September and October Favourites: The Ordinary Skincare Full Review Part 1


Update: to read my complete 27 product full review of The Ordinary please click HERE.

It’s been almost two months since the launch of Deciem’s new line The Ordinary and it has been a total whirlwind for everyone involved! From the moment it was announced there has been such an incredible buzz about it and that has not stopped. I probably got about 20 messages about it within an hour of the debut and since then The Ordinary has become one of my most asked about brands. By now, most of you will know what this new “skincare concept” is all about, but if you’re still new to it, you can read my introduction to the brand here. As I said in that post, this has become one of the biggest (and arguably most important) launches in the history of skincare and a total gamechanger. I have been using 5 out of the 10 products for the past few weeks now and can’t wait to tell you all about them, because they have proved to be far from ordinary…

Advanced Retinoid 2% 30ml £8

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Ethyl Linoleate, Propanediol, Glycerin, Cetearyl Isononanoate, Bisabolol, Retinol, Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate, Tasmannia Lanceolata Fruit/Leaf Extract, Dimethyl Isosorbide, Inulin Lauryl Carbamate, Glyceryl Stearate, Ceteareth-12, Ceteareth-20, Cetearyl Alcohol, Carrageenan, Acacia Senegal Gum, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetyl Palmitate, Sucrose Laurate, Polysorbate 20, Behentrimonium Chloride, Disodium EDTA, Dehydroacetic Acid, Benzoic Acid, Ethylhexylglycerin, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin.

When The Ordinary launched this was the product I was the most excited about, as I had been desperately hoping Deciem would release some sort of retinoid product ever since I discovered the magic of CAIS (review here). I had a feeling it was something they would do very well and I was not wrong. Retinoids/Retinols are so important when it comes to skin health and do everything from reducing wrinkles, correcting pigmentation irregularities and fighting some forms of acne, as well as increasing cell turnover, blood flow to the skin and collagen production. What this means is that when it comes to anti-aging skincare, this is one of the very best ingredients you can use because it prevents and reverses the signs of aging like nothing else. I have used quite a few retin (retinoid, retinols, vitamin A) based products over the years and this is without a doubt the best one for many reasons.

This serum contains solubilized Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate and an encapsulated retinol for a combined 2% weight concentration, which is highly advanced and effective and should cause less irritation than other products like this. It also contains Tasmanian Pepperberry Extract (seen in the Lactic Acid serum and the new Hylamide Hydra-Density Mist) to help reduce inflammation and redness, but also for it’s antimicrobial and antioxidant properties. Despite the name of the brand and the price of the product, this is a highly sophisticated formulation that is easy to use and works well with other products.

As soon as my package arrived from Victoria Health I had to go and wash my face right away so I could get this on. Yep, I was that excited. What immediately struck me about this serum is the texture. It has a beautiful, light, milky consistency that feels cool and watery on the skin and absorbs perfectly, due to the fact that it’s a water based emulsion. It has a faint somewhat chemical scent because it’s fragrance free and I actually don’t mind it at all, as it smells like every other retin product I’ve used (except Luna). I initially thought I would use this once a week, but that quickly changed after seeing how well my skin responded to it. There was absolutely no irritation of any kind (redness, dryness, flaky skin, sensitivity) and because of the formula it left my skin immediately plump, hydrated and glowing, which I had never experienced before with this type of product. I now use it every other day and it’s actually so gentle that you could use it daily, which I did for a week and again, there was no irritation, only happy skin.

So, even though I use this on alternate nights, where it sits in my routine depends on what else I’m using. If I include CAIS then the lineup would be: double cleanse, SDSM, CAIS, wait one minute, this product, wait 5 minutes, sometimes a toner but not always, then usually Buffet or any other serum but again not always, followed by an oil, balm or moisturizer (oh, and please don’t skip sunscreen when using this). If I’m not using CAIS then I apply this directly after cleansing on to clean skin before continuing with my routine. It has worked perfectly with every product I have used after it, which is so important to me because I hate it when the layers start to pill or roll. I generally prefer to keep it simple when using this product as it does so much on it’s own and if you’ve read my post about “two step routines” (here), then you’ll know I have even used it as my only product some nights. I use about 2/3’s of a pipette full, which is definitely way more than needed, but I am addicted to the plump, glowing effect it gives and my skin just drinks it up.


(example nighttime skincare routine: De Mamiel cleanser, NIOD SS cleanser, SDSM “toner”, CAIS treatment, Retinoid serum and La Belle Lune oil.)

This would work well on all skin types, but especially those with mature, dry or sensitive skin because it’s so effective without being irritating. Those with acne prone skin would also greatly benefit from using this, but be warned, there may be some purging in the initial weeks. I know many of you use or are familiar with Sunday Riley’s Luna, and this uses the same form of retinoid as that. I used Luna for over two months back when it first launched and it didn’t do much of anything for my skin. With this on the other hand (and for a fraction of the cost) I have seen a steady improvement in skin tone, clarity and smoothness, just like with the Verso serum (which is 10x more expensive) that I was using before this arrived. Thanks to The Ordinary I now have the very best retinoid product available at an insanely fair price and I can’t recommend it enough.

Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% 30ml £5

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Niacinamide, Zinc PCA, Tamarindus Indica Seed Gum, Pentylene Glycol, Carrageenan, Acacia Senegal Gum, Xanthan Gum, PPG-26-Buteth-26, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Ethoxydiglycol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin.

I have been a long time fan of both niacinamide and zinc and was so happy to see both ingredients in the same product. Even though this is described as a “blemish formula”, it is actually one of my favourite serums for dealing with hyperpigmentation. Niacinamide (Vitamin B3) works to suppress melanin (pigment that gives skin, hair and eyes colours) from reaching the skin’s surface and can also protect the skin against the UV damage that stimulates freckles, brown spots and skin discoloration. It also tackles fine lines and wrinkles, sallow tone, blotchiness, elasticity and of course, the dreaded hyperpigmentation. It is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, which means along with the zinc, it works very well to heal blemishes. Zinc (as seen in La Roche Posay’s now cult Serozinc) is amazing for healing the skin, reducing excess oil production and clearing acne. It is also an important ingredient for our overall health and I take it as a supplement.

This is very different to the Retinoid serum because it has a slightly cloudy, fluid gel texture that is a little sticky, but not at all tacky and spreads and absorbs quickly and easily. It’s a basic formula that has a mild, nondescript scent that doesn’t linger or irritate. Less is definitely more with this and I take just a drop or two (slightly less if I’m using it with AA + HA) and apply it after toning and before my “end” steps (moisturizer, oil or balm). It layers really well with everything I use before and after it and leaves a touch dry, comfortable finish. I pretty much only use it in the mornings now as I have other nighttime products that are very active and I don’t like to overload my skin. In a routine the order would be cleanse, tone (or SDSM and CAIS then tone), watery serum, this, other gel or oil serums, then end products like suncreen, moisturizer, oil or balm. Using this during the day is just a personal preference, but I think those with acne prone skin could really benefit from using this after the Retinoid serum to help create balance and counteract any purging. This is something that should work well for every skin type, but those with hyperpigmentation and/or acne would benefit the most. It works so well to create balance, increase clarity and improve tone and texture. I do know that niacinamide doesn’t work for everyone and a few people have experienced breakouts, either because they’re allergic to it or the “raw” formula/high percent has been too much for their skin, but for me it’s been excellent. This can be used daily, morning and night and how often you use it depends on what your skin needs.


(example morning routine: Oskia cleanser, January Labs mist, Omorovicza serum, N+Z serum, Ilia sunscreen.)

One of the reasons I was so excited about this is because I saw such fast results with Oskia’s Renaissance Brightlight Serum and that has only 5% niacinamide. Even though that product is packed full of skin loving ingredients like MSM, peptides, prebiotics and fruit enzymes, the niacinamide (plus natural Arbutin and zinc) is what I believe made all the difference, which is why I’m seeing the same results with this. It leaves my skin balanced, soft, bright and even and mixed with the Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA has proved to be a decent dupe. While I don’t need to repurchase the Verso serum, I would still consider getting Renaissance Brightlight again because it’s a great product and one of the few actually worth the price. For now I am happy with this, but I will do a niacinamide roundup soon because it’s in a few products I love like Amy‘s brilliant Clarifying Glow Serum (review soon), and I believe the only other 10% one out there is from Paula’s Choice, which is almost 8x the price for 1/3 less.

Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA 30ml £7

Ingredients: Aqua (Water), Niacinamide, Zinc PCA, Tamarindus Indica Seed Gum, Pentylene Glycol, Carrageenan, Acacia Senegal Gum, Xanthan Gum, PPG-26-Buteth-26, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Ethoxydiglycol, Phenoxyethanol, Chlorphenesin.

Alpha Arbutin is a popular skin brightening ingredient used extensively in Asian beauty products (see here), but for some reason it has been very much underrated in western beauty until now. It is such a great ingredient for hyperpigmentation because it actually prevents melanin from forming in the first place and can also reverse the level of skin darkening after too much fun in the sun. It’s probably one of the best ingredients you can get for dealing with sun spots, dark marks and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation because it’s so potent yet very gentle. It’s a slow release active that has been combined with a next generation hyaluronic acid making it perfect for all skin types, but especially those with sensitive skin.

The texture of this is very similar to N+Z, although this is a completely clear gel that is slightly thicker and a tad more stickier, yet not at all tacky and still absorbs just as well. It has that same dry to the touch finish and my skin doesn’t feel coated, which is why I love how lightweight these serums are. It again, layers perfectly with everything I use before and after it and I only need a drop or two because it spreads very well. As I said, I love mixing this with N+Z to create a “basic” version of my beloved Oskia serum and the funny thing is that this mix actually has a better consistency and absorbency than the Oskia, which is quite tacky and doesn’t always layer well if you don’t apply it “correctly”. I also love this as my daytime serum to protect my skin against any sun damage and I think it serves as a great “booster” to my sunscreen. In a routine this would go after cleansing and toning and before heavier serums and your end step. It can be used every day, morning and night and would actually be really nice to use along side the Retinoid at night for an even more potent brightening duo.


(example morning routine: Sarah Chapman cleanser, Omorovicza toner, AA+HA, N+Z, Exuviance eye serum, Sarah Chapman moisturizer, Kypris sunscreen.)

Again, this serum would work very well with all skin types, but those who suffer from uneven skintone, hyperpigmentation or are trying to undo any sun damage from this summer would benefit greatly from using it. If you find that N+Z isn’t right for you or you know you’re allergic to niacinamide, then give this a go because they provide the same type of results.

One of the things I have loved the most about the launch of The Ordinary is the fair and honest price point. There’s no getting around it – never before have serums this potent been sold at this price and it has been a revelation. I have always reserved the bulk of my “skincare funds” for serums because for me, results will always trump luxury but now I can have both. Part of the reason I wanted to review these three products together is so I could also show you what I did with the money I “saved” from not having to repurchase the Verso and OSKIA serums, so please allow me to introduce you to the beautiful Kypris Beauty Elixir II: Healing Bouquet!


The combined price of the Verso and Oskia serums is an eye watering £180/$225, so to celebrate the extra money I had just lying around I decided to treat myself! I have been coveting this gorgeous oil for well over a year, but could never bring myself to purchase it because I felt my money was best spent on results driven serums. I felt comfortable splurging on this oil because I can now get high performing serums at a highly affordable prices, which I couldn’t do before. We no longer have to choose between luxurious products or ones that provide the best results and we don’t have to pay a premium price for the not so premium ingredients that deliver those results. That’s what’s so incredible about The Ordinary – we can now have it all.

I could not be happier with the five products I have been using from The Ordinary and these three have performed just as well or better than their much more expensive counterparts. You can read Part 2 of my review on The Ordinary here featuring goodies like “Buffet” and the Rosehip Seed Oil, as well as other reviews on Deciem products below:


Disclaimer: This is not an ad or sponsored and no affiliate links have been used. These products were sent to me with no obligation to review and all opinions are my own.




77 thoughts on “September and October Favourites: The Ordinary Skincare Full Review Part 1

  1. Thank you so much for this review! I would only add that you shouldn’t use vitamin C with the Niacinamide. I didn’t realize this for a few days until I did a review of The Ordinary list on how to use the products. Oops. How do you incorporate vitamin c into your routine? Also, do you think it is ok to use the SubQ serum from them after the Niacinamide and Alph Arbutin?


    1. Hi Jesse! Yes, I read that about the Vit C and N+Z, but I’ve read such conflicting studies that I haven’t decided how to include that point yet lol. I generally err on the side of caution and try not to mix them, but at the same time I don’t really know if it’s even necessary. Vit C doesn’t really work for my skin (I’ve tried it many ways) and the only way I’m currently using it is in small doses through my Oskia and Kypris serums. I don’t have a dedicated Vit C serum and I don’t know if I ever will. It’s just very irritating for me. Unless you have very dry skin I think it might be too much to use the SubQ with the other two because the Alpha Arbutin has Hyaluronic Acid in it too. I would instead use a hydrating moisturizer, oil or balm or even toner before instead of layering on too many serums. I hope that helps! xxx


      1. Thank you! That is very helpful. I feel like I have a lot of different products that I am trying o fit into my routine, so maybe Vitamin C will take a back seat for now. I have been using the Philosophy Tubo Booster Cpowder. I have had much better results with the Alpha Arbutin.


    2. I am not an expert by any means, but I have been told by multiple beauty therapists that Vit C and Vit B3 shouldn’t be mixed since Vit C is an acid and Vit B3 is basic, and that you should use Vit C in your morning routine and B3 in your evening routine


    1. Yes! The overall results are pretty similar but with this retinoid my skin is far less irritated and I can use this daily, whereas with the Verso I definitely couldn’t. Both are great, but this one is better in formula, price and how my skin responded to it. x


  2. Loved the review! I have similar issues with Vitamin C. I tried using the Paula’s Choice serum ( 15% ascorbic acid one) for about 2 months, but my skin never full agreed with it. I suspect I might also be sensitive to Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate, as products that I use which have it… I am really paying close attention to, and I think it too may not fully agree with my skin.
    I have to say, I’ve had much better results with the Ordinary Alpha Arbutin than any Vit C or brightening product I’ve used before. I regret not having purchased more than one in the first place and not ordering a replacement sooner!! But fortunately, I received x2 today from Victoria Health 😀 and Deciem now ships The Ordinary internationally (thank goodness). I can’t wait to incorporate it back into my routine.
    I’ve been hesitant to try the Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% because of reading mixed reviews, but after reading your experience with it, I think I will try it.
    The buffet originally didn’t agree with me strangely, but I haven’t given up, and want to try it again at some point. Sorry for the incredibly long ramble, lol. xx


    1. Thank you so much Josseline! Please don’t apologize about the “ramble” lol – I love hearing about other people’s experiences. 🙂 It’s such a shame about Vit C because I know it’s a great ingredient but I just haven’t found a formula that works for my sensitive skin yet. I’m so glad you’ve seen good results with AA! It’s an excellent product and I’m so glad they included it in the lineup. Yes, N+Z hasn’t worked for a few people but for me, I have really liked it. Give it a go and see what you think and let me know when/if you do! ❤


  3. Hi Arly 🙂

    thank you for the wonderful review and recommendation! i love love love the ratinoid! as you know have almost all the Ordinary products, but for some reason i do have a problem with this : Buffet, Alpha Arbutin, niacinamid, metrixil, I love them, but can not layer them at al the peel, because they are too sticky, maybe I am using them wrong, may to much, I do not know… what so you think?

    thank you my dear 🙂


    1. Hello Sharona! 🙂 You are so very welcome and I’m so glad you’re enjoying your products! I definitely would not recommend layering that many products – it’s way too much and I don’t think you skin can handle that many layers. I would recommend no more than two serums at a time to be honest. In a full routine with a toner or sdsm and cais, put an end product, it just all gets too much. If I do want to use more than two then you must wait in-between application so each product has time to absorb properly. I said, with these type of serums that have a gel texture, less is more. I mix N+Z and AA+HA and apply it as one product/layer, but with the Retinoid I apply it, wait 5 minutes then apply Buffet or N+Z. Really, no more than three at a time (two would be best) and just make sure you’re applying a little and waiting in between each step. I hope that helps! ❤


  4. Hi Arly,
    thanks for your very informative post. I will be trying one of these serums, I just can decide which ones. I’m sure I want to try the Advanced retinoid, but I also want to get something else to make the shipping costs worth it. I don’t always comment but I find your blog a great and trustworthy source of information. Thank you!

    have a lovely weekend! 🙂



    1. Hello Silvia! Thank you so much for your kind words – I’m so happy you like the blog! 🙂 I definitely recommend the Retinoid and then go with something that will address your current skin needs. People seem to love the lactic acid so if you like that ingredient, then maybe try that? ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Arly! LOVE your reviews and pictures! Here is my question: I have been using the NIOD line (SDSM, CAIS, MMHC and NAAP) and I am wondering how The Ordinary compares to them? Would you consider them a replacement and if so, which would you use in place of CAIS, MMHC &NAAP? I was thinking of getting the retinoid, lactic acid, n+z and the Alpha Arbutus instead of the other 3… what are you thoughts? Thank you!!


    1. Hello Kylina! Thank you so much! So glad you liked the review. 🙂 I absolutely love NIOD and I don’t think The Ordinary can replace them. The products are so different and they work well together. Nothing can replace CAIS, but technically if you have the Retinoid, then you don’t really need NAAP and unless you have very dry skin then the HA in the Alpha Arbutin might be enough for you and replace MMHC. Hope that helps! 🙂


  6. I just got my order from The Ordinary and I have 4 the Alpha Arbutin, Hylauronic, niaciamide and lactic acid 5%.

    I’m not really sure where to incorporate the serum into my routine. I do have dry and acne prone skin type. What do you suggest I do?


      1. Thank you so much!!! I just so want to try them, so I think I will order a few and include them with CAIS to my regimen and see how they do compared to NIOD ( which I also absolutely love!) Thanks again Arly!


  7. Good reviewe arly. Ive been using AA and N+Z. They are good asnd impressed me alot. I will try the retiniod and lactic in future.


  8. So excited to hear your thoughts on the Kypris Arly! I haven’t tried anything from them yet.Yet 😘


  9. Hi Arly,
    I found your blog when looking for more info on The Ordinary products, and your review and description of the serums have been super helpful, thank you!!
    I also suffer of hyper pigmentation and have been struggling with hormonal acne for the last year. Acne is getting better (i’m on topical antibiotics), but the acne brown marks and general pigmentation is my main concern for now. I’ve had a look at your recommendations: N+Z and AA+HA, but wondered what you’d say about Azelaic Acid Suspension to help fade dark spots? I have combination skin, tending to be more on the dry side over winter months, and the occasional dehydration.

    I’m definetely buying the Retinoid and the Rose Hip oil 🙂


    1. Hello Claudia! I’m so glad you have found the review helpful. 🙂 I think the Azelaic Acid will be such an excellent product when that launches and would probably work really well for you too. The key is to not overload your skin, be gentle and have patience. The AA+HA and N+Z should help a lot as well as the Retinoid and Rosehip, just don’t try to use everything all at once lol. Definitely get the acid when it launches and then use it on alternate nights to the retinoid and see how you go! ❤


    2. Your skin sounds a lot like mine. I have been using the niacinimide and Arthur Arbitun at night for the past 6 weeks and I have to say the results have been astonishing. I use them after cleansing and toning and then finish off with khiels midnight recovery oil. During the day I use khiels day oil. And my breakouts have stopped, hyperpigmentation is fading slowly (I’m a mid brown black woman and the hyper-pigmentation was pretty bad)I started with the niacinimide for about a month and even that in its own worked wonders to regulate sebum production but combined with the AA has really tipped it over the top. Can’t decide whether to add Rosehip oil or a rhetinoid or whether to just keep doing what I’m doing coz the results have been so amazing. But I am a skincare junkie so…… : )


      1. I’m so happy to hear N+Z and AA have been working so well for you! They are favourites of mine and if you’re looking to take the results further then I definitely recommend both the Retiniod and Rosehip Oil. Together they would form a gentle but potent duo and I seriously love how my skin looks and feels in the morning when I use them together. ❤


  10. Hiya

    I was google’ing The Ordinary products when I came across your lovely, well written blog 🙂 A pleasure to read.

    I am 30 years old (ageing I suppose!) and suffer with acne scaring. My skin is also dehydrated and dry. What products and regime would you recommend from The Ordinary.

    Many thanks



    1. Hi Yasmin! Thank you so much for reading the post – I’m so glad you enjoyed it. 🙂

      Have you tried The Ordinary yet??? If so, what products did you get? I really recommend the Retinoid and Rosehip oil. x


  11. Thank you so much. I was excited when my first order from Deciem arrived today and wondered where to start. This help so much. CAIS is on my wishlist too! My skin loves vitamin C so I may try it on every second day. This company is a blessing to so many people and I love that. Thanks again. I’m a big believer in the power of thoughts so it’s good to know all the benefits to expect. And so it is. ( :


  12. I recently ordered products from The Ordinary.

    Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA Niacinamide and ZInc Ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate solution 20% in vitamin 100% Cold pressed rosehip seed oil

    I’ve been using it for 3-4 days now.

    AM-Niacinamide and ZInc and 100% Cold pressed rosehip seed oil.

    Pm- Ascorbyl tetraisopalmitate solution 20% in vitamin and 100% Cold pressed rosehip seed oil.

    IT BREAKS MY HEART to say that my skin looks even more dull now.

    Can anyone please suggest a better application routine


    1. Hi Samantha! So sorry to hear your skin isn’t looking great. Is is still that way?

      It could be that the Vit C is too much for your skin. Have you switched up your routine since you wrote this and is it better?


  13. LOVE your in depth reviews on the products. I’m still in shock that there is affordable skincare products. I made an order yesterday. I got the Alpha Arbutin 2% + HA and the Niacinamide 10% + Zinc also and will be following your morning routine suggestion of using the AA before the NZ. It says on the website that water degrades the effectiveness of AA – does this mean I can no longer use a hydrating mist in my routine? Do you think I can add a mist before my oil as opposed to before serums (which is what I would usually do)?


    1. Thank you so much! So glad you like them. 🙂 How have you been getting on with your purchases? Good question about AA. I either use SDSM with CAIS, then wait and apply the AA when my skin is dry or like you said, add a mist before my oil, which works really well. Either should be fine, it just depends what suits your skin. ❤


      1. Thank you so much for your response!! They had a backlog with orders so they only recently posted my order. Very much anticipating the arrival of my products 😃


  14. Wow! This is such a good post! But I do have to tell; I am confused. I want to purchase a few of the products, but I’m not sure what to get and when to use it. I have acne prone skin, combo, with a few scars/pigmentation. Do you have any tips for what to get (and when to use it in the routine, lol)?

    Thanks in advance!


    1. Thank you so much! I know it can be quite confusing finding the right products, so I definitely recommend getting samples and doing as much research as possible. I have posts on products for hyper pigmentation and and acne so check those out and see if anything appeals to you. You can find a whole routine from my posts but if you need any more tips please feel free to ask! ❤


      1. Hello Darlene,

        So sorry for the late reply, I’ve had a death in the family so haven’t been on the blog these past couple of weeks.

        Yes, it’s ok to mix AA and NZ – the combo might be a bit drying so use them together when your skin needs a boost to stop any oiliness or break outs.

        Hope that helps! ❤


  15. I really enjoyed reading your review of The Ordinary.

    I’m 58yrs of age and I’ve always spent a fortune on make up, but I’ve only ever cleansed (washed) and applied moisturiser. I never quite understood the importance of looking after your skin as I always thought it was down to luck and genes……..a little late in the day now maybe.

    Anyway, I heard about TO and I’ve purchased the following but I haven’t got a clue how and when to use them, so any advice would be much appreciated. I’m double cleansing with a damp face flannel and cleanser, a la Caroline Hiron (all hail to the Queen).

    Vit C
    Retinol 1%
    Hyaluronic 2%

    Thanks guys. x


    1. Hello Kim! Thank you so much for reading the review and I’m happy to hear you enjoyed it. 🙂 It is never too late to start taking care of your skin, so don’t worry! How have you been getting on with the products so far? I would recommend using the Retinol 1% every 5-7 days depending on how your skin reacts. HA 2% can be used daily every day and then Buffet at night. Retinol can make your skin sensitive so go easy on the Vit C. I hope that helps and good luck! ❤


  16. My ordinary order was just shipped. I wondered what type of moisturizer I should incorporate into my routine. I did not anything that doesn’t react well with the products I purchased, six different products altogether.


    1. Hi Renee! How have you been getting on with your products so far? As for moisturizer, did you see that The Ordinary actually have one? It’s very good and one I highly recommend. It should work well with what you’ve got since it’s from the same brand. ❤


  17. I was searching for reviews on The Ordinary line and discovered your blog–this post has inspired me to be better informed about my skincare (and helped me narrow my purchases :)! Thanks for this thorough and comprehensive review!

    Jen | affecionada


    1. Hi Jen! Thank you so much for your wonderful comment and I am so happy to hear you are now going to be more informed about your skincare purchases. It changed a lot for me when I started reading ingredients lists and definitely helped me make better choices. Enjoy!!! ❤


  18. hey,
    how did you use all the ordinary serum product?, did u use in one time , or u use in different situation?
    thx (pardon my english)


  19. Thank you so much for this review and the Part 1 as well. I am keen to get into The Ordinary products, and am just beginning to rotate them into my regime. Up to now, I’ve been using Paula’s Choice for everything, and have been happy except for the cost! One criticism of The Ordinary I read on (which is associated with Paula’s Choice, as far as I’m aware) is that the products are ‘one note’ and don’t replace a comprehensive antioxidant serum. Do you have any view on this?

    I had been thinking to switch my regime over to the one recommended by The Ordinary for ‘general signs of age’: AM: Buffet, Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5; PM: Buffet, Advanced Retinoid 2%, 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil. I’d of course add in my own cleanser and SPF. But do I also need an antioxidant serum to round things out? Any advice is appreciated, I’m still trying to get my head around this line of products.


    1. Hello! I can definitely understand what Beautypedia are saying as many of The Ordinary products contain one or two (some have more) main/star ingredients so in that way some can be deemed as not “comprehensive”, but depending on what you use/your skin type, that might not be such a bad thing. I like the sound of the products you want to use and I would always recommend a good antioxidant serum, as well as the sunscreen you mentioned. Vit C is a great antioxidant and The Ordinary have a few to choose from so that’s a good place to start. Good luck with your switch over! ❤


  20. Hi!

    Your review is one of many great reviews on the ordinary skin products! I would really like to try them as my skin has become quite acne prone over the past few months. I’ve only been a 2 product kinda user (cleanser/moisturizer) and have no idea where to start!!
    What products from the ordinary skin would you recommend to a new user who is desperately trying to calm her acne???



    1. Hi Sarah! Thank you so much for your kind words! 🙂 If you need to calm your acne then the top products I would recommend are the salicylic acid or azelaic acid, retinoid and rosehip oil. Start there and see how you go! ❤


  21. Hi Arly, I really enjoyed your review! What a comprehensive and honest article, my compliments. You totally convinced me of buying all the products you recommended haha. The prica tag is also really nice and as I am getting older, I am getting more and more interested in keeping a young and healthy appereance. I will buy the Retinol, Rosehip, Niacimide, Alpha Arbutin and the Glycolic Acid. I am Asian, so I can handle a lot. Thank you for your support in my journey 😉 xxx Ashna


    1. Hello Ashna! Thank you so much for your kind words and I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed the review. 🙂 Haha! I love that you’re getting so many of my faves products and I can’t wait to hear what you think! I hope you like them, if you’re on Instagram please tag me if you talk about them so I can see! ❤


  22. hi, i am 24, olive skin. i have combination skin, oily at the T zone but very dry cheeks. almost like dry skin flaking off. i recently saw a dermetologist who told me i have lots of large pores, whiteheads and blackheads, mainly on my nose, cheeks and chin. i also have a lot of red skin underneath. i think this is the start of rosacea. i can see broken red veins on my nose and my cheeks are starting to break out. they almost look like spots/acne scars. i have never had acne in my life but am starting to see an increase in spots, mainly whiteheads or pink bumpy skin. i am looking for something to tackle the rosacea/red skin, the oily parts and also something to even out the bumpy texture on my face. also something brighten/rejuvenate my skin please. thank you.


    1. Hi Zahra! Wow! Seems like you have a lot going on with your skin right now and I would love to help but it’s impossible for me as a blogger to diagnose/recommendation products online. I’ve never had rosacea so I wouldn’t know what to suggest but for the acne I have a post (scroll back) on what I used when my skin broke out and I definitely recommend what I used there. Good luck! ❤


    2. Hi Zahra, I wanted to add that Azelaic Acid is supposed to work very well for rosacea and I forgot to add that in my previous comment. The Ordinary have a 10% version so give that a try. I hope that helps! ❤


  23. Hello! I am VERY new to skin care as I have recently been diagnosed with acne rosacea (or Rosacea subtype 2 (papulopustular roscea)). I was wondering a few things! First, if you know or have heard of anyone with this diagnosis having tried The Ordinary? Second, I have my breakouts pretty much under control and am DESPERATELY trying to attack my hyper pigmentation left behind (I have a light olive skin tone, oily but with light dryness) I’m certainly looking to purchase the Advanced Retinoid, NA+Z and AA+HA, however I wondered about the SDSM, Buffet and CAIS you also mention… Are these also targeted toward hyper pigmentation or things I should also purchase to aid/ deliver the AR, NA+Z and AA+ HA? IF that is the case, that’s 5 new products and I gather from your fantastic review that order is important in application, where can I learn how to order these products? (I apologize for so many questions!! I simply am at the very beginning and this is the best review I have found and you seem to be the only person who answers! Thank you so much in advance!!!)


    1. Hello Emily! No need to apologize. I will have post on here next week about routines for all skin types and as for the products you asked about, the ones you mentioned do target hyperpigmentation but you should also check out the Azelaic Acid, which should work for your rosacea, acne and hyperpigmentation. CAIS is for all manner of skin issues and SDSM is more about hydration but it compliments CAIS. I don’t think Buffet is for you unless you have mature skin. I have a new blog post up reviewing very single product so check that out for more info on the whole range. ❤


  24. Hi,

    Thank you for your great review! I am interested in purchasing some products from The Ordinary and would love some advice. I have pretty normal skin aside from some pigmentation/dullness and would like to begin using something more advanced in my regime. My current routine is very simple and consists of:

    AM – cleanse, moisturise + SPF
    PM: cleanse, tone, rose hip oil, moisturise.
    I also exfoliate 2 x weekly.

    I am interested in purchasing the Niacinamide, AA+HA and the Retinoid 2%. How do you suggest I incorporate these into my routine?

    Thanks so much for your help!


  25. Hello, i am Fara, almost 24 y.o.

    I’ve been looking up to The Ordinary products since i wanna try to use a serum and add it to my skincare routine.
    I’m kinda late to concern about my skin since i havent had any kind of skin problems before. But for the last one & a half year, suddenly i’m having this acne-prone-skin condition.

    Until the end of 2015, I was rarely have some acnes/pimples. At least, there were (max) 3 pimples when i got my period. I was having a kinda light asian skin. So when i first had this breakout, people around me was like amazed by “my change”, even until now.

    Sorry for the rambling, now i’m gonna straight to the point.
    Lately i’ve heard some good reviews about The Ordinary serums on YouTube. So, i’m kinda curious about them, i’m googling it, then i found your review at first and i think i wont need to reach other’s reviews anymore. Your review is soooo so so great and clear 😍
    But still, i need some advices since i’m a bit clue-less about skincare.

    Right now, my kinda hormonal acnes are reducing alot.
    But, it turns out i’m having this pore (clogged pores) & comedones problem.
    I am now having this bumpy skin, my face is almost full of whiteheads & blackheads. Hyperpigmentation here & there. Combination-to-oily skin. Kinda sensitive.
    It’s too much, right? Lol.

    My current skincare routine are:
    AM: cleanse (cetaphil), tone (apple cider vinegar+water), moisturize (aloe vera gel), sunscreen (from my latest dermatologist), face mist (avene thermal)
    PM: 1st cleanse (garnier micellar water), 2nd cleanse (cetaphil), sometimes toning (apple cider vinegar+water), spot treatment (either OXY 5 or the one from a dermatologist), moisturize/sleeping mask (aloe vera gel/laneige water sleeping mask)
    I scrub my face (with the body shop squeaky clean tea tree) 2-3 times a week.
    Use a wash-off mask which made from oats, honey and some natural ingredients almost 2-5 times a week.
    And have a facial at a beauty clinic monthly.

    Can you give me some advices since i wanna add a serum, exfoliator, oil/essence to my skincare routine? And i think i wanna change my current skincare routine a bit if i have to…

    ((Sorry for my unimportant story and for this super long comment 😅))


    1. Hi Farahdita,

      I’m so happy you found the review helpful! 🙂 Have you seen the recommended routines guide I did? I wrote all the products you would need for your skin type, so give that a look and let me know what you think. ❤


  26. I have read SO much about ‘The Ordinary’ but alas will will continue to use rubber droppers and for someone who is allergic to rubber and latex, we are cruelly shut of this product, we have to go and spend alot more money to get products that do not have droppers.
    I wish the beauty industry would recognise this, as millions of people, not just me suffer with this annoying and sometimes life threatning allergy.
    Great review though, I have tried other Oskia products and really liked them, so i might go with that one 🙂


    1. I am so sorry you have an allergy to the rubber droppers! That’s such a shame. 😦 They are supposed to be releasing pumps, so maybe contact them and ask when they will arrive. I had no idea this was such an issue and I agree with you that the industry needs to do more to recognize and accommodate the allergy.

      As for the Oskia, I am such a fan of the cleanser, so I hope you love it! If you need the discount code, just let me know. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Hello!

    I’m a 23yo female who is actually quite fortunate to have no skin problems besides for a few sunspots here and there. My pores are pretty invisible, and I get the occasional pimple every few weeks, but other than that, I have no complaints. What I do want is something to brighten up my face or even out some mild discoloration. I normally use a thin layer of BB cream for this, but I’m really looking forward to trying TheOrdinary products for what I need! If you could recommend 1 or 2 products, what would you think is best?

    Thank you so much, your reviews are amazing!


    1. Hi Jenny! Check out my other posts on The Ordinary, because I have one that recommends products for every skin type. There are a lot of good options under the “Dull/Uneven/Pigmented” category that you can choose from, but I also highly recommend Re:Pigment from NIOD. It is brilliant for sunspots etc, so check that one out too.


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