The Cosmetic Counter under the spotlight.
At this point in your search for great skin, you feel comfortable just buying what you need in the good old department store, nothing wrong with that, after all, it’s where it all began. If you’re not intimidated by all those made-up, almost-perfect beauty consultants, then it’s a tantalisingly seductive place to start. In which case, here is what to look for.
A good starting point would be when the cosmetic counter consultant immediately invites you for a consultation and offers to diagnose your skin.
This is a good sign.
Once comfortably seated, they ask you what your primary skincare concerns are—another good sign.
Don’t say; you’re not really concerned about anything specific or that you’re just looking for a good moisturiser. That’s not going to cut it. Think about what really worries you and share it with them.
For example, does your skin feel dry by the end of the day? Or, does your makeup exacerbate your dryness or do your pores bother you or does your skin feel oily and dry all at the same time? Or have you suddenly developed brown patches and wrinkles that seemed to appear out of nowhere?
A good consultant can explain and name your specific skin conditions and exactly how active ingredients contained within the product they’re recommending are going to work for you. Still looking good.
However, if you, being the savvy shopper that you are, ask about specific ingredients and the consultant, a) doesn’t know how to explain it, or b) picks up the bottle or jar and reads the ingredient list with a puzzled look on their face. This is a bad sign. Don’t go any further. It’s not that the product is inferior, it’s just that you want someone who knows what they’re talking about, don’t you?
For me, if the cosmetic consultant can’t explain the product and what’s inside, then it’s a big fat NO!
What should they know?
I’m not suggesting they should know every last little ingredient. Still, certainly, the important active ingredients should roll off their tongue like a Malteser running down the aisle of a movie cinema.
Nor am I for a minute suggesting your department store skincare consultant is not an expert in their field. No, not at all, it’s just a bit hit or miss. You’ll have to shop around. Sometimes you’ll find more information on the company website or by calling the company education and customer care department.
Sad, but true and frustrating. Of course, some companies will only employ qualified beauty/skin therapists, that might be a good place to start.
Just ask. Don’t be afraid or intimidated because they are wearing a white coat. It’s just a white coat. You should never feel bad about asking pertinent questions; I assure you they’ll feel nothing but delight if you part with your hard-earned cash.
Make them work for it. Ask how the ingredient is going to work, if it doesn’t make sense, then it probably isn’t going to work in a meaningful way.
And by the way, “it just does” is not a good answer, but hey, no one really says that they give you a whole bunch of samples and hope you like them. Don’t settle, just because they have!
Maybe you think my words are a little harsh? Perhaps. But my expectations are high as it’s where I got my start in the beauty industry. I know what’s expected and I’m always disappointed when I see it all fall short.
See you in the next article where I take a look at what happens in the beauty salon or clinic.