doDo wrinkle creams work?
Gema Herrerías —Of course they work, but you have to be aware of the limitations of cosmetics. We cannot pretend that they will erase a wrinkle or a stain, but they will improve the wrinkle or lighten the stain.
No paying attention to advertising where 30-year-old girls appear announcing creams for 50-year-olds.
Marian García —Every time a manufacturer says that “eight out of ten women state that their skin felt smoother”, the difference between a subjective study must be explained because they are people who have been given a product to test and they have subjectively declared feeling this way. That does not mean that an efficacy study has been done measuring whether or not wrinkles have actually been reduced. We explain the various studies so that when you see those marketing claims, you know what they really mean.
And when the OCU says that the best moisturizer on the market is one worth five euros from a well-known Valencian brand, do we believe them?
MG —We also talked about the price of cosmetics. Because the million dollar question is whether to spend a lot of money, or whether private label cosmetics are just as effective. It is true that there can be a good moisturizer for five or six euros, but in the book we explain what you are going to get, and that it is not going to have anything to do with a moisturizer that includes more concentrated ingredients. The creams that are worth 200 euros, apart from their effectiveness, cost that much for a marketing issue, for the actresses they have hired for advertising, for the packaging, for the glitter glitter… and you have to take it into account.
We still don’t look at the label and we are blinded by advertising.
GH —Our goal is to teach anyone who is not a chemist or pharmacist to understand the importance of ingredients. Sometimes it is a health problem because people still have an allergy and it is important that they verify on the label that it does not have those components that can cause dermatitis.
There are top notch cosmetics and then there are the secondary ones.
MG —We compare the formulation of a cosmetic with a film. And in a movie we have protagonists and secondary characters. In the protagonists we have the smile of Julia Roberts, which is vitamin C, or Santiago Segura, which is hyaluronic acid because it can increase its volume several times as he does in the movies. But we also have very powerful active ingredients, glycolic acid that is Thor, or retinoids like Brad Pitt, who is one of the world’s favorite protagonists. And in the beauty routine, and at night, Brad Pitt cannot be missing. But we also have the extras that are the perfumes or the dyes that give the film an atmosphere. The important thing is that there is a good formulator who knows how to combine the ingredients at their exact point.
You guys compare ninja turtles to sunscreen.
MG —It’s just that a sunscreen that protects us from ultraviolet B rays is not the same as it is from other radiation such as ultraviolet A, or infrared. And depending on the type of skin, it is also interesting that they are in the cosmetic. Because a ninja turtle fighting against the bad guys is not the same as four ninja turtles. That also justifies that a sunscreen can cost 15 euros or cost 40.
And it is essential to use them even if it is winter.
GH —They are extremely important and essential because the radiation even passes through the glass when we are inside the house.
Do social networks alter the rules of cosmetics with the advice of the ‘influencers’?
GH —It is changing with absurd and counterproductive tendencies. We speak, for example, of slugging which is to apply Vaseline on top of the daily routine. However, Vaseline is very occlusive and, a priori, on dry skin it seems that it hydrates it more, but in the long term it will cause dehydration. And on oily skin it’s a very bad idea because you’re going to have acne for sure.
MG —Then there are other tendencies such as skin fasting or cutaneous fasting, which assimilates intermittent fasting from food to fasting from cosmetics. But it is that your skin does not need to rest from cosmetics, and spending three days without putting anything on your face is a crime. Before, those homemade things, those masks with sugar and all that, your neighbor made them and nothing happened, but now the problem is that a youtuber or a ticktoker manages to make it viral and the scope is more serious.
“We compare the ninja turtles with sunscreens and one fighting against the bad guys is not the same as four”