A cosmetic by definition is related to treatment to restore or improve your external appearance. In technical terms, to beautify the integument (skin, nail, hair). If the treatment only affects the external body it is a cosmetic product. If the changes are brought out as a whole, then it is labelled as a true cosmeceutical product. For example, if you have a blackhead, you can use a preparation to simply mask it which give a temporary solution. Whereas, a cosmeceutical product clears the blackhead at the root cause, thus providing a permanent solution.
Have you ever visited a cosmetic shop? You have umpteen number of choices. Categorically split into, hair and skin to begin with. Moving forward to day or night, separate parts of the body, arms, face, legs, lips, under-eye, men or women. There are more options than you can find in a restaurant's menu! (Where you'd at-least be fully understanding what goes into your body.) Children and the elderly are the only consumers to be spared from the categories.
Give this a thought. Now tell me, have you ever heard of a drug prescribed for men and women differently? Of course, except during pregnancy and lactation. If a drug works for both sexes identically, so does a skincare product. So often, the claims that some are women's products and other's mens, are just playing with you psychologically.
So if you need not follow the various subtle rules and categories that skincare industries offer you, how do you need to choose what's best for you?
Know what your skin is like, on a personal level. Does somethings in your routine make it feel better? Something particular irritates it? Do you have any allergies? Is your skin oily, dry or both? Try to explore what works and what doesn't with your food, sleep and personal hygiene routine.
Don't google for information on your skin or follow celebrities words on instagram hastily. Celebrities are people like you who have special talents in acting, sports or media and are of course famous. They are a version of endorsement to turn your attention towards products. They endorse the type of product that fits their pockets rather than products that fit their skin.
In recent times, the cosmetic industry has spent too much time and effort on demonising chemicals. Such fear mongering is created to scare the consumers from safe and effective chemical formulations and also to cover the pitfalls of their own products. The structure of the body basically functions by chemical reactions internally and externally (anatomy = physiology = biochemistry). If this is how our body naturally works, it's puzzling to know why we're so afraid of all chemicals, in all quantities.
Holistic cosmetic indulgence
What your skin needs is more important than what your mind believes through social media. Choosing a product through social media is often dictated by other factors rather than quality of ingredients, right formulations and what actually works. All the terms the industry uses these days, such as miracles, wonders and magic moments in fact happen to the sellers instead of the consumers. Dermatologists are specialised to know your skin the best. Eat a balanced diet, maintain good sleep hygiene and avoid putting your skin through every available product in the market. Be wise and choose what your skin deserves!
- Dr. Ashokkumar, Dermatologist