Skin Care: why do we fall for the expensive brands?

Skin Care: why do we fall for the expensive brands?

The delusional views on skin care products

My mum recently watched a programme which had women testing out skin care products. Two unbranded bottles of moisturiser were placed side by side and tested by women. The left-hand moisturiser won. This was a Nivea moisturiser that can be purchased for £5 from Superdrug or Boots. Little did they know, the other was a luxury brand with a price tag of £32.

It’s almost like when I watched a documentary in high school showing that Primark and VS underwear are manufactured by the same factory in China. This of course left 13 year old me shooketh. However, why do I continue to be pulled towards VS? Is it the women associated with the brand? The likes of Candice and Adriana? I know that the products are manufactured by the same people as Primark. So why is it when it comes to this luxury, gorgeous underwear, you will happily pay £50 for a bra and say “it’s Victoria’s Secret though, that’s what it’s like.”

The point I’m making is that, there are many skin care products on the market but we sway towards the ones with a high price tag. Why? Nivea and Simple somehow just don’t make the cut. We turn to high-end brands such as Dermalogica, Kiehl’s, Laura Mercier, Esteé Lauder etc. So, today, I promised myself that if the people at Kiehl’s were not knowledgeable about the skin and everything I wanted – I would simply walk away.

My experience at Kiehl’s: a high-end, luxury skin care brand

I started by telling the lady on the counter about roaccutane. She knew what I meant straight away which to me was an immediate advantage and a big contribution towards how impressive my overall experience was. Not only did she know about the drug, but she knew all the side effects, the after effects, the way it impacts your skin and exactly what it does. As we began to discuss the sebum production in my skin, she asked if the oil was physically visible on the skin like a sheen. I said no. So, we knew it was present because I never have dry skin even when on roaccutane and not using moisturiser, but the oil wasn’t physically visible so someone could quite easily mistake their skin type for normal. So, she asked about my diet and food. I said how I cannot live without milk and go through at least three glasses a day. She knew about the hormones that become unbalanced due to dairy products and it was extremely impressive to witness someone so knowledgeable about their field. Evidently, by this point she had gained my trust and interest. But I could have quite easily gone for Simple or Nivea or L’Oréal. So why didn’t I? That’s another blog post to come.

I told her how I was on a budget too which was even better. She did try to sell the Night Serum to me which is £45 for a bottle. I said how I had already researched it online but can’t afford it right now. The sales-woman was obviously there otherwise she wouldn’t be employed. But she was very well educated, informed, intelligent and aware.

My purchases from Kiehl’s

I decided I would buy two things from the store: a cleanser and a moisturiser. However, the lady also threw in some freebies for me. I think this is a very clever way to get people to warm to and like your products. You allow them to test the serums before purchase and then if the consumer decides they like the product, they come back to buy!

Kiehl’s deep cleansing foaming face wash

This face wash was what the lady suggested for me. It’s for normal to oily skin which is perfect for me. Instead of being oil based for hydration, this product reacts with water instead and the dense foam gently removes impurities and anything clogging the pores. The formula is built with Glycerin for that soothing and replenishing after feel. It is also soap free and sulfate free. You can shop this fabulous cleanser here.

Kiehl’s oil-free gel cream

As we got talking, I said how I have now come off roaccutane and I don’t know what to do. Obviously my skin is still dry as HELL, but what about in a years time when the oil comes back? What if it happens in 2 months? What then? After a little thinking, she suggested that I didn’t want to be feeding my skin with an oily product if there is any chance of my skin becoming spotty again. So, she suggested to stick with this oil-free moisturiser until my skin adjusts to its natural state. I’m not to know if roaccutane has long-term effects on my skin, causing it to remain dry or normal. Or alternatively, if may return to the oil-ridden face that it used to be. But for now, this soothing gel is a good place to start. It’s non-greasy and is fantastic at instantly hydrating. You can shop this moisturiser here.

Additional Freebies!

I was kindly given these two freebies! The toner compliments the cleanser that I purchased. Again, it caters for oily skin types and helps to balance the skins texture out after cleansing. This toner closes the pores after the cleanser opens and flushes them out. I look forward to using this and I guarantee this will lead to a purchase too.

The mask I am not too sure about. I don’t know much about it. She did say it’s a clay mask that is very natural and doesn’t strip or damage the skin and that’s the main thing I was looking for. I can’t wait to try this out either.

So, the question is: why did I fall for the expensive brand? My answer is as follows:

As a society, we are fed marketing material that enforces the ideology that the higher the price tag, the better the product. The higher the price tag, the more educated are the producers behind the product. We fall for the way a product is marketed and the way it is marketed is what tickles our taste buds. Simple is marketed for all demographics and ages; hence why the price is so affordable. Whereas Kiehl’s have created an authentic prestige surrounding their brand: representing themselves as a “Pharmacy” who began in 1851. We pay for the bigger branded material because we think it’s more expensive so it has to be better, right?

We all fall for it. I’m as guilty as you all are. Look at my blog post above! I spent £50 on a moisturiser and cleanser and almost another £45 on a night serum! Yes, I was very impressed with the lady who served me and her level of education. But with higher price tags come higher expectations. You can’t market yourself as a leading skin expert if your representatives don’t live up to your vision statement.

I guarantee there are better skin care products than Kiehl’s out there in the world. But they have built up such a good name for themselves throughout the years and by marketing themselves as experts in the field, they have made us as consumers fall in love with their extremely educated and knowledgeable representatives. I can’t wait to try these products out. I’m very happy with what I have been sold today. I don’t feel like anything was forced onto me or pushed for a sale. Plus, the stall was heaving. Which is always a good sign.

Olivia Fishwick

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