different facial sunscreens (a lotion and a powder), an exfoliating foot lotion, two different facial moisturizers, one eye cream, jojoba oil to remove eye make-up and another eye make-up remover, a skin cleansing oil to remove make-up, and six or seven different sample sizes of skincare products including facial cleansers, facial scrubs, sunscreens, and a facial lotion.
I bet what I have just admitted to having in my bathroom sounds familiar to many of my readers. It is quite normal for me to have clients who tell me that they change their skincare products as often as they change their clothes. As an esthetician I do get offered samples of skincare lines, and since I’ll try pretty much try anything once on my face I take them home and try them.
But is it right to have so many products? Or is it overkill? In my case I am willing to admit that it is a bit of an overkill to have as many products as I have. In my defense, I have duplicates of a lot of products (like my two facial moisturizers) because I was able to get a really good price on them and didn’t want to miss the discount. I know that any unopened product I have will be fine for a year or more as long as I keep the product sealed. A lot of the samples I receive I don’t use in the end. I guess sometimes it is just best to give samples away to someone who will actually use them. And in my quest to find the best exfoliating product I’ve waylaid a product that cost me plenty of money and now should be thrown out (I noticed that it had changed colors). That was simply money down the drain.
There are some risks involved with changing your skincare products frequently. First, one of the biggest risk is actually to your wallet since you might end up discarding a product after only a few uses. If you switch products a lot you are spending a lot of money without probably getting real results.
This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t try new skincare products if you feel like it, but I suggest researching and taking time to really consider before you purchase the newest skincare product on the market. Newest doesn’t mean best. The gold standard for topical anti-aging products is Retin-A and that has been for about 30 years. No one has yet to find an anti-aging product that works as effectively as Retin-A so why chase after every new product that claims to work as well as Retin-A? It would take years of research and trials to really see if any new product works as well as Retin-A. So if a skincare product claims to do what Retin-A does I would definitely say to stay clear and save your money. See what the feedback on the product is a year after it comes on the market. Look for feedback both from consumers (on websites like Sephora and Allure) and from doctors or other informed individuals as well (Dr. Leslie Baumann’s Skin Type Solutions website has a ton of information on it or look it up on Beautypedia).
So let’s say money is no object and you can afford to try (and have the space to store) every skincare product your heart desires be sure to err on the side of caution nonetheless. If you pile on your skincare products or combine them recklessly you can irritate your skin and cause yourself more harm than good. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t or can’t change your skincare products but be sure to look at your entire skincare routine before adding new products. Just because a celebrity recommended skincare product doesn’t mean that the product is right for you. A little bit of self-control and research can help you find the right products for you in the end.
Lastly, please remember that using a new skincare product for a week and expecting great changes and results in how your skin looks is futile. You need to give a new skincare regime or product approximately three months of daily use before you can determine if the products work as they claim to. If you constantly run after the newest products and switch products repeatedly you will never see a real difference in how your skin looks.
Now having said all of the above about skincare products I have to admit that I am also a make-up product hoarder. The number of eye shadows that I own is simply ridiculous. But unlike with skincare products I absolutely encourage experimentation when it comes to make-up products. Whenever I want to try a new lip gloss or eye shadow color I head over to my neighborhood Target or Ulta and buy the color I want to try from one of the cheap make-up lines (for example NYX, NYC, or E.l.f.). That way I fulfill my desire to try something new or to see how the trendiest colors look on me with minimal investment. This is how I found out, for example, that I should never, ever wear deep purple eyeshadow (I looked like someone punched me) but that lilac eye shadow looks nice on me.
So I guess the moral of this post is as follows: think before you leap. Before you invest your money in skincare products invest some thought as well, and once you invest in new products give them time to work before moving on to the next big thing.