Skincare Opinions: The Unpopular, the Unfounded, the Undisputed
People have opinions about skincare. A lot of them. And they love to share, which is fantastic when the advice is solid and based in science. But when it’s not, it’s not just time-wasting. It can actually be harmful. Being part of team science—the thousands of professionals who’ve logged countless hours of research and clinical study to understand and treat skin effectively—we feel it’s our responsibility to weigh in. So, we’ve collected a sampling of skincare opinions (good and bad) from around the social media sphere. We’re here to celebrate the good and set the record straight on the rest. Let’s examine.
Opinion: “Eye creams are unnecessary. If it’s good around the eyes, it’s good for the entire face.”
Fact: Objection, your honor.
The skin around the eyes is more delicate than the rest of the face. What works on the rest of your face may be irritating for the eye area. Conversely, your eye cream may be more emollient than what you’d want to put on the rest of your face. Eye cream is essential for keeping the fragile skin around the eyes hydrated, plumped, depuffed, and protected from environmental stressors.
Recommendation: Wink Eye Rejuvenation Cream with peptides, vitamin A and caffeine to restore collagen and elastin, brighten dark circles, and depuff.
Opinion: “A tight feeling after cleansing doesn’t mean you’re clean. It means your skin is stripped.”
Fact: This one is on the money.
The surfactant in soap has a high pH, which causes the stratum corneum to swell and absorb water. Additionally, the soap binds to stratum corneum proteins, which reduces the ability of the skin to retain moisture. So, after washing, water evaporates, and skin feels tight and dry. A well-formulated cleanser should leave your skin feeling smooth, clean, fresh, and hydrated, not dry or tight.
Even for oily skin, it’s possible to cleanse effectively and reduce sebum with stripping or drying.
Recommended: Mandelic Acid Wash or Green Tea Antioxidant Cleanser are excellent choices for reducing sebum and controlling breakouts while keeping skin healthy and hydrated. For more resistant acne, try BP3% Exfoliating Cleanser.
For dry or sensitive skin, our gentle Cleansing Milk offers the ultimate hydrating and nourishing cleanse.
Opinion: “Natural skincare does not mean better, and often you get better results with chemical ingredients.”
Fact: This one is always going to be controversial for some, but not for us.
Natural ingredients can contain impurities, inconsistencies, or irritants, and can be hard to preserve against microbial contaminants. Often, the beneficial elements in natural ingredients occur in amounts too low to have an impact. In the lab, we can take natural ingredients and make them better, eliminating impurities and inconsistencies, concentrating active elements, reducing irritants, and providing sustainability.
It’s also important to note that many natural products contain synthesized ingredients, and many synthesized ingredients are naturally derived. Our products include many components that fall into both camps—retinoids, vitamin C, alpha hydroxy acids, peptides, whole leaf aloe, grapeseed oil, marine minerals, sea algae. The best skincare ingredients have a defined mechanism of action and produce specific evidence-based results.
Recommended: Pure C + E antioxidant serum for daily brightening, collagen activation, and protection against environmental stressors. Derm-A-Renew vitamin A and oligopeptide complex for firming and lifting skin structure, relaxing wrinkles, and enhancing elasticity.
Opinion: “Pimples can still scar even when you leave them alone. Acne medicine is necessary to treat the inflammation.”
Fact: A+ for this one.
Acne is an inflammatory disease of the skin. The inflammation causes the skin to mount a protective melanin defense, whether you pick at pimples or not. However, picking will definitely increase the chances of developing post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, as well as textural scars.
Acids and vitamin A will accelerate cell turnover to peel away impactions and promote the regeneration of healthy new skin. Mandelic acid is an excellent AHA choice for treating acne and acne scarring because of its gentle, non-triggering action. It also kills acne bacteria and suppresses melanin to prevent the marks of hyperpigmentation.
Other essential regimen ingredients for reducing acne inflammation and avoiding scars are benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. BP oxygenates pores to kill acne bacteria and decongest. Salicylic acid (the principal metabolite of aspirin) reduces inflammation while flushing pores of excess sebum and dead skin cells.
Recommended: In addition to an acne cleanser like our BP 3% Acne Wash or Mandelic Acid Exfoliating Cleanser, try Daily Repair Pads. These textured single-use pads are soaked in a gently exfoliating, anti-inflammatory cocktail of acne-fighting and brightening ingredients, including mandelic acid, salicylic acid, lactic acid, and niacinamide. To speed healing and reduce inflammation, BP 10% Gel Medication is our strongest acne-fighter.
Pro tip: Rub ice over acne lesions a few times a day to quickly reduce inflammation and enhance penetration of acne medications.
Opinion: “Oils should never be used on oily skin.”
Fact: It depends on the oil.
Not all oils are comedogenic. Oils like grapeseed oil or rosehip oil are rich in linoleic acid, which actually helps reduce sebum. Acne-prone skin lacks linoleic acid in the sebum and instead has an overabundance of oleic acid, which is thicker and stickier. Lightweight linoleic acid reduces the thickness of oleic acid to help keep pores clear. As a bonus, these oils are high in antioxidant content, so they help protect against environmental stressors.
Recommended: Skin Nourishing Toner blends rosehip oil, mandelic acid, green tea extract, and niacinamide in a gently exfoliating formula to leave skin refined, hydrated, and shine-free.
Allantoin Sedating and Hydrating Lotion pairs grapeseed oil with the comfrey-derived soother allantoin for nourishing, non-comedogenic hydration.
Opinion: “Exfoliating isn’t necessary. Hydrating, soothing products are enough.”
Fact: If you have zero skin goals, then technically, this is true.
For healthy, glowing, radiant skin, exfoliation is essential. Exfoliation lifts away the upper layers of dead skin to encourage renewal, peel away impactions, and fade pigmentation. Here’s the kicker, exfoliation is key for hydration—it removes dead skin cells that would otherwise block moisture from entering your skin.
Recommended: You can add our universal water-based Buffing Grains to your favorite targeted cleanser to make it a scrub. Or choose one of our exfoliating cleansers based on your skin goals.
Normalizing Tonic with glycolic and lactic acids is a glow-enhancer for all skin types.
Opinion: “Most celebrity brands are simply backed by their money. Trust research & science more than you trust recognizability.”
Fact: Nothing to argue with here.
Vivant formulator Dr. James Fulton was a biochemist and dermatologist responsible for the gold standards used in dermatology offices around the world, including Retin-A (co-developer), vitamin A propionate, benzoyl peroxide, topical erythromycin, and mandelic acid. He authored the definitive skincare text, Acne Rx, and more than 300 scientific papers. Dr. Fulton’s mantra? “Accept only those therapies that are tested, well documented, and consistent in results.” In other words, skin care products should live up to their promises.
Recommended: Derm-A Gel is our starter vitamin A therapy formulated to accelerate cell turnover, activate collagen, and stimulate antioxidant repair.