There are a lot of skin-care products in the market—like, a lot—and more are introduced every year, making it easy for anyone to get overwhelmed by the sheer number of options. Never mind finding skin-care products that actually work and deliver on their promise; that's a full-time job in and of itself. Lucky for you, we did some of the groundwork for you. Below, find some of the best skin-care products we tried this year. These live up to the hype—and you’re going to want to make some room on your top shelf.
The best skin-care products W+G editors tried in 2021
If you deal with perpetually dry skin, especially in the winter months, add this moisturizer to your cart, stat. Zoë Weiner, Well+Good’s associate beauty and fitness editor, tried First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream for a month. Since then, she’s ended her lifelong search for a moisturizer that quenches her dry skin’s thirst—after testing out hundreds of other moisturizers, no less. “My skin is practically unrecognizable in the best way possible,” she previously wrote.
Retinol has become a staple in many skin-care routines, and with good reason. The vitamin A derivative increases skin cell turnover and stimulates collagen production, and can help treat various skin issues, including acne, uneven texture and tone, hyperpigmentation, and fine lines and wrinkles. That said, some folks experience extremely sensitive skin and peeling when using retinol.
Enter Glossier Universal Pro-Retinol, which features a unique formulation that provides the benefits of retinol without the side effects. Tamara Pridgett, Well+Good’s beauty and fitness editor, says after a couple of weeks of use, the dark spots on her cheek have lightened and her skin texture appears more even.
As a human living in 2021, you probably spend a good chunk of time each day with your neck downturned staring at a device. This can add fine lines, which is why there are products designed specifically for the neck. Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Lifting Neck Cream gives your neck attention as it moisturizes and tightens the area. According to reviews, it’s well worth the price tag.
Got butt-ne? Not for long. Consider Soft Services Buffing Bar your secret weapon for getting rid of those pesky butt pimples (or any type of body breakout) for good. Weiner describes it as a “miracle product,” and we don’t use that term lightly around here, so you know it’s the real deal. Although it may look like a regular soap bar, its magic comes from its superfine sanding crystals, which exfoliate the skin while also delivering skin-nourishing ingredients.
If you’re not already incorporating vitamin C in your skin-care routine, you need to add it—like yesterday. Dermatologists recommend the antioxidant for all skin types and ages because, well, it’s awesome. It protects the skin from pollution and UV damage and helps brighten the skin, among many other benefits. The vitamin C serum that derms often recommend is this one by SkinCeuticals. It features a high concentration of vitamin C and vitamin E, which helps nourish the skin and fight inflammation. Other derm-recommended vitamin C serums include Drunk Elephant C-Firma Vitamin C Day Serum ($78) and The Ordinary Vitamin C Suspension 30% in Silicone ($6).
The struggle to find the perfect body lotion is real—most leave your skin feeling too goopy and greasy. If you can relate, allow us to introduce you to Flamingo Light Hydrating Spray. Beloved and raved about by the Well+Good team, this squalane-containing body hydrator leaves your skin feeling dewy. Plus, we love that it’s a spray, making it so much easier and less messy to apply. And the added scent of bergamot, jasmine, and lavender make it a refreshing post-shower treat.
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