CNA – In the whirlwind of post-COVID life, it seems as if the fast-paced hustle and bustle has returned with a vengeance.
Amid this new normal, juggling a time-consuming, multi-step beauty routine might feel like a luxury we can no longer afford. But fear not, for the beauty industry has responded with a solution: hardworking, multitasking skincare products that aim to be your time-saving companions.
These innovative products go beyond mere skin minimalism; they serve as the ultimate time-savers by addressing a multitude of skin concerns simultaneously.
But are they as effective in addressing a multitude of skin woes as target specific products?
“Using a multipurpose skincare product that claims to address various skin concerns may be effective to some extent, but results may vary depending on the product and individual skin type,” explained Dr Angeline Yong, consultant dermatologist at Angeline Yong Dermatology.
According to Dr Yong, the effectiveness of these products is dependent on several factors, such as the formulation and the combination and concentration of active ingredients.
It’s also why some people might see a noticeable improvement in the appearance of the skin, while others might notice little to no change at all.
Multitasking active ingredients
Here’s something that many might not realise.
“Most skincare products are actually multipurpose products as a single ingredient in a product can have multiple benefits by itself,” explained Dr YZ Tan, founder and medical director of Mizu Aesthetic Clinic.
For instance, retinol not only helps reduce fine lines and pore size, but can also increase skin renewal, while vitamin C works to brighten the skin tone, decrease the appearance of hyperpigmentation and delay the signs of ageing.
Moreover, “most skin conditions are due to more than one cause, and it is important to rectify these causes together rather than be fixated with just one effect of a single ingredient”, added Dr Tan.
And potential benefits you can achieve with all-in-one products, shared Dr Yong, include a more radiant complexion, reduction in the signs of ageing like fine lines, a smoother complexion and increased hydration.
It’s why an all-in-one product can easily address various skin concerns.
All-in-one vs targeted: Which one is for you?
Still unsure? Here are the advantages of each camp to help you along.
A multitasking product is good for:
Convenience. All-in-one/multi-tasking products are convenient because they combine multiple effects in a single product. They may be suitable if you have several minor concerns and prefer a simplified routine. However, do note that the effectiveness of these products may be lower compared to targeted products due to the lower concentration of active ingredients, shared Dr Yong.
Ingredient compatibility. If you have multiple skin concerns that require different active ingredients, an all-in-one product would be an easy solution. This is because the product is already well-formulated to ensure that the ingredients inside work well with one another, which in turn minimises risk and skin irritation.
Maintenance. A multitasking product is good for maintenance and everyday use when there are no major issues to tackle for your skin, said Dr Tan.
Budget and simplify your skincare routine. All-in-one products can be cost-effective and simplifying your skincare routine, especially if you have a limited budget, travel frequently or prefer a simpler all-in-one approach. They can strike a good balance between treating different issues without the need for an extensive range of products.
A targeted product is good for:
Specific skin concerns. If you have specific skin concerns that require targeted treatment, such as acne, hyperpigmentation or deep wrinkles, targeted skincare products may be more effective. These products contain higher concentrations of active ingredients and are designed to directly address specific issues.
Treatment intensity. Targeted products usually have a higher concentration of active ingredients, which allow for a more potent treatment.
Customisation. Targeted products offer the advantage of customisation. This means you are allowed to choose the products you need to address your specific concerns and adjust your routine as needed. “This flexibility allows you to target different areas of the face or adapt your routine to your skin’s changing needs,” added Dr Yong.
However, she also cautioned that extra care needs to be taken with product compatibility and potential interactions between active ingredients when building a skincare routine comprising of different products.
Four doctor-approved tips in picking the right multitasker
Type of ingredients. Look for scientifically proven ingredients and check that they’re present in sufficient amounts to achieve the desire results, said Dr Yong.
Concentration of ingredients. Look at the concentration of the ingredients as these determine the results and the targeted effect of the product. For instance, a blemish serum with salicylic acid and sodium hyaluronate will work to exfoliate the skin while keeping it well-hydrated – two key steps in reducing comedonal acne, said Dr Tan.
Skin compatibility. All-in-one products aren’t suitable for everyone due to individual skin types and sensitivities. Know your skin and identify your skin concerns to ensure that the product is suitable, reminded Dr Tan. And before adding the product to your routine, do a patch test on a small area of your skin, such as your neck or on the inside of your upper arm, and look out for any adverse reactions, like redness, irritation or breakouts, advised Dr Yong.
SPF protection. Even if the all-in-one product offers sun protection, Dr Yong shared to always check the SPF levels to make sure that it meets your sun protection needs. “It’s generally recommended to use a separate sunscreen with a broad-spectrum SPF of at least SPF30 to ensure adequate protection from harmful UV rays.”