Many years ago, I worked for a Vancouver-based skincare company called Enzo Trevi. It was the early 80s, and skincare was nowhere near as prevalent as today. I started using the products because I worked at the company. I will always remember spending the afternoon with one of the product architects, Ursula Wagstaff, and she told me, “It doesn’t matter what product you are using; you MUST cleanse, tone and moisturize morning and night.” And I have done that ever since.
The idea behind the company was to offer affordable skincare products that people would use daily. Health Canada has always regulated the ingredients, so it was hard for one product to be more “effective” than another.
Last year, I read an article in The New Yorker about a Toronto-based company called Deciem that was introducing a skincare line called “The Ordinary.” The article stated that the products’ secret ingredient was “being dirt cheap.” A few months later, I read another article in Town and Country that was touting the use of true ingredients like glycolic acid, vitamin C and retinol at ridiculously low prices. I visited the company’s website and found a peptide serum called “Buffet” for $14. What? I love serums; they have a lighter consistency with a higher concentration of the good stuff. How could this be?
It turns out that the company focuses on high-quality ingredients that are widely available worldwide and very inexpensive to purchase. They believe only marketing differentiates between “luxury” and lower-priced brands, not necessarily the ingredients. The company CEO, Nicola Kilner, offers a great explanation, ” “If you had a headache and you saw a bottle of aspirin for two dollars and one for two hundred dollars, you would never spend two hundred. Why would you? Even though it’s low priced, you don’t doubt that the two-dollar bottle will eliminate your headache.” And that is what they are doing for skin care.
I signed up for their newsletter and received several great online offers. I ordered more products. The Natural Moisturizing Factors Moisturizer for $5.80, the High Adherence Silicone Primer for $4.90 and the Marine Hyaluronic for $6.80. I am addicted.
They have just opened three stores in Vancouver, Granville, Downtown and Metrotown. I visited the minimalistic store on Granville; the staff was very friendly and knowledgeable. I picked up a few more basics but also tried the Serum Foundation for $6.70. Light coverage with no “make-up” feel. Again, I love the products, the company and what they do.
The goal of my blog is to share products that work, and when they are affordable, that’s a bonus. There is no magic pill, and we all know that good skin combines diet, sleep, hydration, sun protection, and a good facial cleansing routine. No product can replace the basics; however, a solid skincare regimen can give you a fighting chance. That doesn’t seem so ordinary to me.