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Professional Skincare vs. Over the Counter – Is There Really a Difference?

New skincare and cosmetic products are being created on a daily basis. Some are only available from licensed estheticians, professionals and doctor’s offices, while others are easily accessible at drugstores department stores, online retailers, multi-level marketing (MLM) companies or through shopping channels or infomercials on television. As a consumer knowing where to start and who to trust with your skin can be confusing and overwhelming. We’ve broken down the important differences between professional skincare and over the counter (OTC) products.

 

Professional Products

 

High Quality Ingredients with Proven Results

These products avoid artificial fragrances, colors, dyes, mineral oil, petroleum and other low quality oils.

 

Stronger, More Concentrated Ingredients

Professional skincare lines are produced in smaller batches and have higher levels of active ingredients making them much more effective. They also contain fewer fillers and preservatives.

 

 

 

Extensive product selection

Professional products cater to a specific skin type or condition. These are not “one size fits all” products.

 

Only sold by licensed professionals

Estheticians and other skincare professionals have extensive education and training to understand skin’s biology. They can recommend products specifically for you to address your unique skincare needs.

 

OTC Products

 

Lower Concentration of Active Ingredients

There are restrictions on the levels of active ingredients allowed in mass produced, commercially available products. These products must be safe enough for anyone to use without the guidance of a skincare professional, therefore they are less effective.

 

Low Quality Ingredients

These products often contain synthetic fragrances, dyes and colors to boost the sensory experience for consumers and encourage sales. These artificial ingredients can cause irritation or unwanted side effects for some people.

 

Low Quality Packaging

Little to no care is taken to protect and stabilize these products’ active ingredients. Many active ingredients can degrade and/or oxidize when exposed to light or air rendering them ineffective.

 

Have you ever tried to call the manufacturer of an OTC skincare product for guidance? If you have then you know they are often less than helpful.  If you’re serious about improving the health and appearance of your skin, you should consult with a licensed skincare professional. Not only can they provide the best products to meet your skincare goals, they will also be there to guide you every step of the way.

 

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