Skin Care Cosmetics – Over The Counter VS Salon Products

Getting serious about skincare.

Are you looking for a new fresh look or to finally get some time to fix a problem you have been dealing with for a while? We are asked a lot of questions about skincare so I decided to write up an easy guide to the differences between salon only brands and over the counter brands that you can buy in pharmacies and supermarkets as it is one of the key questions we get asked.

Cosmetics versus Cosmeceuticals versus Pharmaceuticals:

Skincare Cosmetics – Over the counter brands are cosmetic in nature and only work on the very top layers of skin – giving a feeling of hydration or cleanliness but only working on the very top layers – this are generally sold in pharamacys and supermarkets. Anyone can choose any type of brand or type of cleanser, toner. moisturiser, mask without knowing if they are correct for their skintype. Everyday brands such as Simple, Loreal and Garnier would be examples of cosmetic brands.

Pharmaceuticals – are medical grade products that are given to people by the Doctor or Dermatologist.

Cosmeceuticals Skincare – are a combination of cosmetics and pharmaceuticals – they work on the functionality of the skin cells at a much deeper layer – these products penetrate the skin to change the make up of skin cells as they are being created to create a real functional change in the nature of the skin i.e. such as reducing acne or redness and sensitivity, or true anti ageing. Dermalogica and Image Skincare would be examples of cosmeceuticals. These products are designed to be recommended by a qualified professional who analyses a persons skin and recommends the correct product for their skin type. Image skincare is a particularly high grade cosmeceutical which requires some products to be used only once a week to build exposure to the high level ingredients.

At Bella Beauty we can give you a product recommendation by analysing your skin using our online Free Skincare consultation – HERE

I hope this makes the differences between what you buy in a salon and what you can buy over the counter a little clearer but if anyone has any questions drop us a line at

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Bella Beauty Ballina is an Award winning Beauty and Hair salon based in Ballina, Co Mayo.