5 Truths You Should Know About Your Beauty Products

androgynous guide

Did you know I’ve always wanted to do a section on HJJ where I review beauty products? I’m constantly on a search for the next best facial cleanser, a non-problematic sunscreen, or soothing face mask that won’t burn my face.
Problem? I find that despite that I invest in products that are labelled “for sensitive skin” or “dermatologist tested”, everything makes me break out or causes my skin to burn. I’ve flushed so much money down the drain on products that did more damage than good, I’m sure you’ve had a similar experience or two.

After some research, I learned some important lessons that everyone whose interested in beauty products should know, sensitive-skin or not. This could help you save your money on claims that just aren’t true.


  1. “Dermatologist tested/approved”, “Clinically proven” mean nothing.
    If you’re imagining a group of expert dermatologists doing rigorous testings, you’re going to get disappointed. The American FDA don’t have an official definition or criteria for beauty product/make-up company in order to use these terms.
    The standards to meet the criteria is so low that all it takes is for one dermatologist to test it on one patient and their skin did not react poorly. We all know that we all have different skin types, what works great one person, may be disastrous for another.
  2. “Not tested on animals”, “Animal-cruelty free” may not be as ethical as you think.
    You might be surprised to learn that there’s no legal definition binding cosmetic companies to what it really means to not test on animals.
    An unethical, for more ways than one, method around this claim is for companies to outsource their testing to a secondary company to test their products on animals. But the main company did not test on animals themselves.
    Another way around this is to use previous studies on products in progress that were tested on animals, but the final product wasn’t tested on animals. See how sneaky that is?
  3. Don’t trust what “Patent formula” “Award winning” sounds like it’s promising.
    It doesn’t take a lot for a beauty company to patent a product of theirs. It only creates an illusion to the consumer that their product should be coveted.
    Not one company holds the exotic amazon-plant ingredient that guarantees to remove your wrinkles, not one product can promise you that their award winning product will give you clear skin.
    There’s no regulation on what superior claims can be made on a product. These claims aren’t just in your products. Here’s a list of the type of lies that can be commonly found on beauty advertisements, as per a group of marketing researchers findings.
  4. Skincare products labelled “Organic”, “Botanical” and “All natural” aren’t that green at all.
    In reality, there’s no official definition for what cosmetic companies need in order to label their products as green as they want you to believe. It’s in the best interest for the companies, not for the consumers, to label their beauty products as natural, because so many of us believe it’s healthier for us.
    If you really want organic, choose USDA-certified organic. This label is more dependable, as their requirements are more strict on what products can receive this certification.
  5. “Hypoallergenic”, “For sensitive skin” may result in great disappointment.
    Ok, but what if you have sensitive skin? You react to everything, there must be some truth in hypoallergenic products?
    According to the FDA,

    There are no Federal standards or definitions that govern the use of the term “hypoallergenic.” The term means whatever a particular company wants it to mean.

    Ah, that explains why many “sensitive skin” products failed for me, and maybe it has failed you too. If you’re really determined on finding the right products for your skin, try weeding out irritants in the ingredients list.
    Keep in mind that what is natural, won’t always benefit your skin. Natural fruits such as oranges and lemons, may be a delicious source of vitamin C but don’t rely on it to not cause your skin to react.

I want to hear from you! Was there cosmetic truth that surprised you?

Links à la Mode, January 21


SPONSOR: Amazon’s Shopbop Moschino, Jenni Kayne Shoes, camilla and marc Dresses, Jump From Paper, DODO BAR OR, Christopher Esber, Crochet Dresses, Cold Shoulder Tops, Fringe Skirts, Men’s Satisfy

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