I Let The Ordinary Dictate My Skincare Routine, And The Results Were Amazing

If there’s one thing I learned during the pandemic, it’s how to curate a great skincare routine. 

Y’all, I’m not like our lovely writer Markey, who tries (and sticks to) all routines under the sun. I am not a “routines” person – I thrive in chaos and cling to the new and exciting. Some of my favorite times are when I’m awake for 30 hours traveling to a new country. I rarely stick to a solid sleep or eating schedule and I work odd hours. But while I may love living this way, my skin does not.

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It became clear to me that I actually needed to develop a solid skincare routine only about a year ago. And yes, it was for another article. We tried and reviewed the best products from Sephora, and I got to review two renowned skincare products – Tatcha Dewy Skin Cream and Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum.

It’s not an exaggeration when I say these products changed me on a foundational level. Seemingly overnight, my skin became plump and glowing. I didn’t feel like I needed foundation to leave the house. I felt (and looked) radiant.

Unfortunately, I eventually ran out – and given that I’m not one to regularly spend the BIG bucks on skincare items, I started looking for more affordable alternatives. I promised my skin I would find a solution and be consistent with it.

And I’m happy to say I succeeded, thanks to a little brand called The Ordinary.


About The Ordinary

You’ve probably heard of this skincare brand by now, but if you haven’t, I’ll enlighten you. The Ordinary’s line of skincare products is probably different on the surface from what you’re used to seeing in-store. Most of the line comes in small dropper bottles of one or two ingredients. So while many serums will combine ingredients – for example, hyaluronic acid, retinol, and Vitamin C – The Ordinary sells these individually, for an easily customizable skincare routine.

If you’re well-versed in the chemistry of skincare, building your own skincare routine will be easy. But most of us are not, and The Ordinary is well-prepared for those of us who aren’t as chemically literate.

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Head over to the Regimen Builder on parent company Deciem’s website, and take a short quiz. At the end, you’ll be presented with a curated skincare routine both for AM and PM, including what products to buy and what order to use them in. 

If you don’t feel like taking a 2-minute quiz (not throwing shade, I get it), you can always head over to their Regimen Guide to see what routines/products the company recommends for certain skincare concerns.

My Routine

I took the quiz, and here’s what The Ordinary recommended I use:

Now, full disclosure – I didn’t screenshot my quiz results or take note of which order they said to use the products in, nor was I given an option to save my routine (that I saw, anyway). This is a huge flaw, IMO, because if I want to see my results again, I have to take the whole quiz again and answer all questions the exact same way. 

I did some Googling, though, and eventually settled on the following routine:

AM: Cleanser, HA, Moisturizer

PM: Cleanser, HA, Squalane, Moisturizer

2x/week: Peeling solution

My Results

the ordinary skincare routinethe ordinary skincare routine

I’ve been on this routine for a few weeks now, and I definitely fell off the wagon over the holidays – which is to say, I have not been consistent with this in the slightest. But still, I really do see a drastic change in my skin! As you can see above, my pores are way less noticeable now and my skin tone is more even. The redness I’m prone to on my cheeks has been drastically reduced, and my skin consistently feels smoother.

As far as each individual product, I’m a huge fan of all but the squalane oil. I’ll probably try cutting that one out and seeing how my skin does – I just don’t like oily formulas on my skin. I’m also considering adding in this azelaic acid formula to help further brighten my skin.

Overall, yes, I’m a huge fan. And I almost forgot to mention –- The Ordinary’s products are crazy cheap! I think my whole routine cost about $30? And I know the bottles look tiny, but you’re only supposed to use a single drop at a time, so they really do last ages. Like I said, I’ve been on this routine (inconsistently) for a good few weeks to a month now, and I’ve barely made a dent in my bottles. Except for the HA bottle my cat spilled in my sink, but we don’t need to talk about that.





Do you follow a strict skincare routine? What products do you swear by? Tell us in the comments!

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