Why is the product working better on her skin?

It’s common knowledge that we don’t get the same results from using similar products even within the same age group and usually, it’s explained on the basis of differences in skin physiology or body chemistry. Additionally, because skin is a dynamic system whose condition and properties depend on various factors, so its ability to absorb the skin care products can vary greatly. That is why a perfume that smells sweet on you can smell totally different on someone else for example. However, there are products that are developed for all skin types and yet, still don’t work for some.  Why is that so and can we try to bring our skin up to par for products to work better on it?  

1. Are you cleaning your skin thoroughly?
This is the most basic in terms of skin care and yet, some of us are not doing it right. If you’re always using lots of makeup, then it’s important to ensure your face is thoroughly cleanse or even the most expensive skin care product is not going to work so well. So someone who takes time to carefully remove their makeup and cleanse their face thoroughly is definitely going to reap better benefits from using the same products vs one who is nonchalant about this basic step. As a rule of thumb, I really recommend everyone to double cleanse.

2. Are you having excessive dead skin buildup?
The dead cells on our skin are supposed to shed naturally over a period of time, but some people may find theirs harder to shed off completely and over time, these result in a buildup, causing one’s skin tone to look ashy and dull. In this case, skin care products may not work as well, especially if they contain active ingredients that are supposed to work beneath the epidermis. As such, those with excessive dead skin buildup will wonder why the cream works for others but not them. Even powder would not adhere that well and will look patchy or cakey. The answer could lie in the fact that they’ve not been exfoliating their skin well enough. Hence, it’s good to exfoliate our skin once a week so as to allow your skin to absorb moisture and for products to work more effectively.

3. Are you applying your product correctly?
I noticed that some products these days come with detailed application instructions or even a demo. Some toners are not meant to be wiped on by cotton wool but patted into the skin by hand. Then there are the face sculpting creams where you need to follow a certain method to ensure that you’ll get the desired V-shaped contour. You may also be wondering why the eye cream works better for your friend but perhaps you have not considered that your friend actually took the trouble to tap the cream into the eye area? Even results from a basic moisturizer will differ when you apply it on completely dry skin or slightly damp skin; the latter being encouraged because most ingredients penetrate better when they’re dissolved. And in the past, we might have just spritz on a face mist thinking that it will help to hydrate our skin? Well, that only refreshes but will eventually make your skin feel drier and perhaps secrete more oil and subsequently causing your makeup to streak. The trick is really to spritz and then use a tissue paper to pat off the water and not leave the water to evaporate from the skin.

4. Are you applying your products at the right time?
Apart from the moist factor, most skin care products also work better when the skin is warm so the best time to apply skin care products is really after a warm bath. If you’re using products with active ingredients such as vitamin C, then it’s very important to consider the time you’re applying the products. Some of these products may suggest that you can apply it both day and night but that is not true as the benefits of such active ingredients can get “cancelled out” by sun exposure. Hence, you might then start to wonder why the product is not working for you when everyone else is raving about it. Actually in the day, all you need is to apply a moisturizer with SPF. You can leave the serums and hydrating creams for night usage as skin cell renewal rates is really higher at night than during the day. So the mantra should be – protect your skin during the day and renew it during the night.

5. Are you skipping an important skin care routine?
One important factor that explains why products work better for others and not you could lie in the fact that you may not be protecting your skin well enough. Perhaps you are not protecting your skin effectively against free radical damage while your girlfriend is taking all the right precautions through her other skin care products as well as her diet? As a result, the product may have to take a longer while to work on your skin while it is already yielding fantastic results on your girlfriend.

Obviously, there are other reasons contributing to why products may work better on others and those will largely have to do with their lifestyle. However, if you have such a problem, then you may want to first start off by examining your own skin care routine based on the five I’ve listed and find out if you’re doing something wrong to sabotage your own efforts.

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  1. Raelynn says:

    I have to agree with the exfoliation part and certain actives to be used only at night. But some serums still have to be used in the day IMO, esp if it contains ingredients that help to deliver moisture to the skin to help the day mooaturizer absorb better. About removing makeup, I find it quite bad for skin if you have to wipe makeup and wipe toner

  2. pf1123 says:

    What is wipe makeup and wipe toner?

  3. sesame says:

    I also have the same question as PF about the makeup and toner. Don’t quite understand that.

    As for the serum, yes, you’re right too. If you can find one that delivers extra moisture, that’s good. Or one with goodies like the various oils…also very good. Speaking of which, I use the anti-aging oil with many different types of oils underneath my sunscreen so I guess it’s quite a luxe. ?

  4. Raelynn says:

    i apologise for the abrupt ending, i was caught in the rain. lol. i meant using cotton puffs to wipe cleansing milks to remove makeup and sunblock, and using cotton puffs again to wipe the toner. doing this seems to be causing quite a bit of stress on my skin’s surface. i’m still trying to find a cheap and effective makeup remover that i can wash-off the chanel sunblock and makeup with…

  5. Toxic Beauty says:

    You made some great points, Sesame! I always wondered why the same skin cream someone was raving about on a beauty blog didn’t give me quite the same results. Ive been on a diet plan where I can’t even use oils, so I so look forward to reintroducing them into my skin care plan. I am starting to see little lines creeping in under my eyes…

  6. pf1123 says:

    I see! Indeed…I would imagine that it can be stress causing, especially for blemish/very dry skin and the eye area.

    Recently I found Majolica Majorca’s new eye makeup remover. Gel-wash off type. Have not tried yet though.

    For me, the wipe off with toner is essential because its the last step to my cleansing routine at night.

    How about cleansing oil? Just need to emulsify to remove makeup. If you find the cheap and effective makeup remover, let us know too. I need to find it for the Dior sunblock too!

  7. sesame says:

    Oil is great for the fine lines under the eyes but they don’t really get rid of them totally though…

  8. sesame says:

    When I was using cleansing milk, I use cotton wool to wipe off excess eye makeup but otherwise, was using my bare hands to wash off the rest of the face and then rinsed with water followed by a foaming gel.

  9. tam says:

    I know this may totally be out of topic, but about 2 days ago, I scratched my cheek with my mechanical pencil, and since then I had some of the led from the pencil stuck inside of my skin? I tried removing with a q-tip (it just stayed there on my skin ), I didn’t want to pick at it since it might become a scar.

    But it didn’t go in so far, ( its like a dot looks sort of a freckle)lol I mean should I just leave it? Haha, I just need someone else’s thought on this.

  10. sesame says:

    It is not possible to remove it yourself, perhaps a doctor can advice. My husband has one in his palm since he was 10 years old and it’s just there, not doing any harm, not painful but it’s slightly dark. So I guess that’s what’s happening to your face.

  11. zzzmadison says:

    just wondering if i don’t apply makeup but only sunblock + concealer, do you think there is a need to double-cleanse?

  12. sesame says:

    You should still double cleanse at the end of the day because most sunblock tends to clog pores if they’re not well cleansed.

  13. Raelynn says:

    yes, affirmative yes. what i’ve realised is that usually makeup comes off fairly easily (if u’re not using water proof makeup), it’s the sunblock that sticks well to the skin (desirable since it’s supposed to protect the skin, just that u’ll have to find a suitable remover).

  14. Raelynn says:

    pf1123: interesting… is the makeup remover a big or small bottle/tube? i’m a little worried/skeptical of gel types because LRP fluid claims to be a gel type which is supposed to remove makeup and sunblock by using just the fingertips, but it didnt work effectively unless i use it like a cleansing milk with cotton puffs. in terms of cleansing oils.. i’ve tried a few, aesop’s parsley cleansing oil didnt remove the sunblock, eye makeup remover is essentially just grapeseed oil and i ran out of aesop cleansers to wash it off. i tried using gow’s heather cleanser but it took quite a few washes which made my skin feel uncomfortable. i would assume that my old aesop cleanser had it still been around would be able to wash it off since it’s the same brand, they would make sure it can work together. bobbi brown’s cleansing oil was interesting but i didnt feel that the price was fair enough. so far the best combi that i’ve had was to use gow’s cleansing oil and rose clay cleanser together. washed off the chanel sunblock like a breeze, should work for dior’s sunblock too.

    sesame: i think i’m still trying to look for a pair of cleansing milk and foaming gel that can work together… which seems to be quite a tedious path because some foaming gels can wash off the milk but end up being too strong for the skin and cause the tight/dry feel.

  15. sesame says:

    Raelynn: you wanna give the BODS one a try? A reader of mine told me she uses both the cleansing milk and the cleansing gel and works great on her. I’ve only tried their cleansing gel and I rather like it. No tight, drying feeling for sure and very gentle.

  16. pf1123 says:

    Its a medium size tube called Majolica Majorca Eyes Reset Gel Eyemakeup Remover. I use the mascara which is very difficult to remove. So I think this should work very well. Its only S$9.90 at Watsons.

    Oh before I go on, I must disclaim that I’m not a organic/natural beauty product person. hehe… ?

    Have you tried Paul & Joe Light Cleansing Milk? Its a very light gel texture cleansing milk and goes on to the face and become near watery texture. I use a tissue to wipe off. Its quite cheap too. Ummmm…think its 250ml (or maybe 300ml?) a bottle for S$26 when its on sale.

    The Paul & Joe foaming facial wash is very nice too. Its creamy but works up to a nice lather easily with a red bean size dollop. Non drying. I use this with cleansing oil or Mandom Express makeup remover…very nice. Quite a treat to smell the light orange flower scent. But some ppl might not like any fragrance at all to be in their skin care.

  17. Raelynn says:

    i was at watsons today, and saw that DHC’s cleansing oil, while simple with short ingredients, costs 40 dollars. faint.

    sesame: Bod.. almost forgot about that brand! maybe i should try a’kin’s cleanser too. Bod’s cleansing milk if their price is reasonable i might give it a try…

    pf1123: i havent tried Paul and Joe products before.. i realise that in terms of cleansing milk and gel, it’s hard to find truly natural ones at a reasonable price.. so i might just give it a try. red bean size dollop!? red bean or kidney bean???

  18. pf1123 says:

    Red bean size is enough. Confirm. Its a creamy wash with much foaming once lathered up.

    I can’t imagine using a kidney bean size. I would never feel clean enough if I use so much.

    But then again, I’m the type that just use 1 pump for cleansing oil/ 2 pumps for Mandom Express makeup remover. 1 tub of 50g night cream last me almost 1 year. Perhaps your usage might vary. ?

  19. pf1123 says:

    Yes, I agree with Raelynn. I find that I break out immediately the next day if I don’t double cleanse although I only wore sunblock for the day.

  20. sesame says:

    PF: what sunscreen are you using currently? Is it still LRP? You might have mentioned but I’ve forgotten. My hub used LRP for his outdoor activities and he thinks it’s clogging his pores (body) but he doesn’t double cleanse of course.

  21. pf1123 says:

    Nope. I am using Nivea Light Face Veil / Australian Cancer Council’s Day Wear Face Sunscreen. Both of which I bought in Australia.

    I still use my Diorsnow on and off but as it is rather thick and drying, I tend to use it when I have outdoor activities and no makeup.

  22. pf1123 says:

    Oh, after the LRP, I switched to Vichy’s because they have a new formula.

    I can’t stay loyal. There’s too many sunscreen to try. Especially since I had a trip to Sydney and got very affordable and good sunscreen.

    I think its quite possible that LRP’s sunscreen is (body) pores clogging. Perhaps he uses a waterproof formula?

    While I was baking under the Italian sun last month, I just slather the Australian Cancer Council’s Day Wear Face Sunscreen all over. Its cheap…and light to just bring 1 tube of sunscreen instead of separate for face and for body. But I still tanned. ?

  23. sesame says:

    PF: maybe the sun was too strong or the active ingredients are too low.

  24. pf1123 says:

    Actually, I realised that I did not re-apply frequent enough. ?

  25. sesame says:

    I see…I’m so scared of the sun that if I head out for a play say for a few hours, I’ll reapply every half an hour. Very KS! ?

  26. Raelynn says:

    but is the cancer council days sunscreen a physical or chemical? do physical sunblocks still have to reapplied as frequently??

    sesame: wahhhh every half hour. my boyfriend would scream at me and throw my sunscreen away. hahahahah.

  27. pf1123 says:

    Good question, Raelynn!

    I have no idea and didn’t do any in depth study into the ingredients before I throw the box away. I vaguely remember that the ingredient list is quite short. I think it is a chemical sunblock.

    Its had aloe vera in it and is moisturising. In fact, while I was in London, I was breaking out because I have my moisturiser and the sunblock on together. Something that happens when I over-moisturise. Even in a dry place such as London. Once I do away with the moisturiser, its all fine and dandy!

    So, I don’t think it contains enough zinc oxide to be worthy of a physical sunblock since its not drying on my skin. All that assuming it uses zinc oxide as physical blocker.

    Yar lah….when I was in London, the sky was often overcast…so I just do as per usual. Apply sunblock only once before I go out. But the blazing Italian sun…gosh…I started to re-apply only when I’m burning a little. Regret!

  28. sesame says:

    Raelynn: I am really being KS! Should be every 2 hours but I was so worried the sunblock got washed off with the water. ?

    And if I remember correctly, more important to reapply chemical based sunscreens often. The physical ons need to be reapplied after you come into contact with water.

  29. anusha says:

    love love love this post..thanks

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