Everything you need to know about The Ordinary

The beauty brand worth the buzz

Any beauty junkie worth their salt will have heard about The Ordinary. It’s the fastest growing beauty brand on ASOS for a start and sells one product every 5.5 SECONDS! Because everything from their sell-out skincare to #1 foundation is totally affordable and delivers big results.

But, some of the skincare from The Ordinary can be a bit confusing to anyone without a chemistry degree. So, to make sure you’re really able to get the most outta their products, we thought we’d give you a break down of what everything does, and what YOU need!

What The Ordinary products should you be using?

If you’ve got persistent acne

In the AM: Use Salicylic Acid 2% Solution, £3.90 with Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5

Salicylic Acid 2% Solution: This helps to exfoliate the inside walls of your pores to help minimise blemishes. It also contains witch hazel to keep skin clear and super clean.

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%: This is a high-strength vitamin that helps to reduce the appearance of spots and congestion. It also contains ingredients that help to balance sebum.

In the PM: Retinol 1%, £5.80

Retinol 1%: This contains 1% pure Retinol, which can reduce the appearances of fine lines, of photo damage and of general skin ageing. However because this is strong, it’s advised to dilute it with other creams at the start phase to reduce irritation. Plus don’t forget to wear an SPF after!

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(4/5) 🧬 The Ordinary Amino Acids + B5 offers non-greasy hydration support for the maintenance of healthy skin. This product helps to enhance barrier support, elasticity, as well as surface and below-surface hydration while imparting soothing effects.⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ 💧The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 is a multi-depth hydration support serum that contains 3 forms of hyaluronic acid with varying molecular weights, alongside Vitamin B5, for multi-depth hydration and enhancement of the look of plump skin. ⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ 🐠 The Ordinary Marine Hyaluronics is a lightweight formula containing marine-derived water reservoirs (exopolysaccharides from skin-friendly marine bacteria, Hawaiian red algae, glycoproteins from Antarctic marine sources, and micro-filtered blue-green algae) that attract and hold water, enhancing skin hydration. In comparison to the HA 2% + B5, this formula has a lower viscosity.

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If you’ve got blemishes or congestion

In the AM: Use Salicylic Acid 2% Solution, £3.90 with Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5 (same as above)

In the PM: Salicylic Acid 2% Solution, £3.90 with Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%, £5.50

Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%: This brightens skin tone and skin texture. Great for bringing back radiance to dull, blemish prone skin.

Twice per week: AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, £6.30

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution: This is a 10 minute exfoliating treatment that gives a deep down scrub, without damaging the skin. It’s also great for minimising fine lines and wrinkles. *Not for use on sensitive skin and use an SPF afterwards!

If you’ve got sensitive skin

In the AM: Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, £5.90, Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90

Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5: The best budget HA we’ve tried, this hydrates skin attracting moisture and locking it in. Use before other creams.

Natural Moisturising Factors + HA: Use this after all other serums for immediate hydration that’s non-greasy.

In the PM: 100% Plant-Derived Squalane, £5.50 and Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90

100% Plant-Derived Squalane: Found naturally in the skin, this ups your hydration even more

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We know how hard it is to figure out what to choose to create your ultimate skin care routine so here is some advice from The Ordinary: "Peptides are made up of amino acids holding hands (peptide bonds). As more peptides come together, they begin to form proteins, which are a fundamental building block of the skin. Being a natural component of the skin, peptides play a big part in maintaining skin firmness, texture and elasticity. Without them, the skin isn't able to bounce back as it used to, resulting in fine lines, wrinkles and loss of firmness. As we move through life, the natural peptides within our skin lessen in quantity – however, various topical peptides are available to offer mimicking effects: ⁣ 🧬 Argireline Solution 10% – a lightweight solution that targets signs of aging by improving the appearance of the skin prone to dynamic folds (i.e. around eyes & forehead).⁣ ⁣ 🧬 Matrixyl 10% + HA – a high-strength peptide formula to visibly target the look of static (always there) and dynamic (forming with muscle motion) wrinkles. ⁣ ⁣ 🧬 “Buffet” – If you're not sure which peptide to go for, "Buffet" is an excellent choice to begin with. It features a comprehensive array of complex technologies within a single serum to target various visible signs of aging all at once (such as static or dynamic lines and wrinkles, sagging and loss of elasticity). ⁣ ⁣ 🧬 "Buffet" + Copper Peptides 1% – All the goodness of "Buffet" with the additional benefits of a 1% concentration of GHK-Cu (Copper Tripeptide), focusing on the maintenance of general skin health by encouraging the skin to enter a constant state of repair. This aims to ward against loss of skin elasticity, firmness and plumpness and to help ‘undo’ the impact of our stress-filled lifestyle. We know it's tempting to use our peptide products all at once, but we suggest beginning with one and seeing what makes your skin happiest. If you’re struggling to make a choice, "Buffet" contains both Argireline and Matrixyl, making it a great place to start." 📸 @deciem 🔎 The Ordinary Buffet (986231) The Ordinary Matrixyl (986219) The Ordinary Buffet + Copper Peptides (1337865) The Ordinary Argireline Solution (1399025)

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If you’ve got dry skin

In the AM: Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, £5.90, Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90

Same as above!

In the PM: Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5, £5.90, AND 00% Plant-Derived Squalane, £5.50 AND Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90 – basically all the moisture!

Twice per week: AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, £6.30

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution: This 10 minute exfoliating treatment that gives a deep down scrub, without damaging the skin. It’s also great for minimising fine lines and wrinkles. *Fine for dry skin but careful if you’ve got sensitive skin. Make sure you use an SPF afterwards!

To combat aging and wrinkles

In the AM: Buffet, £12.70 with Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90

Buffet: Apply to the entire face in both the morning and evening, this is jam-packed with ingredients that all help to combat multiple signs of ageing.

In the PM: Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution, £6.80 with Buffet, £12.70 and Advanced Retinoid 2%, £8

Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution: This provides a mild exfoliation to help with skin clarity and radiance. Don’t use if you’ve got sensitive skin as it can tingle! And remember to use a SPF afterwards.

Advanced Retinoid 2%: A form of retinol that can help with ageing skin. Don’t use this as an acne treatment though! And as with all retinols, make sure you’re using SPF as they make your skin more UV sensitive.

Twice per week: AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, £6.30

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution: This 10 minute exfoliating treatment that gives a deep down scrub, without damaging the skin. It’s also great for minimising fine lines and wrinkles. *Fine for dry skin but careful if you’ve got sensitive skin. Make sure you use an SPF afterwards!

If you’ve got problems with pigmentation

In the AM: Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA, £7 with Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5 and Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F, £14.90

Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA: A super concentrated serum that reduces the look of dark spots and hyper-pigmentation

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%: This is a high-strength vitamin that helps to reduce the appearance of spots and congestion. It also contains ingredients that help to balance sebum.

Ascorbyl Tetraisopalmitate Solution 20% in Vitamin F: This is a derivative of Vitamin C that helps to brighten the appearance of skin

In the PM: Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution, £6.80, with Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA, £7 and Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% or Advanced Retinoid 2%, £8

Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution: This provides a mild exfoliation to help with skin clarity and radiance. Don’t use if you’ve got sensitive skin as it can tingle! And remember to use a SPF afterwards.

Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA: same as above!

Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%: This brightens skin tone and skin texture. Great for bringing back radiance to dull, blemish prone skin.

Advanced Retinoid 2%: A form of retinol that can help with ageing skin. Don’t use this as an acne treatment though! And as with all retinols, make sure you’re using SPF as they make your skin more UV sensitive.

Twice per week: AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution, £6.30

AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution: This is a 10 minute exfoliating treatment that gives a deep down scrub, without damaging the skin. It’s also great for minimising fine lines and wrinkles. *Not for use on sensitive skin and use an SPF afterwards!

If you’ve got oily skin

In the AM: Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5 with Natural Moisturising Factors + HA, £4.90 (if the skin becomes too dry)

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%: This is a high-strength vitamin that helps to reduce the appearance of spots and congestion. It also contains ingredients that help to balance sebum.

Natural Moisturising Factors + HA: Use this after all other serums for immediate hydration that’s non-greasy.

In the PM: Salicylic Acid 2% Solution, £3.90 with Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%, £5

Salicylic Acid 2% Solution: This helps to exfoliate the inside walls of your pores to help minimise blemishes. It also contains Witch Hazel to keep skin clear and super clean.

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%: This is a high-strength vitamin that helps to reduce the appearance of spots and congestion. It also contains ingredients that help to balance sebum.