You might think getting a product is easy. Walk into a store and buy it. That’s as simple as it can be, right?. However, if you wish to save money and never regret your purchases, it’s best you follow some steps. Here are some of the steps I take, to ensure I get the right products for myself. Just FYI : My skin type is Normal but leaning towards dry at times.
Researching the product
Once you see a product that you would like to own, research it really well. Don’t buy it on impulse. Here are the steps to do it :
Read reviews : There will definitely be at least one person out there who has tried that particular product before you and reviewed it. Reading reviews can be a bit overwhelming because of the number of different opinions that people have. Try to stick with the reviews of those people who have the same skin type or skin conditions as yourself. If say, I can’t find any reviews by someone with Normal skin type, I will look at those with Dry skin type. If a product is OK for Dry skin, then it’s definitely OK for Normal skin type right?. Also, when searching for scrubs or exfoliating devices, if I don’t find reviews from people with Normal/Dry skin, I look at those with Sensitive skin. Combining all those reviews, you can get a good idea as to whether that product is for you.
Talk to relatives/friends : It’s always good to talk to people who are close to you, who have tried out that product you want. You can make sure they will let you know of all pros/cons of it. I find myself trusting the reviews of people I know closely, more, when compared to a review done by a stranger.
Watch demos : See the demos of the product you wish to buy, on (say) YouTube. There are so many beauty gurus out there, giving their honest reviews. This is actually just like reading reviews, but it’s so good seeing the product being put to use.
Compare prices : You are investing your money into a product. Money definitely doesn’t grow on trees. So make sure you make a good investment. It doesn’t hurt to compare prices. It might vary slightly or significantly from site to site or from site to physical store.
Try samples: It’s always good to try a product and get an impression of it yourself rather than just depending on reviews from others. Try to get a sample. Say, even if you have decided to buy a product online (because you get a better deal there), walk into the physical store selling it and try it on yourself. Feel the texture, experience how it makes you feel etc. This goes particularly for cosmetic products.
Talk to the salesperson: It’s always good to talk to the sales person but know this.. Their commission is based on the number of products they sell and they will try every trick in the book to sell that product to you. It’s always good to be knowledgeable about products. Don’t believe/trust every word the salesperson says. Ask them questions. Test their knowledge!. But, there are some salespersons out there who really are knowledgeable because they are trained well. You can actually learn a lot of info from such people. Stores like BeautyBay have really lovely salespersons. They really guide you towards the right product but at the same time, don’t pressure you to buy anything. Your task is to differentiate between these two kinds of sales persons. Also, don’t buy something simply because they spent a lot of their time talking to you about it. Learn to say no. Finally, its you who is using it.
Use coupon codes/discounts : Even if it’s the same price online and in a physical store, there are chances that you might find a coupon code to use online. I love VoucherCodesUAE for this purpose. Before I buy something online, I just run a search on this site. Also, at a physical store, you could earn loyalty points of some sort. Check all those options.
After getting the product
Finally, you have got the product that you want. Yayy!!. Now you really wanna just use it right?. But stop right there.. If it’s a normal cream, you can obviously start using it immediately. But what if it’s something you have read good things about and bought from online?. You still can’t trust everything. For example, if you are someone who has never used oils on your face, you really can’t just put it on, without a patch test, to determine whether you personally are allergic to it or not. Yes, it’s really important and here is how you do it :
Apply it to your wrist or the crook of your elbow. Leave it on for 24 hours, unwashed. In case you get redness, rashes or itchy feeling, wash off immediately. But after 24 hours, if you haven’t had any adverse effects, you are good to go.
If you usually are prone to breaking out or just want to be extra sure, I would suggest you do an advanced patch test. This is where you apply the same amount of product to the same area for three or five continuous days. After this test, you are 100% in the clear. No worries at all.
Alright, now that the product is safe for you to use it, here comes the judgement process. Here are some points you have to remember (these apply mainly to skincare products):
Do not expect results in a day or week!. For any skincare product, give at least 3 months to properly get a result.
Don’t judge a skincare product too soon and jump from product to product, saying nothing works for you. You might actually pass up on a good product, simply because you didn’t give it enough time.
It’s good to stick with a brand once you find the right one. But that doesn’t have to limit you in any way. Find other brands that you like too. Mix and match :). I urge you to do this simply because your skin will get used to something that’s applied on it regularly and eventually you will feel it’s not as awesome as it used to be. To avoid that, treat your skin with different products and it will continue being in tip top condition.
I hope I haven’t rambled on and on but instead have given you a good idea about all the steps involved in selecting/testing/judging a product. I would love it if you share with me and my readers, your personal tips of choosing and testing products, in the comments section below.