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The Ordinary by Deciem skincare range can be a little confusing because there are so many products to choose from and combine. And of course, there’s big sister brand NIOD to consider too! It can be overwhelming so I have put together this product guide with all the best sellers to make things a little simpler. Here’s what you need to know.
UPDATE 11th May 2020
The Ordinary by Deciem is all about offering advanced technology and quality ingredients at low prices. For skincare that actually works, and these products do, the prices are literally stunning and everything is amazing value for money.
This post is all about skincare but The Ordinary has amazing foundations. The Coverage one is my favourite. You can see my swatches here.
Excitingly, there is also The Ordinary Concealers launching soon!
Many of the products can be used together and you can tailor your own regime to address your specific skin condition. I love the simplicity of the packaging, the straightforward names of the products, the clear ingredients listing.
The Ordinary By Deciem – Best Sellers
Because lots of the products are based on single ingredients, we are encouraged to layer, which of course I love! When layering skincare, the general rule is to start with the lightest texture and layer on heavier formulations as you work through your routine. So you start with products such as Buffet and Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 which are water solutions, and move on to the oils and creams.
If you are already familiar with The Ordinary, and want to move up to the more sophisticated formulations of NIOD, then scroll down for my top recommendations from that range.
The Ordinary by Deciem – Cleanser
The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser is one of the newer additions to the line up. This cleanser is super gentle and has been formulated to thoroughly clean the skin of makeup and impurities. If you like oil cleansing with transformative textures then I think this will be for you.
You dispense the product into hands and then rub together to warm the balm allowing it to melt into an oil. It takes a while, maybe 20 to 30 seconds, and it is important that you take the time to really warm it is your hands before taking it to your face. You suddenly feel it turn into an oil-like texture and then it’s ready to be applied.
It melts away makeup and dirt and leaves skin clean, smooth, soft, hydrated and glowy. Read The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser Review. It starts at £5.50.
The Ordinary by Deciem – Acids
Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution
If you are a fan of acid toners then this will be very interesting for you. The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution can be used daily to exfoliate, brighten and clear the skin. Should you be looking for a super effective, much cheaper alternative to Pixi Glow Tonic, this is most certainly it! It’s just £6.80 for 240ml.
Alongside the Glycolic Acid which promotes mild, non abrasive exfoliation of surface skin, the formula is reinforced with caring ingredients such as Tasmanian Pepperberry which helps to reduce the irritation associated with acid use, and also Ginseng root and aloe vera for extra radiance and soothing.
Use it at night after cleansing and before the rest of your skincare regime. Read The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution Review.
AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution
The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution is one of my favourite products ever! It is brilliant! The first time I used it I was blown away, and it has pretty much the same effect every time I use it.
This brightly coloured mask treatment brightens up and decongests the skin in just 10 minutes. I love the instant results.
Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHA) work to exfoliate the skin’s top layer for a brighter, more even-toned complexion. Beta hydroxyl acids (BHA) also work to exfoliate the skin and also help clear pore congestion. The combination of the two offers up a deeper exfoliation with the dual benefit of clearer skin and increased luminosity.
Salicylic Acid 2% Masque
This another favourite treatment of mine. The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Masque is s a gentle, yet super-effective treatment version of the original SA solution that some people find a little strong.
I love the texture. It has a bouncy, firm jelly texture with a very slight grainy feel. It smooths over the skin really easily and doesn’t have any sting or sensation. After use, my skin isn’t red or irritated, just smooth and clean-looking with a good glow. I often get congestion on the sides of my chin, but this mask leaves it feeling super smooth and de-congested. It’s an excellent treatment if you want to prep skin for perfect makeup application.
It purifies without drying the skin, thanks to its nourishing squalane content. Read The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Masque Review.
Mandelic Acid 10% + HA
The Ordinary Mandelic Acid 10% + HA is brilliant if you want great results but are looking for something gentler than Glycolic Acid.
Mandelic Acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) like Glycolic Acid, however, it penetrates the skin differently which means a much gentler peel. It has a larger molecular size which means it penetrates the skin more slowly. Slow penetration makes it very gentle.
It works extremely well to brighten and even out skin tone and it really boosts hydration too. Read The Ordinary Mandelic Acid 10% + HA Review.
The Ordinary – Hydration & Moisturisers
Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5
This HA serum (£5.90) boasts an excellent formulation and uses multi weight Hyaluronic Acid (low, medium and high) to ensure multi-depth hydration. It instantly plumps the skin and gives it a beautiful dewy look. It is best used as a first step after cleansing.
If you are looking for something that is super hydrating but light as water, then The Ordinary Marine Hyaluronics is for you. It is instantly quenching and sinks in instantly. It is the perfect extra layer of hydration.
Amino Acids + B5
The Ordinary Amino Acids + B5 is a hydration support serum. It is a lightweight, concentrated formula that offers above and below-surface hydration. Amino Acids are found naturally within the skin’s Natural Moisturising Factors and are known for their ability to boost hydration, encourage repair and promote suppleness. This formula offers 17% Amino Acids along with 5% Vitamin B5, a humectant that soothes skin and stimulates the healing process.
100% Plant-Derived Squalane
The Ordinary 100% Plant-Derived Squalane is a top-seller and loved by many. It’s a beautiful lightweight oil texture that makes for an excellent hydrator. The oil can also be applied to hair to increase heat protection, add shine and reduce breakage potential.
It is non-greasy and non-comedogenic so great if you worry that oil will cause you to break out. Use after a water-based serum like Hyluronic Acid or Marine Hyaluronics (above).
100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil
The Ordinary 100% Organic Cold-Pressed Rose Hip Seed Oil is a brilliant all-rounder oil that also works really well for those with acne prone skin.
It is made from cold-pressed, organic 100% pure rosehip seed oil and nothing else. It is rich in linolenic acid and pro-vitamin A and is brilliant for repairing dry skin.
Use after a water-based serum like Hyluronic Acid or Marine Hyaluronics (above).
Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA
The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA is the brand’s only classic moisturiser and should be applied after serums. It works to keep the outer layer of the skin protected and well-hydrated.
This formula is non-greasy and contains 11 amino acids, phospholipids, alpha/beta/gamma fatty acids, triglycerides, sterols and sterol esters, glycerin, ceramide precursors, urea, saccharides, sodium PCA and hyaluronic acid. It offers immediate hydration and lasting results with continued use.
The Ordinary by Deciem – Actives
The Ordinary Buffet is a brilliant multi-peptide serum that’s ideal for adressing the signs of ageing. The technologies include Matrixyl 3000 along with a whole host of other peptides, in a base of 11 skin-friendly amino acids and multiple hyaluronic acid complexes.
Use this after cleansing and before oils or creams. When I use this with other Deciem products, it tends to be in the evening before the Granactive Retinoid 5% in Squalane (see below) and followed by the Rosehip Seed Oil.
Buffet + Copper Peptides 1%
The Ordinary Buffet + Copper Peptides 1% is a newer addition to the line and amazing if you are looking for an even more affordable alternative to one of my all time favourite skincare products, NIOD Copper Amino Isolate Serum 2.1.
Copper Peptides are amazing for strengthening the skin and boosting collagen production. This is Buffet with the added power of a 1% concentration of Copper Peptides.
Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%
The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% is £5 for 30ml, and also available in a 60ml for £8.90 which is amazing value.
Described as a high-strength Vitamin and Mineral Blemish Formula, this serum is great for tackling inflammation and hyperpigmentation and also helps t0 control oil. Niacinamide promotes the natural production of ceramides which strengthen barrier function. This has a positive effect on the appearance of blemishes.
It is best used in the morning regime, after a hydrating serum (eg The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5) and before creams or oils. Keep it separate from Vitamin C as the two ingredients don’t play well together.
Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2%
The Ordinary offer a large range of different Vitamin C products, but as far as I know, the Vitamin C Suspension 23% + HA Spheres 2% is the best seller.
It’s a powerful formula that provides the most direct exposure of extremely high concentrations of Vitamin C topically for a major brightening effect on the skin. When you first use it, it will tingle but this is merely the sensation rather than irritation.
The thing to note with this product is that the texture is slightly gritty, however, this is vital to its efficacy. This is because the only thing that solubilises pure Vitamin C is water. Water also oxidises Vitamin C, so water must not touch it until it is ready to be applied.
For Vitamin C to be as fresh and active as it can be, water must not go near it until it touches the water in your skin. With this product, you are basically getting a powder that is dissolving in the water in your own skin – the same as if you applied powder straight to the skin. It’s as fresh as Vitamin C can get.
It is best used in the evening after your water based serums, and it doesn’t play well with Niacinamide so make sure you separate those out.
Granactive Retinoid 5% in Squalane
The Ordinary Granacitve Retinoid 5% in Squalane is a high strength formula that promises to deliver better results than Retinol with less irritation.
You use a small amount in the evening, after your water-based serums but before heavier textures.
The Ordinary Antioxidants
I love The Ordinary’s antioxidants and enjoy using them mixed into my serums and creams to boost their enviromental protective powers and defend against free radicals.
Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3%
The Ordinary Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3% is an antioxidant powerhouse and contains very high concentrations Resveratrol and Ferulic Acid. Resveratrol is a natural phenol and this one is 100% derived from Japanese Knotweed. Ferulic Acid is a high-potency phytochemical antioxidant found naturally in walls of plant cells.
You can use this after a water based serum and under moisturiser or mix a drop or two into serums or moisturisers to boost their antioxidant protection power. Read The Ordinary Resveratrol 3% + Ferulic Acid 3% Review.
The Ordinary Pycnogenol 5% is a super potent antioxidant formula extracted from pine bark and it can revive oxidised vitamin C to make it active again.
It works to enhance skin hydration and elasticity and can help bind to collagen and elastin, to protect them from degradation. It is a powerful antioxidant and scavenges for free radicals before they cause damage by oxidative stress.
Apply alone or after water-based serums, before oils or heavier creams. Alternatively, mix with other treatments to enhance their antioxidant capacity significantly. Read The Ordinary Pycnogenol 5% Review.
NIOD – Moving on to more sophisticated formulas
The Ordinary by Deciem is a brilliant starter point for your skincare, and if you have found your perfect combinations, this may well be enough. However, if you then want to move up the scale, most of The Ordinary products have a big sister within Deciem’s higher end brand NIOD – that will deliver more intensive, stronger results. What a genius concept!
The Best Products from NIOD
Copper Amino Isolate Complex
NIOD Copper Amino Isolate Complex (CAIS) is my absolute ultimate from NIOD. If I run out of this stuff, I panic, and that’s because it’s one of those products that you don’t realise how amazing it is until you stop using it!
I have been using it religiously since the formula was updated and improved a couple of years ago and I never want to be without it. It works to improve skin health, is healing, calming and strengthening, and it reduces inflammation whilst stimulating collagen and fibroblast production.
You need it if you are concerned with enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, pigmentation, texture, lines and firmness – it works on all that stuff! It’s bloody amazing. Make sure you use it as your first step after cleansing.
Copper Amino Isolate Lipid (CAIL)
A newer product that I have been using for less time, but completely love, is CAIS’s more moisturising sister NIOD Copper Amino Isolate Lipid (CAIL).
It has the skin strengthening power of the original serum but also contains Squalane for brilliant moisturising benefit. If you like instantly dewy skin, you will adore it. Read my full review here.
Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex (MMHC)
NIOD Multi-Molecular Hyaluronic Complex (MMHC) is potentially the best hydrating serum I have ever used in my life! It’s an absolute wonder. The thing about Hyaluronic Acid is that it really does vary in quality. MMHC uses so many different types (15 forms) and molecule sizes including a 1.0% direct Hyaluronic Acid which is far superior to the sodium hyaluronate found in many other hydrating serum formulas. The full review is here.
It is deeply and intensely hydrating at multi-depths of the skin; the ideal inclusion in a regime for anyone looking for serious hydration, plumping, improved elasticity and tone. Even after first use, it makes skin so soft. It is the perfect second step after CAIS.
If you have inflamed or sensitive skin, then you might want to get aquainted with NIOD Modulating Glucosides (MG) which is another of my all time favourites. It is formulated to calm and soothe the skin, works to reduce redness, decongests and acts like a medicine to iritated skin. Read my review here.
It uses a blend of glucosides, peptides and lipids and if you are using a NIOD regime, Deciem suggest using it after CAIS and before MMHC2. I think it also works really well after The Ordinary Marine Hyaluronics and Buffet with Copper.
Fractionated Eye Contour Concentrate
I love this eye serum. NIOD Fractionated Eye Contour Concentrate is a hyper-concentrated bio-serum for the eye contour. It combines 28 clinical technologies to target many signs of under-eye and above-eye ageing, and is for use on both upper eyelids and lower eyelids.
It tackles the looks of dynamic lines, static lines, fine superficial under-eye lines, loss of elasticity (especially upper-eyelids), dark circles, puffiness and textural unevenness. It’s amazing.
That’s it for my The Ordinary by Deciem Guide. I hope you enjoyed the inclusion of the NIOD products because they are my true favourites! Please let me know if you have any questions.
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